"The secret sauce for any meeting: the agenda doesn’t go to outcome first; you design to quiet the mind and allow people to shift to the present moment to get connected."
I am jazzed! I just got off Zoom with a new action team of 12. Different locations, different reasons for participating, a common mandate to be revealed. I had 1-1/2 hours to create a container where they could come together and find commonality, in an environment of mutual trust and respect.
This team was one of six formed at the end of an in-person 1-1/2 day retreat, which was amazing: we created resonance in the midst of dissonance. Moved from resignation to inspiration. When people are inspired, they will step up, no matter how busy they are.
The Convening Tool Kit Worked!
The secret sauce for any meeting: the agenda doesn’t go to outcome first; you design to quiet the mind and allow people to shift to the present moment to get connected.
More secret sauce: a process that focuses on the heart of the matter and gets the purpose and agreements clear, so that people can pay attention and participate fully.
(And, a lot more ideas and learnings to share in another post...)
Outcomes were achieved! Everyone breathed a collective sigh of relief. Common goals and committed action came easily and were the natural outcome of a designed essential conversation.
Whether you are leading a virtual collaboration or a weekly team meeting, an Art of Convening Training adds a powerful skill set to any facilitation or gathering. Learn the secret sauce of great meetings. We would love to work with you!
We are taking a moment to revisit and celebrate some of the purposeful work expressed in these blog pages recently.
View videos with Bob and Ren Wei and read a passionate essay from Cindy Kent. We'll have more. Enjoy!
"A vision created for others to live out is patriarchy in action. There is no ownership in endorsement or enrollment, a fancy term for selling the vision."
We are thrilled to offer a recent essay by friend Peter Block. We deeply admire his thought leadership.
In implementing stewardship principles many well-meaning people in power make the false connection that if we want consistency and control in the quality of product or service we deliver to customers, we must have consistency and control in the way we govern the people creating the product or service. The business process and the human process are both important, but they operate on different principles. Forgetting this results in cosmetic change.
We need to understand that the methods of change we choose can undermine our intentions unless they produce a redistribution of power, purpose, and privilege.
A clear example of how popular strategies of improvement can reinforce patriarchy and feed rather than confront our belief in consistency and control is the organizational visioning process. We have bought the notion that vision must come from the top.
Since the mid-1980s, every top management team has created its vision statement and worked hard on communicating it. What this means in practical terms is that a consultant or staff person has spent a lot of time interviewing executives and writing vision paragraphs. A half- or full-day retreat is then convened so the top group can wordsmith the statement and plan for its distribution.
The intent is sincere and the content is always appealing. Each management team affirms its uniqueness by declaring that it
- is committed to being world class,
- will be number one in its markets,
- believes in its people,
- stands firm for quality,
- cares for customers,
- is committed to the environment,
- supports teams, and
- is going to make a lot of money for shareholders
- (or will be fiscally responsible to its stakeholders).
Sincere intentions. An appealing statement. What’s the problem?
First, it is boring, but put that aside. The significant problem is twofold: ownership and implementation. Ownership resides with those who craft and create a vision, and with them alone. A statement created for a team to endorse is not owned by the team. An even more fundamental defect is that, in most cases, the vision statement is created for the rest of the organization to live out.
Notice that the vision here is used to define a culture or a set of values to be lived. This is different from top management’s rightful task to define business mission and set business goals. A vision created for others to live out is patriarchy in action. There is no ownership in endorsement or enrollment, a fancy term for selling the vision.
The belief that crafting the vision is primarily a leadership-at-the-top function defeats, right at the beginning, the intent of driving ownership and responsibility toward those close to the work and the customer. Creating vision is in fact an ownership function, and if we want ownership widely dispersed, then each person needs to struggle with articulating their own, personal vision for their function or unit.
Ownership comes from an investment, and the investment required from each of us is to define purpose for ourselves. Each of us defining vision for our area of responsibility is how partnership is created. The desire for vision from the top is a subtle way of disclaiming ownership and responsibility. If this were our own business, it is unlikely that we would allow someone else to define values for us.
Adapted from Stewardship: Choosing Service over Self-Interest, 2d ed. (San Francisco: Berrett-Kohler, 2013). In the last 25 years, Peter Block’s Designed Learning has trained over 1,000,000 staff professionals worldwide using his highly successful Flawless Consulting™ workshops.
"I started this project as a small way of offering a counterbalance to the dissonance of the world. Now I am discovering that, while I believe this project is meeting that vision, it is also evolving into a process that goes far beyond."
We are thrilled to celebrate with CPL Associate Barbara Shipka on this amazing milestone. More on the story below and by clicking on the photo.
From Barbara: Today I invite you to celebrate with me. Recently I was honored with the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award by the Boards of Directors of The Gestalt Center for Organization and Systems Development. To quote the Center’s President and CEO, John D. Carter, “Thank you for making a difference in the world through your presence as an applied behavioral science practitioner. You have found a way to gently touch the hearts of people by allowing them to learn from your work.”
Each of you has had a lot to do with my winning this award. ...
I started this project as a small way of offering a counterbalance to the dissonance of the world. Now I am discovering that, while I believe this project is meeting that vision, it is also evolving into a process that goes far beyond that. It is actually demonstrating how, via technology, we can connect at the heart level even when we cannot be in person. Thus, our reach and our individual and collective webs can be so much more than we ever imagined!
I’ve known many of you personally at some point in time covering many decades. We may not have been in each other’s physical company for years but, through this project, we have consciously reignited our connections with each other – both subtly and explicitly. Each time I send an email and you open it, we have gifted and blessed each other. Through that single act we are changing the world!
Together, we form a collective of hope and possibility. We are all such good people who are each doing our part to make the world a better place through our presence. As a collective, we are on six continents…from Iraq to Australia, Ethiopia to China, Argentina to Belgium, the US to India. You are my graduate school advisor, my fifth grade students in Beirut, Lebanon, my clients and colleagues at work in places like the US, Switzerland, and Somalia, my business partner, my spiritual teachers and healers, my son, my beloved friends everywhere. You are my chosen family. I have learned so much from you. I send you my deepest gratitude!
May we continue together on this journey of recognizing how our relationships last longer than our in-person encounters. And may we continue exploring and unfolding new ways that show us more fully how we are connected whether we are aware of it or not.
Serving the "Next Generation Human": I recently had the privilege of working with Roger Kenneth Marsh as he co-led the series Road to Renewal in Houston, Texas. Today we’re going to talk about how he leads people through "The Passion Test" as a path for discovering their purpose. But more than that, The Passion Test is a framework for what Roger sees as emerging: the "Next Generation" human. Roger has a rich background as a formally trained engineer, businessman, leadership and life coach (bio below). Join us for a fascinating leadership conversation.
Roger Kenneth Marsh is a formally trained engineer, businessman, leadership and life coach. He has a degree in engineering, an MBA, is a certified Leadership and Life Coach, a Certified HeartMath® Trainer, a Certified Passion Test® Facilitator, and is a Senior Teacher of Integral Transformative Practice (ITP) emanating from the Esalen Institute. Through his company Beyond Belief he offers Organizational Development Consulting that includes Leadership Development and Coaching, and The HeartMath Resilience Advantage workshop and training.
Website: NexGen Human
The Passion Test: The Effortless Path to Discovering Your Life Purpose, Janet Attwood and Chris Attwood
"There are good companies out there, and a lot of work needs to be done by companies to tell their authentic story and build a firm relationship with customers based on who the company is..."
I first got to know John Izzo in a tent on safari in Tanzania. Our 3-week journey led us to one of the last hunter-gatherer tribes in Africa. Our leader was none other than our mutual mentor, Richard Leider, the "Pope of Purpose." John had already established himself as a global leadership author, speaker, and consultant. Little did I know that 11 years later CPL and John would be joining Richard in a global purpose movement, and John would write a defining book called The Purpose Revolution. - Craig
The Purpose Gap
Dr. John Izzo
What is the Purpose Gap? It is both an opportunity and threat in the business world today. It exists because there a distinct difference between what people desire and hope for, and what is actually being delivered by businesses and organizations. Today a purpose gap exists for both employees and customers.
Seventy seven percent of employees say there is matters a great deal to work for a company they believe in and a job where they have a sense of purpose. Fifty percent of Millennials would take a pay cut to work for the right company, and almost forty percent cite purpose as the main driver of their engagement and retention at work. Yet the vast majority of people, 75%, say that they don’t work for this type of company- that the company they work for mostly cares about profit and its own self-interest. Therein lies the purpose gap for employees.
Customers around the world are asking for more purpose than companies are delivering. Eighty percent of customers globally want to buy from companies that they believe are doing a good job in the world. Yet they feel confident that only 6% of the companies they do business with are actually good. In other words, they have a deep desire to buy good, but have no idea if the companies that serve them are good or not. There are good companies out there, and a lot of work needs to be done by companies to tell their authentic story and build a firm relationship with customers based on who the company is, and what positive good it achieves.
My co-author Jeff Vanderwielen and I talk in The Purpose Revolution about how companies who close the purpose gap are going to
be the real winners. As employees and customers, we want more. The companies who listen and really deliver are going to be the ones we choose to work for and buy from. The Purpose Revolution is here. Are you ready?
Watch my Izzo on Purpose video to find out more about The Purpose Gap.
"Convening leaders create and manage the social space within which citizens get deeply engaged."
Peter Block became a foundational mentor when we founded Heartland/CPL 22 years ago. His writing and thought leadership was invaluable.
'The Answer to How is Yes' and 'Community: The Structure of Belonging' were both primary texts for the early Art of Convening Training's. The essay below states the case for purpose shared as convening, and convening as a foundational characteristic of an on-purpose leader.
Leadership is Convening
Excerpt from Community: The Structure of Belonging, by Peter Block, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, May 2008
In communal transformation, leadership is about intention, convening, valuing relatedness, and presenting choices. It is not a personality characteristic or a matter of style, and therefore it requires nothing more than what all of us already have.
This means we can stop looking for leadership as though it were scarce or lost, or it had to be trained into us by experts. If our traditional form of leadership has been studied for so long, written about with such admiration, defined by so many, worshiped by so few, and the cause of so much disappointment, maybe doing more of all that is not productive. The search for great leadership is a prime example of how we too often take something that does not work and try harder at it. I have written elsewhere about reconstructing leader as social architect.
The Art of Convening
The shift is to believe that the task of leadership is to provide context and produce engagement, to tend to our social fabric. It is to see the leader as one whose function is to engage groups of people in a way that creates accountability and commitment. In this way of thinking we hold leadership to three tasks:
• Create a context that nurtures an alternative future, one based on gifts, generosity, accountability, and commitment.
• Initiate and convene conversations that shift people’s experience, which occurs through the way people are brought together and the nature of the questions used to engage them.
• Listen and pay attention.
Convening leaders create and manage the social space within which citizens get deeply engaged. Through this engagement, citizens discover that it is in their power to resolve something or at least move the action forward.
Engagement, and the accountability that grows out of it, occurs when we ask people to be in charge of their own experience and act on the well-being of the whole. Leaders do this by naming a new context and convening people into new conversations through questions that demand personal investment. This is what triggers the choice to be accountable for those things over which we can have power, even though we may have no control.
In addition to convening and naming the question, we add listening to the critical role of leadership. Listening may be the single most powerful action the leader can take. Leaders will always be under pressure to speak, but if building social fabric is important, and sustained transformation is the goal, then listening becomes the greater service.
This kind of leadership––convening, naming the question, and listening––is restorative and produces energy rather than consumes it. It is leadership that creates accountability as it confronts people with their freedom. In this way, engagement-centered leaders bring kitchen table and street corner democracy into being.
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"So start tomorrow, right now. Welcome to the first few seconds of your bright, beautiful future."
Cindy Kent was the lead Conversation Starter at our 20th Anniversary Conference in 2016. As a thought and purposeful leader, her values are central to all she does and how she does it.
In nearly five decades of life, and too-many-experiences-to-count later, I have come to realize how misguided the notion of finding happiness is. You don’t really find happy, in truth, we make happy. Finding Happy is an ill-conceived notion, that inherently implies that happiness is some illusive by-product of luck or fortune or even, some edenic destination—a wistful, ideologue of a reward at the end of one’s diligent pursuit. Instead, I believe, we make happy—one decision, one choice, at a time.
The very idea that we make happy can be hard for some people to accept. Why? Because if we accept that we make our own happy, then it places the responsibility of our happiness squarely on our own shoulders. As such, it puts an end once and for all to the infamous “blame game” and the convenient opportunity to blame someone, anyone, for our failing to achieve the love, success and happiness that we desire. It would mean that the years we’ve spent blaming friends, parents, spouses, partners and employers for failing to make us happy were in fact, a bad use of our good and precious time. It does not mean that these individuals are abdicated from any wrong-doing, but it does suggest that we maintain absolute control over the effect that we allow their actions to have on our emotional and mental well-being. Fundamentally, happiness is much more about our reactions than it is about the actions themselves—reactions, which are completely within our own control. At some point we must make the choice to let go of the pain and hurt inflicted by others and choose to forgive them, let it go and MOVE ON. In fact today, or better yet right NOW, you can choose to let this very moment be the last bit of hurt that you ascribe to any event of your past. As you take deep cleansing breaths, you are releasing the bitterness of yesterday and taking in all the joy and hope that tomorrow brings. If you choose to wait, to have one final pity party or to savor the familiarity of pain’s bitterness one last time, then tomorrow will never come. So start tomorrow, right now. Welcome to the first few seconds of your bright, beautiful future.
So what is happiness? Happiness is the deepest level of contentment that you can possibly imagine, a sense of fullness that envelopes every fiber of your being. It is soul joy—a knowing that you are where you’re supposed to be, doing what you’re supposed to be doing at this very moment in time. It is not a feeling, for feelings are fleeting, but instead it is a sense of wholeness and being completely at peace in the moment. Happiness is inextricably tied to purpose. Walking in purpose and living life on purpose, by its very nature is a higher order of livelihood. Unfortunately, the sad reality is that many people go through their entire lives having never experienced the depth of peace that comes from a life truly lived.
After years of “ordinary-ness,” the human spirit that is purposed for greatness will eventually take one of two paths. It will either grow dull and bitter, having convinced itself that ‘this is as good as it gets’ or two, the intensity of frustration will fuel the yearning to find ‘something more.’ It is at this point that one becomes increasingly aware that what you’re doing now, or even what you’ve spent the last twenty or thirty years doing is not fulfilling. This can be a frightening and overwhelming experience fraught with questions and self-doubt. What will I do instead? I don’t have the training or education to do what I really want to do. Will I be able to meet my financial obligations? I have a thriving career; people will think I’m crazy to leave this great job. Be assured that these feelings and questions are normal—and necessary—milestones as one endeavors to make happy.
Cindy (Smith) Kent
Innovative Healthcare Executive. Focused Operational Growth Leader. Visionary Change Champion. Public Speaker.
President & General Manager, 3M Infection Prevention Division
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"It took all of his people wisdom to take a stand to serve the common good of all others."
We're honored to publish this original essay by Richard Leider, the "father" of the Purpose Movement as our inaugural posting for our Purpose Shared Series. Who better than Richard to share his reflections on what is needed and wanted from our leaders in these days of destabilization?
Becoming a Wise Leader
“When there is no enemy within, the enemy outside can do no harm.” ‐ African proverb
The ultimate test of wise leadership is this:
Can you regard your leadership, no matter how dire the challenge, as one of serving the common good of others? Do you have a purpose larger than yourself for leading?
Most of us have a keen awareness of wisdom when it is present in our leaders (and in ourselves). And, we have an uneasy feeling of distrust and disengagement with it is absent.
To become a wise leader, one must be “people wise.”
Have you recently heard an inner voice whispering to you things like: “I don’t think I can do it?” “I’m not enough.” “What if I fail?”
That is the enemy within you speaking to you. It is the voice that speaks to you when you need to step outside your comfort zone. It’s the voice of fear. We all hear it occasionally. It’s part of being human.
The answer is not to kill it or suffocate it – but, to dive head first into it! Identify the voice with choice, curiosity, and courage.
Why? Because what you resist will persist.
Nelson Mandela’s actions reflected the truth about becoming a wise leader ‐ “to lead wisely, one must be people wise.” When Mandela became President of South Africa on May 10, 1994, he faced countless challenges outside his comfort zone. And, he faced his inner voice of fear. Upon his release from prison, he was greeted with banners reading, “Mandela Go Home, to Prison” and “Hang Mandela.”
It took all of his people wisdom to take a stand to serve the common good of all others. To become the leader that South Africa needed, he chose to embrace the national rugby team, the Springboks. Popular with Afrikaners, to most blacks the Springboks represented the apartheid system that they despised. Nevertheless, Mandela chose South Africa to host rugby’s World Cup the following year with the slogan, “One Team, One Country.”
As the Springboks began to win in the fierce World Cup competition, the mood in the country shifted. When the players (all but one of them white) showed up in public, they were greeted not just by Afrikaners, but by blacks as well.
The Springboks made it to the finals. They were to play the New Zealand All Blacks, considered as one of the finest rugby teams in history.
Five minutes before the game played before sixty‐five thousand chanting and singing fans, Mandela walked in to the stadium wearing a Springbok’s jersey, the very symbol of apartheid that so many hated.
With millions more watching on TV or listening on the radio, the crowd of mostly Afrikaners went wild with a deafening chant of “Nel‐son,” “Nel‐son!” The country was united for the moment – “One Team, One Country”. It was a moment that many people realized that this country could work.
Mandel showed that he could forgive and become the wise leader they wanted.
The Springbok’s won the thrilling championship game in overtime.
Mandela’s stand embodied what it means to be “people‐wise.” After decades of apartheid and afte twenty‐seven years in prison, it would have been natural for him to focus on the wants of his black constituents at the expense of the broader interests of the country.
But, Mandela had become a leader with a people‐wise view. His actions toward the Springboks served as a powerful symbol of what the new South Africa might be like. They reflected his wise awareness of how others very different from himself would react to changes accelerating around them.
Nelson Mandela has two critical things to teach us about becoming wise leaders.
First, “becoming” means clearly understanding the difference between being smart and being wise.
They’re not the same. Wisdom demands insight and effectiveness with people. A leader can be very smart without being smart about people. Becoming a wise leader requires having a feel for people – their hopes, fears, passions, and purposes.
Second, becoming a wise leader means understanding “Why things are the way they are.” Aristotle claimed that wisdom comes from our understanding of “why” things are the way they are. To him, a smart person knows a lot about “what” and “how” but a wise person understands “why.”
It was Mandela’s understanding of the “why” of all South Africans that testifies to his greatness as a “people‐wise” leader. He had no enemy within. 1
What makes a Leader wise?
We like to believe that our leaders are smart people. But, as Nelson Mandela showed us, being smart is not enough in the long run. So, how does one go from being a smart leader to becoming a wise leader? Start by seeing the world differently – from the inside out. A wise leader is constantly becoming more self‐aware. Without self‐awareness, it’s very hard to move out of smartness. The “dean of leadership gurus”, the late Warren Bennis wrote: “The leader never lies to himself, especially about himself, knows his flaws as well as his assets, and deals with them directly.” Even though Bennis mentored CEOs, taught countless soon‐to‐be leaders while teaching at Harvard, MIT, and USC, and advised U.S. Presidents John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Gerald Ford, and Ronald Reagan, he never pretended he knew everything. He wrote, “To an extent, leadership is like beauty:
It’s hard to define, but you know it when you see it.” Do you see it in yourself? Do others see it in you?
Self‐awareness is the “soul” of wise leadership. Without a soul, a leader is nothing more than a smart suit.
The Big Idea: Becoming Self‐Aware
Self‐awareness is the “soul” of wise leadership. Without a soul, a leader is nothing more than a smart suit. For more information read “Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game that Made a Nation” by John Carlin, and watch the film Invictus starring Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon.
Richard Leider, founder of Inventure – The Purpose Company, is one of America’s preeminent executive‐life coaches.
He is ranked by Forbes as one of the “Top 5” most respected executive coaches, and by the Conference Board as a “legend in coaching.” Richard has written ten books, including three best sellers, which have sold over one million copies and have been translated into 20 languages.
Repacking Your Bags and The Power of Purpose are considered classics in the personal development field. Richard’s PBS Special – The Power of Purpose – was viewed by millions of people across the U.S.
©2018 Inventure ‐ The Purpose Company richardleider.com
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"Subscribe now to get your 2x/week spark of purpose."
In the weeks to come your twice-weekly “Purpose Shared” will feature a beautiful inspirational photo and saying one day and an original article from one of our Purpose Fellows. Welcome to #1!
Could 2018 be the year that we start to see companies who embrace a more purpose-led strategy in an era of technological disruption start to win the war for the best talent?* Great question, but certainly not the only reason to consider why purpose plays a central role in culture strategy and alignment. Why focus on purpose? Purpose brings goodness into our everyday lives and more.
As we evolved from Heartland to Center for Purposeful Leadership, we have been blessed with the presence, heart, and wisdom of hundreds of Conversation Starters plus thousands of attendees as clients and at our events. What did they have in common? A sense of purpose shared with those around them.
Recently we realigned with Richard Leider, the "father" of the Purpose Movement that is exploding around us. It's a perfect fit. CPL has been known as the Convening Company. Marrying convening and purpose has become the sweet spot that defines us. We realized that at the heart of the matter is purpose. Convening activates purpose.
- Purpose shared is core to great leadership.
- Purpose is our true north, our reason for being.
- Purpose is fundamental to health, healing, and happiness.
- Purpose is always about something larger than yourself.
- Purpose expressed is an activator and crucial for an alignment strategy.
- Purposeful leaders are constantly growing and “becoming” self-aware, self-led, and self-less.
We look forward to sharing reflections from the purposeful leaders that inspire us.
Next week we will feature Richard's newest writing on "Becoming a Wise Leader." Stay tuned!
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*A recent article in MARGINALIA: FUTURE OF WORK MAGAZINE, focused on "Future of Work Predictions for 2018". While a lot of the predictions focused on AI and technology, there were many comments about the role of purpose and this question: Could 2018 be the year that we start to see companies who embrace a more purpose-led strategy in an era of technological disruption start to win the war for the best talent?
You might notice something different about us—we have updated our brand, website and blog. We are excited to share our new name, CPL, too.
With the beautiful new blog format, however, we lost our list of subscribers. As our valued readers, we need your help to build our list. Help us reach 800 by June 1, 2017!
Use the Subscribe box to the below then follow instructions to verify. We don't want you to miss a post! Many thanks! Do you know someone who would enjoy the blog? Feel free to forward it to them.
Hello, we have some news! Heartland is now the Center for Purposeful Leadership (CPL).
Though our name has changed, our values remain the same. At the heart of the matter is purpose. We invite you to join us on this journey into new beginnings.
As we celebrated our 20th year in business, it felt like an auspicious time to evolve to something that calls forth where we began - at the inner life of business. We'd love for you to preview our
We particularly love our photos and this new blog. While here, feel free to download our new Owning Successes and Setbacks as A Team thought piece.
On this blog, we will continue sharing current news, case studies and tips to finding shared purpose in leadership. First time visitor? Please subscribe.
Know this: the deepest satisfaction of our professional lives is to be of service to people like you. Let's be powerful on purpose together.
~ The CPL Team
Have you ever been judged? I know the answer to that, because we've all been judged. We're judged every time we walk among others. For the very same behavior or characteristic we can be judged positively (especially by our moms!) or negatively (as by our arch nemesis if we have one).
My own judgments are both involuntary and continuous - like breathing. Sometimes those judgments help me make sense of the world, but more often than I would like, if I have the opportunity to test the judgments I make, they can be amazingly wrong. That is, unless I have triggered the "self-fulfilling prophesy" kind of judgment.
We are all multifaceted human beings, and as such could display characteristics that show us to be shallow barbarians one minute and deep, thoughtful geniuses the next. People judge me (and others) using all kinds of criteria - by the expression on our faces, by the shoes we wear, by the condition or color of our hair, or perhaps by a blog entry. A momentary lapse of manners may be judged as refreshingly real by one person and as unnecessarily crude by another.
A challenge I struggle with sometimes when I convene or participate in a group is setting aside my judgment. A key principle in the Art of Convening for the Aspect of Hearing All the Voices is to suspend our judgment. But my brain is constantly making conscious and unconscious evaluations of the people I am with - and others often seem to be doing the same thing. Like a frisky puppy, judgment chews on my hand and vies for my attention, becoming more stealthy and present as I struggle to banish it.
"Judgment is not necessarily a bad thing, I've learned. I want to have and continue to nurture good judgment in my life."
So, rather than fight with my judgment and try to get rid of it, I have decided to treat it like a puppy I've brought along, but is not participating. I take the time to train her to sit quietly at my feet or under my chair, until my meeting or conversation is over - then I take her away with me somewhat better behaved, more informed and matured in some way.
Judgment is not necessarily a bad thing, I've learned. I want to have and continue to nurture good judgment in my life. But I do myself a disservice when I allow my judgment to be a barrier to relationship with others in my gathering. I notice that the Art of Convening principle asks me to "suspend" my judgment, not to eliminate it. My objective is to be present in my gathering as a place of "charitable interpretation" and openness to being surprised.
What are your experiences with judgment and The Art of Convening? Is your judgment like a puppy too? Do you have some tips for the rest of us?
Cynthia Wold, Co-author of "The Art of Convening: Authentic Engagement in Meetings, Gatherings, and Conversations"
NOTE: In the original post, Judgement was spelled with an "e" after the g. Both spellings are correct, but I was persuaded to change to the more popular Judgment.
"Merriam-Webster prefers judgment and lists judgement as a variant."
Join us Tuesday April 16, when Craig interviews Peter Block in our VisionHolder Series.
Community: The Structure of Belonging
with Peter Block, Author, Consultant and Partner, Designed Learning
Peter articulates a potent design for creating living communities whenever and wherever people gather, through the realization that everyday acts of citizenship are acts of leadership.
Registrations for the VH call on April 16 have been unprecedented. This time, we asked registrants to tell us what they hoped to get out of the call. A tiny sample of responses so far:
"Finding out what Peter considers to be everyday acts of citizenship, more detail about the design for creating living communities, what is his personal experience out of which came this new book."
"Essence of Peter Block--I don't even care what he says, I just like listening to him."
"I spent the first 20 years of my career as a grassroots community organizer, and the past 8 years as an organization consultant. I'm very interested in the intersection of those two worlds. I'm looking forward to hearing Peter's insights."
"A knowing of Peter deeper than knowing him from reading 'The Answer to How is Yes.' Getting additional thoughts provoked for me before heading into the Spring Ceremony weekend"