The biggest threat to nonprofits is not declining membership, meeting attendance or sponsorship.
It is not limitations in volunteers, time or money, but a shortage of “Creative Democracy”.
There are few things more daunting than trying to run a CREATIVE board meeting. Partisan politics, positioning, personal priorities and the occasional ego often bring progress to a standstill. It is easy to get caught up in the illusion that these are people problems.
These are not problems of ill intentioned people,
but of under developed process.
We have systems for everything from managing our finances to marketing our services, even cleaning our toilets; but the most important system of all, a systemic way of thinking together as a group, is often left underdeveloped. Roberts Rules, Carvers Policy Governance and all the Personality Styles Training’s in the world do little to help groups think more creatively together.
We can no longer afford to continue down the well-worn paths of the past or waste time managing the endless variations of personalities. Cubic Thinking™ is a process to change Group Thinking into a system that is faster, more complete, more balanced, less personal and more inclusive.
The Benefits of a Bully Free Process
According to Plato the process of being “ruled by a group” is a democracy. In reality most nonprofits are run by an oligarchy dominated by a few individuals who, through position, politics or personal power, drive discussion and define direction. We need systems that include everyone, encourage exploration and inspire innovation.
Would you like to help your board (or any group) think more effectively, more creatively, more thoroughly and more democratically?
Cubic Thinking™: Creativity³ was designed after fifteen years of frustration working with our own boards, and observing the negative impact of personal agendas and back room politics on membership organizations around the country.
Cubic Thinking™ is powerful not just because of what it starts but because of what it stops. Cubic Thinking™ dis-empowers those who would try and commandeer the system to pursue their own personal agendas. It encourages conflicting ideas while reducing interpersonal conflict those ideas sometimes generate. It does not eliminate the ego but engages it in the sense of play and exploration to integrate many opposing ideas to discover the ultimate best solution.
Take the fear and guesswork out of creativity, convert personal power to process power, and energize your entire team by engaging them in the process.
Effective board meetings have traditionally depended on Carver’s Governance Design and Roberts Rules of Order, but neither one is creative. These are vertical styles of thinking designed to collect, sort and use the best information to improve on the past.
More than a set of tools and rules, Cubic Thinking™ is a way of thinking about thinking.
Here are just a few questions to help you decide if Cubic Thinking™ would be a useful tool for you.
Some would say “we get along great”. Should you? Should we go along to get along? Or should there be a system for creative discourse?
Are you a model of efficiency proficient in Roberts Rules and Policy Governance? Or are you efficient because it is always easiest to do what you have always done?
Do personalities override policies, are personal agendas allowed to steal away the few precious hours you have together?
Are creative ideas nourished and explored or quickly expunged by those who know?
Are all sides of an issue explored by everyone at the table, or do roles, alliances and fiefdoms lobby for their own acceptable outcomes without considering alternate possibilities?
Do members approach each meeting with an open mind to mutual discovery or with a mind to help others discover what they already know?
Do you give equal time to what you should stop doing as you do to what you start?
Do you ever “wait it out” for a changing of the guard?
Do you spend more time trying to “line up the pieces” than producing an outcome?
Does the system occasionally become so unproductive that most real progress happens “back stage” only to be acted out once the meeting begins?
“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.”
Download the Free Cubic Thinking™: Creativity³ eBook and experience what it feels like to be part of a truly creative team.