Our world is becoming increasingly complex and the ability to navigate ambiguity is now, more than ever, a critical leadership and life skill. We all have challenges we face throughout our life and work. Often, we react by focusing on finding someone or something to blame for our circumstances. Then, if we can move beyond that initial reaction, we bring our skills and knowledge to bear, look for ways to fix the problem, put a plan of action together, and execute on a solution. Our goal is to get the problem off our desks so that we can move on to the next item on our to-do list.
In some cases, this approach will work, at least for a little while. Yet, many times, the same circumstance will arise again a few weeks or months down the road. We find ourselves solving the same problem over and over again. Our complex world cries out for a new approach. Alan Seale, master teacher and mentor, and the founder of the Center for Transformational Presence, offers an approach to leadership that helps us to navigate this rapidly changing world in powerful ways.
According to Alan, “Transformational Presence is not a model or a formula. It’s a way of living, leading, and serving – an approach that provides a strong foundation for conscious living and conscious leadership. Transformational Presence is also a practical set of skills that, when developed together, build and expand our capacities for awareness, understanding, perception, and effective action – capacities that are essential for navigating today’s rapidly changing world.”
I have had the privilege of attending several of Alan’s workshops and programs over the last decade. Most recently, I attended the Transformational Presence Leadership in Action program in Connecticut. We explored the latest tools and frameworks from Alan’s most recent books, a two part set: Transformational Presence: How To Make a Difference in a Rapidly Changing World and its companion, Transformational Presence – The Tools, Skills and Frameworks. During those days, we had the opportunity to immerse ourselves in applying the work to our own circumstances and challenges. I came away with a renewed commitment to fully integrate Transformational Presence approaches in my own life and in my work with individual clients and organizations.
When I was first introduced to this work, eight or so years ago, I have to admit that it felt a little foreign to me. After years of working in large corporations, I had developed a strong set of skills that allowed me to solve problems and execute on goals. While I longed for what the Transformational Presence approach offered, I wasn’t quite ready to take it on board. My logical mind was a little bit skeptical about whether I could actually see myself using the skills and tools with my clients. Yet, something has continued calling me to this work and in the last couple of years, there has been no denying that Transformational Presence will allow my clients and me to make the kind of difference in this world that we long to make.
To support Alan Seale in his mission to share this work, the next four blog posts will each focus on one tool or framework of Transformational Presence. As we start off the tool series in our next post, we will explore the three foundational questions of Transformational Presence:
1. What wants to happen?
2. Who is that asking me to be?
3. What is that asking me to do?
Please stay tuned over the next few months as we explore a few selected components of Transformational Presence. No matter what your role, if you are interested in helping to create a world that works, this will get you started.