January 2011 | Volume 4, Issue #7      

In This Issue
Jazz Quote of the Month
Join the Conversation at ISPI Vancouver
Professional Coach Training in Vancouver in February
Cory Weeds' Cellar Jazz Club
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2011 is filled with opportunities to generate the following blessings in the communities that invite me to help them flourish:

When I am aware, I will provoke agility.
When I am blessed, I will provoke beautification.
When I am calm, I will provoke consideration.
When I am disciplined, I will provoke delight.
When I am energetic, I will provoke engagement.
When I am faithful, I will provoke flourishing.
When I am graced, I will provoke gratitude.
When I am holy, I will provoke happiness.
When I am inspired, I will provoke insight.

Each of those words has a profound and vital meaning for me that invites me to align with my core essence or brilliance to help others find their words and blessings through very concrete and specific results. I often use those nine phrases in exercising, breathing in what I am and breathing out what I will provoke. Repetition embeds these words and their rich meanings in the forefront of my consciousness and makes them more readily available to guide my choices in the moment.

The benefits I will help create in 2011 will be shaped by the conversations I choose to convene and pursue in the service of this vision of communities flourishing in rhythms of grace and gratitiude.

Lofty ideals, granted, but I'm satisfied that I've contributed to this happening in 2010 and can do so much better in 2011. It's challenging work to pay attention to the quality of the conversations you are convening at work, at home, in places of worship and service, or in your leisure, but those conversations do determine the way you show up and the impact you have on your circles of influence.

So, positive or negative impact this year? It's your choice. And the opportunity is there to make that choice with your next conversation.




Jazz Quote of the Month


Brian Haymen remains one of my most respected mentors in applying the wisdom and workings of jazz to productive teamwork. His latest article in Random Riffs featured these astute observations on the benefits of conversing like a jazz musician:


Brian HaymenConversations that move us out of our comfort zones reinforced by power, influence, status, professional standing - the list goes on - confront us with the same choices faced by jazz musicians. Do we go with the emerging "idea in the middle of the table" or do we, as politicians who stick to talking points regardless of the questions that are put to them, resort to safe cliches? No doubt a degree of virtuosity is useful when it comes to conjuring up never before created melody lines and sentences. But more important is digging up the courage to go where they lead.

I've told this story elsewhere, but it bears repeating here. The great jazz pianist, Bill Mays, was once asked what it was like to play a concert, without rehearsal, with musicians he'd never worked with before and he replied by saying, "As long as they're egoless and fearless, it will be fine." Here we enter a realm of performance that is beyond technique and self-interest.

The recognition that innovation in productivity arises from listening for the new possibilities that arise in the midst of a conversation, discovering something no one brought to the table when the conversation began, is crucial if you are to move above and beyond that current quality of teamwork your conversations are creating. Listen, contribute, discover, and implement. That flow leads to both great jazz and great teams.




Join the Conversation at ISPI Vancouver on Tuesday, January 11, from 5:30 - 7:30PM

Brian and WayneWayne Rawcliffe and I will be convening some fascinating conversations about managing yourself to provoke performance improvement at the January meeting of the Vancouver chapter of the International Society for Performance Improvement at the Jewish Cultural Centre (41st and Oak) at 5:30PM on January 11, 2011.  We would love to benefit from your contribution.  Click here for more information and to register. 



Professional Coach Training in Vancouver in February

The second cohort of the Demers Group's Core Alignment Professional Coach Training Program, in which I am privileged to teach, begins the week of Feb 13-17, 2011, in the Viva Tower at Drake and Howe in Vancouver, BC.  This program is fully accredited with the International Coach Federation. The program features more grounding in your own essential coaching presence and more faculty attention to your practice coaching than most programs.  Click here to find out more.


Enjoy Great Jazz in Vancouver

The Cellar 

For information on October's schedule and reservations, click here.