Thursday, April 28, 2011


#3best is a hashtag that can be found on Twitter. It can be used as a way to reflect on the highlights of your day and share them with your Tweeps, or Twitter community. I've found myself more and more drawn to this movement. I'm finding that in those moments of thinking about my #3best, I am more connected to the positive things that took place throughout my day. I like how this thinking connects me to gratitude, because I do find myself feeling truly grateful for those daily high points and the impact they make on my life. That gratitude helps me to be more appreciative of the "every-day" and puts into perspective the frustrating moments that are experienced. I guess today, one of my #3best is #3best!

What are your #3best?

Friday, April 22, 2011

LeaderShape: An Evidence-Based Leadership Example

How do you make the case for The LeaderShape Institute?

Too often we hear participants say things like "you've just gotta do it" or "it was life-changing." And while we agree (we realize we may be biased) with these participants, it's important to note when the work that you are doing is highlighted as phenomenal evidence-based leadership program.

A description of The LeaderShape Institute may be best described in Komives et. al (2011) The Handbook for Student Leadership Development (2nd ed.) that states:

“Examples of evidence-based leadership programming abound. The LeaderShape Institute is a phenomenal example of an individual leadership experience that successfully embeds multiple high-impact learning strategies to enhance student learning. LeaderShape is a six-day intensive retreat experience focused on building college students’ leadership capacities (see for more information). The curriculum integrates theoretical leadership content consistent with contemporary philosophies with a delivery that taps into many of the positive influences identified in the literature. Specifically, the program provides extensive opportunities for group interaction that stimulate critical self-reflection. Groups also build trust and engage in experiential learning designed to enhance students’ leadership efficacy as well as capacity. The content incorporates sociocultural conversations both across the curriculum as well as in a focused section that allows participants to delve deeply into issues related to power, privilege, and oppression. Mentoring also plays a key role, with participants interacting with adult facilitators and building relationships that continue well beyond the boundaries of the six-day experience” (p. 79).

We appreciate the fact that such notable scholars in the field have highlighted The LeaderShape Institute as a great example. As we celebrate our 25th Anniversary of the program, we would like to thank the thousands of faculty and partners who share our goal of creating a just, caring, and thriving world. Our success is due to the generosity of so many others. We're proud of our collective work and efforts.

Komives, S. R., Dugan, J. P., Owen, J. E., Slack, C., Wagner, W., & Associates (Eds.). (2011). The handbook for student leadership development (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Who Do You Want To Be?

Here is a quote that I think really resonates with the teachings of LeaderShape and is often difficult to practice in daily life.

“Do the things you used to talk about doing but never did. Know when to let go and when to hold on tight. Stop rushing. Don’t be intimidated to say it like it is. Stop apologizing all the time. Learn to say no, so your yes has some oomph. Spend time with the friends who lift you up, and cut loose the ones who bring you down. Stop giving your power away. Be more concerned with being interested than being interesting. Be old enough to appreciate your freedom, and young enough to enjoy it. Finally know who you are."
Kristin Armstrong

In the upcoming days, I encourage you to practice a little healthy selfishness! Explore who you are and more importantly who you are becoming.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

1.4 Million Reasons to Celebrate 25 Years!

This weekend, we celebrated 25 years of The LeaderShape Institute with so many participants, cluster facilitators, lead facilitators, guest leaders, and family.

It was a glorious evening and wonderful celebration with 240 of our closest friends.

The LeaderShape staff was able to go through our archives and provide historical pictures, documents, and letters to share our founding and growth that were put on display at the 25th Gala.

A t-shirt wall of dozens of past session t-shirts over the last 25 years displayed the richness and diversity of sessions.

Joe Cimino's "I am LeaderShape" video was shown as the chosen winner to our YouTube contest with over 1100 votes cast. Joe is a current student from St. John Fisher College. To see Joe's winning video, please click here.

We enjoyed the fellowship and friendship with all of those who were able to attend and with all of those who helped us celebrate by wearing your t-shirt, sending in pictures, posting on our Facebook fan page, retweeting our tweets, or sharing with a friend or colleague the impact that the program had on you. We all can share in our collective success!

We are so very proud to announce that the board alone has personally committed $1.4 million toward LeaderShape's 25th anniversary campaign! This is an incredible gesture of leadership!

The board invites you to become involved with our 25th anniversary campaign by contacting our President, Paul Pyrz, at 800.900.LEAD (5323) or by email at or by donating here online. We invite you join us to make our next 25 years even better!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

How Fascinating

In the curriculum for The LeaderShape Institute, I particularly enjoy and connect with the pieces on making mistakes and failure. As a person who struggles when I've blundered or (ugh!) bombed something, these sections continuously provide me with ways to reflect, reframe, and attend to error and my attitude. Right now I'm working to quiet my inner voice (thanks, Zander) in order to move forward.

What lessons from The LeaderShape Institute do you revisit?