A festival of fire and ice

As winter arrives, many of us are drawn to the magic of making fires. Personally I love this time of year. There is something about the stark beauty of the landscape, stripped back and illuminated by winter sun, with breath taking glistening frost. It feels elemental in the way that fire, light and dark play with our senses, providing an opportunity to take stock, reflect, let go and prepare for what emerges in the new year.

The upcoming Fire Starter Festival  provides an opportunity for us to share what we personally and collectively what we want to leave behind, and share some of the small fires of change we have ignited. And given that we are holding it in the last week in January (23rd – 30th) there is a strong chance of snow and ice as well as all of our fires! fire-snow

Already we have fourteen events open for registration, with the same number almost ready to be ignited. It’s wonderful to see the energy and enthusiasm of so many colleagues across public services, evidencing a paradigm shift in how we collectively share ideas, resources, and reimagine the future of public services in Scotland.

Here’s a small sample of what’s on offer but please do check out the Eventbrite Page and watch as the small fires of change emerge over the next few weeks.

Igniting Inquiry: the (hidden) power of storytelling

Stories play a big part in how we make sense of our lives, our organisations, our world. They carry and shape our values; can limit or transform organisational cultures; and often shape political agendas.

 Yet many of us tend not to look that closely at the stories we tell, rehearse, ignore, or develop as acts of leadership.

– blurb from workshop brief

Why bother with a workshop on story-telling as part of the ‘Fire Starter’ Festival?

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My intention with offering this workshop was to spark a conversation about ‘igniting inquiry’ through storytelling. Inquiry, for me, is shorthand for giving ourselves permission to interrupt the usual flow of ‘business as usual’ – to reflect about whether we are really heading in the direction we want; whether there might be a better way – and if so, what the story of that better way might be.