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More crowd sourcing!

June 8, 2013

A second post in my attempt to crowd source our new training programme.  Tomorrow the draft brochure, today a question on venue and format.  The new format has a four day programme that can be bought as a whole or through individual days.  There is also a buy the first half day option designed to provide an executive briefing.  The modularisation is also designed to make it easier to take up the material in-house, or to incorporate any individual elements in a network member's own training programmes.  Subject to license of course, but for methods that is simple.  

Now so far, and it's early days so I need to be careful here, most people have booked for the three or four days and in general booked accommodation which can be expensive.  So we are thinking that when we announce the programme for the rest of the year this week, we will make more of a feature of those choosing the 3/4 day options and make the whole thing residential.  That means we can bundle accommodation at considerably lower cost that people hunting down hotels, but only for those who book early.   It also means we can make a feature of the evenings, dinning together and giving access to the tutors to discuss projects, principles, best techniques for fluffy bunny hunting or whatever.

So for London we plan to use the former Civil Service Training College at Sunningdale.  Its an easy trip for UK residents – next to a rail station with a shuttle bus and a short taxi ride or bus journey from Heathrow for others.  Its also in the countryside, near Runnymede and Windsor, close to the Thames and so on.   For the London ones I will probably always be on the faculty.  For other locations I will be in the major areas probably once a year but they will use our other main trainers Michael and Tony – and other as we develop them.  Quality control is critical for us on this programme so we are not going to just franchise it willy nilly as we need people who understand the theory and have practical experience of multiple projects. 

So we need advice!  We need similar locations in these areas:

  • USA East Coast, New York or DC but can be out of town if transport is easy
  • USA West Coast in San Francisco and also Seattle (both seem good locations)
  • Australia in Melbourne, but open to others
  • New Zealand in Auckland or Wellington areas
  • Copenhagen
  • Helsinki

Basic needs are good meeting rooms with natural light and plenty of beds.  We want maximum flexibility to settle numbers as near to the final date as possible.   Ideally in a natural setting and an easy, not too expensive transport route.  But also a good place to sit around and talk into the night for those staying on.  If it has a cricket pitch then I think we have considerable potential for a new game to help people understand complexity ….

Now we are also looking to create partners in Latin America, Germany and France to create local language versions but that will take a bit more time to set up.   Otherwise I keep thinking that Chicago is somewhere we are missing out on and Dallas/Austin might make sense.  So ideas on any of those welcome.  For the Netherlands we are planning something special, more on that when it is all agreed.  Also if there are other areas you think we are missing let us know.

For those who don't know we also offer a deal to in house training facilities and Universities swapping places for facilities.  If a company or University or whatever can guarantee a minimum number and has a venue we are more than open to deals for setting up public courses in other locations.  

As before ideas through comments here or email or via twitter

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The Cynefin Company (formerly known as Cognitive Edge) was founded in 2005 by Dave Snowden. We believe in praxis and focus on building methods, tools and capability that apply the wisdom from Complex Adaptive Systems theory and other scientific disciplines in social systems. We are the world leader in developing management approaches (in society, government and industry) that empower organisations to absorb uncertainty, detect weak signals to enable sense-making in complex systems, act on the rich data, create resilience and, ultimately, thrive in a complex world.
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