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Clearing the Bar
Taking a look at how an organisation may cope in today's demanding world, and contribute to the wider society - and at the same time assessing the leader's required character and competence
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WHAT'S IN THIS NEWSLETTER
Loads of news this month
I’ve had the privilege and pleasure of talking with Durban-born poet and gentle activist Shabbir Banoobhai. He is now a Cape Town resident and his latest book, for modern leaders with heart, is Leadership as Healing
- see website
WORLD STORYTELLING INSTITUTE
A series of monthly story sessions at CCD Square in Chennai, hosted by WSI director, Dr Eric Miller, is in its sixth year. Admission: Rs 150 (ZAR R30, US$2)! For details contact: 98403 94282 or email Dr Eric is available as a provider of one-on-one coaching and/or counselling -- in-person in Chennai, and via Zoom video conference. He has developed a 7-step Storytelling Therapy process which he applies to clients – and trains practitioners in this method. See website ).
UCT GSB VALUES-BASED LEADERSHIP
A few weeks ago I ran a session for University of Cape Town, Graduate School of Business MBAs. A wonderful group, 50% local, relishing learning, deep inner work and diverse interacting. They will be changing face of leadership in this country and beyond.
New conversation topics include Coaching Quality, Moving from Values to Virtues, Strategy Formulation, implementation and Flexibility, and Project Management – and of course the subject of this newsletter, a brief overall Organizational Assessment
I’ve been delighted to write the foreword to Pat Grayson’s new book, SEEDS of potential: an anthology of positivity, to be published in a few months’ time. Pat shares stories that invoke inner work and makes of it an exciting and practical exploration. See website
CULTURE UNIVERSITY POSTS
Last year, Framework for a New Leadership Culture was one of their top ten most trafficked articles. See blog
This has prompted an article on projects as incubators (referred to in the 2018 article), titled
How to Use Project Teams to Foster a Benevolent Leadership Culture.
I’m hoping that this one is equally well read. (One of the questions in the CultureScan Overview Organizational Assessment addresses projects). See blog
ON-LINE LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT TRAINING
I’m in talks with Businessballs and look forward to a long association with this pre-eminent outlet
THE HALO AND THE NOOSE: VERSION 2
The Chinese launch is now expected to take place as soon as August this year. This is very satisfying as I devoted a lot of time to updating and expanding the book. The new version contains 25% more content.
THE UNIVERSAL CHRIST
Richard Rohr’s new book The Universal Christ is destined to have a huge positive impact (and hence much resistance) with his message of a non-elitist, connected, inclusive love found in all creation, and which means dying to the non-true self. The dedication alone whets one’s reading appetite; “I dedicate this book to my beloved 15-year old black Labrador Venus, whom I had to release to God while writing this book – without any apologies, any excuses, any concerns about lightweight theology for appearing to be inappropriate. I can honestly say that Venus was Christ to me”!
CHIEF JOY OFFICER
Richard Sheridan, CEO of Menlo Innovations and author of Joy, Inc. whom I interviewed in 2016 when writing Ancient Wisdom for Modern Workplaces has followed up with Chief Joy Officer, set to make waves. Tom Peters in his introduction says: “What a menu! And Menlo’s record of success in the toughest industry around says to you and me that it is not pie in the sky. It can be done, done very effectively – and sustained”.
Employee Ana Boonstra shared with me her biggest take-away from Joy, Inc.: “Joy, Inc. taught me the importance of a positive culture. A culture that encourages you to run experiments and make mistakes faster. Having a culture based on these values helps your team to be more creative and successful“.
Her colleague lisa Ho gives this feedback on Chief Joy Officer: "Chief Joy Officer taught me that there are opportunities to lead all around us. Many of the things we observe during the day where it would be easier to sit on the side-lines and complain or critique, a leader steps into the situation to help."
See on Amazon.com
SACAP – PSYCHOLOGY FESTIVAL OF LEARNING 2019 – EDUCATION FOR SOCIAL CHANGE
On 24th May in Cape Town, I’ll be hosting a one hour deliberation on , “Are there any relevant spiritual principles one can apply when engaging in social change activities?”
WE DON’T KNOW WHAT WE DON’T KNOW – EVEN IF WE THINK WE DO
Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value – Marechal Ferdinand Foch, Professor of Strategy, Ecole Superieure de Guerre
The bomb will never go off. I speak as an expert in explosives – Admiral William Leahy, U.S. Atomic Bomb Project
There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home – Ken Olson, President, Chairman and Founder of Digital Equipment Corp (1977)
IS WISDOM UNDER PRESSURE?
The epic side of truth, wisdom, is dying out (as big data and the stampede for information, knowledge and machine intelligence takes hold) – Walter Benjamin
BECOMING YOUR OWN TRUE SELF
No one can build you the bridge on which you, and only you, must cross the river of life - Nietzsche
Our lives are ceaselessly intertwined with narrative, with the stories that we tell and hear told, those we dream or imagine or would like to tell, all of which are reworked in that story of our own lives that we narrate to ourselves in an episodic, sometimes semi-conscious, but virtually uninterrupted monologue. We live immersed in narrative, recounting and reassessing the meaning of our past actions, anticipating the outcome of our future projects, situating ourselves at the intersection of several stories not yet completed - Peter Brooks (in his book titled Reading for the Plot)
We can learn to sink the taproot of our heart into that invincible love and draw out from it resources of courage, patience, and tenderness to touch the hurting places with love, so they might dissolve in love until only love is left. This is Christ’s presence in the world. —James Finley
To be nobody but yourself – in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everyone else – means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight – e.e. Cummings
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