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URLeading: Module 4: The Organization Workshop

This guide contains links, documents, and other information for UR Leading participants.

Module 3: The Organization Workshop

The Organization Workshop

THE ORGANIZATION WORKSHOP involves a variety of learning activities all of which are aimed at deepening your understanding of organizational partnerships -- to see more clearly the day-to-day dynamics that regularly knock us out of partnership, what gets in the way of creating and sustaining satisfying and productive partnerships, and what it takes to to develop concrete strategies for considering, creating and maintaining satisfying and productive partnerships up, down, and across organizational lines...including with our clients/stakeholders.

Through the Organization Workshop, participants have the opportunity to:

  • Understand intellectually and experience viscerally the differing "worlds" of Tops, Middles, Bottoms, and Customers, and develop concrete strategies for working more constructively across organizational lines;
  • Recognize the multiplicity of roles we play, as sometimes Top, Middle, Bottom and Customer/Client. We will recognize and avoid the disempowering pitfalls of each position, and approach each role with more effective behavior;
  • Learn how to build partnership in lateral relationships with our peers and create exciting new synergies; and
  • Provide leadership that addresses issues systemically rather than personally.

Module 3: The Organization Workshop - Pre Read

In preparation for the Core Module 3 workshop please complete the following:
Read the article Total System Power found at this link:
Watch the video featuring Barry Oshry, author of Seeing Systems: Unlocking the Mysteries of Organizational Life (2nd edition, 2007)
On the occasion of Power+Systems' 40th anniversary, Barry Oshry spoke at PwC, London, UK, June 2015. The theme: Transforming System Blindness, with all its personal and organizational costs, into the creative possibilities that come with System Sight.

Module 3: The Organization Workshop - Pre Work

**Please bring your Pre Work responses with you.**

In your journal answer the following questions:
1. After listening to Barry Oshry's presentation and reading the article Total System Power
a) Consider "We are all Tops. Middles, Bottoms and Customers , these are the conditions all of us face in whatever position we occupy." (Barry Oshry, Total System Power).
b) In the last 4-5 months what conditions have you experienced? What were the circumstances that resulted in you experiencing these conditions? Consider the definitions from the paper as you reflect on these questions.
c) What condition(s) are you currently experiencing? What is the potential of this condition(s)? How might you be sabotaging the potential of this condition(s), i.e. building partnerships across unit, faculty, department boundaries; contributing to a joint project; and supporting others' success?

Module 3: The Organization Workshop - Workshop Materials

All materials will be provided at the workshop.