When an organization is doing cutting edge work, this work often spans a wide variety of fields and backgrounds. Perhaps you've hired an expert team to work on a sticky issue, but when your team comes together, folks have a sneaking suspicion that there's deeper set of knowledge that is out there to tap into.
You'll know this is the case when you start wondering
- "Isn't there any research on this topic?"
- "I wish I could call up someone and get them to tell me how this works in the lab."
- "What would someone from a design/engineering/social science have to say about this?"
The problem is, those aren't your fields of study, you don't know the jargon in the field you're interested in and you're not sure who you should even call on to answer those questions or where to start to do a research literature review.
Do you hire another person with those skills? Commission a literature review? Comb websites for scholars to grill? Get access to an academic library? What would help?
With a problem like this, we like to start with a conversation on what your team really wants to know. In these conversations, we'll ask you to talk through what is missing, and the importance of deepening your team's knowledge base.
We'll ask questions like:
- What research questions are compelling right now for the work you're doing?
- Who would you love to talk to?
- If you had an unlimited research budget to fund outside research, what would you spend it on?
- What fields might have an approach that would be really different from the way you're looking at the topic now?
As a group, we'll iterate until we have a sense of what the research looks like and get super clear on what the research questions are.
Once we've named our research question, we can create an expert group that we engage in an open collaborative workshop process that we use as a starting place for the data you need to work on these issues.
Outputs can include lists of research papers and researchers who are working on these topics, an overview of contentious topics within each field related to your research question, expert advice, and suggestions on where to go deeper on these topics.
Our methods are unique. We make a point to find diverse collegial professionals and we facilitate a collaborative discussion to grapple with exactly the issues your team is struggling with. The only difference is that these professionals are there to teach, support, and share information and knowledge with you.
The result is a starting place to deepen your team's expertise. What kind of expertise does your organization want?
Here at Organizational Mycology, we're working to bring facilitation, and consulting engagements that can help you and your organization navigate these complexities by finding ways to bring forward differing perspectives so that you can co-create a robust and resilient organization.
To get a sample of how we work, and how we think, come along to one of our Oblique Thinking Hours run the second Tuesday/Wednesday (depending on time zone) of every month.