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Responding to the Exponential Demand for Systems Thinking
May 5, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm EDT
The “demand” for systems thinking has never been greater. Period. And it’s growing. Exponentially. Yet, our ability to meaningfully recognize and respond to that demand comes nowhere near closing such a critical gap – a gap that simply must be closed – especially now. Much like other “causal” systems, there are reasons for (and solutions to) this one – reasons quite familiar even to VCs in Silicon Valley – reasons that can be understood – and solutions that can be internalized and put into practice to bridge the gap. Join us for a conversation with Scott Spann (author of the soon to be published book “Solving for the Impossible; Harnessing Chaos & Complexity; Humanizing Applied Systems Thinking: for Leadership in an Age of Wicked Problems.”) as we explore how to meet that demand by, paradoxically, never uttering the words “systems thinking”. Scott has successfully applied his own formula for “systems thinking” with clients like Apple, HP, The Nature Conservancy, former Guerilla leaders in Guatemala – and many others – including VCs. On May 5th@11amET/8amPT, we’ll be exploring case studies along with the principles, practices, and processes (now its own body of work, rooted in “systems thinking”) that emerged from them – with plenty of time for a deeper Q&A.
About the presenters:
Scott Spann solves seemingly “impossible” problems in Business and Society. His work is inspired by his experience with business leaders – trying to do the right thing in complex, competitive situations; his work with Social leaders in NGO’s and government – seeking to satisfy diverse stakeholders in ways that benefit the whole; his career as a Rolfer and trauma psychotherapist – witnessing people recover from the injuries that life and humanity too often deal us; his time in nature as a cowboy, hunter, and sailor; and his training as an internationally competitive athlete.
Born and raised in South Texas working on ranches and fishing boats, Scott’s experiences range from consulting with Arthur Andersen & Co. to launching the Texas office of The Nature Conservancy; Managing Vice President of RPC, a small national consulting firm, to leading the Rolf Institute; Vice President for ARC, International, a global leadership development & cultural change group, to Stone Yamashita Partners, global branding & strategy firm; CEO for VC firms to working with former guerrilla & indigenous leaders in Guatemala. And he continues to learn by working with Business and Social leaders today.
Scott’s applied his unique strategic methodologies successfully in businesses like Apple, HP, and Humana; with social issues like Climate Change, Affordable Housing, and Social Justice with foundations and NGOs; and on complex projects for the U.S. Navy and the White House.
Kell Delaney has boundless curiosity and playfulness that he brings into all areas of his life—work, relationships, hobbies, and his partnerships with his clients.
As a Consultant & Experience Designer working for Conversant, LLC and based out of Boulder, Colorado, Kell’s primary focus is on bringing his curiosity and playfulness to working with individuals, groups, teams, communities, and organizations (human beings) to build connection: through relationship, conversation, curiosity, play, and empathy. He strongly believes that everything we do happens through human connection (good or bad!) and that the opportunity to affect lives, communities, and the world is grounded in improving the quality of these connections.
Kell also has a particular fascination with how technology is shaping how we work. He leads the charge on everything having to do with the adoption of technology in the workplace for Conversant clients and is mostly focused on keeping the “human” and our relationships front and center in this new world. He is widely read, experienced, and constantly exploring the cutting edge of learning, collaboration, and how people do their best work in the modern workplace.
Kell holds an MA in Communication from the University of Colorado Boulder and it was in this program where he developed a fascination with the gap between what we aspire to be and who we are in our day-to-day. From the surprising conversations that emerge from a World Cafe to the transformative insights revealed during a complex collaboration project, it is experiences like these that reveal our “gaps” to us. With the right perspective, focusing on closing those gaps can be a playful and profound way to grow, learn, and transform our contribution.
In his free time, Kell loves experiences that help him to play even more–by escaping into the mountains of Colorado with friends to ski, hike, or to enjoy the challenge of his most recent obsession–mountain biking.