We occassionally get requests and invtations to talk about undiscussables, such as those below. And we are interested in hearing from you if you would like us to talk about either the project, or undiscussables in a wider context, to an organisation or group. Upcoming and past events are detailed below.


Seeing & navigating patterns of ‘undiscussables’: the implications of Saville, Snowden & whistleblowing for OD practice

At the OD Network Europe Conference in May 2014, Steve ran a session that explored the undiscussables in the context of Organisational Development (OD) practice.

The session exploted questions such as: What prevented those around Jimmy Saville from breaking the taboo that such a figure was unchallengable? What led a Southern Cross care home worker to risk and suffer actual ostracizationas a result of becoming a whistleblower? What might the conversation Edward Snowden has started mean in terms of our ability to discuss the undiscussable? How much true collaboration and innovation can there be when some subjects are off limits? And what does this mean for us as OD practitioners?

Steve wrote in more detailabout this workshop in this post.


What links love, sex, & intimacy to Edward Snowden & whistleblowing?

Steve ran a workshop at the Love, Sex & Intimacy Fair in Brighton & Hove in 2013, where he facilitated a conversation around the connection between our individual relationship with undiscussables, and what that might mean in terms of our behaviour at work, and in turn wider patterns in society.

The session explored whether there is there a relationship between our individual capacities for speaking the truth, and the patterns we see in organisations and human systems in general. If we can’t discuss the undiscussable with our loved ones, what does that mean for our workplaces?

The session was also covered in this post.


Undiscussables: seeing & navigating patterns of undiscussables in self & others

FreshAir Brighton, Tuesday March 19th, 2013

The past two years have seen what was ‘undiscussable’ come into the open, and it hasn’t been comfortable to witness. The revelations concerning Jimmy Savile are easy to dismiss as symptomatic of failures local to the organisations he was involved in. Yet if the UK’s largest employer (the NHS) and second largest media organisation (the BBC) , were apparently unable to ‘stop him’, what might that say more broadly about  the inability of human beings to challenge each other when it counts? Specifically, what does it say about us, and what can we do about it?

Steve Hearsum, co-founder of Undiscussables.com, will talk briefly about the background to the project, how it relates to Savile, and to us individually. The main body of the session will be practical, and take the form of an inquiry into questions such as:

  • How can organisations encourage the discussable vs defaulting to the undiscussable?
  • What are the costs of undiscussables, in human and organisational terms?
  • What are the benefits of keeping things undiscussable?
  • With whom does the responsibility lie when it comes to naming elephants? Is it about individuals? Leadership? Organisational culture? Society?

As part of the session, we will pay particular attention to what we can do differently, as individuals, to make a difference in relationships where undiscussables are lurking, or might arise.

Booking details here.


How do you tell the bosses in your organisation things they aren’t likely to want to hear? Steve Hearsum looks at how “the elephant in the room” can be addressed.

University of Brighton Momentum Programme, Feb 13th 2013

This was a talk and conversation with a mentors and mentees on the University of Brighton’s Momentum Programme. The slides that accompanied the session can be found here.