Coming to (Snowy) Ground

Coming to (Snowy) Ground

STONE (Thobar Phádraig) The face in the stone is a mirror looking into you. You have gazed into the moving waters, you have seen the slow light, in the sky above Lough Inagh, beneath you, streams have flowed, and rivers of earth have moved beneath your feet, but you have never looked into the immovability […]

More →

Asking the Beautiful Question

Asking the Beautiful Question

SOMETIMES Sometimes if you move carefully through the forest,   breathing like the ones in the old stories,   who could cross a shimmering bed of leaves without a sound,   you come to a place whose only task   is to trouble you with tiny but frightening requests,   conceived out of nowhere but […]

More →

Stopping the Conversation

Stopping the Conversation

When we aren’t satisfied with how things are going in your organization of life, one of the most powerful questions to ask, according to poet David Whyte, is how do we stop having the conversations we’ve been having? How do we just stop having the conversations we’re having that aren’t serving us well? When we […]

More →

Conversational Leadership: An Irish Poet Walks into a Boardroom…

Conversational Leadership: An Irish Poet Walks into a Boardroom...

An Irish poet walks into a corporate boardroom… Sounds like the set up to a bad joke, doesn’t it? Only, boardrooms all over organizational life have been where poet David Whyte has spent a great deal of his life. Whyte, an associate faculty member at Oxford’s Saïd School of Business, has consulted with giants like […]

More →

Negotiating Terms of Call in 3-D

Negotiating Terms of Call in 3-D

For many years I served my Presbytery by chairing our Committee on Ministry. We were mainly responsible for the caring and feeding of pastors. One of the more fun areas involved working with churches in the process of calling a new pastor. I learned a lot by watching how pastor nominating committees discerned who they […]

More →

Negotiating with Style(s)

Negotiating with Style(s)

“Life is a series of negotiations.” –Erica Ariel Fox, Former Director of Harvard Negotiation Insight Initiative From the moment we wake up until the moment our head hits the pillow at night, we move from one negotiation to another. We do this so often, most of us don’t give it a second thought. But we […]

More →

Our Irrational Politics…

Our Irrational Politics...

This weekend I’m leading an adult education class at another church about predictable irrationality and politics. I agreed to do this class months ago. When I got back in touch with the guy who extended the invitation, I was like: “Well, I’m happy to come if you still want me…but this election season is so […]

More →

Ideation: Creativity Beyond the Brainstorm

Ideation: Creativity Beyond the Brainstorm

        I remember the first time I heard the word “ideate”, which means to form an idea, imagine, or conceive of something. It was a few months ago. My partner casually tossed it into a conversation, and I snorted: “Ideate? What kind of a word is THAT? That’s exactly the kind of […]

More →

Design Thinking: What Quadrant Are You Living In?

Design Thinking: What Quadrant Are You Living In?

One of the reasons design thinking has become so powerful in organizational life is that the problems we face today are qualitatively different than the ones facing previous generations. Stanford’s Banny Bannerjee showed us a powerful chart dividing problems up depending on the familiarity or novelty of the contexts and solutions. The easiest place to […]

More →

Design Thinking: Creativity CAN Be Taught

Design Thinking: Creativity CAN Be Taught

One of the most exciting things about design thinking is the conviction that creativity is something that belongs to everyone and not just the province of a lone few “creative types.” Stanford’s Bill Burnett told our class, “I may not be able to make you more intelligent. I may not be able to make you […]

More →