Systems Leadership

Accelerated Systems Leadership – A New Approach 

A quick search on the internet will reveal a near endless abundance of leadership tools, methodologies, and programs. Where then are all the highly skilled and capable leaders?  

Developing leaders who can lead takes more than transferring cognitive knowledge or practicing skills. Those two approaches are important.  We’ve led programs that do just that for years.  And we have seen repeatedly that the ability to turn knowledge into a competency relies on a third element that is increasingly described as systems leadership.  This element includes, but is more than, an aspect of self-awareness or emotional intelligence. Its foundation is the ability to be observant and reflective about oneself and others and make choices based on those observations. This ability is something every human has. What activates it is motivation and intentionality. It’s a choice and once we choose it new capacities and possibilities start to open up.

Leading a complex system consciously requires us to interact with others from a place of curiosity, openness, and inspiration.   Listening, learning and innovating stop when defensiveness and “being right” take over. While most know and agree that the former is a much more optimal approach than the latter – actually possessing that capacity requires more from a leader than lip service. Ironically, many leaders are either afraid of using their power or careless in how they use it. Finding that sweet spot is the expression of a healthy relationship to power, others and one’ sense of self. 

Despite the best of intentions by all concerned, blind spots, inner resistances and obstacles more often than not hinder the effective and healthy use of leadership power. What we don’t know about ourselves or the system we operate in leads to a lack of alignment between our intentions and our actions.  We end up with different parts of ourselves and the people we hope to lead at cross purposes with each other. Leaders, who can access their internal as well as external resources, are better able to mitigate their blind spots and deficits and work strategically with others to achieve results.

The systemic approach enables us to map out the challenges of leadership and change that touch us personally as well as professionally. If we face these challenges head-on we can gain the resilience and insights needed to resolve them. As we take responsibility for our own inner change and our inner blocks to it we are more able to understand and influence the system we seek to change. To paraphrase Gandhi, we can become more of the change we want to see in the world.

Profound change is possible when we draw upon our tacit knowledge – what we don’t know we know. We can access this non-verbal level of “knowing” through the Constellation methodology, which taps into the domains of body, emotions, and spirit as well as the mind.

Our accelerated conscious leadership programs are primary experiential with brief presentations and discussions to deepen our understanding of the theories and concepts underlying this practical and hands-on approach. Given our common humanity when one person works through a meaningful challenge, everyone benefits. Typical programs are two days or more. We also offer tailored, in-house programs designed to meet the specific learning needs of leaders in one organization as well as open enrollment programs for a diverse group of organizations and independent professionals.

Participants in these programs will notice a shift in how they typically respond to difficult situation or person. They will feel more mature and resourceful whereas before they may have felt frozen and ineffective. This is more than about putting information and techniques into a container. It’s about expanding the container and the capacity to use its contents.    

Visit the upcoming workshops page for the dates and location of public workshops.