THE UNBOSSING ARCHIPELAGO By Ermelinda Hadjari
Afterthoughts of a fly on the wall
“Surreal” - “A humbling yet powerful experience” - "Magical" - "Unforgettable”
The first 3-day Unbossing Experience in Ibiza is, I can say with almost full certainty, one that will be ingrained in the minds of the participants for a long time. Summarizing what made it all the things that it was is a hard task to say the least.
Nonetheless, I am going to try to distill at least some of the gems, insights, revelations and impressions as seen and experienced by yours truly.
I first start by situating the whole experience from the participatory and activities point of view, to then deduct the insights into 3 main themes.
Here and there I think I succeeded in using some of the quotes from participants or descriptive examples of what happened during the unbossing conference to illustrate the ideas.
The credit goes to all of the brilliant participants who have shared invaluable insights that should inspire, instigate and enable real Unbossing. Having listened and tried to absorb all this knowledge and wisdom, I dictated 3 theme’s which I believe form invisible threads between not only unbossing participants and individuals but also organizations, stakeholders and ideas.
Unbossing Hero’s Journey
Like on any journey the actual quest is about the Hero.
It wasn't different for the Unbossing creed, the 3-day remote roundtable, Ibiza edition.
The hero in this quest wasn't one person. It was over 24 experts, inspiring and 'unsettled' individuals, professionals, leaders, rebels. What was striking was indeed this plural unbossing that found its expression through the delicate, sophisticated and raw direction of the 3 unbossing musketeers: Thomas, Nick & Charlotte.
Their style is remarkably empowering for the very reason of creating space for each and every participant to contribute, nurture and enrich what their own vision of Unbossing is.
They set the tone of the whole Experience for a safe space for connectivity, creativity and immersion.
Coming back to the plural unbossing; materialized in knowledge, experience, and crystallized insights from the participants, the Ibiza unbossing experience was exactly that - a concentrated physical, shared immersion of creating in togetherness.
Each and every one of the participants had a unique view and angle on what unbossing meant to them - but this is exactly what the whole movement genesis made clear - we can build together while honoring the sovereignty of our uniqueness.
Observing the participants I could sense that each and every person there, came in humbleness attracted by a calling to enable true transformation. The opportunity to share and build on it together from our own point of view was indeed the next step to take. Each driven by their passion, to instigate change together.
The journey was a sensory one; from the amazing food, beautiful sunsets, joyful freedom-inspired rides, and purposeful togetherness. With sophisticated craftiness, the 3 day experience started with everyone gathering in the beautiful Hacienda Encanto del Mar, where the participants were staying. In what follows I describe the three days of magic.
FRIDAY - Connecting in playfulness
The conscious goal: an invitation to truly connect.
The challenge: to show up as our purest self, stripped from roles, function titles or individual agendas.
The delightful surprise was seeing everyone gracefully accept this invitation and show a deep trust towards each other.
The unbossers were divided into smaller groups, and played a question card game. Answering personal, deep questions in a group of practical strangers called for bravery, transparency and authenticity. Stepping away from pre-conditioned ideas, but also from formal direction, the mood was set. There were also the occasional tears, but most importantly it inspired deep respect and compassion for others.
Listening to all these stories weaved a net of bonding that is difficult to express in words and rational commentary. The magic had emerged.
The day wrapped up at The Houseboat restaurant in Ibiza - where we all heard about their authentic unbossing story. Not a randomly chosen place in other words, but a showcase of unbossing in action.
SATURDAY - Active co-creation
After the often underestimated connection establishment, it was time to engage in intellectual, analytical and functional dialogue.
The unbossers all together brainstormed on the themes and topics they were facing, but also about tackling the challenges we collectively are facing in companies, teams and work environments.
All the participants wrote down these questions, topics and conundrums on post-it's which then were categorized in groups. Out of that 6 main themes emerged for elaboration, which were divided into 2 breakout sessions through-out Saturday, with a special break between the two.
The first break out session included the following 3 topics:
1. What does leadership mean for an Unbossed Era - and how can unbossing leaders thrive
2. How to approach organizational growth from an Unbossing perspective
3. What role can Unbossing play in changing the world
The groups containing around 5 or 6 people deep dived into one of these items through a group discussion. Each group had one host who took ownership of the topic.
Immediately the host and participants showed a savoir-faire and skill for engaging in constructive dialogue and co-creation.
What was interesting to see, is the usual group dynamic forming during the discussions, but beautifully creating space for everyone to contribute.
The second break-out session included a driving-experience with the Unbossed 60’s Mustang cars. Talking about driving change! For this session the 3 newly created groups received each a special Ibiza location to drive to in groups and discuss on the road about the topics. “Building the parachute on the way down” metaphor applies here.
The topics discussed on the road and at the locations:
1. Evolving management and performance through Unbossing
2. Education and Unbossing
3. How to accelerate unbossing globally
This kind of informal and associative learning, while immersed in a physical, social and cultural experience resulted in interesting and elaborate insights.
We danced Saturday away at the Hacienda, with music laughter and celebration.
SUNDAY - Authentic Synthesis
On the last day we took some time to digest everything. We sat together at the breakfast table by the pool and looked back at our conversations, our learnings and what the elevation of this wonderful energy could mean in practice.
If it resonates with you, get in touch with us and let us embark on Unbossing Journeys that change the world.