[OSList] Open Space for innovation with group of 8?

Harrison Owen via OSList oslist at lists.openspacetech.org
Thu Jan 8 12:48:01 PST 2015

Thomas -- I suspicion that not only is OS possible, but probably the only
way to provide sufficient latitude for innovation combined with the
essential focus to deliver something useful. And a group of 8-10 is
certainly possible. BUT why the limit if there is all that other talent?
That would be the 90 other folks who might just care to join in???

As you know the start up time for an Open Space is about 1 and 1/2 hours,
then with the exception of a short time in the am (morning news) and
something similar in the evening (Evening News) -- everything else just
spreads itself naturally over the time available.

So it is quite possible, indeed I have done it on multiple occasions, to
basically make the whole company Open Space for the period. True, you do
have to have an large meeting at the beginning -- but from there on out
everybody sets their own schedule and thusly can integrate it with whatever
else they need to do (client business, etc).

I have done this in hospitals, power companies, and phone companies where
you can't shut the whole thing down but it is possible to find a time when
most people can get together for a short period. This usually turns out to
be a the change of shifts times -- and one shift stays an hour longer, and
the other comes in an hour earlier -- and presto... you have two hours
together, which is more than sufficient to get the ball rolling.

There are some complications, but people do work it out, as they always seem
to do. And usually the whole place is just buzzing with a level of
excitement that is rarely if ever seen on a "normal" business day. Fun!


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-----Original Message-----
From: OSList [mailto:oslist-bounces at lists.openspacetech.org] On Behalf Of
Thomas Perret via OSList
Sent: Thursday, January 08, 2015 12:55 PM
To: oslist at lists.openspacetech.org email list
Subject: [OSList] Open Space for innovation with group of 8?

Hi friends,

I would like some help.

I have been approached by a company who wants to find innovations within a
certain technology. They are looking to have a team of 8-10 working for 2 or
3 days, and they have invited me to give them a suggestion for how to go
about it. 

My questions:

1. Do you think OS is the best approach with only 8 people and this kind of
mission? If not, how would you go about it? If yes, how have you had it
2. There are over 100 people in the company - how could one utilise this
potential for the purpose without having to release everybody from client
work for 2-3 days?
3. They would really want to explore new innovations more broadly, but are
looking, for now, to look within a certain technology because they fear
being more general will give less results. Thoughts on this?

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