The next level of Strategic Inclusivity involves the reconfiguring of standard organizational structures.
Along with our instinct to exclude, there’s a genetic trait that we’ve been fine-tuning simultaneously and to such a high degree that, like gravity, we take it for granted. Altruism — and more specifically, Inclusivity.
As mentioned, the need to belong is a psychological need rooted in our desire to survive.
But this is different. Altruistic acts, like including someone in a group, ignites the same primitive region of the brain that sex and food do. It’s deeper than the need to belong or the instinct to exclude.
In the context of sociobiology, the Inclusive Fitness Theory states that “An organism can improve its overall genetic success by inclusive social behavior."
So, while the fear-based and Exclusive Males are pounding their chests at the edge of a territory — or on AM radio — the more inclusive Males are hanging back with the females — improving their overall genetic success so to speak.
So, if survival of the fittest is the game — and those with more inclusive behavior have more genetic success, then why is our species still locked into this Exclusivity Ethos that celebrates elitist attitudes and hierarchical structure?
Whatever the reason, the model is obsolete and we need to rise against it and replace it.
"If the goal is to come up with great ideas that help everyone, then letting everyone in to help is the first great idea."
Open Source Sessions
[See TEDx Talk Above]
If a group or company needs to come up with new, even groundbreaking ideas, don’t limit participation.
Invite everyone in on the initial call or meeting. From the receptionist to the CEO — having a bigger title doesn’t increase your creative ability.
Make these sessions Title-Free Zones.
The Spiral Ascent Model
We live in a time of tremendous attention deficit yet an increasingly sophisticated public eye.
When someone is excelling at anything in this environment — sales, design, construction, whatever — it’s because they are doing something iconoclastic . Like a Rebel,
they’re overthrowing traditional methods that are no longer enough to meet goals or to get attention.
Our current model is a Vertical Promotion one — we reward a person by promoting them above their peers and out of their sweet spot.
We give them a raise, a bigger title and a job description that includes overseeing and developing their peers so their results can be multiplied.
It’s a terrific idea.
There’s a snag though. We’re talking about human beings.
The more likely scenario is that the peers left back will resent the recently promoted and form a quiet fiefdom against them. Conversely, the person promoted may retreat to the Executive Washroom and begin the political plotting toward the next station.
In the current Exclusivity Ethos, someone who excels gets placed in perfect balance between their expertise and their incompetence.
"Go at it boldly, and you'll find unexpected forces closing round you and coming to your aid." —Basil King
When I first heard that I was quite literally emboldened. The idea that taking the risk of putting a bold idea or piece of work out there will summon unseen forces was… is still thrilling.
I consider this quote a touchstone for a New Model of rewarding excellence. I call it the...
Concentric Enhancement Model
A Promotion raises someone's position while an Enhancement improves value and quality.
Instead of lifting these people out of their expertise and above others, an Inclusivity Ethos Manager will surround them with the others in concentric circles to aid them, enhance their resources and learn what’s working on the same level.
Of course this person should get the raise, but there should be an extra stipend for those peers who aid the most and strive to duplicate their best practices.
These people are being bold and we should bring mighty forces to their aid.
Th Bliss Assessment Assessment
While following the protocols and customs of your workplace like a Monk, be sure that you're resisting conventions that obstruct you or your group from inclusive productivity.
Take advantage of having your people together and in a cooperative, inclusive frame of mind.
At the end of each Opens Source Session, invite everyone to answer the Bliss question: “What skill or talent do I have that I wish more people recognized?” The answer unveils our bliss path, if you will. It’s what we wish were doing instead or doing more of. And the harder it gets to answer this question, the closer we are, and the group is to bliss. Invite but don’t require participants to share it with the group. Then pose the problem or challenge for the next Open Source Session. But ask the group to bear in mind their answer to the Bliss Question while developing their ideas. Whether or not they shared their answer, coming at a problem from this angle will inspire a new set of ideas from a deeper place.
I want to share with you a personal practice I call the Lawndala Dharma.
You probably know what a Mandala is — a symbolic pattern created with colored sand or other media as a meditation.
Dharma, in this instance, means conformity to one’s duty and nature — in other word using mundane tasks or chores as meditations.
By Lawndala, I means…well…Lawn (as in Grass)
Whenever I need to mow the lawn, I first plot out a new pattern and, even though it can make the chore take longer, the practice of seeing it through makes it a Dharma for me..."
My lawn managed its own Facebook page for a time.
While obeying the laws of the world and the customs of the workplace, are you breaking enough rules and casting off enough conventions that bring You Closer to Your bliss?
Just as every group has a mix of cognitive styles, so does our own brain.
Every decision we make is the end result of a debate between the billions of neurons firing between centers of or brain and readings from our heart.
If you have a linear problem, draw a picture.
A spatial problem, write it out.
Or do what I do and mow the lawn.