I’ve been facilitating group experiences for almost 25 years. One of the first things I learned was the importance of creating a sense of safety so that people can fully participate in the work they have gathered to do together. The best way to begin that process is to give participants a chance to check in and introduce themselves. Early on, I found that the standard introductory, “Tell us your name, what you do, and why you are here,” was never very satisfying. People usually responded by giving their “elevator...
Ronald Burke, the accomplished organizational change expert, once said, “There may be as many and as diverse definitions of leadership as there are for love.” Most social scientists agree that leadership and the role and makeup of a leader are among the most researched and written about subjects in business literature. There are several types of leadership styles that have been covered by the literature. In his article Leadership Moment by Moment!, Ron Cacioppe described four leadership frameworks: behavioral, situational,...
I remember covering the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life in April 2003. Well, sort of. I was four months into my internship with The Miami Herald at the time covering the civic beat in the town of Miami Lakes, a suburb about 30 minutes northwest of Miami. I landed that intership after stringing for the newspaper for more than a year while I finished my undergraduate degree in journalism. Despite the time I had already put in writing community news at the Herald, I was still very green and very wet around the ears. After four months...
I've been impressed with the rich blog entries that have led up to this one. My colleagues have offered some wonderful insights about how we relate to our work, our communities, our family, and ourselves. In overgeneralized terms, the entries touch on how we show up as social beings and maintain our authentic self. This entry adds another dimension. By intention, it’s a simple post meant to merely inspire a reunion to oneself through nature and invoke inquiry. This is the time of year when our neighbors are typically clamoring to get...
It's Monday and you wake up without an alarm clock, looking forward to your day at the office—you love what you do and you love the people with whom you work. You are a member of a community: trust, mutual support, open communication, and friendships sustain your whole self as much as the income you receive from your job. Just a dream? It might seem that way, but it's not. In fact, this idyllic scenario isn't quite as out of reach as you might think. Russell Ackoff observed that "the principal obstructions to corporate...
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