How can we co-create a strategy story? (2)
In my last article, I talked about the last process of the value creation process, “Co-creation of strategies.” In this article, I will continue to talk about “Co-creation of strategies” in depth.
The whole value creation process is shown here.
The relationship between the 3+1 consciousness model and the SECI model
In my previous article, I talked about strategy co-creation/emergence as “integrating the different ideas of each person to create an integrated strategic story that cannot be expressed by a collection of individual ideas,” and introduced the SECI model as a collaborative process to realize this.
The SECI model introduced in the previous section is restated below.
In this article, I would like to explore the essence of the SECI model from the perspective of the 3+1 consciousness model. I believe that by reading the SECI model from the perspective of consciousness, we will be able to perceive the SECI model in a more differential, causal, and bodily sensible way, making it easier to both understand the theory and put it into practice.
As I have mentioned in previous articles, let me briefly explain the 3+1 consciousness model again.
Intuitive consciousness is “the consciousness that intuitively senses the existence of essence, truth, INOCHI(life), and love. In a word, “it is the consciousness that integrate into the One.”
On the other hand, bodily consciousness is “the consciousness that perceptually captures the sensations and emotions that arise in the body,” or in a word, “it is the consciousness that feels.”
The thinking consciousness is “the consciousness that interprets and makes sense of what is intuited or perceived by the intuitive or bodily consciousness”; in a word, “it is the consciousness that sorts.”
These three consciousnesses cooperate with each other and embody the process of cognizing and judging, wherein the intuitive or bodily consciousness cognizes something intuitively or perceptually, and the thinking consciousness judges it.
Slightly different from these three types of consciousness is meta-consciousness. Meta-consciousness is “the consciousness that captures the three consciousnesses of Self and the scope of these consciousnesses,” or in a word, “the consciousness that watches over.”
This is the end of the explanation of the big picture of the 3+1 ISHIKI(consciousness) Model. Rather than trying to understand the details of the 3+1 ISHIKI(consciousness) Model, it is sufficient if you understand the general framework of the relationship between the three consciousnesses and their concrete images.
Next, I would like to explain the relationship between the 3+1 consciousness model and the SECI model. This is not what Professor Ikujiro Nonaka talks about in the SECI model, but is my own interpretation.
The four modes of knowledge transformation in the SECI model can be explained in terms of the use of consciousness in the 3+1 consciousness model as follows.
This is the process of sharing with the team what we perceive with our intuitive and bodily consciousness. The key point is to share the sensations captured by the intuitive consciousness (including some of the bodily consciousness) as much as possible without forcing the thinking consciousness to verbalize or organize them.
In order to do this, it is important to use meta-consciousness to get a bird’s eye view of how we feel and to ethnograph how the other person feels, in other words, to put ourselves in their shoes.
The key of Externalization is the work of the intuitive consciousness. Intuitive consciousness has the function of integrating various elements to find a single thing. Through collaboration, the intuitive consciousness discovers what is common and common to the shared tacit knowledge, which is then verbalized by the thinking consciousness.
It is important to note that we should not rush the verbalization of our thoughts. It’s better to wait until we are informed, and not rush to verbalize until the inspiration comes to us, which will lead to a better concept.
By activating the thinking consciousness, we can check the consistency with existing frameworks and ideas, organize their positioning, and identify and resolve contradictions and issues. Since the thinking consciousness is a “sorting consciousness,” it is very suitable for this kind of organization and problem solving.
We put into practice what we perceive with our thinking consciousness while activating our bodily consciousness. While practicing, it is important to keep our antennae up for what we perceive in our physical consciousness.
Cherishing the feeling of fulfillment and discomfort when practicing will enrich the content to be shared in the next process of socialization.
We have been talking about the relationship between the 3+1 consciousness model and the SECI model, but this is not just about organizing concepts.
By tying the specific consciousness (in the 3+1 model) to be activated in each knowledge transformation mode of the SECI model, each knowledge transformation can be practiced more smoothly and successfully.
In my previous article, I mentioned that among the four knowledge transformations in the SECI model, the one I value the most as a personal feeling is Socialization. In Socialization, we share through dialogue what we have intuited and experienced, including sensations that have not been verbalized, and from the perspective of the 3+1 consciousness model, the key to successfully practicing Socialization is to avoid becoming dominant in thinking consciousness.
The essence of the SECI model
When we interpret the SECI model from the perspective of consciousness management, we realize that the SECI model creates knowledge by moving back and forth between several modes of consciousness.
What do we mean by several modes of consciousness?
The first mode of consciousness is abstract and concrete.
In the four-quadrant diagram of the SECI model, it refers to the upper two quadrants (abstract) and the lower two quadrants (concrete). The upper two quadrants deal with abstract things such as people’s intuition, ideas, and concepts. The lower two quadrants deal with the concrete in the sense of considering and implementing measures based on real world conditions and constraints.
In the 3+1 consciousness model, it can be described as the difference in the mode of consciousness between the abstract worldview, which is mainly based on meta-consciousness and intuition, and the concrete worldview, which is mainly based on thinking consciousness and bodily consciousness.
The second mode of consciousness is subject-object non-separation and subject-object separation.
Subject-object non-separation is an unfamiliar expression, but it refers to a state in which the subject and the object are not separated. Think of an experience where you were so immersed in something that you forgot about the passage of time.
In the moment of immersion, don’t you feel that the boundary between “you” (the subject) and “what you are immersed in” (the object) is blurred?
Have you ever felt an aspect of “it’s making me do it” that cannot be described simply by the feeling of “I’m doing it,” or even that expression is inadequate, but more like “it’s becoming me” or “I’m becoming one with it”?
Or remember an experience when you saw something new or beautiful to you and were captivated by it.
When you are in such a captivating moment, don’t you feel that the event jumps into your eyes, and your mind is so drawn to it that you are glued to it without having time to put into words what you are seeing or feeling?
These sensations are the subject-object non-separation. It refers to the state in which you, the subject, and the thing, event, or situation, the object, are not yet separated. Because it is an unseparated state, it cannot be verbalized in the moment. Language is the act of extracting a thing or concept from a situation. Therefore, these sensations can be said to be the state before understanding, before expressing in language, separating oneself from things, events, and situations.
On the other hand, the mode of consciousness that separates the subject from the object is subject-object separation. The mode of consciousness in which we usually communicate through words can be said to be the mode of subject-object separation.
In the four quadrants of the SECI model, the two quadrants on the left side can be regarded as the mode of consciousness with non-separation of subject and object, and the two quadrants on the right side as the mode of consciousness with separation of subject and object. We can interpret that we are creating knowledge by moving back and forth between these two modes of consciousness.
In the 3+1 model of consciousness, the two quadrants on the left side can be interpreted as a mode in which meta-consciousness, intuition, and bodily consciousness are central and the two quadrants on the right side can be interpreted as a mode in which thinking consciousness is central.
Tacit knowledge and explicit knowledge can be expressed in terms of the use of consciousness as the difference between the non-separation of subject and object and the separation of subject and object.
The third mode of consciousness is that of the individual and the collective.
Individual and collective as modes of consciousness may be a little difficult to understand. Individual consciousness is understandable, but collective consciousness is an unfamiliar expression. When we are able to have the same kind of consciousness as ourselves and others, we call it a collective consciousness.
For example, organizational culture can be seen as one of the collective consciousness, in the sense that what is valued in an organization has become a culture as a shared state.
In the SECI model, Socialization is focused on the aggregation of tacit knowledge, while Combination is focused on the aggregation of explicit knowledge. In this sense, the upper left and lower right quadrants can be said to be modes of consciousness that focus on collectivity.
On the other hand, it can be said that Externalization is a conversion from tacit knowledge to explicit knowledge, and Internalization is a conversion from explicit knowledge to tacit knowledge, but in the sense that this conversion process itself takes place within the individual, it can be said that this is a mode of consciousness that focuses on individuality
“Huh? Aren’t some of the Externalization processes, like conceptualizing, done in groups?”
Some of you may be asking yourself this question. As you said, Externalization and Internalizing can take place in groups as well as in individuals, but the conversion between tacit and explicit knowledge itself takes place in the individuals.
Let’s imagine a situation where a team is discussing and creating a concept. The discussion itself takes place in the team, but the flash of inspiration and the transformation of tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge may still take place in the individual.
When a team discusses something, they feel that they have created it as a team, and that’s great, but if we look at the mechanism in detail, we can say that the tacit knowledge shared by the team is converted into explicit knowledge by one person at one moment, and when that knowledge is shared within the team, it becomes the explicit knowledge of the team.
In this sense, Externalization and Internalization, the conversion of tacit and explicit knowledge, can be seen as modes of consciousness that have an emphasis on individuality.
To summarize what I have said so far, the essence of the SECI model can be said to be “creation of knowledge through the back-and-forth between abstract and concrete, separable subject/object and inseparable subject/object (tacit knowledge and formal knowledge), and individuality and collectivity.”
Switch freely between modes of consciousness.
In this way, the SECI model can be seen as creating knowledge by moving back and forth between several modes of consciousness.
So what do we need to do to switch back and forth between the several modes of consciousness?
The most important thing, I think, is to become aware of our (our) current mode of consciousness. This is exactly the consciousness management!
If we are able to be aware not only of what our current consciousness is targeting, but also of the meta consciousness of that mode of consciousness, and if we are able to say, “This is the main mode of consciousness at the moment, so let’s try a different mode of consciousness,” or “This mode of consciousness is working well at the moment, so let’s continue with this mode of consciousness for a while,” then we can say that we are able to use different modes of consciousness.
The first step in this process is to become aware of our (our) mode of consciousness.
In this article, I have discussed the last process of the value creation process, “Co-creation of strategies,” in depth from the perspective of consciousness management. Some parts may have seemed a little difficult, but I think that if you can understand the SECI model from the perspective of consciousness management, you will be able to see it very simply as “using different modes of consciousness,” which will make it easier to put into practice.
Here are the quests of the day. (If you’d like, please share your thoughts in the comments.)
・In your experience that led to the creation of a new idea or concept, what were the different modes of consciousness that you used, if any?
・Which mode of consciousness do you usually use, in terms of concrete or abstract, subject-object non-separation or subject-object separation, or individualization or collectivization? (e.g., concrete, subject-object separation, and individuation). What do you think would be good to be aware of in order to use a mode of consciousness that is not usually used?