An open space for global conversation
I wish to learn from and compare with others in this group the definitions of effectiveness that are out there. I'm most familiar with the definition given by Stephen R. Covey:
Effectiveness is the balance between production of desired results (P) and production capability (PC). In other words, it's the golden eggs that people want and the goose that lays them. Sometimes we call this the P/PC Balance. The essence of effectiveness is achieving the results you want in a way that enables you to get even more of these results in the future.
Of course, he qualified effective with highly. Because effective already includes "more... in the future," I think highly implies broadly and consistently.
I like the question.
For me, effectiveness (in terms of working with an entire assembly) is what we all decide it means. This puts the spotlight back on our choice of decision-making. Are we going to include everyone's voice in this definition? In order to prevent authoritarian/oligarchic dynamics from developing, I would be in favor of no voice being ignored.
So I see the question of what effectiveness means as being dependent on the specific context that it arises in and then how we decide to decide its definition.
I like what Clark's saying, maybe because I can more readily understand it without thinking too hard or inventing new vocabulary. Continuing to reflect back to Covey's statement, I do see a similarity.
I define effectiveness as "that effort which produces the desired result in the most efficient manner." And, by that definition (and Covey's), effectiveness morphs/changes depending on application so cannot be, further defined until all unknowns are revealed. Once on the table, production capability becomes transparent, but does NOT inherently include an evaluation of efficiency. By definition, I think effectiveness must include efficiency.
Clark's comment about "no voice being ignored" is at the top of my list of concerns. I believe each voice has a sovereign right to be heard and must participate in the decision about what's effective.
I hope this helps you David.
I appreciate that you contributed, Scott. Is your definition Sociocratic? I ask because I wouldn't know.
Effectiveness does not necessarily include efficiency. The most efficient way to complete a task or project is often resource-intensive and relies on command and control, if not a number of externalities that dump costs on innocents. High effectiveness is neither depleting nor victimizing and is co-creation (synergy).
Re no voice being ignored, see this discussion I posted on December 1.
No sir, not Sociocratic that I'm aware. It comes from my systems analysis background. I'ma student of Sociocracy, and attempt to define effectiveness according to what I currently understand, below. I do not yet know how much I've retained, integrated or otherwise, exactly what spawns these thoughts of mine. Maybe it will encourage input from others, as well. I count on it to fill my need for feedback.
Thank you for the link to the discussion re no voice being ignored. I found it informative and support what I understand of it at first glance.
I've recently considered how a World-wide Utopian Sociocratic model might come closer to defining effectiveness. Maybe a stretch, but I can see the potential. As I relate it below, if you're willing, please don't expect to just read and get the full effect, see if you can get into the idea instead of judging it. It's easy to judge it, believe me. Closing your eyes may help (hard to read that way). Give each separate point some seconds for your mind to get the picture. The story goes something like this:
Consider (breath) no national boundaries, (breath) no state boundaries, (breath) no definitions of country, or government. (breath, you get the picture) People are empowered to express their individuality and it all works. (breath, you can fill in the rest) No corruption ... no greed no poisonous substances ... Just breath that all in for a moment. Try to feel it.
Now consider the ideas, "those who inform our lives are local by nature." "More local, more informative."
Consider a local circle of friends, neighbors, colleagues, or any other socially related group. Consider, feedback these circles offer you, the individual. Notice, any objection is considered a treasure. A tool to hone and shape ourselves, activities and projects, our communities.
Consider, if you will, these small, local circles linked together, informing each other only where they overlap in social interest, whatever that interest may be. Expand the group of circles to a giant fabric of small, local, inter-connected circles spanning the globe.
Consider, if you will, there is no longer a need for national boundaries ... state boundaries ... countries ... governments. The people govern themselves by mechanism of the small, local circle directly informing and being informed by, those relating to it.
Ok, now you can evaluate, judge, whatever comes to you naturally! Any and all, please feel free to share your thoughts. --------------- end story------------------
Yes, the last line is part of the story. We, as a people, don't typically invite objections. In the story, however, objection is a critical component of informing/informed. I've learned, using the rough outline of the formerly mentioned circles, objections are the most effective way to find a solution when faced with a conflict.
Incidentally, I do invite feedback from all, and offer a note of consideration, it may take me a while to respond, but, I will do my absolute best to contribute