Wednesday, 5 September 2012
Monday, 3 September 2012
Since its inception, the A2B Movement has exploded, not just in civil society but also in the corporate, industry and retail sectors. Our training has become known as catalysts in the lives of the change makers who attend out workshops. Our various workshops offer the following to corporate, industry and retail sectors.
- Raising employee performance capacity
- Fitting the task to the man
- Changing organisations into interactive and mutually beneficial ecosystems
- Dealing with low volition in employees
- Increasing competency in employees
- Stimulating enterprising mind-sets in employees
Senior & middle management and supervisors will be introduced to Occupational Intelligence (OI) and understand:
- OI levels & how it affects employee’s performance capacity
- OI-levels as it relates to productivity
- The language of the transformative environment
- The difference between those who think that they can transform humans and those who can transformer others into self-sustainable achievers
- What causes dependency in employees
- What volition is and identify factors that influence volition in the work place
- The A2B task and man assessment tools
- How to apply A2B tools to assess tasks and sub-tasks
- How to apply A2B tools to assess the man
- How to modify the task to fit it to the man
- How to lower anxiety and heighten volition
- How to explain task completion and norms to employees
- What an organisational eco-system is
- How to assess an organisational ecosystem
- How to re-engineer an organisational eco-system
- How to identify power partners
- How to evaluate power partners
- How to re-define power partner relationships
One and/or two-day workshops can be presented at your offices according to your own schedules. We have 8 different workshops but they can be combined according to your needs.
To find out more about the workshops please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday, 22 June 2012
Saturday, 19 May 2012
In March 2012 we wrote an open letter to the SA Government, Civil Society and various Business, Media and Research organisations of SA. Read it here.
Cutting to the Chase about the Stuck-ness of South Africa’s Human Problems...Education, Aid, Coaching, Preaching and all the Rest!
I have a passionate belief in human transformative and renewal potential…probably more than what most others believe about themselves. Why? Because I love human consciousness - that space in which all experience arises and where growth takes place. I’m at times awestruck by the neuroplasticity of the human brain. It’s the most potent and influential part of our humanness that bears the healing power to turn hate responses into compassion responses. The smart part is that it metamorphoses a dependent, stuck, entitled-mind response to an independent mind response. Once here, it has the capacity to develop to even higher responses like entrepreneurialism, where one’s responses are self-starting, decisive, and solution based. From here it goes beyond a materialistic responsiveness to a state of social entrepreneurial responses; the actual state of being that was intended for every human. Living on this level brings out one’s unique design and one’s responses to life challenges. Here conscience has outgrown consciousness. Here Conscience has won the battle over Consciousness…the one essential and vital quality for those who seek to change the world – a world that yields most painfully to change.
You may wonder if I am one of those “overly idealistic community baby-huggers?”
Yep, I was for the best part of 18 years I trustingly spent many more than the required working hours gathering dirt under my nails by offering socio economic well-being to disempowered Africans. I naively went with them into the dark physical and emotional places in their lives…and, yes, I did burn my fingers, put my life in danger. Even my marriage reeled into turmoil as my husband required the attention I could not give any having spent my time blindly with little reward. Eventually, my hope in destitute humans was depleting, putting my own esteem synonymous to theirs: disheartened and despondent.
“After everything I did for them!” I grumbled.
I guess throughout many generations this was the classic aftershock experienced by people with bleeding hearts when they ended up burnt-out with scars on their hands from bite marks given by the desolate human race they fed. Why did no one tell me that most disempowered people aren’t satisfied with one’s help…and that they bite?
Like a snake handler working in a snake park, I finally learnt to understand the causes of their unpredictability, their low volitional and defensive behaviours and their often ferocious resistance in response to change. I realised that this was all prompted by primal fearfulness and anxiety caused by their low perceived self-worth. It was only after this that I recovered from my fatigue and gained a new interest in human value and began my quest for new ways to get them to move by themselves.
When I finally found and started using the right tools to unlock hidden inner resourcefulness, I was astounded by the potency of human potential when it was set free. I witnessed first-hand the magical transformative effect as people become un-stuck and moved to higher levels of unique sustainability.
In my experience with people on grassroots level, I found that the major reason for being poverty stricken (excluding mental or physical illness) is “stuck-ness”, and the reason for stuck-ness is the poor volitional pathology of the individual.
Stuck people are those who say: “Eish! I can’t, you must give me things or I will resent you or steal from you!” These are the people who make demands to receive instead of moving forward to give. They want to have and take what others have developed, rather than develop it themselves, they toyi-toyi ignorantly and throw tantrums.They only move towards action when you give them a reward, or a performance appraisal, etc. Stuck-ness stands for all behaviour related to a person spinning in one place, in need of other humans or external aid to get them moving. Stuck people do not apply their internal drivers and therefore cannot reach sustainability. Let’s give them some credit: stuck people do apply their internal energy, but only cause negative noise and in clutch for external straws. Things must come to them instead of them going to things. They consume and do not create!
Stuck-ness in humans is not at all related to race but, needless to say, some cultural practices and beliefs overtly instil human stuck-ness into each other and carry it over from one generation to the next. They defend their actions by saying: “it is my culture”. What they do not recognise is that it is precisely that, their culture, that keeps them trapped.
Let’s give the critics their moment to re-label me as “politically incorrect” rather than an “overly idealistic community baby-hugger”
Here’s my understanding of human stuck ness: Stuck-ness in an adult firstly dates back to the quality of volitional development that a person receives during early childhood development from parenting and schooling into adulthood, and secondly to the volitional development a person presently receives. So if stuck-ness is connected to human development, then it’s also true that there will be different stages of stuck-ness.
Dependent (Stuck) phases: Independent (Unstuck), Entrepreneurial, Social- Entrepreneur
Sadly most of government-subsidized education at the early childhood, schooling and university levels have not yet integrated volitional development and is mainly about jumping through short-term knowledge-based hoops...and measures how many rounds the learner won… not how well he can act and implement from within!
Furthermore, the typical way we deal with a stuck person, (in the community or workplace) is to put them through some training that we think that they need. This is merely another hand-out. And hand-outs perpetuate the above-mentioned symptoms. Every course we offer to a community member or an employee that does not aim to develop their volition is unlikely to have any sustainable impact. For example an affirmative action-employee in an IT company can do basic programming, but takes a week to do programming that his colleagues could do in a day. His politically sensitive boss would be unsure how to deal with the unconsciousness of the employee’s incompetency or the task-man misfit. So he sends the employee on another course to increase his programming skills. This, however, would not move the employee an inch out of his stuck-ness. He would hang his certificate on the wall and still take a week to do the advanced job without applying initiative or originality.
Readers who are academically inclined would probably label me as Constructivist (that argues that humans generate knowledge and meaning from an interaction between their experiences and their ideas, or during infancy between their experiences and reflexes or behavioural patterns). This is true, however, I have added volitional and occupational intelligence concepts and although I am not a philosopher, I am a doer and pragmatist in Africa.
So let me tell you more about volitional development: Volitional development is a multi-dimensional cognitive process that triggers two components: WILL (CHOICE) AND ACTION. Volition is an energy source, activated by the combination of thoughts, emotions, beliefs, experiences, perceptions, and the mobilising effects of anxiety that acts like a jet engine to propel a person into action.
I like using the analogy between a human and a car. A disempowered person is like the body of a car. Volition (will to act) would be the engine and fuel of the car. These are the main components that need to be developed for human propulsion. Propulsion, i.e. going forward, ensures task completion, productivity and success. Knowledge-based education would be a “wheel” for the car but sad to say, the car is still stuck without the engine and fuel. I watched a fundraising video of an organisation working with destitute people. Their way of “helping” is to give out food parcels, old clothes, Xmas parties,etc. I thought that if I respond to their fundraising plea, my money will merely be filling the car’s water tank. Despite their high-budget programmes, they still do not give their people wheels, an engine or fuel. Their constituents will stay stuck forever –just like a body of a car in a scrap yard with a full water tank.
The A2B Volitional developmental model is a model for the facilitation of human progression that follows a continuum and is defined on the 6 levels of the A2B scale. The first three levels are the DEPENDENT RESPONSE AND PARTICIPATION levels, called the A-levels, while the last three levels are the INDEPENDENT RESPONSES AND PARTICIPATION B-levels.Those who grow to perform on level 4 are those who make the transition to independent volitional behaviour in their tasks. It is a grown-up state of consciousness, which is effectively what adulthood and maturity is all about. Ideally we all should be capable of reaching this state, or higher, depending on the quality of transformative parenting, conscious development and the ecosystem in which we were raised. Some persons are fortunate to develop volitionally from an early age and will easily reach competitive or entrepreneurial levels. They could develop even further towards social entrepreneurial volition when their consciousness has evolved to the B3-level of occupational intelligence.
“There is nothing more powerful than a good idea in the hands of a social entrepreneur.”
According to Russian psychologist Vygotski’s learning model, the Zone of Proximal Development, there are stages in a human’s life where he cannot learn, empower and change without a tutor or external empowerment. This is during the A-levels of participation.On the other hand it is said that adults can only change themselves by exercising their inner will and that external help, hand-outs and change attempts are short lived and unsustainable.
Do these two statements sound contradictory?
No, not at all! Consider the difference between provoke and help. Provocation incites and stimulates a person from within, whereas help relieves and aids from the outside. Help is necessary in any acute state of need, but when a client regains his powers, the A2B process has to commence. If not, I have to warn you, you are creating monster clients for yourself to deal with! You would’ve instilled a culture of entitlement. Your beneficiaries, instead of appreciating what you do, will become disgruntled complainers and project their discontentment towards you. They will bite the hand that feeds them despite your ranking as a teacher, professor, coach, facilitator, pastor or mentor! Do not be naïve and set yourself up for such abuse while you were in actual fact so noble in your intentions.
You have to become a provoker of change (provocateur) in order to facilitate meaningful growth during the first three A2B-levels.
What skills and characteristics does a provocateur need?
You will need:
You will need:
- Knowledge of how humans manifest in their behaviour and respond on each different A2B level.
- Ability to carefully read the responses between the person and the task/challenge.
- Ability to assess people and tasks on the A2B levels.
- Energy and passion.
- Thoughtfulness (not naivety) and a deep sense of integrity and ethical stance.
- Ability to challenge capacity and offer affirmation.
- A deeply ingrained respect and faith in people and their occupational intelligence (OI)
- Ability to be on the level with other people – not superior, and a capacity to be flexible to align with people on different tasks.
- Resilience and stamina, creative ability and resourcefulness to think smart about how to best leverage settings/processes and multi-sectors to ensure that all are involved in the change process and take full responsibility for it.
Development of humans on A-levels are thus far more than merely standing in a classroom and transferring information, giving bleeding-hearted counselling, preaching from a pulpit or working through life-skill manuals. I understand that having faith in human capacity is difficult and that committing oneself to anything be it marriage, God or to any human being, takes significant effort. That’s why most of our interventions are unsustainable, long-arm quick- fixes, or “let me do it for you because I can do it better”.
South Africa is a country that has never been more ready for this!
The inevitability of crises, market failures, and too many people for too few jobs, reinforces the argument of a volitional development approach towards a higher occupational intelligence in every programme offered in SA. Inequality will then be addressed automatically and finally disappear. Being sustained financially by one’s own actions is based on pro-activity, creativity, initiative and lateral thinking.This is where the inner resourcefulness in the human unlocks and faith in human potential bursts forth and keeps gushing out.
Herein lies a key to socio-economic change! All the vertical interventions by governments and NGOs to address poverty are tiny compared to the huge need for change. In a country with too many people and too little resources, I believe that the primary challenge is, therefore, for interventions to unleash inner human volition and hidden resourcefulness so that it rolls over from person to person, family to family, community to community, to the next generation, unleashing even more...
Intrinsic motivation for independent action in humans can never develop whilst they are given hand-outs, social grants or welfare/charity. The present BBEEE activities are still oblivious of these realities and continue their nightmare of legal jargon, forcing the horse to the water, blaming and claiming and shameful attempts to make people equal without incorporating volitional development.
A person’s behaviour is a predictor of his volition (will to act) that in turn is a predictor of his occupational intelligence (OI) for the task at hand. A2B is the only way to grow our children as from early childhood from dependency (A) to dignity (B) and into adults that can carry the country economically and not adults carried by the country.