The Heart of Leadership for Business

Dates: Dates and location to be designed in collaboration with the client.

As a firm oriented around developing people, we are dedicated to the possibility that one’s work and all other aspects of one’s life can be a source of joy, inspiration, ongoing development, contribution and meaning. In the past thirty years of developing people, we have observed that living well and working well are related; that accomplishment, productivity and satisfaction are related; and that forwarding people’s development over time ever increases the power of people to fulfill their intentions and to create environments around them that nourish themselves and others.

“Work should be and can be productive and rewarding, meaningful and maturing, enriching and fulfilling, healing and joyful. Work is one of our greatest privileges. Work can even be poetic.”

– Max Depree, “Leadership is an Art”

“Tell me: what is it that you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

– Mary Oliver

The Heart of Leadership is a developmental program that unleashes the heart and spirit component in work and in life. This rich conversation develops people to live and begin to master what is at the heart of leadership, communication, trust, connectivity, empowerment, and accomplishment. It enables people to create work and life as a pathway for meaning and fulfillment, to create a present and a future where people are released to their own passion, to their ability to release others’ brilliance and passion, and to being productive, accomplished, and fulfilled. It enables leaders to fulfill what they intend, and people in their organization able to support leadership’s intentions. It allows for breakthroughs in productivity, satisfaction, and joy in the workplace.  It leaves people empowered.

We can hear in our work with our clients, a call for expanding “edge”, competence, and mastery through forwarding the growth and fulfillment of human beings. The work environment is a domain that can contribute to every aspect of a human being’s life, but is often not constituted to do so. We have seen, over and over, this profound call for inspiration in people’s personal and professional lives, particularly now, when it is clearer than ever that we live in a changing and uncertain environment.

The Heart of Leadership addresses that calling. It aims at awakening and engaging the vast resource that is the human spirit. From that awakening, participants are able to create changes in their personal and professional lives that generate breakthroughs in ease, fulfillment, accomplishment, and the experience of making a meaningful difference in the lives of others.

Through this program, people are able to bring into being the core ingredients for awakening a culture in the workplace and in the other dimensions of their lives of trust, inspiration, partnership, connection with others, accomplishment, success, creativity, and fulfillment. Some of the key elements included are: access to honest, authentic communication based in powerful listening; compassion; honor and regard for one’s own and others’ gifts and unique contribution; a capacity to take risks and embrace mistakes; integrity; forgiveness; the ability to fulfill intentions and accomplishments with ease and velocity through collaborative conversational pathways; keys for creating breakthroughs from breakdowns; and an increased ability to forward and empower others to fulfill their intentions. This program opens up territory for people to connect with living life from a place of profundity, meaning, and inspiration as well as accomplish what they intend. In fact, the two are very much related.

What are the results of the program?

This program, delivered through a three-day session followed  by two days approximately three or four weeks later opens people to the collaborative nature of leadership, with authentic communication as the base for ever-expanding power in the area. It addresses what is at the heart of leadership, communication, and empowering others. It leaves people causing a relationship with their work that has meaning and substance. It leads people to be able to create relationships with others that have heart and that allows for gracious and effective collaboration, including in the face of breakdowns, so that people are both successful and fulfilled.

Through this program, people have reshaped their work, their lives, their personal relationships, and their organizational environments into environments that are fulfilling and nurturing to human beings, in which people can thrive. Through this program, people have reshaped their work cultures from:

  • No trust to trust
  • Little communication to communication that works
  • No partnership to partnership
  • Having barriers and walls between people to healing those barriers ongoingly
  • Control to empowerment
  •  “Silo” thinking to creating possibility, opportunity and actions collaboratively
  • Longing for what they don’t have to being satisfied with what they do have (or creating it)

Appreciation, communication, and integrity become the background of the culture in a sustained way. These environmental or cultural shifts have allowed individuals, partners, and organizations to produce surprising, concrete, and extraordinary results. In these five days, participants create breakthroughs in their ability to listen, in their ability to speak from commitment, compassion, and inspiration, and in their ability to create innovation from problems and breakdowns. New freedoms, openings for action, and new outcomes are produced.

Some of the questions we address and develop people to live from are:

  • Where does leading a meaningful life and empowering others come from?
  • How do I create trust when I don’t already trust someone?
  • What is my purpose (in life and work)?
  • How do I deepen my relationship with others?
  • What is the unique contribution I am?
  • What is the role of completion, forgiveness, and integrity in living and in leading?
  • How do we accomplish completion/learning before moving on to the next project?
  • How does appreciation release my own creativity and the creativity of others?
  • What blocks appreciation?
  • How do I get access to connecting powerfully, committedly, and generously, with both others and myself? (especially when I don’t like them)              
  • What are the conversational pathways for fulfilling intentions collaboratively?
  • What are the principles for creating and sustaining trust through time?
  • How can I resolve interruptions and breakdowns with ease and grace?
  • How can I create breakthroughs from breakdowns?
  • How can I engage the teams I work with to be in effective communication and action on an ongoing basis?

While most people would agree that leadership and management based in hierarchy, paternalism, and control are no longer viable, there are few schools educating people to be able to make a new kind of leadership — both in our work and in our private lives and families – operational. We suggest that to move forward into the next era will take a new kind of leadership: a leadership that is based in fulfilling one’s own life, releasing one’s self to one’s own heart, joy, wisdom, and soaring spirit. From there, one can take on being someone who releases others to fulfill the possibility that they are. We are not well trained in releasing our own and/or others’ brilliance. This program provides that training.

Who can participate?

Typically, a leader (or leaders) of an organization go through a public offering of The Heart of Leadership first, to personally engage and have the breakthrough in their leadership that this program makes available.  If they then see that they want to bring the course into their organization, we collaborate together on the design, the timing, the intentions and purposes, and the logistics, including costs. We work very closely with both the sponsor/champion and the in house administrator to bring The Heart of Leadership into existence in the company, including designing the invitation for people, and the enrollment conversations that allow people in the company to choose whether or not they want to participate.

Generally, anyone who is interested in and willing to rigorously and seriously explore questions that allow for an explosion in creativity and freedom, in integrity, in taking action on enriching their personal and work life with meaning, expanding their ability to create alignment and trust with others, and fulfilling their intentions with velocity, is a good candidate for this program.

Because the program enables one’s ability to break down walls and to create communication across functional areas and resolve alignment issues, organization’s frequently structure classes to have people in the program who are actively engaged with each other. This program is a potent and reliable resource for developing a greater level of unity and connectivity with others, for the present and the future.

How is it organized?

The program is delivered in two sections: the first is three days in a row, followed by two days approximately three weeks later. The first three days provide a breakthrough in authentic communication, completion, integrity, forgiveness, creating a meaningful future, a deep regard for one’s self and others, healing with others, and the distinctions for creating trust and partnership on an ongoing basis. The second two days cover the conversational pathways for fulfilling intentions collaboratively, in an integrated way with others, and the keys to reliably creating breakthroughs from breakdowns. Participants and business leaders report dramatic breakthroughs in their personal and professional lives from the first three days; many of the comments in the “Previous Participants’ Comments” section stem from people having participated in a workshop based solely in the distinctions of the first three days. To get a deeper sense of what our clients who have used the Gale Leadership Development programs to transform their culture into one which is based in the values of communication, trust, integrity, authenticity, and collaborative partnership say, please refer to the Our Clients Speak section of this website.

If you have any questions about the program or this program’s applicability to you and/or your business, we would be happy to speak with you about the program, look with you at how it might be able to benefit you personally, those in relationship with you, or your organization, and to answer any questions you may have.


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