Knowledge is Power – So help yourself

Hopefully you’re here because you’re interested in success.

Purpose is critical to success because it dictates what you choose to do.
It’s easy to work really hard for a purpose that won’t bring you happiness, prosperity and fulfilment – but not that smart. 

The resources below are here to help you know what you are, how you work, and things you can do to achieve your goals.
I hope you find them useful.

NB – this is work in progress. Comments/requests/suggestions are welcome. Scroll down for the ‘send a message’ box on the right of your screen.

Renowned psychologists Thomas Gilovich & Lee Ross describe the most useful insights from social psychology that can help make you “wise”: wise about why people behave the way they do, and wise about how to use that knowledge in understanding and influencing the people in your life. GoodReads review here.

Mark McKergow & Helen Bailey offer a metaphor of host as leader, and leader as host which is practical and transformational.  Practical skills, tools and ideas engage people at any level from the individual to communities or movements.  The shift from controller to host brings awareness and flexibility that’s transformational. HRreview opinion here

Can the electromagnetic spectrum help us understand our behavour? Mike Zeidler thinks so. The greatest physicists had an interest in arts, culture and philosophy. Seeing a paper called ‘The curvature of Constitutional Space: What lawyers can learn from modern physics’, I wondered how physics plays out in politics and business. Here’s how.

A Bigger Prize by Margaret Heffernan is about competition, why it often doesn’t work, producing more waste than ‘efficiency’. The future belongs to the people and companies who have learned they are greater working together than against one another….but it’s harder than anything they’ve done before.

Charlie Irvine takes people into the challenging territory of differences between people, turning them into great opportunities for development all round. Cash in on Conflict explores assumptions, gets you thinking strategically and prompts a Partnering Attitude that speeds up the process of change. Appreciative Inquiry is very strong here – see Charlie on the 70:30 concept here

This book by Sue Hammond is a “translation” of the work of David Cooperrider inviting you to begin a journey of learning about Appreciative Inquiry – the philosophy for change management which assumes it’s best to find what works and build on that. Review from Positive Sharing

This brilliant book by Elizabeth Lank is a ‘must read’ for anyone working in partnerships in my view. I reviewed it here, and give my synopsis of the key points to people as a handout at workshops. The rewards of collaboration are very great, but they don’t come easy…

The byline for The Solutions Focus is ‘making coaching and change simple’ and I’m a big fan. Plenty of people endorse Mark Mckergow & Paul Jackson’s work  with good reason. Top marks for being clear, practical and well written.

The Handbook of Action Research by Hilary Bradbury & Peter Reason is rightly called a ‘landmark’ publication. Read about the richness and rewards of  researching your work as you go, and finding coherence in the everyday messiness of life. It’s for those seeking meaning and inspiring insights into how our life and work can make the world a better place.

Another classic, this time about meetings – Six Thinking Hats by Edward de Bono offers a simple way of increasing efficiency in discussions and decision-making, while encouraging openness and trust. Good for productivity, and as they claim ‘decisions which almost make themselves‘.

I love the simple clarity of Start with Why by Simon Sinek. A lot of the work we do here is about the ‘how’ – but there’s a reason it’s the third most popular TED talk of all time (as I write this).  As Simon says, it’s ‘a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired’.

The web based simulation game known as Fishbanks offers the most profound lessons I have ever learned about competition in myself and others.

I think the best way to experience it is ‘live’ with a facilitator as part of a team playing other teams in the same space. You can  get it from the Systems Dynamics Society as a board game (they also run classes) or you can set up a class, join a class or play as an individual here.

Be warned, it’s not a game to ‘try out’ before sharing. Trust me and throw yourself into it with a crowd if you can. You will come out of it enlightened.

This guide provides a practical framework for the design and facilitation of Multi Stakeholder Partnerships working across the boundaries of business, government, civil society and science. Useful for evaluators and people who commission/manage evaluation, it’s got sections on rationale, principles, design, facilitation, and participatory tools.  BetterEvaluation review here

Referenced by someone in one of our partnership workshops, the paper here looks at five conditions for ‘Making Collective Impact Work‘ (2014) – bit academic, but it’s related to the Charter of Compassion which promotes tools and ideas working in collaborative partnerships worldwide. The same person also offered Collective Insights – a set of articles on collective impact that I liked rather more. 

I have a hard copy of the Peerworks guide to Collaborative Working from Oasis but  it’s packed away until I move house. I know I liked it, but can’t say more until I get my hands on it again.  You can get your own free digital version from the link above…

The Purpose of Life

Nature is everything. We are a part of it, not apart from it.   Nature is more than the physical world we can see, it includes our feelings and behaviours too. It defines our horizons, our capabilities, our present and all possible futures.

So we’ve spent a little time trying to get to know how it works, hoping to discover something useful about life’s purpose.  The point of  life, the universe and everything remains a mystery – but the links below help set the scene for every kind of future you can imagine.

If you want to strive for strong, healthy, happy and active ones, have a browse.

In Development….

We’re just sifting links we can verify for clear messaging, quality learning content and potential for practical impact. Thank you for your patience – we’ll be back with the first batch in a while. .

Youtube – yeah, I know – a time-munching wormhole of a place. But this Star size comparison clip is worth a look just once (on double speed) if you’re ever in need of a cosmic perspective…  

More coming soon – got a suitable link you’d like us to share?  Please mail us at