short news from ebbf members
During this 25th anniversary event we will explore together:
what is the role and how can unity and collaboration
be defined and implemented in the prosperity-creating organizations we aim to create and influence?
Congratulations to ebbf member Sandya Abrar (pictured in the bottom left of this image) on winning the #YPGEA15 Young Professional Green Energy Academic Award.
She won this prize after submitting here thesis titled: The impact of bioenergy development on the climate resilience of vulnerable communities in Kenya.
She offers here an interesting summary of her findings:
The purpose of this project was to examine whether bioenergy developments has an impact on the climate resilience of vulnerable communities in Kenya. Interviews were conducted with professionals and several projects and programmes were visited on site. The research, based on evidence, shows that traditional use of solid biomass, which is the most popular source of energy in Kenya, is believed to have a negative impact on climate resilience.
However, most of the interviews and projects visited have also demonstrated that, in certain conditions and under specific circumstances, bioenergy developments can reveal strong climate resilience characteristics. If they cannot by themselves improve considerably the resilience to climate change, some of them, when combined with measures and initiatives aimed at improving the life of the most vulnerable, do achieve this purpose.
This study also demonstrates, once again, how important it is for any project, programme or technology to address the specific needs and tastes of the populations they intend to serve and how engagement, empowerment and ownership by the communities is key to achieve success.
A higher consideration and respect for local cultures and ways of living, promoting a grass-‐root approach, encouraging collective actions through capacity building and awareness raising, and finally providing financial and political support, will help generate more suitable and targeted technologies and programmes, including those related to bioenergy, that would improve the climate resilience of vulnerable communities in Kenya and elsewhere.
#ebbflisbon - post-event opportunities to re-connect and keep exploring with keynoter Emanuel Gävert
How can people improve organizations? this is one of the questions we explored during the recent ebbf international learning event.
Emanuel Gävert (you can see him in the image on the left in one of the event’s “meaningful conversations”) was one of the keynoters at the event together with his partner Majken Rønne and he will offer insights and then open the floor to an interactive exploration on “the little things that allow us to make big changes happen in our workplaces”.
Go here to book your free place and join people from around the world in this interactive opportunity Wednesday 24th of June at 20:00 (CEST)
New York - congratulations to Sean Hinton on his new post at the Open Society Foundation and Soros Economic Development Fund
Warmest congratulations to Sean Hinton who also keynoted in a recent ebbf international event on his personal story, crossing continents continuously seeking and losing and seeking and finding ways to positively impact through his work in various multinational positions.
We look forward to hearing of his new ideas and opportunities for meaningful impact as he will be soon joining the Open Society Foundations as the director of their new Economic Advancement Program and chief executive officer of the Soros Economic Development Fund.
From September 2015, Hinton will lead the Foundations’ economic advancement agenda, which aims to encourage sound economic policies and wise financial investment that drive shared, equitable growth. Hinton will start in Open Society’s New York office and will be based in the London office from the second quarter of 2016.
Emanuel Gävert, Senior Manager Global Chocolate for Mondelêz International, London, and Majke Rønne, Head of E-Commerce at AG, Sweden closed the conference with their keynote about little things that enable big thing. Being spiritually and phisically ready for the day is what they do everyday. Their advice is to spend more time in nature. Art and music are another important component, e.g. going to festivals. And how to keep yourself a curious individual? They have a learning library. The different spaces that we have – they believe – are guiding our behaviours. Moving on to the big things changing values and behaviours it’s really hard: how can we have a transformative impact? They asked some key questions to start a meaningful conversation: What if we moved 30 minutes everyday? What if everyone took time to reflect? What is there wasn’t too much or too little food? What if we lived in communities? What if we learned something new everyday?
You can also decide to start a meaningful conversation after having read this article.
Marc Rivers, CFO of Roche’ s Pharma Global Division in Switzerland, showed a video to introduce the concept of concentric connectedness. Who we are? As individuals, we are spiritual beings, like a child in the womb. Then we have groups and organizations, as biome. The enviroment influences the organization. The Moving to opportunity experiment, realized in order to demostrate that. Community does matter: each additional year in a better area improved the income of the test sample people. How can we improve organizations? The thought of changing the organization can feel overwhelming. Organitations are composed of individuals: change the individuals and the organization will also change, so you have to inventory your relationship and work on them day by day.
We are part of a greater whole. Our purpose is to learn, grow and fulfill our potential. Organizations are excellent class / biomes / bodies / communities in which we can learn. Organization are excellent ways to improve society. Individuals help organizations, organizations help individuals: a true symbiotic love story.
Alain Gauthier, Executive Director at Core Leadership Development, offered his keynote about evolutionary co-leadership, addressing four questions: 1. Why are new forms of leadership needed? 2. What characterizes evolutionary co-leadership? 3. Which integral practices enable this embodiment? 4. How to develop it and scale it up? During the keynote he explored the first two.
Starting to talk about the new forms of leadership, he explained that co-enterpreneurship, located in the middle of the curve between entrepreneuship and plutocracy leading to disintegration could generate chaos, so that another form of leadership is needed in order to overcome it.
We can identify four domains of human experience from the combination of the individual / collective and interior / exterior variables and two dimension of evolution, from the combinatiin of the I / We and interior / exterior variables. We can also distinguish between evolutionists, limited to the externally observable aspects, and evolutionists, who appreciate borth exterior and interior aspects.
A domination paradigm creates authoritarian and punitive social structures, which are causing the current polycrisis like ethnic/religious conflicts, ecological threats, economic disoarities, erosion of solidarity, etc. If we turn to a partnership paradigm we find equality as intrisic value, mutual trust and flat structures and what has to be built are some stories and myths honoring partnership as normal.The paradigm shift we need is from machines to living systems: from command and control ro collaborative dynamics. Which are the forms of collaborative leadership? Learning, sharing, distributing, distributing, rotating, complementary, co-creative, consultative, accompanying, collegial, cooperative, etc.
Moving to the second question he explored the characteristics of co-leadership. Lead comes from the indo-eropean word “leath”, which means “going forward, “crosseing threshold” or even “dying”. The practice of co-leadership invite other to cross a threshold, venture together into the unknown, sense together what is trying to eme rge and open up a space whwre individual creativity and collective wisdon can be combined. Examples of co-leadership can be found in sports, art (jazz ensemble, theatre improvisation), movies (Lord of rings, Star Wars, Matrix,…) and economy.
An evolutionary discenrs deep patterns and integrates disciplines theat have been separated, in reflection as in action; look At reality with a sense of long, deep time; trusts the life process and show profound faith in the future and, last but not least, experiences co-creating and being co-responsible for evolution.
Evolutionary co-leadership is the synthesis between indivisual heroic leadership (thesis) and collective / cooperative leadership (antithesis): it’s the application of the moderation value. Evolutionary co-leadership can be seen as dances: the inner dance of personal practiced on one side, the interpersonal and systemic practices on the other one and the evolutionary dance as metasystemic practice.
Which are the possible next steps? He suggested individual and collective inquiry, experimentation, feedback and sharing; identifying and supporting other co-evolutionary experiments and the participation to communities of pratice.
Luis Monteiro, Head of Professional Services at Unit 4, told his personal story to introduce his keynote. He is a people centric person, believing in people-centric organizations. A people centric organization is open and trustworthy, it shares the vision and the plan, explain the reasons, provide autonomy, promote transparency and authenticity. Building realtionship is another important thing, including inclusion, sense of belonging, collaboration, communication, nature of the relations and friendship. He is still in contact with is former collegue from the previous company he worked for, Altran: he is a friend to them. Last, but not least, courage is needed: always learining, experiment, be assertive, accept differences and assume risks. What are the boundaries of people-centric organization? He prefer not to establish boundaries and believes that a people-centric organization is possible.
Vafa Akhavan, CEO of CEO Forum, opened the Ebbf conference in Lisbon with a keynote presenting his journey through organizational theory and personal transformation. His thesis is that people can improve organizations by becoming seekers. Seekership is the genoma of organizations and where it’s present it will transform the organization. In his personal journey he learned that back-biting is a cancer, prejudice is a virus, he is nothing but he is everything and many other things. Human capital is the greatest capital and has multiple relationships with many aspects of the business, it expresses itself with organizational structure. He reached the conclusion that the person is the most common denominator in all things. His struggle was between being the center of the universe and not being even dust. He told that his learinings came from the Writings of the Baha’i Faith: the trasformative experience was the Tablet of the True Seeker, describing the Seven Valleys. The true seker “hunteth naught but the object of his quest”. Are some unique attributes that trasform what we do? They are the qualities of the seeker: answers, profitability, integrity, justice, trutth, fair, and many more. The Tablet of the True Seeker is the catalyst that impact every aspect of life. The ideal qualities are rely upon and trust in God, detachment from the world of dust, never seek to exalt self above others, don’t promise what you can’t deliver, cleanse the channel of human soul. Perfect cleanliness of the heart, poor in material wealth, douts and misgiving dissipated, enveloped with knowledge, and, last but not least, a news eye, a new ear, a new heart and a new mind. The seeker impact the organization and the organization impact the seeker: interdepence is created. One seeker can change the world.
ebbf member Elisa Mallis recently won the opportunity to fly into space, as part of an astronaut training project relating to the XCOR Space Expeditions.
What struck us was how clearly she expressed her values and her way of applying spirituality even in this kind of workplace. You can read below just a few of the phrases she used in a longer interview she gave for the astronaut program.
“I believe that as more leaders take a truly global perspective we will finally be ‘solving for the world’ and we will have a real opportunity to tackle some of the biggest challenges that threaten our planet and our existence.” and “having worked and lived in 16 countries … I explored many cultures, religions and spiritual traditions. What I continuously noticed was that although there are so many differences, the similarities are astounding and in many ways more important … appreciating the many ways to nurture the human spirit in the workplace across all cultures and religions … creating in me a ‘one world’ perspective.
You can read here the full interview introducing you to her current work, her future ambitious and the values that sustain her life.