Seth Kahan and Steve Denning Lead a Collaborative Workshop, “Revolutionizing the World of Work”
Seth Kahan, change leadership expert, and Steve Denning, former World Bank director and award-winning author led a two-day gathering, May 12 & 13, in Washington, DC on “Revolutionizing the World of Work” – a conversation dedicated to reinventing business, government, education, health and associations for the 21st Century.
Seth Kahan, an international speaker and change leadership expert, shared jump start storytelling techniques drawn from his work with leaders in the World Bank, Peace Corp, Royal Dutch Shell, Prudential Retirement and 40 plus organizations. He outlined strategies and tactics to help remake the management mindset to reinvent business, government, education, and health. Tips and guidelines discussed can be found in Kahan’s Washington Post bestseller, “Getting Change Right: How Leaders Transform Organizations from the Inside Out,” which was identified on the American Express OPEN Forum as a Top 20 of 2010.
Steve Denning, former World Bank director who received international recognition for his successful transformation of the old-school, decentralized, multi-cultural lending international agency in the 90s, led the gathering with insights into why today’s broken institutions don’t work. His keynote highlighted the differences in Traditional Management style vs Radical Management styles as described in his best-selling book, “The Leaders Guide to Radical Management: Reinventing the Workplace for the 21st Century.” He highlighted what successful companies (Apple, Amazon, Salesforce.com) are doing vs. those recognizable behemoths whose share prices are dropping or flatlining (GE, Walmart, etc).
The event was interactive and collaborative in nature with attendees separating into break-out sessions to strategize ways to reinvent the workplace. Two participants answered the question why they came. Here is a comment by a manager from a Fortune 50 health care company:
“These ideas resonated with me. I work in a large organization and it's obvious that command and control is a disaster and we need to aspire to these ways of working. In my company we just went through a change initiative that was about saving $10 million, but it was billed as bringing us closer to the customer. It was a complete lie. We are getting this wrong and the stakes are really high. We need this kind of thing so badly.”
Jim Hays, a consultant for Cisco, said, “I came because I believe in the revolution and I'm trying to learn how to apply it to the world of technology, the way its sold, the way its bought, and the way its leveraged. I want to know how do we get better business outcomes out for technology. How we do it better. It's been a push model and we need to turn it into pull model.”
Kahan covered the event live - with articles posted on both Fast Company and Forbes' websites. Forbes registered well over 1,000 views of each post (1st post: http://ow.ly/4VYma, and 2nd post: http://ow.ly/4VYnB). There was also a live twitter feed at #revwork with insights from participants and our practice partners, Madelyn Blair, Rod Collins, Michelle James, Deb Mills-Scofield, and Peter Stevens.
Kahan says, “I continue to collaborate with other thought leaders on bringing the future to forward-looking companies, helping leverage what's on the horizon for success and impact today. William Gibson made the astute comment, The future is already here. It's just very unevenly distributed. Well, at this conference we caught a pretty solid glimpse of the future. It is radically different than common practice in most organizations today. Case studies from Salesforce.com, Amazon.com, Gore, Cisco, and NASA highlighted both highly successful work force practices and arcane attempts at control in the face of overwhelming change.”
Seth Kahan is a best-selling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant who has worked with CEOs and senior leaders responsible for large-scale change around the world. He writes Fast Company’s expert blog, Leading Change (SethFast.com), and is a regular contributor to the Washington Post column “On Success” (SethPost.com). He is recognized as a Visionary by The Center for Association Leadership and a Thought Leader and Exemplar in Change Leadership by The Society for the Advancement of Consulting. For questions or to contact Seth Kahan, visit http://visionaryleadership.com or email Seth@VisionaryLeadership.com.