Extending the discussion of With

I was delighted that a number of people I admire picked up on my tweet about moving from for to with as a performance analyst.
This is a follow up post to encourage the sharing of experience about with activities.
I wondered if these three images depict our community of practice. I think they apply to coaching journeys too.
Step 1: The Heroic Journey
When we start out as performance analysts we face a significant work flow. Hopefully we are able to deal with this challenge. This is the foundation of for activities. We keep climbing without support. We all do it.
Step 2: Facing the Same Challenges but Working Independently
If we do manage to deal with the volume of work and have an opportunity to raise our heads to look around, we discover that others are doing the same for kind of for work. The growing network of performance analysts means that we are more aware than ever before of other responses to the same situations. We still act independently but our practice is enhanced by our own and others’ experience.
We are confident in our ability and we are able to deal with a diversity of challenges.
Step 3: In it Together
This is a very powerful image for me. It symbolises the moment we synthesise for into with in our practice. A critical incident has transformed the relationship between driver, cyclist and his colleagues.
One option could be for the cyclist to extricate the bike and carry on regardless. The other option is to address the issue head on and speak with the driver. Felix Sellier, the cyclist in this picture, decided to speak with the driver. His colleagues do not try to squeeze past, they are in this together. There is even a cyclist with a sling as part of the action.
The conversation with the driver has the potential to change everything if the driver acknowledges he or she has some responsibility and accountability for a shared journey.
Some of us, perhaps many of us, have experienced this third step. If we have been fortunate it did not take a crash to share a journey.
Step 3 relationships are very special. They are characterised by entangled leadership with shared responsibilities … and profound trust.

Photo Credits

Every body has a share (aphotoshooter, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Pierre Gallien in the French Alps (Nationaal Archief, No known copyright restrictions)
Cyclists climbing over closed railway crossing (Nationaal Archief, No known copyright restrictions)
Hit by a car (Nationaal Archief, No known copyright restrictions)


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