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Greater productivity should be a goal of just about every organization. It is often challenged, however, by ever-tightening budgets and low employee morale. Nevertheless, increasing productivity can be accomplished without a lot of money and ultimately result in raising employee engagement. To do this, nothing works better than appealing to people’s intrinsic motivation and letting them decide how best to do the work. It is this combination of aligning people’s passion with the work they do and giving them the freedom on how to do...
Traumatic stress reactions and related disorders comprise some of the most prominent human afflictions in the world today, especially with the pervasiveness of war and terrorism.  In the past three decades there has been growing public interest and focus on the impact of traumatic events on humanity.  This interest has been reflected in a growing body of research investigating this impact, especially in the context of military combat, acts of terrorism, natural disasters, and professions such as public safety work that have a high...
The Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program developed by Jon Kabat Zinn at the University of Massachusetts Medical School is now a global phenomenon with programs running in every continent. Mindfulness studies conducted from the school’s Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society, and involving over 20,000 patients, have created a foundation of empirical research that documents the benefits of mindfulness for healing and well-being and for dealing with anxiety, chronic illness and pain. Participants in the...
Last week I attended the 15th Annual International Leadership Association Global Conference in Montreal. The conference theme was Leadership for Local and Global Resilience, recognizing the need for leaders to innovate and lead sustainable change in our local and global communities and organizations. This academic conference brought together students, faculty, consultants, coaches, and just a few organizational leaders to explore and advance new theories and approaches to leadership. There is plenty being written today about the need for...
In all the books and research papers on systems thinking that I have read, I don't think I have yet found the word courage as part of the language used. There is a lot written about systems thinking in terms of it's relevance and importance, it's theories and methodologies, but nothing about what it takes--emotionally. And I'm convinced: systems thinking not only requires skill, it also takes courage. I was invited as a keynote speaker to the 9th Brazilian Congress of Systems in Palmas, Brazil. My colleague, Raul Espejo, was...

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