Language: bringing forth a regenerative future…

“By continually expanding the distinctions available to observe and participate in the world in a myriad of ways, humans increase the diversity of ways they can coordinate their actions. Humans are continually inventing new ways of doing things together and so bring forth new creations, whether it is a new dance, more ecologically sustainable buildings or new forms of communication …

Myers-Briggs insights for sustainable business change agents…

During my early coach training, I learned about the Myers-Briggs  temperament preferences.  It helped me understand some of my frustrations in the world and gave me some insights into how I could operate more effectively. It was like the time I found out about the basics of perspective and proportion in drawing – there were actually tools that could help …

3 simple practices for success in the business sustainability game

GreenBiz.com recently released its 2013 State of the Profession report on the sustainability executive job market.  One of its findings was that there are key ways of being that support sustainability leadership success – particularly curiosity and an ambition to communicate effectively. There is a trio of definable and practicable mindsets that support these ways of being. In the same way …

Sustainablity hero

Could you help generate the next Ray Anderson?

More and more people these days know who Ray Anderson was – one of the great  global entrepreneurs, and a world leader in regenerative business. It’s tempting to just accept the 20th century’s “super hero” assumption – but there was more to it than just inspiration.  Ray got inspired because he  had to be inspiring – giving a kick-off speech …

Winning the sustainability game with Good to Great

In 2001, Jim Collins published his research into the factors that turned good businesses into great businesses, performing well above their industry average over long periods of time. The title of the book is “Good to Great. Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t”. Collins described a cyclic process of 6 steps that – pursued persistently – significantly …

What’s YOUR sustainability scope?

How do you stay positive and focussed in the face of overwhelm? In a recent interview for The CO2 Manager, I was asked how I stay positive and focussed when sustainability can seem so overwhelming. Thinking about it, what works for me is: To remember that the fact that there are at least 150 million change-makers in the world. To be …

Regenerative business and coaching…

What’s coaching got to do with Regenerative Business?   In a collaboration with Alan Sieler of Newfield Institute, we explored this question in October 2010.  The detail has changed, but the value proposition hasn’t: A business opportunity for coaches We believe that Regenerative Business Coaching is an emerging area of business for ontological coaches and other forms of coaching. A significant challenge for organisation …

A conversational approach to innovation adoption…

So you’ve got a great idea, and you’ve come up with a proposal that will meet the needs of the people you want to use it. Your work here is done… isn’t it? Well, no – it’s not a done deal until you have your invention turned into an adopted practice – that’s the real work of innovation. Your proposed change requires a …

Love that LEAF

Recently, I had a ride in a Nissan LEAF EV. A friend has just bought one and she took me for a drive. It’s quiet, it’s cool and it’s a distinctive shape in a Megane sort of way. My friend’s experience is that it’s been an amazing conversation starter. In just one week all sorts of people have stopped her …

Looking for leverage…

“Small changes can produce big results – but the areas of highest leverage are often the least obvious.” –  Peter Senge, “The Fifth Discipline” Do we best change the world by pushing it – or does just pushing  hard only  generate resistance? For change-makers, the concept of leverage can be a useful one to work with.  Leverage isn’t just pushing, …

Creating clarity on a sustainable future

In an earlier post “Conversational practices for smart sustainability professionals” I outlined four types of conversations that contribute to effective communication and collaboration. The most overlooked type of conversation is a conversation for clarity, where we articulate and test our understanding of a situation; explore the understandings of others; and develop a shared understanding.  Conversations for clarity  eliminate misunderstandings, build …

Confessions of a Radical Industrialist

Is there a process behind our heroes?

Joel Makower’s recent blog “Why aren’t there more Ray Andersons?” was an interesting read with great insights into who Ray was from other famous sustainability players.  The ongoing conversation from that article is the basis of this post. There was a PROCESS behind Ray Anderson’s “aha” moment on sustainability… I only met Ray through his books, including “Business Lessons of a Radical …

Are your opinions making you impotent?

How we understand and explain the world (our assessments) controls what we see, how we act and how we feel.    If our beliefs and opinions are inaccurate or out-of-date we can find ourselves expending enormous amounts of energy without getting the results we want.   We can find ourselves feeling powerless, resentful and on the road to burnout. If …

My ideal (regenerative) iPhone

My ideal iPhone wouldn’t be mine… My ideal iPhone would be a product of service. It’s body would belong to Apple and I’d lease its services – as an entertainment and communication platform. My data (music, notes, apps, movies, etc.) would be on a removable memory card in the same way the SIM card is removable. It would be upgrade-able …

Farewell Stephen Covey

Author Stephen Covey died last month, age 79 (from complications arising from a bicycle accident!).  The best known of his books is “7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, but I first met him between the covers of “First Things First”, co-written with A. Roger and Rebecca R. Merrill  (Habit #3 is all about putting first things first.) “First Things First” was …

Powerful conversational practices for smart sustainability professionals

“It is through conversations that we interact with each other, coordinate actions and get things done.  Conversations underpin and accompany everything we do, and what we do and do not accomplish.” -Alan Sieler, ‘Coaching to the Human Soul. Volume 1’ p.249 Getting things done in the world – and particularly in business – happens through conversation.  Yet how many of us …

Spreading sustainability: innovation diffusion applied

In the book “Crossing the Chasm“, marketer Geoffrey Moore proposed that there is a specific challenge in moving innovations from the early adopters (technology enthusiasts and visionaries) out into the broader community – particularly in engaging the early majority ( who are pragmatists). Many innovations never make it across “the chasm” into the broader population, regardless of their potential value. If you’re …

Is Cleantech the future of Australian manufacturing?

As different industries grapple with what sustainability means, different terms are being developed to suit specific contexts. One term emerging in the manufacturing sector is Cleantech – short for Clean Technology. John O’Brien of Australian Cleantech defines it as: “Products and services with economic AND environmental benefits” It’s about thinking win/win and letting go of 20th century notions of cost, …

Ontera proves Interface is no fluke

It’s great to have a local story to combat “yes – but it’s different here”.  A favourite story of ours is that of InterfaceFLOR – a commercial carpet manufacturer making a big difference. So hearing about the case study of Sydney carpet maker Ontera at a workshop last month was great. Ontera has profited significantly from their sustainability strategy, and their five …