Archives for Leading future possibilities

When is the goal big enough?

If what we serve is not big enough, not really aligned with our heart or too short-sighted for our heart’s intuition, we will perform well, possibly commit, but our hearts won’t be in it. Real service needs the engagement of the heart. As we walk through life, we may at times feel inspired and full of energy, at other times we feel a lack of direction. Most often the latter happens when we have lost the meaning of what we do, we don’t feel we can make a difference. Many change programs in companies are based on aligning people with
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What is at the core of life enhancing leadership?

Leading has many faces. The history of humankind is witness to this. It is easy to determine what kind of leadership was not sustainable in the long run – though it might have been effective in the short term. It is much more difficult to identify the examples for leadership that centred on sustainability. But this does not mean we should stop thinking about it. Leading for sustainability is not something we really know how to do yet. Not every admired leader has created sustainability. Not every person doing good in the world has been a good leader. There are
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The search for meaning

I believe every human being has an initial deeper intention: the intuitive, half-rational, half non-rational feeling or insight, during childhood or adolescence, that the world can be a different place. This is a search for meaning that drives us, a quest that informes the choices we make. It is an unconscious response to a call that is deeper than surface reality. It is almost a knowing that comes from a timeless place, a place that contains the eternal potential for humanity’s reconciliation. When I began to talk with other leaders about their young leadership stories I realized the immense role of
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Leading is a co-creative process

Does this sound familiar to you: the to-do-lists are ever emerging and never-ending lists of chores, it remains a challenges to get the priorities clear, yet you know what you want to change in the world for the better? If we begin to only manage or administer endless list and numbers, if we avoid leading over a longer period of time, how we impact on the world is a far cry from our deeper intention and bears little relation to our quest, our source of energy and subsequently our creativity dwindles. Then it is time to stop, take a breath
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Taking action: today you can start changing the world

Today you can start changing the world. Well known leadership experts say, if you want to achieve something, start with the end in mind. Can we make it happen that by the end of 2015 women are at centre stage in sustainability leadership? I think we can. But it needs us all. The guardian sustainable business hub has made a brilliant start with its discussion on  women in sustainability . Good start. But don’t we need a bigger shift? We have come up to this point in our human development with a rather unbalanced relationship between men and women in positions
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How do we foster collective Intelligence?

It took me years to understand that human intelligence must be seen both as an individual and a collective phenomenon – although this insight is not new.  Dialogic settings  – the only way to harness collective intelligence – are essentially human and have a long tradition in human history. Dialogue is a communicative structure, and as such can become a container for the awareness of mutuality and interdependence. In a circle hierarchy is not structurally exposed, nor are lines of communication influenced by the seating order. But the essence is that each person sees herself as important as he or she sees the
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A powerful tool to make stakeholder collaboration work

Sometimes life suggests contradictions. On could suggest that in stakeholder collaboration people work together, because they can’t achieve the goal alone. This is surely right. And yet, without suggesting that competition in collaboration is helpful, my experience is that the stronger the collaboration partners, the better the quality of collaboration. What does this mean in practice?
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What I have learned from Richard Branson

Do you know these moments of insight when you realize you have walked down a track that is not taking you home to your dreams? You have traded in you biggest aspirations for something others have recommended to you as feasible? You are fire fighting, focussing on financial performance and dealing with personality issues? And then there is a window opening and you see into the future and realize that you have let mediocrity enter your life, have settled for avoidance of failure and let critics run your life whispering that your aspirations are too high? I have just come
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The magic of self-awareness

There are these Friday evenings when we stumble upon self-doubt because the week behind us did not let us harvest what we planned. Unexpected events turned against us. We felt that some people we met drained our energy and we could not prevent it. Life feels heavy and our mind has tuned into perceiving difficulties rather then the easy path ahead. On such evenings I sometimes walk past my bookshelf and simply let my intuition grab a book, open it at any of the pages and start reading. Why? My experience is that what helps us is always available, we
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Collective leadership at work

I believe the capacity for initiating, leading, facilitating and sustaining the construction of meaningful futures is within all of us. If you find collective leadership at work, you most probably experience the following situation: A group of people has in front of them a big challenge. They come from different background, they may have different expertise, and they may have different opinions on how to solve the issue. They get into a conversation about the way forward and what to do to solve the issue. The issue is so urgent that they can’t waste their time with blocking each other.
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