What Makes Us Come Alive At Work?

  Last year, I participated in one of Eugene Eric Kim’s collaborative literacy experiments called Changemaker bootcamp. In this series of monthly meetings, a half-dozen professionals gathered to learn from each other about best practices and “muscle building” for building our own collaborative literacy and facilitation skills. After the series ended, we met up occasionally for gatherings hosted by participants. One of these meetings, run by Marie Haller of Impact Hub San Francisco and Eugene Chan of PolicyLink, taught me one of the […]

We use roadmaps (not project plans) for complex emergent projects like this one.

Leaps of Faith for Healthy Hearts

Experiments in participatory process design for patient-powered research As I mentioned in my recent blog post introducing our work with The Health eHeart Alliance, there’s a new movement afoot in the world of health care. It’s not talked about too much yet in the media – it’s not about fancy drug trials or big business. It’s about patients, and to me it’s one of the more exciting and potentially transformative movements in the history of health care in the US. […]

HeH Summit

The Health eHeart Alliance Debuts a New Approach to Collaborative Research

For the last year, with Groupaya’s favorite collaboration ninja Rebecca Petzel, I have had the pleasure of working on a ground-breaking project for medical research. With the stellar Health eHeart Study team at UCSF and a dozen patient and patient organization representatives, we have been slowly building a new kind of network — an alliance between patients, caregivers, and researchers to produce patient-powered and patient-centered research. This network is part of a budding movement, supported largely by The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute […]

Part of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, as captured by Edward Burtynsky for National Geographic, 2010.

Defining and Designing Successful Conversations – Reflections on the Delta Dialogues.

Groupaya recently wrapped up a two-year project facilitating a series of dialogues around contentious water issues in California’s Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.  As we reflected on the process of facilitating the Delta Dialogues, we found ourselves reflecting on the process of dialogue itself – how do we design for success, and how do we measure successful dialogue?  With a bit of introduction to the context of our work in the Delta, we want to share our learnings, recently published in our […]

“When you check in, you have to leave the world outside the room.”

A Simple Tool for Better Meetings

*A narrative version of this article was run by Zocalo and picked up by TIME.  Contrary to popular belief, meetings can be both productive and enjoyable. In my twenty years helping leaders learn to run such meetings, I’ve learned a lot of tricks. But by far the simplest, most powerful, and perhaps most surprising is this: Start your meeting with a check-in. From small NGOs and start-ups to Fortune 100 leadership teams and the UN, I start every meeting the same way: […]