Books: Organizing Conversations (2024) | Agendashift (2nd edition 2021) | Right to Left (2019, audiobook 2020) | Kanban from the Inside (2014)

Organizing Conversations: Preparing Groups to Take on Adaptive Challenges

Published May 27th 2024, available in both print and e-book formats.

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Praise for Organizing Conversations:

“Mike has a unique voice in how he talks about people, organizations, leadership and outcomes. Organizing Conversations takes this a step further, providing conversations and practices that enable accountability and ownership of the direction of strategy and outcomes.”
“Not just a book but a tool to prepare managers, leaders, and change agents with the capability and understanding of how to engage work teams fully. It provides a fresh view of Dialogic Organization Development, bringing in the strength of meaningful conversations to fuel change and innovation in organizational practices.”
“My reading experience can be summarized as making lots of highlights while connecting the dots to improve strategy, organization design, OD, and facilitation work. I will definitely recommend Organizing Conversations to the people I work with.”

This fourth book by Agendashift founder Mike Burrows is a commission for the Bushe-Marshak Institute's BMI Series in Dialogic Organisation Development. Its themes:

  • Dialogic patterns – models, routines, and strings of exercises that organize a range of powerful conversational tools and give structure and direction to exploratory dialog
  • Participatory tools for organizing the outputs of such inquiry, dealing respectfully with its quantity, diversity, and ambiguity
  • Patterns for generative conversations – conversations designed to yield solutions that people are motivated to act on
  • Patterns for integrating and sustaining the above, seeing that as an issue of organization as much process



Part One: Inquiry

  1. Context
  2. Setting the Stage: Shared Ideals, Obstacles, and Outcomes
  3. Repertoire – Foundations for Setting the Stage

Part Two: Managing the Inquiry Process and Organizing its Outputs

  1. Configuration, Calibration, and Framing
  2. Clarifying and Organizing Outcomes Before Searching for Solutions

Part Three: Generative Processes

  1. Ideation and Experimentation
  2. Keeping the Conversation Alive

Author and Agendashift founder Mike Burrows is recognised for his pioneering work in Lean, Agile, and Kanban, his ground-breaking first book Kanban from the Inside (Blue Hole Press, 2014), and for championing participatory and outcome-oriented approaches to change, transformation, and strategy. Before embarking on his consulting career, he was global development manager and Executive Director at a top tier investment bank, and CTO for an energy risk management startup.

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Agendashift™ is brought to you by Agendashift Ltd (formerly Positive Incline Ltd), UK-based specialists in leadership, engagement, strategy, and change. Founder Mike Burrows came to prominence in the Lean-Agile community as the originator of Kanban’s values model, out of which came his first book, Kanban from the Inside (2014). His more recent books Agendashift (2nd edition 2021) and Right to Left (2019, audiobook 2020) bring a resolutely needs-based and outcome-oriented perspective to change, transformation, and the Lean-Agile landscape as a whole, contributing meanwhile a number of popular tools, games, and other resources. He works as a consultant, facilitator, and trainer, and as a keynote speaker at events public and private around the world.

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