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Quakers and Business Group
Promoting Quaker values in Business and the Workplace

Minute of Quaker Business Conference 2017

Approximately 60 members of Q&B and guests attended QBC’17 'Seek unity; uphold difference; find wholeness: Exploring decision-making through Quaker Business Method and other models', on Tuesday, 5th December 2017, at Friends House in London.

Throughout the day we were introduced to various processes, methods, ideas and frameworks. We were encouraged to explore how they can aid our decision-making. We learned about Quaker Business Method (QBM) through experiencing a simple hypothetical case study. Then, in small groups of 5 or 6 people we discussed a decision one of us had to make, each seeking to open our hearts and minds so they functioned as one.

Ruth Steinholtz and Eoin McCarthy shared a dialogue that Jenny Tipping facilitated. Ruth spoke about the Barrett Seven Levels of Consciousness Model. Eoin, standing in for Joycelin Dawes told us about her book ‘Discernment and Inner Knowing making decisions for the best’. The book explains QBM process of discernment using Theory U (first developed by Betty Sue Flowers,‎ C. Otto Scharmer,‎ Joseph Jaworski, and Peter M. Senge). Eoin also told us about a 3-part framework for Conscious Decision Making.

We divided to attend our chosen workshops:

Conversational Intelligence – conversations that prime the brain for better decisionsClaire James
Quaker Business Method: How it works and Why it works? Peter Cheng
Cognitive bias – how our decision-making can be affected Paul Moxey

We broke for lunch during which there was much discussion and networking. We then divided into three more groups for workshop sessions.

Listening to Values: Values and Ethical Decision Making Models Ruth Steinholz
Growing a Business Method Community of Practice Eoin McCarthy & Paul Moxey
Quaker Business Method and the Public Good Shivaji Shiva

We came together again to experience a whole self - whole system decision-making exercise, led by Sarah James –Wright, using the decisions we worked on in our small groups in the morning. One group then volunteered to work on their decision with the rest of us watching.

In the concluding plenary session we agreed that we had learned more about QBM. We all thanked the 30 organisers and volunteers. We were reminded that the next Q&B meeting will be in York on 30 June 2018.