Leadership Development Circling
“Leadership Development Circling” is a slight variation of a traditional circle in which participants are encouraged to work on their own developmental or leadership issues, whether they be personal or business-related. As such, we allow a bit more directionality, coaching and “story” than a traditional circle, and perhaps even (at times) “advice”, while still prioritizing connection, as in a traditional circle, and returning to connection in case of doubt. Typically we will do a brief checkin followed by 3 short (20-25 minutes) birthday circles in the 90 minute group. I especially want to invite people who are doing work in social justice, community leadership or conscious business and who are looking to become more effective leaders.
I have been forming free private groups over Zoom, which typically fill quickly and then close to new members. To be notified of upcoming groups join the main list, and then also subscribe to the open groups reminders list. This is a weekly mail of meetings that are still open to new members (if any).
Context for Circling
Everybody has a slightly different context for Circling, but most people agree on the following: that Circling is primarily a practice of connection, and therefore everything we do and say (or don’t do and say) ought to, ideally, serve connection. Thus we want to amplify practices that are known to create connection, such as: curiosity, empathy, vulnerable sharing, appreciation, use of ownership language, etc; while minimizing practices that are either known to create disconnection, or else can be a little iffy: advice-giving, coaching, “therapizing”, judging, and story-telling. To note however there is nothing inherently wrong with coaching, story-telling etc., and there may be times where this will be appropriate. The key distinction there being to return to connection-amplifying practices whenever there is doubt (meaning to take a break from the flow and probe the nature and strength of the group connection). Another key distinction is that everyone in a circle is a leader, leadership consisting primarily of providing curiosity, empathy and vulnerability:
“A true leader is when the people say, when the work is all done: ‘We did it ourselves’ “ — Lao Tzu
For more information about Circling and connection-building practices, download the free Circling Handbook.