The Lean Conference Season is Upon Us
This is the season; summer vacations are over and the Lean conference season has started. Have you signed up for one? Have you signed up for my next workshop, Lean Service Design Open Workshop on Sept. 27th at the Maryland World Class Consortia quarterly meeting?
In a past blog post I discussed, Turning your Conference Learning into Action and in that post introduced an A3 on how to turn your learning into action.
Since that time, I have had a profound shift in my workshops. I do not believe that I am breaking new ground or doing anything revolutionary. However, I do think that I am part of a few early adaptors that are forsaking this notion of “Expert Status” and taking a much more servant style role in their workshops. I discussed last week in the blog post, Opening Appreciative Space Process 2
where I discussed Lean Coffee ( a concept introduced to me by Jim Benson
, co-author of Personal Kanban
Most conferences are developed where all the experts fly in and instruct everyone about all the things that they are an “expert” of. What I have found is that the knowledge many transfer is seldom put into practice. Speaking at conferences is really just an opportunity for “experts” to share their knowledge. It does not transform anything.
The workshops given before and after the conferences are the best way to learn something. The LSSC 2012 – Lean Systems Society
conference this year held a day long Lean Camp before the 3-day conference which followed this open space type thinking. They also held the Lean Coffee sessions each morning of the conference. Lean Camp and Lean Coffee
was not the only the difference in the LSSC 2012 conference. I had numerous attendees mention to me how available the speakers made themselves during the conference. It seemed these types of interaction were more important than the speaking events.
In my online workshops, I have now structured them through the use of Smartsheet
so that the participants whether as an individual or as a group can communicate by subject matter on a thread and supporting material can be uploaded. I believe that you may be able to do something similar through Google Drive. This allows a greater degree of personal interaction allowing me to take a role of coaching and facilitation versus that of as an instructor.
Have we reached that transformation stage in the customer experience hierarchy? If so, the role as an expert may have diminished substantially, and we are now seeking facilitators to guide us through our journey.