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July 2014

A return to the coastal path

By Dave Snowden  ·  July 26, 2014  ·  Walks & Bike rides

My original plan for this three week tour had been to manage two days of exercise in Sydney.  I had the option of the full weekend in New Zealand and in summer I would have taken that and aimed too complete another section of the Queen Charlotte Trail (I missed posting on that and I must do at some stage).  However that walk was in Summer and it is now winter and I would have had to take some serious kit.   Winter in Sydney however is more like spring in the UK so walking there made more sense given the packing restrictions.  I had...

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The first seminar on scaling

By Dave Snowden  ·  July 25, 2014  ·  SenseMaker®

After my series of posts on scaling it was time to but some of that work into a seminar/training course that I ran with Simon Bennett.  We'd spent some time talking and planning it on a walk near Congee beach with Simon and Saf earlier in the week and I got a chance to see their first baby, produced after less than two hours labour which is enough to make any husband envious let alone mothers.  Mind you Saf is one of the best organisers I have ever known.  We'd organised the whole thing with less than a weeks notice so it was good...

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Scaling: the perversion of order

By Dave Snowden  ·  July 24, 2014  ·  Reflections

To my final post on scaling, at least for the moment as it's a big and developing subject.  There is a tendency in some complexity writing to simply abandon the whole question of management to vague and idealistic statements about self-organising and natural systems.  The simple fact is that choosing not to do something is as much an intentional act as to do something; sins of omission are at the same level as those of commission.  The issue is not management, but what is the focus of management.  To put it simply it's all about...

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Scaling: context is all

By Dave Snowden  ·  July 23, 2014  ·  Reflections

In my second post on scaling I talked about about two types of scaling and the last two posts handled the issue of scaling up within the enterprise.  The essence of yesterday's post was that we need to allow cluster patterns to emerge from finely grained objects in three areas: strategy, capability and needs.  Each of those patterns allows a new emergent potentiality to shift to realisation.  This evolutionary approach is all about sustainability and resilience, designing capability not product.  In this post I want to pick up the...

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Scaling: of gaps and things

By Dave Snowden  ·  July 22, 2014  ·  Reflections

Yesterday I promised to move on the How do you scale success? question but working on Friday's seminar with Simon that afternoon various other thoughts came to mind and I started to sketch out the diagrams that appear below.  

For those interested and able to get to Sydney this link will give you a third off the full price

So my plan today is to talk more about the issue of granularity and non-linearity in scaling.  I want to do this in the context of understanding the dynamic between three aspects of an organisation:

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Chronology