We energize individuals. We build productive inclusive teams. We work with individuals, groups, and whole systems to align and strengthen the organization’s capability to live its potential. We strengthen organizational cultures — how people work together.
Relationships, at all levels, are central to the effectiveness of any organization. When people have strong relationships at work, they are more motivated to contribute and are committed to continuous learning and development.– Ilene Wasserman, Founder ICW Consulting
Organizations are human systems constructed through relationships. These relationships are created and perpetuated through the stories we tell.
We help our clients inspire people at all levels, in all positions, to contribute their unique perspectives and to value each other. We help our clients tap the diversity of skills and experiences that already exist in the organization in order to address new challenges and opportunities they are facing.
Change at the individual, group, and organizational levels requires clear, positive, compelling images of what is possible; and a shift in how people talk about, live, and interact in their day-to-day lives.
Because these behaviors and practices are typically embedded in organizational structures (policies, procedures, practices) and group dynamics, (roles, responsibilities both formal and informal), we take a systems perspective in all of our work. Regardless of which level we are invited into (individual, interpersonal, institutional, etc), we center systems level culture shift in our interventions and offerings. We see the culture of organizations as a story that is in an ongoing process of validation and emergence.
Regardless of which level we are invited into (individual, interpersonal, institutional, etc), we center systems level culture shift in our interventions and offerings. We see the culture of organizations as a story that is in an ongoing process of validation and emergence.
We build on the strengths of what our client already knows through observation and experience. We are committed to bringing the latest developments in the field through our attention to research and practice innovation. Our relationships with clients help them to clarify their goals based on where they are, where they want to go, and how they will help their people develop the roadmaps to get there.
Our work is primarily informed by three core research based models: Appreciative Inquiry, The Coordinated Management of Meaning, and Power and Systems. Our unique way of working weaves all three together using the following Guiding Principles:
- Focus on Partnership – Focusing on what clients want to achieve, and what strengths they could leverage to surpass their imagination.
- Communication of the Organization’s Culture – Bringing to light explicit and implicit cues about how the current culture is expressed. Finding new ways to express the culture you aspire to live.
- Honor for What Exists – Listening first to what works, encouraging people to build on that in new and creative ways for future success.
- Leveraging of Diversity – Encouraging clients to develop a culture that sees the engagement of diversity as a core requirement of doing good work and unleashing creativity on teams.
- Imagination About What Is Possible – Inviting the voices of multiple stakeholders within and outside the organization to imagine the organization’s future and determine how to get there.
- Customized, Actionable Strategies – Creating the approach. Taking concrete steps that will achieve the vision created.
Innovative Communities at the Workplace (ICW) is affiliated with the following institutions, whose theories and methodologies ground and inform our work:
- CMM Institute
- Future Search Network
- Public Dialogue Consortium
- The Lewin Center
- The National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
- Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
- The Taos Institute