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Group Blog

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Curiosity in Change Leads to Openness, Wonder and Possibility

Posted by Lon Swartzentruber on August 13, 2019

Over the past two months, we've explored the concept of change, and how courage, curiosity, and trust can help you navigate it. Last month , we looked at the importance of practicing courage. This month, we’re taking a deep dive into the benefits of approaching change with curiosity.

When change happens, there is a lot of new—new people, new ways of doing things, new deadlines, new voices, new perspectives, and new outcomes. Approaching change from a posture of curiosity helps you maintain a sense of openness, wonder, and possibility in the face of all this newness.

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Topics: leadership coaching, lon swartzentruber, business, deep dive, nonprofit, education, faith-based community

Courage in Change

Posted by Lon Swartzentruber on July 11, 2019

As I mentioned last month, change takes courage, curiosity, and trust. This month, I’m taking a deep dive into courage, and how it can help you approach, embrace, and engage change.

A little over a year ago, I began working with an executive director whose predecessor was well-liked and had a long tenure but left rather abruptly.

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Topics: leadership coaching, lon swartzentruber, business, deep dive, nonprofit, education, faith-based community

Three Behaviors Necessary for Change

Posted by Lon Swartzentruber on June 11, 2019

Our mission at Design Group International is clear: we help organizations and their leaders transform for a vibrant future. The word transform indicates some type of change. We deal with change every day and with every client.

As you might imagine, over the years, we have learned a lot about change. But mostly we’ve learned that change takes courage, curiosity, and trust.

Over the next few months, through my blog writing, I plan to take a deep dive into change and the three behaviors that I’ve found helpful in approaching, embracing, and engaging it.

This month, let’s take a bird’s-eye view of change and how practicing courage, curiosity, and trust can help. Let’s take them in reverse order.

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Topics: leadership coaching, lon swartzentruber, business, deep dive, nonprofit, education, faith-based community

Nothing New: Adaptive Organizational Change!

Posted by Arlen Vernava on July 29, 2012

"By the 1840's, the structure of the American Jewish community ... had produced a religious revolution that overthrew the synagogue-communities and replaced a monolithic Judaism with one that was much more democratic, free, diverse, and competitive."  (American Judaism, Jonathan D. Sarna, pg 61)

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Topics: faith-based community

Sounds Like Transition Work?

Posted by Arlen Vernava on February 28, 2012

“One of the things that I’m constantly obsessed with is trying to get just the feeling of the balance between the right hand and the left hand and make it feel good.”

(Aaron Diehl, stride pianist and the 2011 Cole Porter Fellow in Jazz) 

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Topics: faith-based community

Your Good News: Buggy whips or Steering wheels?

Posted by Arlen Vernava on January 17, 2012

I drive a car with 225,000 miles under the hood and Mazda’s bones are feeling achy.  Here’s my conundrum.  Mazda:  faithful, dependable, (hasn’t missed a day since we met in 1997 except for regular maintenance), economical, safe and in it’s younger days, energetically fun.  Sadly, Mazda has less and less “get up and go,” blah curb appeal, noisy, and likes to drive in it’s own ruts (so to speak).  New tires, windshield wipers and a tune up?  Necessary, but they do not make for a 21st century Mazda.  My biggest fear?  One morning Mazda will start, then stop for the last time and I’ll have no sensible transportation plan.  What to do?  What to do?!  

If you are a leader in a congregation or organization with 225,000 miles on her, you have exclaimed:  What to do?  What to do?!  Memories, experiences, relationships.  Success, defeat, ecstatic joy, knee buckling sorrow.  You have been around the block with people and a “product” that matters to you.  New copy machine, steam-cleaned carpets and a revamped training program?  Necessary, but regular maintenance may not make for a vitally relevant “now.” And though “decline” often measures in decades, not years (for long established congregations and organizations), that day will arrive.  What to do?!  Consider...

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Topics: business, faith-based community

Just My Type: The Vision Thing

Posted by Arlen Vernava on January 10, 2012

Just My Type, a wonderfully inventive jaunt through the history and current use of fonts, really understands the vision thing, and I mean that both literally and figuratively.  Fonts are everywhere.  Write a vision statement:  font.  Express a vision statement in such a way that passer-byes look twice, stop and say, "I want some of that": a font that works really well. A vision statement that goes viral?  A font by only one name:  the vision statement!

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Topics: faith-based community

"On the first day of Christmas, my Intentional Interim gave to me..."

Posted by Arlen Vernava on December 20, 2011

 

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Topics: faith-based community

Give and you shall receive? Yes to generosity & sacrifice!

Posted by Arlen Vernava on December 13, 2011

Give and You Shall Receive? Generosity, Sacrifice, and Marital Quality  

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Topics: nonprofit, faith-based community

Unity with diversity? Absolutely!

Posted by Arlen Vernava on December 5, 2011

At their beginning just after the Civil War, founders of Sigma Chi fraternity noted how existing college brotherhoods sought “like minded men.”  They believed, instead that:  “true brotherhood could prosper only when men of unlike minds, talents and personalities banded themselves together under a common set of ideals.”

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Topics: faith-based community