A complete list of Josie’s peer reviewed papers book chapters and academic conference presentations is provided.
Sometimes, we all get too close to the trees to see the forest. This short article employs perceptual positions from NLP to help gain a view of the broader system as play in organisational challenges that we all face.
Abstract: In this conceptual paper, we support the proposition that, if we are to apply the lessons learnt from our
engagement with complex natural systems to our practice of leadership and leading organisational
change, a true paradigm shift is required. It is more than embracing the natural and social worlds in
addition to the economic realities –solutions such as the triple bottom line already offer this. The required
profound shift places the principles that underpin sustainability, in its broadest sense, at the centre of
organisational life. Within this systems perspective, we examine the nature and dynamic of the
paradigmatic shift, positioning vision and leadership at the heart of a transition designed to liberate and
maximise the contribution which our undiminished humanity can make within organisations. We propose
that the shift will be marked by joy and fulfilment and a new level of organisational effectiveness.
On this basis, we identify and explore fundamental principles that can inform the work of those exercising
their leadership for organisational change. These are at odds with more traditional and mythical (and
enduring) notions of leaders as ‘heroes’.
Exploring changes in organisational coaching practices, Josie McLean PCC discusses the organisation as a ‘system’ and the benefits of a dynamic-based coaching approach.
Sam Wells and Josie McLean’s research helps organisations to shift culturally and to improve employee engagement and productivity, and the capacity to exercise leadership in complex environments.
Abstract: We face a global crisis of un-sustainability—we need to change trajectory, but have so far displayed a collective inability to do so. This article suggests that one reason for this is our entrenched approach to change, which has inappropriately applied mechanistic Newtonian assumptions to “living” systems. Applying what has been learned about the behaviour of complex adaptive systems, we develop a pragmatic model for students of sustainability, who want to facilitate profound organizational and community change towards sustainability on the ground. Our model, “one way forward”, does not purport to be the only way but one possibility, grounded in a different understanding of the nature and dynamic of change as seen through the lens of complexity. In this way, it challenges more conventional change management practices. One way forward is a model facilitating evolutionary change in a social ecology—one possible expression of a “culture of community self-design” as expressed by Banathy. Its theoretical foundations and its practical application (it is designed for practice) both have their source in a systemic view and in the principles that reflect the paradigm of complexity. Four central components of this new model—envisioning, core messages (values), indicators of progress, and experimentation—are explored in more detail.