During our discussion group exploring TVOL’s Third Way Series, we asked the question “What is Positive Deviance?” There’s a small chance that you know all about it and a larger chance that you’ve never heard of it at all. That’s because successful cultural change methods have a way of emerging at a particular time and place, spreading to a degree on the basis of their success, but then coming up against boundaries, beyond which they remain unknown. So it is with Positive Deviance, which has been used to prevent child malnourishment in Vietnam, female circumcision in Egypt, and even improve an American pharmaceutical company’s outreach to doctors. Our guide to this effective change method is David K. Hurst, a Management educator and author of The New Ecology of Leadership: Business Mastery in a Chaotic World among other books. Sage Gibbons, budding evolutionist and TVOL’s Marketing and Development Strategist, joins me as guest host as we explore what Positive Deviance teaches us about the Third Way and how a formal articulation of the Third Way can add value to Positive Deviance.
- “Of Boxes, Bubbles, and Effective Management“, David K. Hurst
- “From Life Cycle to Ecocycle: A New Perspective on the Growth, Maturity, Destruction, and Renewal of Complex Systems“, David K. Hurst and Brenda J. Zimmerman
- “Enquire within: cultural evolution and cognitive science“, Celia Hayes
- Evolution and Contextual Behavioral Science: An Integrated Framework for Understanding, Predicting, and Influencing Human Behavior, David Sloan Wilson and Steven C. Hayes
- The Power of Positive Deviance: How Unlikely Innovators Solve the World’s Toughest Problems,