The GLEN Ecosystem
To support The GLEN’s exploratory learning, we have developed an initial structure called the GLEN Ecosystem. This diagram graphically illustrates how the different learning elements of The GLEN interact to create a real ecosystem for advancing our knowledge in the fields of collaboration and change. It is a scaffolding that we hope will provide a lattice for a robust, co-creative effort on the part of GLEN members to evolve all the elements.
- PURPOSE: Our north star is our strong alignment on a shared purpose of advancing the field of collaborative methods, in a broad, boundary-spanning way. In addition, the whole Earth image in the logo reminds us of our commitment to think systemically and act collaboratively worldwide.
- NETWORKING: Being known and appreciated by a network of committed colleagues is important in sustaining the intense work that change consultants and collaborative organization leaders take on. The GLEN’s commitment is to keep the network at a size where people can actually get to know and trust each other. We will work to support a diversity of spontaneous connections as well as diversity in age, cultural backgrounds, and geography.
- EXCHANGES with other members: Programs and gatherings that intentionally work with the pooled experience of participants, exploring significant questions at the edges of our practice to generate insights. These sessions are sourced and led by GLEN members. “Exchanges” is a metaphor that invites us to evolve new approaches to collaborative learning based on curiosity, the willingness to examine deeply-held beliefs, and a deep reciprocity that results in a sense of mutual empowerment. These are held both on zoom.us and in person.
- COLLABORATIONS on key issues: Members sponsor and lead action learning collaborations focused on critical issues, pushing the edges of methodology to support collective impact. These projects will provide opportunities for members with diverse experience to work together and support each other on their different initiatives. Project leads organize teams of members who express interest in collaborating and will generate their own processes for taking action and business models for new tools development if that is their interest. All project teams are encouraged to harvest and share learning with the membership as a whole through this website.
- LEARNING JOURNEYS at your own pace: Members are invited to share experiences by authoring Learning Journeys—self-directed explorations of how members are advancing the field—using a full vocabulary of text, graphics, and video. For authors, the website allows for feedback preliminary to wider sharing in other media. For learners, it provides post-workshop and event support for self-paced professional development. The Learning Journeys are focusing on five areas: 1) Personal and Leadership Transformation; 2) Team Development; 3) Visual & Virtual Facilitation; 4) Organizational Strategy & Evolution; and 5) Social Change. Currently, David Sibbet works as the lead facilitative editor. As we evolve an editorial support team will help members with these kinds of communications.
We anticipate a range of levels of involvement. Those who join as founding members will help co-create the learning infrastructure needed to grow the network. Those members who are most highly engaged in guiding action learning Collaborations, hosting Exchanges and contributing to Learning Journeys are invited to participate as The GLEN’s meta-learners, coming together as a core group to follow threads of interest and synthesize what The GLEN community is learning. They will help shape the projects and topics addressed, and they will be stewards of sharing insights and evolving methods with the larger field.