Loomio software is a collaborative decision-making tool that fits well into the concept of Free Flow Management. Loomio “enables more transparency and inclusion in decision-making with fewer meetings and e mails”. Its online platform facilitates gathering people, on-topic conversations, visual summaries and clear outcomes.
How does your organization make decisions? Would you say your decisions flow freely or are you bogged down in meetings and email? Our new methods of communication have their advantages, but we do get bogged down with them. New decision-making approaches are called for. It is time well spent for your organization to look at the efficiency and flow of your decision-making and find innovative ways to keep your programs and processes flowing smoothly.
Free Flow Management honors freedom and calls for a balance of freedom and structure. What happens if you have a team member who cannot “handle” freedom and whose performance suffers without a balance that overly favors structure?
Flow is the centerpiece of Free Flow Management. In this situation, honor your team member’s need for structure, initially. If their performance is suffering, ask them what they need to bring their performance up again. Co-create a structure with them to do this. At the same time, coach them to find ways they can become more comfortable with freedom. One of the premises of Free Flow Management is that freedom leads to creativity, innovation and fulfillment. Help your team member align with your balance of freedom and structure.
You do not want to regress and do not have to increase structure permanently just because one team member needs it. You want to keep things flowing. Obstructions need to be addressed and flow regained.
photo: sritangphoto, FreeDigitalPhotos.net
In my previous posts on Free Flow Management we’ve looked at letting go of structure and visioning. With the freedom involved in free flow management, what happens when collaboration is required and team dynamics come into play? Perhaps one team member’s flow is in one direction and another team member’s flow is in the opposite one. For example, one team member needs quiet and open space to create effectively, while another needs group brainstorming.
There are no set answers to how best to integrate free flow management with collaborative projects. One approach is to allow collaboration to slightly trump the free flow. Using a free flow approach, work with the team to create a process for working together. The starting point is honoring the aspects of each person’s free flow. Then, you can move to a team discussion (with no wrong answers) on how to proceed with the project. Even within free flow, there is a need for some structure. The key is to allow the structure to evolve organically, depending on the particulars of each situation.
If there is power in numbers, collaborative free flow management can result in innovative and effective results for you and your team.
photo: supakitmod, FreeDigitalPhotos.net