LILA ~ Learning Innovations Laboratory at the Harvard Graduate School of Education

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  1. Sue Borchardt

    October 2016 Animation: Understanding Culture in Organizations

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    The sheer scope of Culture’s sweep makes a pithy definition difficult, a challenge further amplified by the dynamic, overlapping, and nested cultural contexts we strive to make sense of. Culture is often named as contributing to the success or failure of organizational efforts such as globalization, mergers & acquisitions, and cultivating diversity. One place to start when exploring whether and how cultural forces might be leveraged to help organizations adapt to internal and external change, is by asking: how do cultures work? and how do they adapt?
  2. Marga Biller

    Learning Conversations Moves

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    Cross-organizational “learning conversations” are an important source of informal learning among professionals, though little is known about whether specific characteristics of conversational interaction contribute to different learning outcomes in such conversations.
  3. Marga Biller

    10th Annual LILA Summit Speakers Announced

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    The Learning Innovations Laboratory will be celebrating its 10th Annual Summit on June 7th 2016 in Cambridge, MA. This is an opportunity for Chief Learning, Talent and Innovation Officers to come together to explore potential next practices for their organizations. The three keynote speakers at the LILA Summit will be Marianne Lewis (Dean of Cass School of Business), Tima Bansal (professor at the Ivey Business School) and Bob Kegan (Harvard) as well as small group discussions led by distinguished professors and practitioners Deborah Ancona (MIT), Maurizio Zollo (Buconni Univeristy) and Ethan Bernstein (Harvard) with John Bunch (Zappos).
  4. Working through the organizational “F” word: Failure.

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    Jennifer’s ideas made us wonder: Maybe “failure” is the obscenity in organizations that gets in the way of learning? Is curiosity the energy in the tension of learning & performance?   She reminds us that learning and adapting are more useful in complex systems than predicting and planning. So failure is a necessary part of growth, development, and learning.   What moves us through the necessity of failure? Perhaps courage is part of the answer. When we fail but don’t grow we experience shame, rejection, loss of identity, isolation, judgment, etc.   When we fail and we experience these things, too, but...
  5. Living in a “or AND and” world

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    Jennifer Garvey Berger reminds us of the Cynefin framework that describes two world states: the predictable world (obvious and complicated) and the unpredictable world (complex and chaotic). DW: I’m reminded that these four “worlds” are both objective and subjective. That is my 7 year old might experience something as chaotic or complex while I might experience it as obvious or complicated. Also, while I also appreciate this framework, where things often get tricky for me is when these worlds become nested – inside a “complex” experience or problem, there often are “complicated” and “obvious” sub-problems. So diagnosing the nature of a problem feels like the right move, toggling between the worlds in real-time is often the big challenge. How to create the spaces, tools, structures that support the skills but also the toggling feels tricky.
  6. Learning & Performing (Chris Kayes)

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    A big idea that I took away was the role of curiosity and safe risks to support individual and group learning. And I’m wondering how the opposite of curiosity and safe risk -- confidence and “safe routines” – might work against learning and support performance. My guess is that In short, Kayes noted from his work that a key individual factor that predicts learning is “open to new experiences.” A key team processes that predict learning is psychological safety and supervisory support. DW: Being open to novelty is a hallmark of conceptual frameworks of curiosity. And that makes intuitive sense in terms of the role it plays in individual learning. Psych safety and the leader role are also well established in team learning literature, so good to see it here. However, it raises a question in me: I wonder how their opposites, such as indifference, confidence, normality, and routines, might explain individual and team performance?
  7. Reflections on Learning & Performance

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    A big idea that I took away was the role of curiosity and safe risks to support individual and group learning. And I’m wondering how the opposite of curiosity and safe risk -- confidence and “safe routines” – might work against learning and support performance.

Harvard Graduate School of Education