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Hello! Welcome to the Star Cypress Partners Blog!
I’ll be sharing insights, interests and inspiration with you each month. My hope is this communication will serve as a source of encouragement for readers as each of you pursue your personal and professional goals.
INSIGHTS – What Keeps Me Focused
Star Cypress Partners works strategically with clients to understand the DNA of their organization. Our consultants identify unique value drivers and clarify the root cause of existing challenges to uncover the future clients envision for their organizations and those they serve. Our 5i Pathways to Change approach represents an experience that expands and converges as insights are made.
We use an ecological systems framework that enables us to determine the best recommendations to implement. This means we place an emphasis on how an organization’s social environment and systems influence the humans (e.g., employees, managers and leaders, customers, volunteers, board members, suppliers, the local community, etc.) it serves. This requires that we understand and take into consideration the local community context, the people that make up the organization and the culture within an organization to allow us to co-create solutions with clients.
Our work in human-centered design, organizational development and change management, improvement science and stakeholder/conscious capitalism has shaped our 5i Pathways to Change approach.
Each of the five phases are described next.
When an engagement begins our consultants focus on confirming why the work of change is necessary. We develop a theory of change to obtain a sense of what an organization’s future state is and what initial goals are priorities. Addressing the why behind the change is the first step of our work. The inflection phase also provides us an opportunity to assess overall organizational change readiness across all levels of the organization.
The inspiration phase allows us to engage the organization and its stakeholders in a discovery and exploration process to determine what is possible and what is viable. The most creative of the phases, guiding our clients through inspiration allows them to affirm who they are by learning from others and by challenging assumptions and potential unconscious behavior.
Our clients are then prepared to develop hypotheses by building prototypes for the organization to test. During ideation, we analyze data from interviews and research during the inspiration phase and start the process of converging on a set of priorities which can be refined and tested.
It is important to guide our clients through the prototyping process to encourage learning by doing. We will offer a custom improvement pilot during this phase that serves as a basis for a repeatable process for the client to replicate. This gives us a sense of root causes behind existing challenges and ultimately allows us to co-create solutions with our clients. We strongly believe people embrace what they create. Therefore our approach focuses on empowering our clients along the way so that they can continue to own the work when our consultant team is gone.
We present our final change recommendations during the implementation phase and then continue in our role of “teaching the organization to fish”. At this stage we reinforce new behaviors by coaching stakeholders through the execution of the pilot. This creates more learning along the way and strengthens the organization’s change and continuous improvement muscles.
We have most recently used our 5i Pathways to Change approach in new client work supporting multiple Baltimore nonprofits. Our team has been absolutely delighted by the impact these organizations are making in Baltimore. What a joy it is to be a part of their transformations!
INTERESTS – What Keeps Me Growing
I’ve had the pleasure since the fall of 2020 to participate in Conscious Capitalism’s consultant program. The program includes individuals from across the globe. We are all committed to transforming business by using conscious capitalism’s four tenets.
Conscious Capitalism (also known as stakeholder capitalism or stakeholder approach to strategic business management) is in alignment with Star Cypress’s way of working. Our team most recently facilitated a virtual higher purpose workshop to design improvement recommendations for an organization. We have also internally affirmed our role as consulting partners with our clients. We want to make our clients better because of us, not overly-dependent on us. Consider joining a conscious capitalism chapter in your area. Just Capital has also served as a great resource for me as I seek best practices and other leaders working with a stakeholder orientation intention.
INSPIRATION – What Keeps Me Human
Did January even really happen this year? It went by so fast but at the same time felt like an entire year! That pace alone has encouraged me to slow down in February and find more ways to connect with others and to seek inspiration (and honestly escape in my mind a tiny bit) through storytelling. To commit to these goals, I’ll be attending the Hungry Hearts Live Event Series this month to hear from other Black Women and People of Color.
We continue to enjoy meeting new organizations and leaders interested in transforming their work and improving how they support their employees or communities they serve. We’ve also grown through new business partnerships.
HERE ARE THREE WAYS WE CAN SUPPORT YOU:
If you are interested in learning more about how we may work with you, please schedule a discovery call by visiting this link: https://calendly.com/hje/60min-1
Take care of yourself and each other.
Until next time,
Heidi Jackson Everett
President & CEO
Star Cypress Partners