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LLC Staff's blog

GUEST BLOG: The Power of Secular Sangha by Bidisha Banerjee

Sangha means spiritual community in the Buddhist tradition; paradoxically, during the first six summers, our task at Dalai Lama Fellows, a global network of young social innovators working at the intersection of justice, peace, and ecology, was to create a global, secular community of mindful, compassionate, and ethical leaders.

“At African Leadership Academy, I learned that there are about four thousand different definitions of leadership; the one that resonates most for me is that leadership means making yourself replaceable,” said Hind Ourahou from Morocco at our sixth annual Dalai Lama Fellows Ethical Leadership Assembly earlier this summer. Her work has focused on water and education on the African continent.

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GUEST BLOG | Benefits of Using Data to Bring Mindfulness to Your Work By Beth Kanter

Never in a million years did I ever think I would use data and mindfulness in the same sentence. For the past two months, I’ve been wearing a rock in a bra, a device called Spire.  You think of it as a Fitbit for stress developed by the Calming Technology Lab at Stanford University.  You wear it in your bra or clip it to your waist, and it measures your breath.    It streams data to an app on your phone like your step count, but more importantly gives you a report on whether you are calm, tense, or focused based on the length, depth, and spacing of your breath.

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GUEST BLOG | Solo Leadership: It's Time To Change The Story By Michelle Gislason

We need to break away from the traditional, Westernized story of the heroic leader toward a more expansive, sustainable, and community-oriented leadership approach. This is the premise of this piece by Senior Project Director Michelle Gislason, which takes readers on a journey starting with thoughts on our current political landscape and ending with how we can create change in our communities—with stops along the way to consider adaptive leadership, outdated power paradigms, and nonprofit leadership. Enjoy the ride!

 

I have been watching the recent election coverage with a combination of dismay and disillusionment. As someone who self-identifies as progressive and works for social justice, the majority of the candidates not only don't speak to me, they don't speak for me. Personal attacks, verbal attacks, racism. And this is just from the left. The leading candidate for president on the Republican side is a racist, misogynistic demagogue. Just, wow. How disheartening and enraging. The one candidate who has come close to speaking to me? Well, the irony is not lost on me that hope for a revolution has been claimed by a 70-year-old white man from Vermont.

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Guest Blog | The Seminal Skill in Adaptive Leadership: The Work of Building Trust By Katherine Tyler Scott

In response to Deborah’s blog on Trust and Leadership, Katherine Tylor Scott shares this article. Originally published on the Ki Thought Bridge website.

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One of the first things we learn in life is whether and how to trust someone else. Our experience with our caregivers tell us whether we can be safe and secure in a dependent relationship, whether the environment is loving or hostile, open or closed to our discomfort, affirming or rejecting of who we are, and whether our basic survival needs will be met without fear. What we learn in these first relationships of trust-holding remain with us for all of our lives. They are the building blocks, the foundation for who we become. If we have not examined the origins of trust in our own lives we will be unaware of the influence they have on our behavior and the health of our relationships. We will be unconscious as to the effect these early formational experiences have on our leadership of others. We will be limited in our understanding of the  impact that trust in our lives will have on the individuals and groups we invite into the vulnerable and risky work of adaptive leadership.

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Networks and Leadership Webinar Series: Foundations as Network Leaders: Learning from One Foundation’s Journey and Results

           

Join us for the third session of the Networks and Leadership Webinar Series on "Foundations as Network Leaders: Learning From One Foundation's Journey and Results"

What does it mean for a foundation to become a facilitative leader?  And how can foundation staff make the case for network-based funding approaches to boards and other stakeholders?  This two-part series will explore successes and insights from the DentaQuest Foundation’s national systems change strategy Oral Health 2020.  Started in 2011, this network-based strategy has achieved notable results—development of oral health leaders across the country, creation of new state partnerships connected to a national health improvement network, and tangible system and policy changes such as the expansion of public benefits in more than 15 states.  Come learn about what it took to make this work happen from the perspective of Foundation leaders Brian Souza and Mike Monopoli, initiative evaluator Clare Nolan (Harder+Company Community Research), and network weaver Marianne Hughes (Interaction Institute for Social Change).

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GUEST BLOG | A Simple Way for Nonprofit Leaders To Incorporate Mindfulness Into Their Daily Work by Beth Kanter

Yesterday, I had the honor of being a guest facilitator at a transformative leadership retreat with colleagues Heather McLeod Grant, Chris Block, Lance Fors, and David Havens. The retreat curriculum is built around a framework called “I-WE-IT” that covers mindsets and practical skills that today’s social change leaders of all generations need as we move towards more collective approaches.

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GUEST BLOG | Leadership for Audacious Change by Steve Waddell

Large systems change is audacious.  It is change that involves lots and lots of people and organizations – even global breadth.  It is change that is transformational rather than incremental;  it is about basic restructuring, rethinking and reimaging. 

Over the past few decades, I’ve been in working on understanding and advancing this type of change, in relationship with large systems change agents.  People like Peter Eigen at Transparency International, Georg Kell at the Global Compact, Otto Scharmer at the Presencing Institute, and Petra Kunkel at the Collective Leadership Institute.  What do these people and my experience suggest about leadership among audacious change agents?

Such people are attentive to their own life balance, well-being, and happiness.  Peter Eigen plays the saxophone; Otto Scharmer takes blocks of time off for his family; Petra has a home in Germany and South Africa, which enhances her relationship with those she’s working; I’ve found morning chanting in my Sokka Gaki Buddhist tradition indispensable. 

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Webinar : Successfully Transitioning Your Organization to a Network Mindset (Video & Slides)

Friday, June 10, 2016

10:00 -11:00 am Pacific | 1:00 - 2:00 pm Eastern

 

Working in networked ways is fundamentally different than traditional ways of working. Organizations can commit to a network approach yet not fully realize all the pieces and behaviors needed to make it actually work.

Carole Martin and Beth Tener will share their insights as coaches/facilitators with a wide range of social change network initiatives. They'll explore what they have been learning about which networks get traction and grow and which ones stumble, related to these themes:

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