I’ve been calling myself an organisational change consultant for twenty years.

Then about two years ago I lost my way. I didn’t know what type of work I needed to be doing in the world. I didn’t know how to talk about my work. I was feeling deeply unsure of my value.

After a 6-month period of soul searching, and a particularly intense 24-hour retreat, alone, which nearly drove me crazy…

…the next morning, blinking in the sunlight, out popped the phrase: Simple Connected Conversations

Yeah, I know. It doesn’t look like much. That’s what my inner critic said too.

Yet just recently it’s making so much more sense.

Over the last couple of years I’ve found myself supporting stability, disidentification, steadfastness, spaciousness, understanding and kindness – in myself, in others, and in organisations. I’ve been feeling a bit frustrated by this – like it’s not really ‘changing the world’ in the way that I and others have valued in the past…

Maybe all you folks have got there first and I’ve been slow to catch on. ‘Change is the only constant!’ people used to say – but that also meant ‘get used to it suckers!’.

It’s true of course. If you look at the clouds for a few minutes, or gaze at the palm of your hand – it’s changing all the time. We know this. Impermanence is everywhere. The pandemic gave us all a massive jolt – in case we had forgotten that nothing’s forever, and that our lives are precious. How come we forgot?

But what I’m curious about, and learning more about every day, is what supports us in this impermanence, in this constant unfolding that tests us every day with its challenges, and its wants for us to do the best we can, in service of society?

I think the answer is simple to say, but difficult to enact: stability, disidentification, steadfastness, spaciousness, understanding and kindness. Personally, organisationally, universally.

In organisations I think this means agile, soulful leadership. It means forming leadership teams that can hold conflict, while deepening connection, and focusing on priorities in an effective way. It means building communities where people can belong, contribute meaningfully and experience a satisfying exchange of effort and reward.

Out of this, the useful dynamism arises. The rest is …. well, to be questioned at the very least.

So if you’re interested in Simple, Connected, Conversations in your organization – and how this can invoke and hold some of these qualities I’ve mentioned, let me know.

Meanwhile, a really simple suggestion for today: If you’re feeling some strain and overwhelm in this moment… breathe, and simply make space for that in your body. In for 4, out for 6 – five times.

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