Theory U: Leading from the Future as it Emerges
by C. Otto Scharmer, 2007
In this ground-breaking book, Otto Scharmer invites us to see the world in new ways. Fundamental problems, as Einstein once noted, cannot be solved at the same level of thought that created them. What we pay attention to, and how we pay attention - both individually and collectively - is key to what we create. What often prevents us from "attending" is what Scharmer calls our "blind spot," the inner place from which each of us operates. Learning to become aware of our blind spot is critical to bringing forth the profound systemic changes so needed in business and society today.
First introduced in Presence, the "U" methodology of leading profound change is expanded and deepened in Theory U. By moving through the "U" process we learn to connect to our essential Self in the realm of presencing - a term coined by Scharmer that combines the present with sensing. Here we are able to see our own blind spot and pay attention in a way that allows us to experience the opening of our minds, our hearts, and our wills. This wholistic opening constitutes a shift in awareness that allows us to learn from the future as it emerges, and to realize that future in the world.
Theory U explores a new territory of scientific research and personal leadership, one that is grounded in real life experience and shared practices. Scharmer shares much from his own personal and professional development, and draws from a rich diversity of compelling stories and examples. Readers will find themselves drawn to new ways of thinking and acting as they read, completing a parallel journey of exploration and discovery. The final chapters lay out principles and practices that allow everyone to participate fully in co-creating and bringing forth the desired future that is working to emerge through us.
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Related Event: Theory U, Leading from the Future as it Emerges Group Study Book October 1, 2008
by Peter M. Senge, C. Otto Scharmer, Joseph Jaworski, Betty Sue Flowers, 2004
Presence is an intimate look at the development of a new theory about change and learning. In wide-ranging conversations held over a year and a half, organizational learning pioneers Peter Senge, C. Otto Scharmer, Joseph Jaworski, and Betty Sue Flowers explored the nature of transformational changeâ€”how it arises, and the fresh possibilities it offers a world dangerously out of balance. The book introduces the idea of â€œpresence"â€”a concept borrowed from the natural world that the whole is entirely present in any of its partsâ€”to the worlds of business, education, government, and leadership. Too often, the authors found, we remain stuck in old patterns of seeing and acting. By encouraging deeper levels of learning, we create an awareness of the larger whole, leading to actions that can help to shape its evolution and our future.
Drawing on the wisdom and experience of 150 scientists, social leaders, and entrepreneurs, including Brian Arthur, Rupert Sheldrake, Buckminster Fuller, Lao Tzu, and Carl Jung, Presence is both revolutionary in its exploration and hopeful in its message. This astonishing and completely original work goes on to define the capabilities that underlie our ability to see, sense, and realize new possibilitiesâ€”in ourselves, in our institutions and organizations, and in society itself.