[Springboard] Transformational Leadership Lab (TLL)

John Cock jpc2025 at triad.rr.com
Tue Oct 2 15:07:23 EDT 2007

Jack, this description of your work is profound, indeed. 

Thank you very much. 


-----Original Message-----
From: springboard-bounces at wedgeblade.net
[mailto:springboard-bounces at wedgeblade.net] On Behalf Of Jack Gilles
Sent: Sunday, September 30, 2007 9:15 AM
To: Springboard Dialogue
Subject: [Springboard] Transformational Leadership Lab (TLL)

Larry, Randy & Carolyn (and others),

I will attempt to summarize our Transformational Leadership Lab and share
some of the models we work with.  The TLL was originally designed to create
effective change agents within organizations.  We found that when we worked
with companies that had, what we would call "Spirit People" we got results.
When we were working with people who  
just wanted to improve their organization we were less successful.   
So we decided to create a program that would help produce the effective
change agents.

We built the program as a three module, 10 day (3-3-4 but actually starting
the evening before the first day) format with at least one month to six
weeks between modules.  The first module focused on Personal Transformation
as a necessary criteria for understanding and executing organizational
transformation.  The second module focused on working with others and
creating the change team.  The third module was about the "hows" of
transformation, the practical tasks and strategy of change.  Another way we
viewed the three modules was "Head-Heart-Hands", the first module was more
about understanding what transformation is, the second about the
spirit/courage to being a change agent and the third is the practical work
one has to do.

We have used many different tools and resources over the years in each of
the modules.  Each module used movies and training videos where appropriate.
For instance, for many years we used Covey's 7 Habits training videos in
modules I & II.  Habits 1,2 & 3 in module 1 and 4,5,6 & 7 in module II.  We
would show them and then have small group discussions and have created
workshops for each Habit.  But we no longer use them, although we still
share some of the concepts in the first two modules.  Each module would have
a full length hollywood film and discussion in it.  Again, these have
varied, but some of those we have used are: Gung Ho (people love it and it
is a great teaching tool for teamwork, motivation, goal setting, projects),
The Doctor, Apollo 13, Bruebaker, Man of La Mancha,  We used training videos
including several Tom Peters ones (Germany's Quality Obsession, Go Fast or
Go Broke), Blanchard's One Minute Manager, Even Eagles Need a Push,  In the
last module we often used Campbell's Power of Myth tapes (1,2 & 6) along
with The Global Brain or A White Hole in Time.  We have watched Margaret
Wheatley's video on Leadership & the New Science.  We would bring a table
full of books from our library for each module and each participant was
expected to read one during the month interval.  We collected a series of
papers for each module that we would pass out and have  
people read between modules including copies of The Image Journal.   
We also used chapters of books for a seminar in each module.  We have used
Syncronicity, Covey's 8th Habit, Katzenbach's Real Change Leaders, Senge's
Fifth Discipline, Mahesh's Thresholds of Motivation,  
and several others.   Each participant selects a "Change Project" and  
reports to others on progress and learnings each module.  In the 2nd module
we do our ORID and Workshop Methods work.

Each module would start with early morning Body Work led by Judy.  We did
yoga, The Five Rites of Immortality, Body Poem and used a lot of Depak
Chopra as context (Ageless Body, Timeless Mind).  We read poetry at each
session, create rituals, sing, and do something different with the seating
arrangements.  We did a lot of short courses on the role of Space and
Spirit, as illustrated in our setups.  For example, we always have something
living in our space, lots of plants.  We would create different spaces for
different kinds of work.  One is Square Time versus Circle Time.  Square
time is when we are sitting at tables dealing with temporal dimensions.
Circle time is when we would sit in a circle, usually on pillows/mattresses
on the floor and we would talk about more eternal things.  We also had a
celebration on the last evening of each module.  Great times for creativity
and always a highlight.

The last day of module III was always a great happening.  We (much of the
whole TLL design was done in a creative partnership with Marguerite Theophil
and Homayun Taba) created a closing ceremony that was very powerful.  it
involved each person writing and then reading a statement of personal
intent, a sharing of affirmation of someone who's name you drew, a quote you
selected from a large number placed on beautiful paper and a symbol of
transformation which we gave them.  The symbol was a geod, representing the
power hidden in the center of ordinariness.  The program changed a lot of
lives and led to some very profound life decisions, including leaving one's
present line of work.  We have put hundreds of people through the program
over the years, but recently I and Judy have been doing it in a slightly
shorter version as an in-house program.

Now what I have outlined is but the framework on which the real work of
transformation is done.  We are about doing two things: one, getting people
to grasp the power of Spirit, the implicate order (OW in the midst of TW)
and the source of Spirit found within oneself and within the situation.  We
are about allowing people to affirm the gift that their life is, the
situation they find themselves in and the people who are part of their
lives.  We are about allowing people to re-source the depth dimensions of
their lives.  We do all of this in dozens of different ways, but mostly in
reflections on personal experiences and short courses.  The second power
center is pulling as much as possible through the Indian ethos.  This is
crucial to transformation in India.  It is the source of their empowerment
and unless they grasp their gift of humanness, they will always be
"importers" of someone else's insight, be that HBS or Tom Peters or the
Japanese quality models.  So we have worked hard on this.  I won't try and
share these with you but you will see terms like, Vahana, Sahaja, Sewa,
Sadana and Paunchabuta throughout our work.  It is always an address for a
westerner to reveal depth meaning in their spirit dimension to them.  We see
the Indian ethos as a depth understanding of Spirit and Energy.  We drill
these dimensions into them in many different ways, including the poetry and
singing.  We are about enabling them to become a gift of that ethos to the
world, on behalf of all.

We are about to conduct the first module of a TLL starting this Tuesday for
an aluminum factory belonging to the Birla Group.  Here is what we are doing
during the three days, although we don't have as much time as it is not
residential.  The first day we have an exercise in individual affirmation
(having two people introduce each  
other to the group and then we have them draw each other's picture.   
This is always a big hit and a bit of transparency.   We then  
encourage people to write statements of affirmation on other's pictures
during the program (based on ORID - four different types of affirmation they
can choose from).  I will then do an extensive context on what is
transformation, some work on Spirit and Energy and outline our time for the
three modules.  After the lunch break we will be watching An Inconvenient
Truth and having a discussion on it.  The company has agreed to have
everyone work on transforming the plant into a "green" model, so this will
be the common project.  We will brainstorm work areas, divide into teams and
set 6 month goals for each area.  The second day we will be doing Learning
Styles, Signs of Life exercise and then in the afternoon we will work on
life journey (creating one's life timeline) and then an extensive
conversation in circle time.  This is always a very powerful event for
people.  The third day we will work on Motivation using VS Mahesh's
east-west model and exercises.  We will conclude the first  
module with Blanchard's Situational Leadership model and exercises.   
Not sure we will be doing any singing, but we will be playing some music and
of course lots of poetry, incense and meditation.

Attached is one of the models we created some years ago that we use in
module III.  I won't go into the meaning of each of the terms of the
Transformation Tasks Triangles, but there is a trans-rational flow to them.

Finally, after conducting many of these modules with people of different
levels, Managing Directors down to Dept. Heads, we are convinced we have the
core of a new program that needs to be put together on transformation and
vocation.  That is why I am so passionate that we work together to create a
program like an Academy that is based on our historical wisdom and combined
with our years of working on new models and insights that make all of that
wisdom relevant and applicable.

I hope this gives you a feel for what we have been doing here for the last
10-15 years.

Grace & Peace,


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