Five Roles of Change Agents
LifeWork mapping starts as an individual practice of making more meaning of our life, but as it unfolds, it rapidly becomes a community art.
Here you will find the explanation of the latest version of my Circle of LifeWork that I update annually, on my birthday. If you are interested on the deeper meaning of the directions, the process and benefits of developing your own Circle of LifeWork, read my article about it in Enlivening Edge: http://www.enliveningedge.org/columns/mapping-a-lifework/
East — VISION HOLDER (Meaning Making)
Having been playing this role (formally or informally) in various organizations and groups I’m involved with, I recognize its domain as the future in need of our wise action and collaboration today. The ultimate purpose of this role is to keep me available, moment-to-moment, to the evolutionary impulse. manifesting in/through/as me.
The accountabilities of this role include:
• Sensing, articulating, and responding to the highest potential of everyone and every situations
• Providing a vantage point for my other roles, from which they can deepen their self-knowledge and have their action better aligned with what is needed.
South — EVOLUTIONARY AGENT (Relationship Building)
This role’s domain is the facilitation of evolutionary transformation in people, organizations, and social systems. Its purpose is to strengthen the ecosystem of co-evolving transformational movements, by fostering meaningful connections among them.
The role’s accountabilities include:
• Expanding evolutionary entrepreneurship in business, government, and civil society, by helping reinvent them in alignment with the universal principles of self-organization.
• Mentoring people and organizations, who want their work be guided by the next-stage of human consciousness, supported by the R3 framework of Reckoning, Reinventing, Regeneration.
• Charting organisational strategies for communities of practice that liberate the creative potential of their members.
• Serving thought-leaders and facilitators of transformational change, by being their strategic learning partner and amplifying the impact of their work.
• Rebalancing the ravaging effects of the patriarchal millennia on the fabric of social relations, by fostering the mutual power of women and men.
West — CO-INTELLIGENCE CATALYST (Co-evolution Fostering)
The domain here is the emergent collective intelligence (CI) of groups, organizations, cities, and other complex adaptive social systems. Here, I define CI as the capacity of human communities to evolve towards higher-order complexity and harmony, through such innovation mechanisms as variation-feedback-selection, differentiation-integration-transformation, and competition-cooperation-“coopetition”.
The role’s purpose is boosting the emergent collective intelligence, consciousness, and impact of the ecosystem of next-stage organizations and initiatives until they become the new mainstream of organizing work. (This purpose of the Co-Intelligence Catalyst role of mine is presently also under exploration as the proposed explicit mission of Enlivening Edge.)
The role’s accountabilities can be memorized with a new meaning of the familiar acronym, HTML, which in this case, stands for:
• Humans — supporting people who know that none of us is smart as all of us, and want to graduate from communities of learners to communities that learn.
• Tools — advising the creation of maps and platforms of transformational movements and post-conventional educational offers, including their Community Knowledge.
• Methods — contributing to the development of, and sharing the fruits of, new approaches to augment CI.
• Learning — inspiring the formation of communities of CI-boosting practice, where practitioners can become ever better at their art, thanks to the mutual exposure to each other’s mental models and practices.
North — PRAXIS RESEARCHER (Knowledge Development)
Praxis is the name of the dance floor where Mr. Theory and Ms. Practice caper together. They alternate who is leading, cuddling and clinging with entwined limbs, in good days, knowing that they can get far away from each other only at their own peril.
That dance floor is the domain of the Praxis Researcher.
My work as a researcher is the work of a basket weaver. My “craft” and purpose is to weave a basket of deep understanding of how the evolution of consciousness and society work and affect each other, and then to share it with all who are inspired to foster that evolution. In that role, I want to dive for ever-deeper truths in the overlap of science, spirituality, technology, and social change.
The accountabilities of this role include:
• Conducting participatory action research (PAR) into the future of work and organizing
• Developing scalable PAR methodologies suitable to cause the resolution of wicked challenges in organizations and social systems
• Contributing to the further development of the PAR field, through writing and publishing, and through cultivating epistemic communities
Center — THE UNSPEAKABLE QUALITY
In the center of my Circle of Lifeworks, the space is held for an unspeakable quality, or “the quality without a name”, as Christopher Alexander calls it. (Alexander, Christopher (1979). The Timeless Way of Building. Oxford University Press)
There are names that try to describe that space, like Wholeness, Emptiness, Non-duality, Oneness, the Source, the Light, and more (including the Force, for Star Wars fans.) They all reflect an aspect of the unspeakable quality, but when a name is given, its living, multidimensional nature is reduced to a concept. I hold it as the evolutionary impulse manifesting in/through/as me, as well as in/through/as all of us." (Facebook, December 2016)
"If the LifeWork mapping calls you, read my introductory how-to article about it here http://www.enliveningedge.org/columns/mapping-a-lifework/ and start practicing it. If you're interested in future practice-development opportunities, please say so here: http://www.enliveningedge.org/contact-form/." Another way to get engaged with this practice is to ask yourself, as you re-read the accountabilities of my roles, which of them could serve you or your organization. If you find something that strikes you as valuable to you, think also what form of value exchange could you suggest that would make it sustainable for both sides and drop me a line about it at george(at)enliveningedge(dot)com.