In most collaborations, we're moving from ambiguity to action. Ambiguity can manifest as any number of unknowns.
- It's unclear where we need to go or how to get there
- It's unclear exactly what resources we will have
- It's unclear what could change as we move forward
- It's unclear how our efforts will impact outcomes
There are five basic categories of action.
- Researching our actionable questions
- Making decisions & commitments
- Designing and testing something new
- Communicating and inquiring about something
- Launching something
When groups aren't moving from ambiguity to action, they're stuck. Stuckness comes a variety of shapes and sizes.
- Either-or and win-lose competitive debates to be right
- Hoping someone saves the group from its stuckness
- Complaining about whatever people believe victimizes them
- Postponing action in fear it might lead to imperfect outcomes
- Paralysis of analysis and other speculation based discussions
- Skeet shooting new ideas until we have none left
- Investing time in old conversations believing they can get us to get us to new outcomes
What these have in common is they each effectively postpone action. The only antidote to these are the five basic categories of action. Groups get unstuck the instant they take any form of action possible in the present.