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Andrea Barrett abarrett at
Fri Feb 26 15:25:54 PST 1999


I think this last message from you Harrison touches on the point that is of most interest to me in the so called dilemma I have posed re the role of space holder/ convenor. In my experience, Open Space offers participants a rare opportunity to be open and naieve in their learning. OS also provides the space for participants to be spontaneous in relationship to others, two faces of humanity often masked in organisations.

In an environment of trust, openess and learning there comes a time in groups when the group mind, the collective unconscious, becomes more visible and known. During this time the primary urges of the group are mobile and expressed and in my experience it results in a particular state of being. The only way I can describe that state, be it be seen in fleeting glimpses or sustained across a few days is that of primary relating or love of the other(s) as an unique and creative being.

It is within this context, rare and exquisite that it is, that I pitch my question re facilitating the whole OS and convening workshops. "It is only when we move beyond our conventional expectations of learning..." it is only when we challenge the usual conserves that have us operating the way we do in groups that I believe real learning takes place. The OS facilItator is part of that, leading the way, faciltating the space, facilitating the experience, being part of it. The analogy of the role of therapist is not adequate, it's good in terms of role definition and professional ethic and primary responsibility but it falls short in the face of the potentiality of OS.

I suppose I like to think that each OS event has the potential to become a place of heightened awareness of humanity, learning and community. Within a business context this is no less relevant than any other. OS methodology as it has been described safegaurds the learning of the group.The spontaneity of the facilitator plays a role in the development of the group and to what extent is of interest to me.

I really like the the idea of OS disappearing, absorbed into the fabric of organisational life.....

Thanks for your wonderful responses.


Andrea Barrett
Process and Organisational Consultant

Systemic Intervention Consultancy (sic!)
PO Box 3, North Fremantle, West Australia 6159
Tel: (08) 93356989 mobile 015 606 678 fax (08) 9335 6989

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