December 2015 | Volume 1, Issue #1 (new series)    
In This Issue
Gifts to Provoke Your Conversations
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Greetings,

It was a fallow year for Jazzthink in 2015 - time for refocusing and restoring.  As a result, I am ready to plant and cultivate in some new/old fields in 2016. I'm going back to my deep passion for not-for-profit organizations. I want to provoke the leadership of those enterprises to create the space for people to improve their contributions to the flourishing of this creation. Big dream, but I'm confident it can be realized one conversation after another. I do hope some of those conversations will be with you.
 
Within my own spiritual tradition, which most of you know is Christianity, we see the roots of Santa Claus in St. Nicholas, a fourth-century bishop known for his humble but resilient generosity. That spirit - humility and resilience - still inspires my approach to not-for-profit governance and leadership. If our generosity is infused with the melodies, harmonies, and rhythms of those qualities, our work will be more effective and attract more support. 
 
The humility has to do with encouraging respect for all those involved in the work of the not-for-profit - those who are benefiting from the work, those who are offering the services, those who are governing the enterprise, and those who are supporting the improvements being made. It involves listening, encouraging, appreciating, and deliberating in ways that welcome all voices to contribute to the flourishing of the organization.
 
The resilience has to do with the positive patience it takes to keep on track in creating your benefits in the midst of the growing uncertainties and challenges facing the not-for-profit sector. It involves creating space for new possibilities being explored, tested, adopted, and adapted.
   
This contemporary St. Nick, with his sax giving voice to the glories of Christmas delight, speaks powerfully for me to the role that not-for-profits can play in creating communities of justice, peace, and beauty in this fearful and divided world of ours. This kind of energy and joy is possible for every not-for-profit. 
 
Jazzthink exists to help you find that vibe among the people with whom and for whom you work. I hope we will be able to play together during 2016 - perhaps simply through this ezine, perhaps through some coaching of your leaders, perhaps through a Jazzthink event or process for your not-for-profit.

Regardless, know that you are in my prayers this holiday season for a flourishing flow in your organization throughout 2016 and beyond.
 
Richest blessings,
  
Brian
   

Gifts to Provoke Your Conversations
 
Over the past couple of months, I've been writing new Jazzthink Thought Provokers for not-for-profit staffs and boards to use to generate constructive conversations about how best to develop and align their talents. Take a look here and use them to your heart's content.