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Capacitating Local Leadership Teams: Transitioning Toward Systems-Based Strategic Management Practices in Response to Increasing Global Complexity

3 speakers

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As the world changes at an accelerating rate, cities are being forced to respond to a widening range of complex challenges. Leaders are finding it difficult to match past performance results and recognizing conventional management practices are falling short. This workshop will explore the potential in adopting and operationalizing systemic management innovations at the local level. In particular, participants will be introduced to Enterprise Evolution: an organizational development program designed to enable senior leadership teams to transform their strategic management practices. By prioritizing context, relationships, and learning, the program enables enterprises to become more adaptive, effective and efficient, and resilient. While originally developed and deployed to capacitate business leaders (with dozens of success stories), Enterprise Evolution’s flexible design allows for it to be tailored to the needs and interests of organizations in any sector. More recently, the Enterprise Evolution was adopted by a medium-sized Canadian municipality engaged in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and the transformation of their strategy development process. Building upon the success of this experience, an applied research program was co-creatively developed by a number of partners including several municipal sector NGOs, city networks, and academic institutions, to engage 10 additional municipal leadership teams in five countries across the Global North and South in applying the Enterprise Evolution program. During this workshop, participants will gain insight into several specific, systems-based methods and tools; the City of Kitchener’s experience; and how other municipalities can get more involved and apply Enterprise Evolution locally.