Productive Community

In organizations distrust is common and conflict is frequent. It is normal for people to speak of teamwork while they actually pursue their self-interests. Yet there is a time when organizations can transform and become productive communities.

Productive community is an elusive concept. In a productive community people have hierarchical roles and differentiated status. Yet the differentiations are voluntarily suspended whenever necessary. As people pursue shared challenges, they “check their titles at the door.” Everyone becomes a respected equal. The person closest to the action or issue becomes most influential. Leadership no longer resides in one person. It shifts from person to person in a dance of co-creation. At such moments individual minds join and a collective intelligence emerges. The work of the collective intelligence is usually extraordinary and becomes one of the identifying marks of the fact that the productive community was operating.

Reflection

When have you seen the emergence of a productive community?

Why is this concept important to a person who wants to create a positive organization?

How could we use this passage to create a more positive organization?

 

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