An outsider’s perspective on Spiral Dynamics

A friend who I run with has often talked about how his thinking, and his actions have been influenced by a theory/concept called “Spiral Dynamics”. He talks about how he uses this to observe and categorize himself and people who he might, in order to better understand himself and them, and how he might interact with them, in both personal and professional situations.

In some ways one might initially be encouraged to see Spiral Dynamics as a religious/spiritual movement or a management theory. It is, in my view, neither. It might also come across as arrogant, or even radical. I could understand how these views arise (more on this below), but it doesn’t bother me if that would be how others see it – I see that it can have a positive effect in those who decide to learn about it and apply it responsibly.

Through its altruistic perspectives Spiral Dynamics seems to achieve a clear, methodical basis on which to understand human and social development. The benefits of this can be ‘enlightenment’ (satisfaction from greater knowledge/understanding of oneself and others) as well as, potentially, more effective interactions with other people.

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My TEDxperience (TEDxMunich, Monday 7 June 2010)


Today I attended the TEDxMunich event, held in the BMW Museum in Munich, Germany. The TEDx events are independently organized TED events, which are held under guidelines set by TED (see my earlier post, ‘TED Talks. We listen.‘, for further details about what TED is, and my thoughts and opinions thereon).

In this post I aim to share some feedback on the TEDx event. My primary interest in attending the event was to better understand the TED ‘movement’ and how it works in the background, beyond just being a series of videos of talks recorded on TED.com or YouTube.

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