One of the most compelling qualities of our brains and minds is that we are designed to be social beings. Our brains are designed for relationship because they form through relationships while our neural networks and patterns of thought grow and change as we relate and respond to the people in our lives. We also develop in relationship with the world around us—with the air we breathe, the food we eat, the water we drink, and the earth we live on. The earth may or may not depend upon us to survive, but the survival of the human race is...
Groups of young people and business-attired elders swarmed the lobby of the Ritz Carlton in Singapore in one of the most inspiring and unique gatherings I have ever experienced. An estimated 700 family business owners from more than 40 countries—ranging from restaurants to oil refining, from media to manufacturing, from food to green technology—attended the annual Family Business Network International Summit in Singapore. Some of them—the businesses not the people—were hundreds of years old. Despite the financial crisis...
I was chatting with colleagues over lunch during a workshop a few weeks ago when a consultant from a leadership development firm polled us about career development trends we’re noticing in our client organizations. We all agreed that our training programs targeting high-potential leaders have been selling well. We noted that due to a cruel demographic anomaly, “Baby Boomer” executives with 20 to 30 years of corporate experience are preparing for retirement and there aren’t enough “Generation X” managers...
Having just returned from the 2011 Systems Thinking in Action conference, I continue to believe that building the capacity for all children to think systemically is the key to shaping a new world. The more we recognize that problems are rarely simple cause-and-effect, but rather complex threads of interconnected actions and inactions, we can begin to seek systemic solutions. The conference, hosted by Pegasus Communications in Seattle last week, supports the work of the Society for Organizational Learning (or SoL), which was started by Peter...
In his book, I and Thou, Martin Buber asserted, “God is present when I confront You. But if I look away from You, I ignore him. As long as I merely experience or use you, I deny God. But when I encounter You I encounter him.” What a profound and spiritual contextualization of the self and other—the relational self. Acknowledging the feminine divine energy and tapping into my spiritual and cultural depths where the notion that God or the Great Spirit is present in all living things, I find Buber’s interpretation that I and You...
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