The following is a post from buddy Chris Corrigan. It is part of a longer piece, here, that clarifies the relationship between The Art of Hosting and complexity.
One of the things I like in these words is that Chris points to a level of change that is beneath the surface. It is less about a training program, though that too is important. It is more about a change of being, the kind that takes place well after a program, if people maintain their curiosity and commitment to experiment and share learnings.
For me, the pursuit of mastery in the practice of hosting conversations is the way I respond to the complexity that we are facing in the world. When faced with uncertainty and emergent problems, it is imperative that we engage in collective intelligence and create the conditions for good sense making and decision making. Working with complexity is a high art, and is in rare supply these days. Over the past year I have been in many situations where the fear of an uncertain future has caused people to reduce their work to the simplest and easiest problems to solve. Money gets spent, resources get deployed and another year passes, and at best we shift the needle on something in a way that we can never understand and at worst, we erode the collective capacity we have to act resourcefully in complex environments. And that, I am certain, will be what is written on the gravestone of humanity, should it come to that. I have no doubt that the statement will be accompanied by a pie chart analysing the downfall.
That is my biggest frame of understanding why these practices are important: complexity matters and we need more complexity workers.