- Create a space to shut off the noise of the world to achieve a fresh outlook on your life and your leadership.
- Take the time to reset your internal compass with a clarity of values and sense of purpose as a leader.
- Learn how to earn the trust and respect of those you serve through authentic relationships.
- Understand the quality of presence and how it creates more productive and engaged employees and relationships.
- Value and model accountability and self- discipline as a trust builder.
- Find clarity about what matters most in your life while living and leading with greater focus and alignment with your highest values.
- Learn how mindfulness, meditation, body integration, and yoga can help you amplify your impact on others.
- Transform the darker side of your nature into your greatest gifts.
- Leave with your own personal leadership development plan.
“You are a leader second. First, you are a human being.” – John Scherer
I know from my own research, and my more than thirty years of experience in the leadership development field, that now more than ever, the world is in need of leaders who are committed to substance over superficial, character over charisma, and service over self-interest. In short, we need leaders who are authentic – people whose inner compass guides their daily actions and who inspire trust by being honest and real. To come to this place of impact and influence requires slowing down, going inside, and developing a relationship with an interior self. It’s about finding one’s voice away from the voices of the world. To attain the capacity to influence in today’s changing, complex, and demanding world, to lead with the depth of a strong authentic presence, requires an inner journey, a journey to one’s heart, a journey to what I call the “Other Everest.”
A year ago I had a dream to create an authentic community of like-minded leaders – difference makers – who are committed to go deeper than what I was offering in my keynote and one day leadership programs. Last week I saw this dream come to fruition at the Banff Centre when thirty-one remarkable, authentic, caring leaders came together to create a pivotal moment in my career. Assisting me by integrating mindfulness training, creativity, accountability, self-awareness, and yoga into the experience of deepening one’s leadership presence, were two extraordinary human beings, Julianna Veldtman and Jeff Lichty.
During the three days we co-created an amazing space to pause, to go within, and to connect with our authentic selves. These leaders are committed to amplifying their impact through increased self-awareness and a stronger, clearer purpose and presence and created a community of support with other authentic leaders. Together we discovered a renewed perspective on leadership and immersed ourselves, in the words of one participant, in “an inspiring space of complete trust, kindness and support.” Another participant, a CEO from Edmonton, explained it this way a week after the experience, “It seems so surreal looking back at it now. How was it possible to bring those exact people together at that exact time to make the magic happen? I cannot fully describe the life-changing event that you set the stage for and made happen. Truly, truly amazing.”
Words cannot adequately describe my own profound gratitude for the honesty, courage, vulnerability, engagement, openness, and trust that these amazing leaders put into the experience. They actually left their devices and technology at the door for three full days and engaged themselves completely in the process. I left with a deep and sustaining knowing that leadership is truly not about position; it’s about presence. Leadership cannot be reduced to techniques or tools. True Leadership is about connecting to our authentic self and bringing that self wholeheartedly to the service of others.
My father used to say that, “only so far as a man is happily married to himself, is he fit for married life.” By embarking on a journey of integration and inner peace, one expands their capacity to fully reach and influence the world. It’s about being engaged in a perpetual process of becoming. The experience last week has made me a better person. It has confirmed my conviction that a person enlarges their ability to lead and impact others through a strong presence that is attained, in large part, through an inner journey.
Each of us has within us a calling. While the outside world pushes us, something within pulls us. Let your deepest desires lead you. If this sounds like a journey upon which you would like to embark, watch for details for the next retreat in December on my website. Also feel free to send us a note expressing an interest: http://www.davidirvine.ca/contact/.
I look forward to having you join us for the next one.
CREATING A LEADERSHIP CULTURE IN YOUR ORGANIZATION
David Irvine & Results Canada Invite You To A LEADERSHIP SUMMIT
Banff Springs Hotel
March 12 – 14, 2017
One of the most rewarding aspects of my career are the amazing organizations and leaders I have the privilege to work with. Over the years, Tim O’Connor, CEO and Partner of Results Canada Inc. http://www.resultsci.com has been a tremendous inspiration and support. His company is about helping companies unleash their business potential through disciplined execution. Hot on the heels of a standout year of business growth and expansion, I am proud to be associated with this business consulting firm that has been named to the 2017 Fast Growth 50 list by Alberta Venture magazine.
In partnership with Results Canada I’m thrilled to be co-presenting at their Leadership Summit in Banff this spring with John Spence. John is an award winning speaker, author and thought leader. If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend his book: Awesomely Simple.
John Spence is recognized as one of the Top 100 Business Thought Leaders in America, one of the Top 100 Small Business Influencers in America, and one of the Top 500 Leadership Development Experts in the World. He is an international keynote speaker and management consultant who has written five books on business and life success. John has a unique ability of making the very complex business and leadership concepts awesomely simple – and, I might add, “awesomely practical.” To learn more about John and the work he had done around the world in the past twenty-two years, go to: http://www.johnspence.com
As The Leader’s Navigator™ my work is to inspire and guide leaders to build authentic, accountable organizations – by creating lives that matter. As a trusted advisor, I help people unleash their potential through cultural alignment, better leadership practices, and a stronger leadership presence. I get to the heart of humanity, leadership, and life.
In Banff, John and I will be addressing key issues leaders are facing today over a two-day information packed, inspiring, highly interactive, and practical session. We will be bringing you real, actionable tools and ideas that will take your leadership to the next level.
While John will lead us through a session about his foremost research on effective leadership, his personal leadership competency model, understanding the importance of values-based leadership, and the core characteristics it takes to build a winning culture, my contribution will be about making leadership “awesomely authentic.”
In this deeply reflective part of our time together, I will be discussing the nature of influence, and how you can amplify your impact on others through the power of presence. I will lead participants through a practical, hands-on approach to the three critical leadership imperatives to create a leadership culture in your organization:
- Building Trust: The Power Of Connection
- Engaging Talent: The Power Of Internal Alignment
- Ensuring Results: The Power Of Accountability
As an added bonus, the event is being held in the beautiful Rockies at the Banff Springs Hotel in March, which makes it ideal timing for taking advantage of the local sights and skiing.
This is going to be a fantastic learning and networking opportunity with executive attendees from across Canada and the USA.
I encourage you to check out the details at the following link: http://resultsci.com/events/leadership-retreat/
Hope to see you there.
Last Thursday I had the good fortune of attending a one-day Lean 101 course, hosted by POS Bio-Sciences in Saskatoon. The Lean approach has been integral to their success, and I wanted to learn first hand how the tool of Lean is used to help build the “POS Way.” POS has inspired me over the years by their leadership, innovation, and customer driven entrepreneurialism.
I also had another reason for attending. Being passionate about accountability, I wanted to learn how the Lean management approach can help strengthen the accountability process I help organizations implement.
What I learned about Lean
Lean is a philosophy, an approach to business, and a set of tools designed to eliminate waste while adding value for the customer. At its core, business is a set of processes for delivering results. And Lean is a mind-set for continuously improving these processes. Lean turns employees into leaders by encouraging and empowering ownership and better contribution at every level.
But Lean isn’t just a business philosophy. It’s a philosophy for life. Who, after all, doesn’t have waste in the way we do our work and live our lives? Life is a series of processes, whether it’s doing the laundry, finding your keys, managing stress, or improving a relationship. Whenever you are systematic about improving these processes, you are practicing Lean.
As a novice to Lean, I am making it comprehendible by breaking it down and outlining a five-step approach. Below is a process you can use for applying the Lean philosophy to any aspect of life.
Take a look at anything in your life that is frustrating to you. It might be as simple as finding your keys in the morning or as complex as an under-achieving sales team.
Do a Value Stream Map of your process:
- Define your goal. Your goal can be as simple as having your keys in your pocket as you walk out the door – with zero frustration, or, in the case of your sales team, having achieved a specific sales quota.
- Clearly identify all steps in the process to achieving your goal. For finding your keys look specifically at what you do with your keys when you come home right through until you need them the next morning when you leave for work. On your sales team, break down the sales process from the time a salesperson enters the door to the end of the month when celebrating your team’s success. It is best if you do this with everyone who is involved in the process. With your keys, you might do it with your spouse, who experiences the impact of a stressed marriage partner in the morning. With your sales process, get the whole sales team to help you identify all the steps it takes to make it a successful sales division.
- Identify each step as value-added or non-value added. Value-added means it moves you closer to your goal and decreases frustration of everyone. It’s also what the customer is willing to pay for. Non-value added is waste: anything that doesn’t add value to the customer.
- Identify and remove waste. It’s a waste to hang your pants up in the closet with your keys still in the pocket because you’ll have to run into your bedroom the next morning when you can’t find your keys. It may be a waste for your sales team to be coming in to the office and returning emails unrelated to sales when they need to be spending time following up on leads.
- Focus on process execution. Once you have identified and removed waste:
- Decide who will own the process (one person needs to be accountable for the accomplishment of the process).
- Identify the most effective step-by-step process to accomplish your goal.
- Ensure everyone understands the process and their part in making the process a success.
- Get agreement on people’s contribution to the process.
- Monitor for success. Lean has a term called, “Hansei,” which means, essentially, “Looking back with critical eyes.” Self and group reflection is critical to process improvement. You will likely decide to hold regular meetings to see how the process is working. Above all, make it safe for anyone to identify waste and make suggestions for improvement at anytime. Always question. Don’t just accept what’s there. The only failure is failure to learn ways to improve.
- Don’t hold people accountable for results. Hold people accountable for following the process. If the results aren’t there, don’t blame the people. Instead, change the process and ensure that everyone understands it.
I am aware that this short summary from my rookie mind-set of Lean is incomplete and overly simplistic. I look forward to learning more and continually improving the processes that run my own organization and the processes that help me manage my life with the greatest ease. I also look forward to continuously learn about how to use the Lean philosophy in helping foster accountability in organizations – without blame.