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Radical Collaboration

Inspirational leader Tammy Scarlett explains the benefits of showing up in community with an intention of coherence
Panoramic overhead view of several business meetings going on in the communal area of a modern office building

This article first appeared in our COP28 issue of My Green Pod Magazine, published 30 November 2023. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox

Love might be what makes the world go round, but just to shake things up – and with a goal of getting humanity to where we need to be by 2030 – this year, a few starry-eyed organisations began intentionally practising something else, too: Radical Collaboration.

By the time you read this, I’ll be on a superyacht at the Formula 1 races, or in Dubai for COP28. Either way, I’ll be discussing the Impact Portfolio on SDG panels as part of the epic Where Worlds Collide event series, launched by Nick Baci of Let’s Disrupt Digital.

The event, sponsored by the Rio Way wellness company, has a long list of partners; Nexus will be attending, the Green Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Nuaimi will be there and the new Faraday Future car will make more than one appearance, to name a few.

While I love a good yacht party, the glitz and glam novelties might seem excessive to some – or even counter-intuitive to the premise of COP28. But while sophisticated and laced with luxury, this event series is not just for vanity and show.

This series represents a rush of people coming together to sync up in ways that wouldn’t normally be expected; hundreds of organisations and companies will team up to allow Radical Collaboration before the event has even begun. And the method is catching on like wildfire.

The Holomovement

I first noticed the emerging trend of Radical Collaboration (and my tendency to be a proponent of it) in March 2023.

Emanuel Kuntzelman, founder of Greenheart International and Purpose Earth, had launched the Igniting the Holomovement conference in Sedona, and had invited me to attend.

The Holomovement is based on David Bohm’s many works, including Wholeness and the Implicate Order, and offers a space for individuals or organisations to identify and participate as Holons, whereby they will not be alone in their good work in the world.

They will have like-purposed, ready collaborators with whom to knit a strong fabric of becoming in our global communities.

At the Holomovement event, I witnessed leaders of organisations – many of whom I had known for years – softening and opening to the practical possibilities of collaboration.

These organisational leaders did not need to have an agenda go before them in order to navigate the collaborative relationship.

They connected as people first, in a deeply genuine way, and allowed what might emerge naturally to follow.

For example, David Gershon, founder of the First Earth Run, the Empowerment Institute and the Center for Reinventing the Planet, invited any organisations who wanted to participate to be a part of the global Peace on Earth by 2030 game, his initiative.

But he added that he is open to how the game might need to evolve at this juncture and asked people to take an inventory of how it might feel right for them to be involved.

It was a beautifully messy experiment, with lots of learning, and now we have a template that can be used again.

Many months later, one by one, these organisations are better for it, and I believe the leaders would say the same of themselves. Not only that, but our greater community is richer for it.

Discovering synergies

It might be a new concept to most people, but several individuals – including Teresa Collins of
the Global Coherence Pulse and Jon Ramer of the Compassion Games – have been holding down the fort for Radical Collaboration to emerge on the scene.

Teresa and Jon both speak of Radical Collaboration often, using their skills and resources to help foster the innovative activities that cultivate the coherence of our connectedness.

Recently, Jon helped me navigate preparation for the coming months of travel and speaking regarding the Impact Portfolio. In our meetings, Jon would use mind-mapping software to track the overlap between our worlds, so we could become aware of one another in a greater context and see where we might give each other more attention.

In the business sector, when I am consulting for companies, I call this Relationship Mapping for Momentum (or Relational Momentum Mapping).

Practices like this, that Jon so gracefully weaves into his daily conversations, are powerful, practical tools that can meet people where they are and help to bring them to the next level of Radical Collaboration.

Do more of what you love

Years ago, Teresa shared her belief that if we were simply consistent in showing up in community with one another with an intention of coherence, then we would end up in a place where burdens were naturally lifted off our shoulders, we would not see each other through a lens of comparison or competition but instead one of gratitude and endearment, and we would be freed up to do more of what we love.

She would quote complexity scientist Ilya Prigogine in saying, ‘When a system is far from equilibrium, small islands of coherence in a sea of chaos have the capacity to lift the entire system to a higher order.’ And she was right.

A little over a year later, I found myself in spaces where Radical Collaboration is now happening naturally, through consistency and presence, and is beginning to lend itself to Radical Synergy.

Today a group of over 30 organisations collaborates in a social media play space called The Connection Field, the only thing of its kind that I know of.

As executive-director of UNIFY and founder of the Impact Portfolio, I have a unique global lens on organisations and individuals, and how they interact.

I see that a simple choice for Radical Collaboration increases an organisation’s capacity. And I see that letting go of agenda and relaxing into allowing, before making the practical plans, is indeed radical and does indeed prime us for Radical Synergy.

This year at COP28 I am challenging myself to set my agenda aside and engage with open -heartedness and intention, allowing that which is trying to emerge for the good of all. And I’m keeping my eyes, ears and heart wide open for those who want to come with me. We can tell them next year how it went.

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