Echoes from SoL Finland conferencePosted: November 13, 2008
I attended the 2 day conference by the Society of Organizational Learning in Finland a few days ago. (www.solconference.com) The arrangements were interactive with well over hundred participants and guests from France and Australia. The arrangements could easily handle even more participants.
Some things that left echoing in my mind…
SoL France has made a study of several succesfull big cultural transformations. One key finding I want to publish here: In all cases there was a close co-operation of internal and external consultant. In every case. I have experience of this and can wholeheartedly support the finding. And here the internal consultant means really a coach, not just a managing contact person. Full time for organizations over 1000 people. Please compare with the Scrum Master role in Agile SW tradition.
I have quite strong background in working with groups and individuals. Learning Organizations tradition seems to emphasize leadership actions and other things concerning the whole. For me the experience reminded of how leadership affects local phenomena. And the Learning Organization mainstream might benefit from remembering classical (unconscious) group phenomena, like dependency, group defenses etc.
Also A close study of Toyotas practical practises might bridge the gap from values and visions to everyday work and local interaction. Also Agile software development has very valuable experiences tho be shared with other fields.
Finally this proved again that a big conference can be made interactive, inviting into participation and resulting to great energy and feelings of connectedness.