Adaptive Leadership incorporates the human complexities of organizational life. Based on the work of Ronald Heifetz, Marty Linsky, and Dean Williams of the Harvard Kennedy School, adaptive leadership is defined as the practice of "mobilizing people to tackle a challenge and thrive". Leadership does not refer to a person or a people, but is instead it is a verb - it is something one practices. The framework provides a language and immediately applicable strategies to inform your approach to leadership.
We operate in groups - whether as a department, sales team, family, community, etc - it is how we have survived as a species. And in a group, how we engage is largely defined by the reason why we exist as a group, personal experience, shared experiences, one's ethnicity, gender, etc. What happens in one part of the system effects another part of the same system. In other words, everything is connected. My knowledge and perspective on systems and groups are informed by my training in group dynamics with the AK Rice Institute.
As coined by leading design firm, IDEO, HCD is essentially about creating solutions to problems based on a deep understanding of the people you are serving. We integrate HCD principles as we design strategies and solutions for a client. We customize every solution based on a process of research, observation, assessments, and stated needs. What you have at the end are solutions that adapt tried and true methodologies to meet the unique needs of your organization.
It is not change that people resist, instead what people resist is the loss that change implies. As adult development psychologists Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey would put it, we each have built psychological immune systems that protect us from sustaining the losses of change. The Immunity-to-Change framework has helped individuals and organizations surface the hidden system and unlock the potential to finally make progress on the changes we desire.
Informed by the work of Adam Kahane and Otto Scharmer, our approach to scenario planning deviates from the norm in that it inherently incorporates a combination of the above frameworks to inform a group's approach to planning. In other words, to scenario plan in a meaningful way, one cannot not exercise leadership and put into practice the key tenets of the Adaptive Leadership and organizational dynamics. We have found that the most valuable part of the process is that it allows participants to both look at the future from the lens of systems as well as the role of the individual.