The Organizational Development Muse

The Steward Leader and the Challenge of Nontraditional Funding

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

The following is a presentation made this past week at the Christian Leadership Alliance's Conference in Dallas, TX. It was part of a summit on Steward Leadership. Portions of what you will find below include input from summit participants.

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Topics: process consulting, Foundations of resource raising, fiscal responsibility, board development, Christian Leadership Alliance, Stewardship Development, steward leader, stewardism, denominational funding, associational systems, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, Fiscal Health, Executive Development, Five Stewardship Confusions,

The Steward Leader Needs Deep Community

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

Over the years, we've turned, repeatedly, to the subject of Steward Leadership, especially as articulated in Scott Rodin's book on the Steward Leader.  I've been privileged to support this work through some writing contributions to other titles:

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Topics: process consulting, it begins with design, Matthew Thomas, steward leader, stewardism, organizational development muse, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, David Van Winkle

More on millennials in the workplace

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

We recently hosted a conversation on millennials in the manufacturing workplace and posted the notes from those proceedings here. It sparked some significant response and a wide amplification across a variety of market sectors. It also prompted the following response from Sterling Balstead, GM of the Minnesota facility for Engineered Pump Systems (full disclosure: I serve on the board of the company):

I hired three young engineers in the last two years and work with them daily.  Previously, I worked with two other engineers who were 26 and 33 years old.  I am [personally] right on the edge of this conversation at 36.

When I think about our younger employees I see we need to engage and work with them differently than older generations, or hold on and hope they change into their grandparents.  Our company is used to employees who like or at least tolerate “8 hours per day + lots of overtime and few questions”---“nose to the grind stone”.  It also seems important for these same people to “start on time every day”.  Overtime seems to be proof of character[upon which] one can build identity.  Another obstacle we face is the length of time it takes to train our engineering team.  It takes 2+ years of employment to build the competency some of our current white collar job descriptions require, which I imagine is typical of small service based companies.  This is a big deal given millennials seem willing to change jobs, locations, and maybe career paths more easily than previous generations.  The younger generation seems to desire looser work schedules, working from home, and protecting personal time.  I understand and admire some of these concepts.

Your conversation notes seem to highlights millennials liking well communicated goals and performance reviews.  It also states they are jaded.  I wonder if this is what non-millennials perceive when millennials are trying to make sense of “why” we are so rigid.  To reframe the entire conversation positively, millennials may be asking: “who cares what road we take as long as we get to the final destination on time”.

This GM, Sterling Balstead, is paying attention, thinking about the changes needed rather than resisting the tide, and moving forward--not just in technical innovation, but with personnel recruitment and workplace consideration. 
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Topics: process consulting, organizational development, Process Consultation, Organizational Leadership, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, leadership development methods,, millennials in the workforce, Millennials and manufacturing

Millennials and Manufacturing: a Convene conversation.

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

The Convene Team I chair is blessed with the perspective of several manufacturers. After some recent case studies regarding hiring and some content on millennials in the workplace, it was noted that a great deal of the content they had come across didn't provide practical solutions for manufacturers seeking to hire and engage millennials. Most of the illustrations pointed to other industries like tech, health and service, perhaps more suited to flexible hours, a team culture and a quick succession of challenges. Finding there to be a virtual desIMG_1110.jpgert of ideas, we decided to gather senior leaders from several companies and pool experiences and ideas to see what might develop. What follows below is a summary of a conversation held on 18 October 2016, in Grafton, Wisconsin, at UFS.

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Topics: process consulting, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, Convene Teams,, millennials in the workforce, Millennials and manufacturing

Managing Polarities: the basics

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

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Topics: process consulting, organizational development, the art of agreement, leadership arts, organizational development muse, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, organizational decision making, group process, group discernment, executive learning, polarity management

Leaders drive organizational culture: reflections above the Mediterranean

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

The shoreline of the Mediterranean sea can be seen from the right side of the jet I’m riding in as I write this. It is beautiful, even from this height.

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Topics: process consulting, organizational development firm, leadership arts, organizational development muse, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, executive leader development

Respite and Renewed Focus

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

My postings to this blog have been minimal in 2015, and almost nothing since the summer began.

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Topics: process consulting, executive coaching, leadership development, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, deep transformation, CEO peer-based advising,, peer-based executive teams, Executive peer-based advising, executive learning

Notes on a Resource: The Objective Leader

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

The Objective Leader

How To Leverage The Power Of Seeing Things As They Are

Publishing Information: by Elizabeth R. Thornton, Palgrave-Macmillan, 2015

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Topics: process design, process consulting, organizational development, objective reality, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, notes on a resource, executive leadership development,, Elizabeth Thornton,, business success

Opening up the organizational can: Organizational design should continue to evolve

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

Truth be told, even after several decades of Silicon Valley leading the way, and an incredible amount of research demonstrating the power of teams and an empowered work force, the majority of organizations are stuck in the authoritarian model of old (especially manufacturing), or even more stuck in the hyper-democratic models that tried to offer a correction in the last half of the 20th century (especially charities and denominational bodies).

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Topics: process consulting, organizational development consulting, Organizational Governance, organizational development muse, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, organizational design, organizational systems, open vs. closed organizational systems

Thank you Sepp Blatter - putting succession front and center

Posted by Mark L. Vincent

Outcomes  magazine from Christian Leadership Alliance just published an article of mine on the importance of succession. With Sepp Blatter's FIFA (non)resignation, the timing could not have been better for putting this issue that confounds so many leaders front, center and global.
In Blatter's case, we are being the shown how to make all the succession mistakes, compounding one upon another, and being lived in front of the planet in vivid 24 hour ever-evolving news cycles.
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Topics: process consulting, organizational development firm, leadership succession, organizational development muse, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, executive leadership development,, ethical leadership, executive case studies, business ethics