Tackle problems at their depths, not their surface

See the big picture! You are interested in making broad change.  But sometimes the complexity of the world makes it hard to know how to be effective. You can explore how micro and macro levels relate to each other and how systemic and societal issues affect your work.

Thinking systemically enables you to build your skills in creative problem solving, collaboration, systems thinking, and emergent action planning to increase your impact on social problems.

Systems and Complex Thinking

(consulting and facilitation)

Build your organization’s capacity to think systemically about the big problems you are trying to solve in the world. We will support you to tackle problems at their depth not their surface.

An organization that thinks systemically is able to:

  • Go beneath the surface of a problem to diagnose and analyze the root causes
  • Understand the relationship between seemingly disconnected social trends and factors
  • Identify common ways of thinking, mental models and social structures that feed the problems we see on the surface
  • Evaluate how they can most effectively make impact on a systemic issue
  • Understand that cause and effect relationships are complex webs and not linear
  • Understand the value of collaborating for greater impact and have the capacity to work with a wide range of stakeholders
  • Navigate the discomfort of complexity, paradigm shifts and the unpredictability of an outcome
  • Work from a growth mindset that values failure as a learning opportunity
  • Develop strategy, make decisions and allocate resources based on an understanding of complexity

Multi-stakeholder Engagement and Collaboration

Gather and learn from the wisdom and experience of everyone working on or impacted by a particular social issue. Develop the skills to collaborate across differences and expand your capacity to act bigger than you can on your own.

We can support you to:

  • Host large participatory meetings where diverse perspectives and experiences are shared and integrated
  • Build the foundation for strong collaborative relationships between departments, organizations and/or different stakeholders
  • Step into courageous conversations to explore areas of disagreement and find areas of agreement

Creative Problem Solving

We can’t afford to get stuck in our usual way of doing things. Approach big problems as a creative experimental process. What if we thought about healthcare or housing or food security as areas of play and experimentation? What if we could bring all our creative capacities to these things?

Big Waves will support your team to:

  • Access knowledge, learning and wisdom from their whole selves, including mind, body, spirit and emotion
  • Approach problems from a growth mindset, with curiosity and an openness to learning from mistakes
  • Make use of a range of creative and playful strategies to think bigger and more creatively than business as usual

Purpose-driven Action Planning

Have you ever put a huge amount of time and energy into planning for the future, only to realize everything is changing so quickly your detailed strategy no longer feels relevant?

When dealing with complex and rapidly changing situations we sometimes need to bring more flexibility and openness to the planning process. You may know where you are starting from and where you are trying to go, but sometimes the paths to get there have to be discovered through trial and error.

Big Waves can help you define what you are trying to achieve and explore different scenarios to get there. We learn what can work by coming up with many possibilities, trying them, and building on the ones that show promise.

Upcoming Trainings

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