conference- Meditation and Human Values in the Workplace

Hi, I received this link through another network and thought of you!

Open Event – Central Scotland Group 13th Nov

The Unreasonable Learners Network

Join us in building a better society for all of us, and our children and grandchildren.

Our aim is to facilitate a learning society that is driven by knowledge and a respect for people. This vision is in contrast with the present, where some in positions of authority have excessive influence in determining the future, sometimes rather for their own benefit, at the expense of everyone else, and often in ignorance or disregard for the long-term effects of their actions.

Our purpose is to lift the human spirit and address the long-term well being of our society. To make significant progress, we must shift from our present level of thinking. The opportunity lies with us, collectively identifying how society and we think, and being willing to challenge those perceptions in light of modern knowledge of how things truly work. The outcome will be radical improvement of the systems that characterise our society – the financial system, the public sector system, our education system, the way we address drug and alcohol addiction, the way the majority of organisations are managed, and the systems that effect our environment, and so on.

If you would like to find out more the Central Scotland Group are having an open event on

Wed 13th November from 7pm till 9pm

In the Stirling County Cricket Club – New Williamfield, Royal Stuart Way, Stirling FK7 7WS.

The evening will consist of an introduction to the Unreasonable Learners Group and two short presentations and discussions designed to get you thinking about a better society and what we can do to start achieving it. After which there will be an opportunity to network and informally meet like-minded people.

For more information on the Unreasonable Learners please visit the website at:


“The reasonable man adapts himself to the conditions that surround him… The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself… All progress depends on the unreasonable man.” George Bernard Shaw

Plan ‘B’ Event 22nd July Outcomes have been submitted


Attendees of the above event might find it helpful to revisit The B Team website and in particular look at the stories of those organisations participating in the Plan B for Business Stories

“How might The B Team help amplify or catalyse what you are already doing in your organisation as part of a Plan B for Business?”
Use the Plan B brand to create awareness, champion the role model and new thinking and to build a network of businesses who share our common vision and who sign the “pledge” and strive collectively to live the principles, matching Plan B opportunities to the network’s resources. In return for demonstrating this, they can co-brand with Plan B. Living the principles would include redefining legacy power structures by democratising decision-making and discouraging market domination.

“What are the most transformative, scalable and systemic solutions that could advance the three Challenges we have announced?” (focus on just 1 if you want)
(a) Redefine the bottom line to incorporate the new values i.e. to include setting profit against people and planet costs (over time) and then promote and adopt objectives and new incentives in line with the new values. This might include taking a circular economy approach.

(b) Apply incentives to the collective not the individual; make them apply over a longer term; reward performance against “whole planet”objectives; remove financial bonuses.

(c)  Encourage the view that leaders are servants who “show not tell” and “guide rather than drive”; facilitate the development of a new business language (e.g. stop using the word management) that democratises power.

As part of a Plan B for business, we need to reflect on what the fundamental role of business is. If you could add one statement to the new ‘Charter’ that redefines the purpose of business, to make it a driving force for social, environmental and economic benefit what would it say?”

Business must mindfully monitor and measure the impact of all of its decisions and actions and must align itself towards a broader definition of progress that is commensurate with a sustainable future for our people and our planet.

Unreasonable Learners – Stirling / Central Scotland Group Update

URL Stirling / Central Scotland Group met on 24th June and held a workshop to look at the core values and activities we wanted to adopt and take forward. We had an excellent session and the outputs are detailed below. As a result of this we will be meeting again in September to review our progress and agree what next. Please look out for the date and come along.

~ Core Values and Activities, as decided upon through our interactive dialogue process.

Group Values
Most Supported:
– energy and purposeful action
– listening
– open minded
– positivity
– risk taking

Next Best
– big thinking
– learning from each other
– willingness to engage and commit
– being brave

Other Possibilities
– Understanding that numbers matter
– outcome / results driven
– teaching
– present
– truth
– trust

Group Activities
Most supported
– Stirling LinkedIn Group, Webpage, Twitter, Update UL site re meeting etc
– Engaging with structures & organisations (social, political, civic and economic) to achieve change
– Spearheading a campaign to communicate a different management process. Media, PR, word of mouth
– Enriched learning for myself and others within group
– back to basics and human spirit development on a corporate level

Next Best
– press releases
– talks and discussions
– connect and communicate outwardly, engage and share learning

Other Possibilities
– regularity of action, within a flexible framework
– engage with current civic groups, parent councils, health boards, etc
– Did you know campaign…
– Present a clear image of the society we want to see (‘I have a dream’)
– PR / Media

Any questions or queries just ask ….

Many Thanks

UL’s Stirling/ Central Scotland Group

Help Create Curiosity……

Thanks for coming to the Unreasonable Learners (UL) hosting of the B team Kick Off event on Monday 22 July. You contributed to a fantastic evening and judging by the feedback and the buzz at the event everyone made it a great success.

We will shortly be announcing the date of the next event for those who did not manage to secure a place for Monday evening. Can I ask you please to spread the work about the Unreasonable learners and the B team Kick-off event that will be held in early September, specific date to follow.

The Unreasonable Learners Network believes the best way to increase awareness of what the UL and the B Team are about is to increase curiosity… rather than sell these new emerging ideas directly.  I would like to ask you a favour:  Would you please use your social media networks to help us achieve greater curiosity, such as by posting on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, as you prefer.  The UL have a LinkedIn group Unreasonable Learners which we would be pleased if you would join and a Twitter account @Unrslearners, which of course you can follow. If you haven’t already done so, please join the UL’s mailing list at Use the “Join Us” tab.

I will also advise you of the next event in due course and if you can again create curiosity to gain interest and bring together like-minded “early adopters” that would be marvellous.


I would like to thank you again for your enthusiastic and innovative contribution to Monday’s event.


Cheers Fiona

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Reflections on the Open Space event 21 March 2013

Open Space event 21 March 2013We judged the event (details) to be a success with a 100 or so present in the audience. Thanks to Wendy Mill, Fiona Savage, Mike Bell, Jacqui Mitchell, Andy Lippok, Chris Alder and Gordon Cassells for all their work and for speaking on the night.

The event was free to attend and the venue (Summer Hall) was chosen accordingly. That worked out well on the whole, although there were some drawbacks, principally around the acoustics for the discussion groups in the second half. Another time, we might position the groups in a different way to avoid these difficulties.

We sought feedback from the attendees and have a number of points to think about. In general terms, the feedback varied from unconvinced through to “fabulous”, mostly in the favourable to very favourable category.

One specific theme is refining the message of the Unreasonable Learners so that it engages widely, is positively expressed, and retains sufficient coherence to make a difference. With the diversity of subjects and viewpoints in play, this represents something of a challenge.

Another theme that has been emerging for some time and which was reinforced by the Open Space event is how we most effectively share the learning already at our disposal within the network. Gathering the expertise and achieving the personal growth necessary to effect systemic and sustainable change is a key area.

This will be discussed further at our meeting on the 18th April.

Running the event on a free-to-attend basis was in line with the ULN’s philosophy of achieving as much as possible without outlays. Whether this is the right policy is regularly discussed. So far, the case for establishing a funded organisation with administrative resource has not been made. The time may come though when that is an essential step. Meantime, we proceed with an approach of sharing the tasks as widely as possible. Remaining an entirely voluntary organisation has implications for consistency and our ability to meet third party expectations. Views on this point would be welcome.

Our speakers at the Open Space event deserve our thanks. If you attended the event, thank you for coming along and contributing to a considerable success.

Please feel free to comment with impressions of the event, ideas for further events, and suggestions or comments in general on the points mentioned above.

Connections with the Society of Organisational Learning (SoL) in Boston

SoL logoSoL North America is interested in the work of The Unreasonable Learners. (The Society of Organisational Learning (North America) is closely associated with Peter Senge, author of The Fifth Discipline, one of the classic references on systems thinking.)

Every month, SoL NA organises a conference call of members to focus on the work on one of those members and support them in their projects. David Fraser is a SoL member and recently suggested that the group might be interested in hearing about and discussing the work of the Unreasonable Learners. This they were and the call is taking place on 5th April, facilitated by Michael Sales who, among other things, studied with Chris Argyris and has a number of useful perspectives relevant to our work.

Michael Sales

Michael Sales

The call is focused on three questions of both particular and general relevance chosen from a longer list of issues…

  • Recognizing the constant interplay between inner personal maturity and the outer system, how do we further the development of the relationship between the self and the system – both in ourselves and in others?
  • How do we best lead in a system that is tightly controlled?
  • How do we stop the bipolar nature of organizational and public politics preventing the generative dialogue needed for organizational learning?

SoL members putting forward the subject of a call are encouraged to make substantive requests for assistance from the other participants. Suggestions of specific requests for help from SoL North America would be welcome. Please comment here or email

SoL North America is very keen to be connected with what is going on in Scotland, in and around the Unreasonable Learners Network, and sees systemic change and the organizational learning that lies within it as something it would like to support and contribute to.

Feedback from the call will be posted in due course.

Comments welcome.

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