Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Donate Button

Did you know that LeaderShape is a not-for-profit organization? And did you know that we depend on contributions in order to reach more people with our programs?

The contributions we receive go directly to providing scholarships for participants to attend programs. If you have attended The LeaderShape Institute, you may be someone who has benefited from a donation to our organization. If you have already participated in one of our programs, your contribution could help to provide someone else with the experience, too. Think about it like this…

If every graduate and facilitator contributed $20, we would be able to add $800,000.00 to our endowment.

Wow. That’s a lot of scholarship money! Imagine the impact that would have. Seriously, imagine it. Imagine the number of people out in the world furthering our vision of a just, caring, thriving world where all lead with integrity and a healthy disregard for the impossible. If you ask me, that’s pretty powerful.

Because the act of giving is so important to LeaderShape and the ability to further our cause, we’ve made it easy to contribute through our website by including a “Donate” button right on the main page. We hope you check it out. We hope you decide that you’d like to make a contribution. No amount is too small.

Of course, no amount is too big either.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Profile PIcture

Sometimes it’s helpful to be able to put a face with a name, don’t you think? We do!

In order to make it easier for you to have your mug shot, er photo, connected to your LeaderShape profile, we’ve added a new feature to the “My Profile” that allows you to sync your Twitter status and your Facebook photo to your LeaderShape profile.

To do this, go to “My Profile” and scroll down to the “Social Networking Settings” section. Click “Edit” and follow complete the information. Click “Save” and you are all set! Now people can see that good-looking face of yours and you can see theirs.

Monday, October 25, 2010

2011 Cluster Facilitator applications

It's that time of year again! Cluster Facilitator application time! The application to serve as a Cluster Facilitator for a National Session of The LeaderShape Institute is now available.

Please visit our website to learn more, including how to apply.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Videos Help Tell a Story

Have you seen the new videos we have on the LeaderShape website? If not, we hope you take a moment to check them out. They were created as a resource to help folks understand the programs that we offer, The LeaderShape Institute and Catalyst. We hope that you find them helpful.

To view the video on The LeaderShape Institute, click “Institute” at the top of the page then scroll down and click play in the video box.

For the Catalyst video, click “Additional Programs” at the top of the page. Scroll down and click “Catalyst.” Click play in the video box below.

Would you like to share or view the opening video again? Scroll to the very bottom of our homepage and click the “View Intro” link located in the left hand corner.

Monday, October 4, 2010

New Website: Login and Contest

We hope you’ve been enjoying the new LeaderShape website so far. We are excited to share it with you. The feature we’d like to share with you today is the “My Profile” area. (Be sure to read to the end because there is a contest involved! With a prize, of course.)

For folks who have created a profile on our website (if you have ever participated in a session of The LeaderShape Institute, you probably have a profile here), the following information will get you familiar with logging in and navigating your profile.

New “Login” location: To login, you’ll now go to the upper right hand corner of the home page. Enter in your login and your password in the pop-up box that appears when you click “login” and you now have access to your profile. Forgot your password? No worries. Click “Forgotten Password?” and follow the instructions.

My Profile: This is where you will be directed to once you login. You’ll notice that there is a place to update your picture as well as review your contact, work, and education information. We like to stay in touch with our community members so please take a few minutes to make sure that your profile is up-to-date.

My Session Information: If you attended The LeaderShape Institute, you can find contact information for all of the folks who participated in the session with you by clicking the “My Session Info” tab. By staying in touch, the community you created together can continue on after the program has ended. How great is that?

Vision Updates: Often our visions are fluid, growing, and evolving over time. You can update, refine, and even change your vision right in your profile by clicking on the “My Vision” tab. Additionally, you can search for and connect with other participants of The LeaderShape Institute who care about the same issues that you do by clicking on “Vision Search” and following the instructions.

So let’s have some fun with this! Update your picture on your LeaderShape profile and let us know that you have by emailing lead@leadershape.org. If you do so wearing a LeaderShape t-shirt, hat, fleece etc., we’ll enter you into a drawing for one of the LeaderShape shirts we have here in the office. Deadline to enter is Friday, October 8, 2010.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Website Redesign!

The next time you visit www.leadershape.org, you may be surprised with a new look and layout. That’s right! We’ve redesigned our website.

We feel confident that the new design will make it easier for you to do all of the things you’ve been doing on the website. Just like in the previous design, you still have the ability to learn about our organization, gather information on programs we offer, access resources, and donate to our cause.

Plus…there’s more!

More opportunities to connect with the LeaderShape community. We’d like to share two community-focused features with you today.

Share Your Story – We love to hear what the members of the LeaderShape community are up to. The “Share Your Story” tab on the lower left hand side of our main page is a great place to share YOUR story with us. And by story, we mean a moment, a discovery, a breakthrough…anything that you connect with the LeaderShape experience.

@LeaderShape – We want to stay connected to and interact with our community as much as possible. With graduates and facilitators located all over the world, it can be challenging to do so face-to-face. LeaderShape has accounts on Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, and YouTube. Scroll down to the center light grey box and connect with us! You can also subscribe to the “I am LeaderShape” blog by clicking on the RSS feed button.

Again, we hope that the new design, crisp look, and updated information allows you to navigate the site more easily and provide you with the particulars you are looking for. So take a look. Click away. Let us know what you think.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Palmer Award Recipients!

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” Anne Frank

Once again we are in awe over the amazing work that this year’s Palmer Award applicants have done to help to create a just, caring, and thriving world. Thank you to all of the LeaderShape graduates who shared their stories with us through this process. We are eager to continue to hear about the strides that you make. So don’t stop! Keep going!

We do want to take some time to highlight this year’s recipients. Their passion and the progress they have made on their visions is inspiring and touching. We hope that you are able to capture the essence of the outstanding work they are each putting out into the world.

Jonathan Naber (The University of Illinois)
With a vision to provide affordable prosthetics, Jonathan founded the Illini Prosthetics Team and, in collaboration with his team, began a start-up social venture to provide prosthetic arms to people in developing nations. In his application, he shared that candid conversation, networking, and a resolve to accomplish the vision have served as motivators for him and the group.

Jonathan also developed a website (www.illiniprosthetics.com) to serve as a platform for amputees to convey their concerns for prosthetic arm design as well as aid organizations in obtaining prosthetic arms. As the site grew, clinics in Guatamala, Columbia, Bolivia, India, and Sierra Leone have contacted the group asking for prosthetic arms. Through the connections that have been created through the website, Jonathan and his team were sought out to provide prosthetic fingers to a patient in Ecuador and they are currently testing out three different “concept” arms with ten patients at a partner clinic in Guatamala.

Not only has Jonathan been acknowledged by LeaderShape for the work he has accomplished related to his vision, he was also the recipient of the 2010 Lemelson-MIT Illinois Student prize, recognizing him as the most innovative student at the University of Illinois.

Janelle Legros (Florida State University)
Longing to be an active voice on campus that would educate and inform the student body on issues distinctive to the Caribbean islands and Haiti in particular, Janelle set forth on a path of self-discovery. Through this self-discovery and the encouragement from her fellow LeaderShapers, Janelle chartered the Global Haiti Initiative (http://www.haiti-initiative.com) on her campus. Since then, she has collaborated with other colleges and universities, establishing over 15 additional chapters.

The initial focus of the Global Haiti Initiative was to take on projects that brought to light various issues from education to water sanitation, orphanages to health care, and de-worming to the construction of medical facilities. The focus of the organization changed suddenly when the earthquakes struck Haiti in January.

Demonstrating her ability to work in times of chaos and change, Janelle and The Global Haiti Initiative worked to provide assistance to the people of Haiti by collecting over $3000 in donations and coordinating a mission trip to the country. They have also held a blood drive that benefited Doctors Without Borders’ work in Haiti and sponsored a screening the film “Road to Fondwa” that was accompanied by a discussion.

Congratulations to Jonathan and Janelle!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Accepting Applications for The Palmer Award

The Palmer Award is given out each year to two LeaderShape graduates who have participated in a national or campus-based session during the previous year (in this case, that's 2009). The award is given to recognize the achievements of those individuals who have demonstrated their commitment to bringing their vision to reality after attending a session of The LeaderShape Institute. The recipients of these awards receive $750 in honor of their achievements.

The Palmer Awards are provided from an endowment gift donated to the Alpha Tau Omega Foundation by Dr. Edmund T. Palmer, Jr. Alpha Tau Omega created the concept of The LeaderShape Institute in 1986 and the Alpha Tau Omega Foundation funded the creation of the initial curriculum design for The LeaderShape Institute.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Why Multiple Sources Of Information Are Important

It seems lately that everything seems to be characterized as polar opposites. Democrat or Republican. Red or Blue. Fox News or MSNBC. Liberal or Conservative. With us or against us.

The leaders of today and tomorrow need to see past this sucker's argument. Very rarely in life are things just so simple with easy dichotomy. Heck, just do a Google image search of blue states vs. red states and see how many versions different sources show. I've just shown two examples above.

That's one reason we haven't hung our hat here at LeaderShape with any one particular leadership theory. No one author, theory, study, or approach works in a one-size fits all, works every time, way.

One strategy to help you avoid falling into this trap is to seek out multiple sources of information. Look for opinions and approaches different than yours. To illustrate the point of why only looking to one source of information could be dangerous, I'd like to share with you four different takes on the same research study. Each of these articles have a different spin on the same recent study. Notice the different titles:

New EyeDriver technology the future of driving?

Hands off that steering wheel

Driving with your eyes, not your hands

Checking out girls while driving could kill you

Nothing is "wrong" here. Just different takes on the same basic information.

Let's be honest. We're all busy. It's easy to only listen, hang out, and agree with people who already agree with what you think or believe.

But there is a danger in doing this. Part of leadership is not doing the easy, way you want it, version. Effective leadership bringing all voices, people, opinions, thoughts, and ideas together and forges a new way forward that's better for all.

Often there are multiple "truths" involved. No one is saying this is easy. But this is one reason why good leadership can be difficult, exciting, challenging, rewarding, frustrating, and needed.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Why Is Ethics So Important?

"Business is set up in a way that deliberately pushes the boundaries of ethical acceptability and evolves naturally along a path of ethical ambiguity. This does not arise because of intrinsically low integrity of the entrepreneurs/owners, but because of the genuinely ambiguous role of them." (p. 21)

Pearson, G. (1995). Integrity in organization: An alternative business ethic. London: McGraw-Hill.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Humanitar-ish Award

I have to admit. I'm a fan of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

While I do enjoying watching these shows, I don't support these shows as a main source of news for some individuals (my lack of support extends to all tabloid journalism, not just these shows, posing as legitimate news).

That being said, comedy can often provide a reality check. Last week, there was an episode on The Colbert Report that seemed timely:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Own a Piece of Histor-Me - Original Interview Table
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorEconomy

Stephen Colbert proposes a Humanitar-ish Award for "outstanding achievement in the field of considering whether to give to charity as long as there's something in it for me."

Colbert does a great job and poking fun at individuals and organizations that seemingly give for altruistic purposes, but come across as though they have alternative selfish motives.

There is no substitute for the real thing.

If you choose to give, give because you really care - not because you want to look good.

Monday, January 4, 2010

New Years Revolutions!

A few years ago, a good friend and LeaderShape Lead Facilitator, Jeff Cufaude, and I were discussing new year's resolutions. I have to say that I have not been a big fan. I've never understood the concept of waiting until a particular time of year to start or do what you want to do. Why not do it now? Why wait?

Now I do value the taking stock of what you've done, where you've been, and where you want to go.

Jeff suggested I change my language from resolutions to revolutions. Now we're talking...

So for the past several years I've made a list of things that would truly be revolutionary in thinking and doing. And set out to do just that. To put it in LeaderShape terms, it's stretch goals.

I've included a great revolution clip for your inspiration (of course, I'm hoping it really doesn't involve the police).

If you are interested in taking stock of the past year and want to look toward the next year, I think David Allen's most recent newsletter does a great job of posing some compelling questions. Here are his questions:

David's Coaching Tips

For those of you who want more form and structure, here are some questions that can guide you in your 2009 review and 2010 goal setting. When I go through these kinds of questions I like to consider my answers in several areas:

Community Service
Fun / creativity / recreation

Completing and remembering 2009

Review the list of all completed projects
What was your biggest triumph in 2009?
What was the smartest decision you made in 2009?
What one word best sums up and describes your 2009 experience?
What was the greatest lesson you learned in 2009?
What was the most loving service you performed in 2009?
What is your biggest piece of unfinished business in 2009?
What are you most happy about completing in 2009?
Who were the three people that had the greatest impact on your life in 2009?
What was the biggest risk you took in 2009?
What was the biggest surprise in 2009?
What important relationship improved the most in 2009?
What compliment would you liked to have received in 2009?
What compliment would you liked to have given in 2009?
What else do you need to do or say to be complete with 2009?

Creating the new year

What would you like to be your biggest triumph in 2010?
What advice would you like to give yourself in 2010?
What is the major effort you are planning to improve your financial results in 2010?
What would you be most happy about completing in 2010?
What major indulgence are you willing to experience in 2010?
What would you most like to change about yourself in 2010?
What are you looking forward to learning in 2010?
What do you think your biggest risk will be in 2010?
What about your work, are you most committed to changing and improving in 2010?
What is one as yet undeveloped talent you are willing to explore in 2010?
What brings you the most joy and how are you going to do or have more of that in 2010?
Who or what, other than yourself, are you most committed to loving and serving in 2010?
What one word would you like to have as your theme in 2010?

So here's to a new decade...and not to incremental change, but rather revolutionary change that makes a much bigger difference.