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The Power of Collective Wisdom by Sheryl Erickson, Alan Briskin

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twoPreparing for Collective Wisdom to Arise

Our colleague Kate Regan uses a simple exercise to prepare individuals in groups to notice their internal thoughts and calibrate their group behaviors. In this exercise, typically done in workshops of approximately twenty people who are seated in a circle, she asks the participants to look down at the floor and close their eyes. She tells them that without opening their eyes, they must count to thirty in sequence without two people speaking at the same time. If two people do speak simultaneously, they must begin again. As you might expect, rarely do groups accomplish this the first time. As they report later, many individuals develop strategies to get the task done quickly without any sense of knowing ...

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