I will try to unpack these first thoughts in more depth in future posts.  For now, I want to share some of what emerged for me during my time at the 2016 OD Network Conference in Atlanta.

  •  The embodied nature of our work as OD scholar-practitioners.  During all of my sessions, we engaged both the literal and metaphorical human body.  Whether it was standing, gazing, touching (with permission!), and exploring trauma-informed identity with Harrison Snow and Brenda Boyd, or discussing the model of Healthcare Organization as Patient with Irv Rubin, Matt Stone, and Paul Sokoloff, the body was essential to the understanding and application of our change work. Summarized from Matt’s talk, I tweeted:

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  • Structure shapes behavior.  Sandra Janoff’s workshop was an intimate exploration of managing structures and systems to lead from a place of awareness, creativity, respect, and diversity, based on her new book with partner Marv Weisbord Lead More, Control Less 8 Advanced Leadership Skills That Overturn Convention.Sandra modeled for us the ways in which leaders can shape behavior in their contexts by using the simplest of techniques (like starting on time, setting up chairs to place people in a circle for discussion, etc.)
  • Co-creating in community is amazing (and fun!).  Prior to the conference, I had an opportunity to work with a small group of current and recent grads from some of the best OD programs in the country in a collaborative design for the ODEA.  Working with a very quick turnaround with strangers, we quickly organized, planned, and delivered an experience that helped this organization explore their history and plan for their future.  I felt really energized and grateful to be part of this opportunity.

Can’t wait for next year’s conference in Chicago!

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