Dit is het vierde deel van een vierdelige serie over systemisch leiderschap
Sarah is een goede vriendin van mij. Hoewel ze letterlijk aan de andere kant van de wereld woont (op een ranch net buiten Sydney) hebben we een bijzondere band. We brengen elkaar altijd verder. Vanuit onze verbinding ontstaan altijd nieuwe inzichten, nieuwe werkvormen, nieuwe concepten.
Sarah is een toonaangevende naam in Australië op het terrein van leiderschap. Zij begeleidt talloze CEO’s en kabinetsleden in de manier waarop ze keuzes maken. Toen ik voor de serie ‘Verboden Gesprekken’ een gesprekspartner zocht voor het thema Macht en leiderschap, was er eigenlijk maar één kandidaat.
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Omdat het best een lange opname is (01:42:43) heb ik ik ook een .mp3 bestand gemaakt. Soms is luisteren makkelijker dan kijken. Hoop dat je geen last hebt van mijn Nederlandse accent.
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Ik vond zelf het gesprek zéér de moeite waard, vooral het eerste half uur. Ik heb er daarom ook een transcript van de gemaakt. Een transcript is de letterlijke weergave van wat er gezegd is. Spreektaal die je leest dus. Dit transcript is ook nog eens geautomatiseerd gemaakt, er staan dus een heleboel fouten in, sommige woorden zijn fonetisch weergegeven en mijn Nederlandse accent helpt ook niet echt. Maar ik deel het toch met je, het kost je niets en als je er niet mee uit de voeten kunt, dan kies je gewoon iets anders.
Siets: And it’s eight o’clock, so I’d say let’s start in this second one of the series of forbidden conversations and. I was explaining today to someone what this is about, and when I was explaining it, I could feel it so well again and she said, we are not going to be a group of yuppies. How we’re not going to be people of coffee deniers or Devecser. It’s not about that, is it? And the way she asked the question, I couldn’t even say, yes, that’s what it’s about. Or perhaps it’s about that. It’s like there’s a no go area. And I find that so many no go areas nowadays, much more than I experienced when I was growing up, much more than I experienced in the past 10 years of my life. And I’m a little bit worried about that. Also, I think covid has such a huge impact on our daily lives that we need to rethink our lifestyle and also our choices. And how can we create places with all the communication and availability we have? How can we create places in which we can say yes, in which we can say I don’t know, or which we can say I’ve changed my mind. So this is my invitation for these forbidden conversations to create a place to just explore and to exchange thoughts, to be in a state of not knowing, listening to each other without trying to make your point all the time. And the topic of tonight is about power and leadership. And there’s a lot of movement on these two things, I think, and also I think it’s very easy to feel powerless with all the decisions being taken, which sometimes are very logical and sometimes it’s very hard to find the reason behind it. And you need to trust the people who had been given or taken the leadership. So tonight, my invitation is to explore specifically this topic. And of course, Sarah, I couldn’t think of anyone else besides you to have this conversation with. And Sarah and I met in December 2019 where I was invited to go to Sydney to do a training, a million questions with Sarah’s clients. And it was really cool because Sarah invited me. She trusted me. We haven’t met each other yet. And it was such a wonderful training. And I think to me from the moment we met, I felt here is my friend on the other side of the world. So thank you, Sarah, for being here. Thank you for being here in the middle of the night. I’m looking forward to working with you.
Sarah: Oh, as always, me, too.
Siets: Yeah, so what is the first thing for you that comes to mind when thinking about power and leadership, especially in a systemic with reducing your systemic intelligence?
Sarah: Well, it’s interesting because in leadership work, when you’re working with clients, this whole notion of empowerment is central to a conversation about power and leadership. And I love the notion, if you think about it on a scale there’s the power outside or the power that I give to others. Yeah. And this my relationship with power, do I actually have? A relationship with my own power and my own authority. And so whether I’m giving power away, whether I’m in contact with my own power, speaks right to this question of power because. If I’m centered in myself and I’m in contact with power as an ocean, then I can notice what what power belongs to me and what power doesn’t belong to me. And then how can I exercise that power? And when you think about a couple of the systemic principles, but where do I belong? Where do I where is my place and what is my power in that place? And do I actually take up my authority that I have? And it strikes me, you know, this whole idea of power. I loved the Franklin, his his book about his experiences in Auschwitz and and search for meaning. He says, nobody could take away my thoughts. Nobody would take away what goes on inside of me. So even even in the darkest of circumstances, remaining connected to what power he had and that’s what enabled him to survive. I mean, that was one of the things that he realized. It’s the same with Stockdale in Korea, you know, so this this this notion of who has the power, where is the power, is really comes back to our relationship with power. Yeah, and it’s very, very common in the business world that when you go into an organization that you somehow surrender your power to the authority in the organization rather than staying in contact with it. And to be a really good leader and a really effective leader is to understand all of that relationship with power and not be identified with your power, but identified with the power that lies within people. And how can you mobilize that? And that’s so when you ask me to think about power and leadership, that’s what that’s what immediately comes to mind. And, you know, there’s also something about the power that lies within a collective. You know, there is there is a power that lies within a group because it’s a group, a group actually generates its own power in terms of what the purpose is for the group. It’s a purpose then connects to power. And I do think in these COVA times when you talk about, well, all the things that we not talk about, this is a really big question. What’s our relationship with our own authority? And when we use the power of a collective, you know, how do you like your doing it, even here, you’re generating a group of people who are interested in this notion of forbidden questions, forbidden conversations like. That’s generating this group itself would have a power and a possibility of leadership. So now this early thoughts.
Siets: Yeah, I find myself creating some kind of parallel universe because I feel powerless in the regular circumstances. So I feel powerless when decisions are being taken. I feel powerless when people’s motivation to vaccinate are because they want to travel. And I feel powerless when they decide that teenagers also needs to be vaccinated. And I was thinking, wow, they’re not allowed to have sex, they’re not allowed to drink alcohol. They’re not allowed to open their own bank accounts. But that. This, this this can happen inside our body, and I’m not against vaccinating, but I feel a little bit overwhelmed, perhaps even when I see how my mind’s big decisions like this are being taken without having had the conversation and without having had the wrist or the attention to to talk it through.
Sarah: And this is it’s an interesting tension in our world right now, because the more. Decisions you take. For others, the less they learn to have a relationship with their own authority. Yeah, so you’re actually creating. Dependancy. So this is this, so if you keep taking decisions for people, then they don’t have to take responsibility. So then they they lose that muscle. They lose that that yeah. That sovereignty is lost by doing that. The interesting thing is it creates the need for more and more control. And of course, you know, we can see why that’s happening when something like covid comes along and it produces what fundamentally it produces fear of survival. That’s that’s that’s what it generates. And one of our go to devices for community fear and anxiety is certainty. And so then and you can see this, people taking up very strong positions and not being able to sit with the complexity, not being able to sit with. Waiting, listening, noticing the emergence. But rather going to certainty and. It’s hard to sit with uncertainty, especially when a large community is at stake. So I don’t want to one minute suggest that. You know, it’s easy. But yet in the conversation to stay in the question, and this is if you look at leadership in organizations and you know it’s covid, it’s just a great teacher really bringing everything, bringing everything. I find myself, you know, I have moments where I don’t know what the answer is, but I know that. Yeah, absolutely, yeah.
Siets: When do you feel powerless?
Sarah: Well, some fascinating things at the moment. I feel powerless as a grandmother watching. Watching my grandchildren. Mm hmm. You know, when when I see things happened on a couple of weeks ago, my grandson was having a very, very, very difficult moment where he lost complete control of himself and was acting out. You know, I would say fairly, it’s one of those children that you’d go really what’s going on in that household? And watching my son deal with that in a way that was very, very different from how I would deal with that and. Respecting, respecting what my son was doing and how he was doing it. So wanting to just leave him to do it his way and then seeing it get out of control and being unclear about what’s the move I should make here and holding back and holding back and holding back and being confused and not knowing what to do, but then remembering what I know about systemic intelligence, which is just wait until a movement becomes clear. And just just just stay in that, and then suddenly a movement became clear. But for a good 30 minutes, I was in a total state of I don’t know what to do here. This is going from bad to worse, the matter. You know what my son’s doing? My grandson is about to start doing things that are dangerous, you know, so that whole sort of on the precipice of something, you know, and I just go to. Wait until it becomes clear, you know, so that’s just a recent moment where I felt.
Siets: But that’s palletizing because you are a business owner, you have several businesses, you teach leadership, you coach people, some people on the highest leadership levels in Australia. And then I ask you about do you feel powerless? And you refer to something so personal and to the next generation, to the direction of the way life flows?
Sarah: Exactly. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Now, if you if you if you asked me to think about that in a business setting, it’s harder to find it because it’s a very familiar territory.
Sarah: I kind of. Yeah, I mean, in my career, there have been times that I’ve felt powerless and in. But yeah, the more familiar the territory. The more I know it is something a bit more predictable about it for me.
Siets: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And it’s interesting because when I listen to you, I was thinking, when do I feel powerless? I feel powerless when I feel I’m alone. And that’s really interesting because I always tell the narrative to people. The way I grew up was I started out alone feeling there was no help, which made me really independent and stuff like that. So if anyone is very capable of being alone, it’s me. And we’re going with our campervan to Sweden in a couple of weeks. And the plan is to go to for three to four weeks. And to be honest, I’m just frightened thinking about it, not being able to have like a couple of hours alone, but spending all this time with my family, which I love dearly, of course. But I’m not looking forward to this vacation because of that. And then feeling powerless when sensing or feeling that I’m alone. That’s that’s really interesting to me
Sarah: because it’s a contradiction of the pattern I know so well. And this being alone is a different kind of being alone, I guess. Yeah. Well, it also I mean, aloneness does tap into an existential fear for human beings because we’re wired to connect. You know, yeah, aloneness has very big existential meanings. Because this we’re safer when we’re connected. So it’s interesting, I mean, I think you’re speaking to something very interesting here. About and this goes to consciousness, you know, can I? Can I notice my experience and can I notice what meaning I’m making of my experience and is the meaning I’m making of my experience? Connected to the present. All the past. Hmm.
Siets: Yeah, yeah, that makes sense.
Sarah: Yeah, so if the meaning I’m making in the moment is connected to the past, then it’s connected to some experience that activated my survival mechanism. Yeah, so is this something in my in my memory, in my brain that says when these conditions arise, watch out? Yeah, this is this is when you pay attention. But if that’s happening unconsciously rather than consciously. That’s very different because this is what happens. I mean, if we look at why all these decisions being made, you know, one could ask what’s the fear that’s arising unconsciously that’s provoking these decisions? You know, I see it myself in terms of the barcoded question. And I have the most of the time, I feel pretty calm about it, but then something might happen. And I notice all that stillness is gone and this is this sort of this big anxiety shows up and saying, oh, that’s interesting. What’s what’s that connected to? And if I can’t find what it’s connected to, there’s nothing I can do about it, it just sits there. But it can if I can see what it’s connected to, I can reorganize internally, you know, my system, reorganizes internally, and then that stillness comes back. Oh, that’s what it is like, is that present now? Well, some prison now. I think that’s one of the one of the gifts of the systemic noticing and the systemic knowing and the systemic listening. Is that it actually supports you being in the now and not in the future and not in the past, you know, you can you can be with what is and let’s face it, if leaders could really be with what is and be more in the moment and there is much more in touch with the wisdom. The past and the future, a very, very what’s the word, seductive. Yeah, in terms of getting your attention. And that pulls you out of the prison. So if you’re out of the prison, you can’t be listening to. All of the resources that are here for you now. Actually losing contact, you know, it’s the easiest way to lose contact with your resources.
Siets: I was thinking in preparation of this conversation, has leadership. Changed because of everything that’s going on or is the way it’s the same question has. Our systemic intelligence or knowledge or interpretation, has it evolved because of what we’re witnessing now in terms of leadership and easiness with which people follow and how easy it is to be fearful? And I was also thinking, you know, so these are not well-developed thoughts. So they’re just pure pupu things going on in my mind. But I feel comfortable enough in this company to share them. So I was thinking in preparation, what actually is leadership and how can we talk about leadership without having to point to people in specific functions and without making it about personal leadership? You need to take leadership, et cetera, et cetera, but really into. In leading with systems and then my thoughts were, and I’m interested to learn how you think about Sarah is perhaps you could say there’s like this system leadership where a leader tries to lead a system and where the leader and system are separated. So they’re not the same. And there’s someone making themselves, in a way, owner of a part of the system say, I’m going to lead this. I’m going to make sure it goes from A to B, and you could perhaps even say there’s something like a system, not leadership, but a manifestation where another person of the leader is being put in the central point. But a system is being put in a central point and the leader is just a bypass circuit who serves what is already a presence in the system for a while and then goes away and takes a different position so that it’s more like one. It’s the leader exists because of the system and not the other way around. And it’s this one is in service of that. And I was thinking, if this would be true, that we need more system manifestation instead of system leadership. What? What might be the impact and where do we already see it taking place? Because I also believe that it’s if it’s true, it’s already present. We haven’t found a word yet and we haven’t developed the models yet and we haven’t talked about it yet. How do you think about that?
Sarah: Well, I think. You know, it’s funny, one of the things that human beings do. Because they personify everything, so they it’s like it’s like they put themselves in the highest position in the hierarchy, like we do over the planet, you know, I’ll do to forests. What I want to do, the forests I’ll do to, you know, whatever. And so we put we put ourselves in the number one position, but we’re not actually in the number one position. So there’s already kind of an illusion that we’re in the number one position. So from where I see systems of leading anyway. So the system is in the first position, we are just part of the system. And so if we put ourselves above the system, we actually create some of the difficulties that we have ourselves by putting ourselves above the system. So I would I would say, Lida, that in fact, that’s a lot of my work is. Helping you, looking at challenges that people, leaders are having with systems and then stepping back and really listening to the system and what’s your relationship, what’s your place in the system? I think this is a really good question. What’s your place in the system, whether you’re the CEO or whoever you are? I mean, you may not be the CEO, but your place in the system might be more significant than the CEO, you know, in terms of the contribution you have to make. Now, I think back when I was an occupational therapist and. I specialized in an area of rehabilitation, which was. Which was nobody had really focused on that particular area and developed a treatment program that was the first in the world of its kind in the hospital where I was, had another 10 years of life because of that program, you know. And so I went I was a small person in the system, but. And I don’t know where that came from, it was an inspiration, it was I didn’t I didn’t think it up, if I could put it that way, it came through me. Right. And then they took me into the work that I’m doing now. So who was leading whom? I mean, I had no idea I would end up working in organizations. But, you know, I ended up I mean, as a long time ago now. But I loved being a therapist. But somehow that’s not where I was meant to be in life. Took me to. Where it was meant to be. So, you know, these are notions because they’re very they’re much more they’re much more suits in the global right brain than they do in the left brain. And we’ve made we’ve made logic and rationality and the number one position, but doesn’t actually belong in the number one position. It’s in the number two. I think the big the big transformation that we as a human race are faced with at the moment is this reordering, you know, how things actually work and the fact that we have the pace and complexity that we have. And the uncertainty that we have means that the rational mind can’t handle it. But we keep trying to reduce it to that. So it’s like this this, you know, it’s like when the limits of your way of operating have been reached, then there’s a breakthrough is is coming. There’s a breakthrough. And typically breakthroughs happen when things get out of control as well, you know, because we have to surrender to to it. There’s no there’s no other option. So, yeah, I see, you know, organizations that particularly the ones that I work with, so I could only speak to the world that I’m exposed to and most of my clients are global clients. I mean, I do have local clients in Australia, but most of them are global. And this interest in this new frontier would be a new frontier in the organisation’s is increasing. This, this. And so I think it’s almost like life is ripening. The conditions for this, we could call it a transformation, this breakthrough, and there are leaders who are looking for how do we lead systemically? How do we listen to the system? And how do we do that in in an entity that there are so many expectations around it that are rational and logical and numerate and all these things. So it’s a question of how do we do both, which is a much, much healthier movement. How do we bring these things, these things together, and it’s to me, it’s like the early stages of that. Still, if you think.
Siets: About that way, it’s still separated.
Sarah: Well, I don’t see it as separate minds, so I. I see that we are simply a part of the system. With simply an element within the system. And I think that’s a very you know, what we’re talking about here. I don’t think many people can get their heads around because of this sense of dominion over the world, you know? Yeah. So this idea that. There has to be a leader and it’s a person and that they lead the system. I think definitely that’s like a mental model, a mindset that we have. That is limiting, and I think we’re a long, long way from shifting on that as a as a societal mental model. But I think. I think. It’s interesting, this has intrigued me for some time. Because I think we look to society leaders for these things and they they typically won’t be in our institutions because this kind of thinking doesn’t and don’t survive in an institution with this kind of thinking. It’s it’s too alien to the institution. So it happens outside. I know one of the books that you suggested people read was Gandhi. And Gandhi is a beautiful example of standing outside conventions. Now, even that’s problematic because then you point to a person who did something, and so it reinforces the notion that it’s a person, but. If you have the eyes to see something was moving through Ghandhi, something was moving through Martin Luther King know something was moving through these people that was beyond them as people. So, yeah, I think it’s this. It’s the way we language it, the way we make it explicit keeps reinforcing the mental models that we have. Because even as you were trying to explain it, notice how language is, language is limiting to actually explain the notion that you’re that you’re seeking to speak about and even me, you know, how to how to speak about it in a way that is beyond the current mental models, because people only understand things based on the mental models that that are common. The minute you start speak about something that’s beyond the mental models, you sound like you don’t know what you’re talking about or or. Yeah, somehow you’re incompetent at talking about it. As I’m fighting just at the moment,
Siets: we had this great experience when we were translating the Dutch cadec of moving questions into Danish and Danish language has almost half the words the Dutch language has. And first, it went from Dutch to English, English has more words than Dutch, and then Danish has almost half of the English words. So you can literally not say the same thing in Danish as you can do in English, which really took us beyond language by itself. And the same kind of thing happens when we follow the trail. And Cassidy was there as well. And it was a training of Damien and he he’s from Patagonia and he spoke Dutch in the training, but with a heavy Spanish accent. So sometimes it was a bit difficult to follow. And this really invited you to travel beyond the realm of language and to be in a different place where words didn’t help you.
Sarah: Yeah, and this is this is key actually seats about the systemic intelligence because the systemic intelligence is not dependent on language. It’s dependent on. Sensing, noticing, it’s it’s it’s it’s beyond the you could almost say language is one dimensional. I mean, it depends on if you’re in a language, a multi dimensional language like like Aramaic or something. But but it’s fun. Most of our Western languages are one dimensional, but we’re talking something that’s multidimensional. You know, so systemic intelligence isn’t this or that it is it’s a whole system of information. You know, I love that. That’s what you that’s what you speak about. It’s it’s. So it’s information that. And so we’re listening not just with our eyes and our ears, but without with our body, with that which lies between which isn’t even a substance, its energy itself. So trying to reduce that into it’s like taking something very expensive and putting it in this box. Yeah, and I think that that’s in fact, that that’s the connection I would make to what you’re saying. We’ve tried to put leadership in a small box and call it a person. Yeah, and it’s not that. Yeah.
Siets: Yeah, I agree there’s a question coming in in the chat, so I’m also with my attention there because as Janine is asking, we’re giving great examples about how a system flows through a person and brings something beautiful. The same logic apply for less well rounded examples. What does the system or. Takes the person, the system hostage. I’m not sure, Janine, if I translated it correctly, if he wants, you can prove me correctly. Yeah, it was correctly. OK, so. To me, life flows, so to me, your body is an antenna, and if you make yourself as an antenna available for life itself, then it can flow through you. And that’s the way I wrote the book, Moving Questions. I wasn’t planning to write a book, but I went there and sat behind my computer and the book wrote itself in a way. And I started writing a new book three weeks ago with with with a colleague. And it wasn’t really my territory, but I thought it’s great experiments. And we I was at his premises and we started writing together and the same experience happened. So and again, it went through me and I didn’t have to make anything up. It just was already present. It was already there. So in my way of thinking, it’s not persay in good examples of beautiful examples or successful examples. It’s it’s much more about being available for the flow of life and the effortlessness. What we talk about often, Mircera. And then when you’re at that point, there are no good or bad examples and there is no success or failure, just just almost like the tower set it. It just is through. By doing. By not doing.
Sarah: Well, and also I love this question about what about when the system takes somebody to even that notion is is taking some somebody a good or a bad thing like we don’t. And that’s the way, you know, we don’t know. It can appear that it’s bad. And. But is it really like if I if I have an experience that wakes me up or if I have an experience that provokes me in some way and maybe that’s a difficult experience and pretty much all transformation is a difficult experience. It is if we take the word transformation, it means to change the form, you know, so to change your form. He’s uncomfortable because given that we’re comfort seeking creatures, you know, that that that that change the alchemy of change unless we surrender to it and it’s the surrendering that produces the these. It’s the fighting that produces the suffering. Yeah, you know, so so so even even there can we surrendered to the movement, but what this what this requires, which is very interesting, because I know this was a big struggle from myself personally. It means trusting life. Hmm. Yeah. And like, if I go back into my story not to make it about my story, but there was a lot of death in my in my family and and early deaths and, you know, traumatic things, let’s call it. So I had a difficulty trusting on. And so until I and until I realized, oh, this is about trusting life, there was still a holding back, there was still a hesitancy. And and I would say I’m still practicing trusting life so that I can trust that flow. So and I had a beautiful small example just a week ago where. I I had put a proposal into a client, everything was in flow, it was all going beautifully. And then I got an email saying thanks but no thanks, I read. That was really weird and then just sat with it. Obviously, I had a bit of upset for for a little while because it was so exciting and it felt so natural that it was moving forward, but then sat with it and then. This thought just came into my head. Well, just ring the exec and talk to him about your confusion. So I rang him and I talked to him about my confusion. And he said, oh, yes, that’s a big mistake. Yeah, you know, and we had this brilliant conversation that we would never have had and it turns out that that person doesn’t understand what I’m offering and he understands what I’m offering. And so he’s going to channel it a different way because he can see that the system needs that. So. There was something that looked potentially bad, but actually it. It was useful that that happened, you know, in some way. Yeah, so I think and look, it’s harder when they’re very big, very big issues where you’re taken in service of the system. It confronts so many more things that, you know, because of the scale of them, sometimes when you think about. Huge societal issues, like if we think about, you know, what happened with Hitler and what happened with Stalin and you know, what’s happened in many countries, Pol Pot. Whatever you wanted, you know, that’s even harder for us to digest. I’m not sure I can even
Siets: let you say leadership is
Sarah: trusting life. Yes, absolutely. Yes, absolutely.
Siets: And is trusting life leadership?
Sarah: Yeah, I think it is, and when I think about it, it’s a lovely question, seats because. When I think about. The work that me and my colleagues do, much of it is about. Having the leader come in contact with that in a deeper way. I never thought of that before until you raised it. But when they can actually connect to the systemic intelligence and work with the systemic intelligence, some something releases something. There’s that movement and that energy that set free by that. And thank you for that, you know that song. That’ll will stay with me. Yeah, and even as I think about a number, you know, like I’m I’m always stunned, certainly in my experience. Many people who rise to leadership have had, like some of their personal stories are pretty amazing. So they’ve been through very, very, very difficult experiences, and there’s something in them that’s alive because of that and that’s something that’s driving them. That’s because of that. And that can be driven. As a reaction or it can be channeled as a lifeforce energy, and that difference makes a huge difference. Yeah. Yeah.
Siets: And yet Scott is saying in the church, working on that level in the unknown is like the work of a midwife facilitating life. Mm.
Sarah: Yeah, I heard a great yes and and because well. The minute we sort of make it that it’s us doing it, then something in me pays attention. A. You know, because then it’s still saying we’re the agent, you know, and I think. Yeah. So I love it. I love what you’re saying, you know, like it, it feels such a beautiful thing. And then and then this little part goes that a little bit about me being the agent of it rather than. Yes, again, words fail me, you know, I haven’t I haven’t got the language because I think that’s the perfect language to say it’s within our mental models. And then. Yeah, and then and that and there’s some sort of limitation to, you know. So it’s almost like being it’s like I’m a bit attached to the tango, I love the tango as a dance because neither one is leading each or making suggestions. And then the question is, do do I have the impulse to follow the suggestion? Or something you want something, want to make another suggestion, you know, so it’s it’s it’s neither one or the other is leading, but the dance between the two is manifesting. So it’s it’s a little bit more like this, I think. Yeah, yeah,
Siets: yeah, and I think and now I understand a little bit better about why these movie questions are so powerful. Because through the language of the question. Something gets disturbed as well, so it’s the invitation travels beyond the question and gets to a different level or something inside happens. And it’s like this, this tiny moment, often it’s just a fraction of a second where the change takes place and then some words pop out. But you’re already beyond the place you were before. And we’ve been talking for quite a while now, so I think it’s about time to create a space where we can do some sharing. So I should just we’re going to use the breakout rooms for that. And I was thinking it might be interesting to exchange a little bits in groups of three about when and how do you feel powerless, if ever. So if you feel powerless to what is connected, where is it coming from? Just have a little little check to bring it into your own life. And then as a second question, of course, which is part of it is how can you trust life? So I’m not asking when do you trust life? I don’t want you to prove that your trust in life or that you’re teaching the Romans how to trust life. But just for you, as if you look in the mirror inside and ask to people listening to you, inviting you to look in the mirror, mirror, how can you trust life? So what is needed for you to trust life? And I know for sure each of you has examples when you really felt something moving through you as a proof that how you trusted life. So what’s that like for you? How do you do that? And the aim of these invitations, the aim of these questions is, of course, to create some awareness, not in order to gain control, but to make yourself more receptive and more sensitive to the next time there’s an opportunity to trust life, perhaps even more than you normally would. I’m going to open breakout rooms for going to take 25 minutes. So we’re going to allow for some time to really exchange. And then when we come back, we’ll just share some experiences and build upon that. All right. And if you like the assistance of me or Sharada, Sarah, just call for the host and pop in your breaking room so everybody is back again. Welcome back here. And there’s still some unanswered questions in the chats. Will address them later. But first, I’d like to invite you to share whatever you want about the question about powerlessness and about trusting life. If there’s any discoveries you’ve done. And as you know, with doing the forbidden conversations, we’re allowed to change your minds and explore and let’s share with each other. You can do it either in Dutch or English if you do it in Dutch Fambul translated to us in English. So Sarah will understand as well. And well, let’s have a conversation. So if there’s anything you’d like to say or to share, you can either raise your hands. Your physical hands, with any luck, will notice. You can use reactions at the bottom of your screen or you can put it in a chat. So in whatever way we find you, we invite you to share what your findings are. So anyone would like to share or comment? Sonia, Sonia, yes, from our conversation, I would say, well, it’s a bit fake, but my conclusion is that as people now nowadays, people we are so used to keeping up straight so much, having so much control, like insurances, payments, administration, blah, blah, blah, all those straight up things that we need to bring in more flow to, to or even bring in more water. I took the last minute to bring some water for myself. I got thirst to to bring in more flow and to be able to surrender more to life. So to combine those two things like that, like that, the the the straight up, we are so used to together, bring it and bring some more flow with it and combine the two
Sarah: so we can have more movement. Yeah.
Siets: Do you want to respond
Sarah: to the Sarah? Well, look, it just makes me think of the body, you know, we need the skeleton, you know, the bones and the and the muscles, we need the satin. But then I forget how much water we need in our body. But it’s 80 percent or 88 percent or anywhere close to 90 percent to two full life to flourish. So it’s this it is this combination of these two things. And then and then how do we how do we bring them together? Yeah.
Siets: And many of these choices in these circumstances we create for ourselves are fear orientated. So you do something because you fear that something might happen. And that’s an interesting check. It’s a very practical way of applying this kind of thinking and a system, systemic knowledge, if I want to make this choice. Is it fear orientated or is it trust orientated? What is it being fed by an. It doesn’t have to be that it’s always trust orientated or love orientated, but it’s just helpful to notice the difference and if it’s coming from fear. Is this fear taking too much place in my life, you know, is it a healthy amount of fear which helps me be alert and make sure I don’t do any stupid things? Is it on a healthy level or is there too much fear in my life? And if it there’s too much fear and this also refers to the question Lena has put in a chat. If you don’t trust life itself, then. Your stress levels will go up again and again, and if your stress levels go up too much, there’s not so much left for yourself to live a fulfilled life and to live in prosperity because you spent so much time on dealing with these stress levels and after a while you get used to them. So you think, this is my default mode. This is the way I am. But in reality, if you find a way to to keep fear, give fear a place in your life, it’s it’s helping you instead of it’s hindering you, then it’s way easier to do things. So if you feel too stuck and too tired and you see it sometimes happen with people moving to a different country, just breaking loose as an attempt to bring themselves in a new place again.
Sarah: Is this something that you say that I think is really important and it connects to something you’re talking about water and talking about fear. So if we make the connection to this is about emotions. You know, because water is actually what allows emotions to flow, and when we have tears, for instance, that’s that’s the emotion trying to move through us. And a good practice is when something like that comes up, it’s to have a relationship with it. What are you trying to communicate to me? Because that’s exactly your system seeking to get your attention, your so how do we pay attention and be in relationships so that it’s an exchange? It’s a conversation. And so we’re not identifying with it, we’re exploring it, and that’s what can allow the movement. So if we think emotions, that’s the energy of emotion, yeah, so emotions are intended for movement. So how do we instead of freezing, which is the fear, but how do we actually be in dialogue with it so that then this movement. No.
Siets: And then when it’s hot, just start with the smallest, tiniest step that is possible for you, and if that even that is possible to start imagining and fantasizing about. Suppose it were possible to just take this very tiny step. Where would I start? And very often that’s enough because it’s not about the specific action you take, it’s it’s like we talked about in language before, it’s not about doing it’s not about acting, but it’s about from what in a connection this comes from and what flows through you when you’re trying to figure this one out. And that’s the important part. That’s the part that makes a difference. But in our daily practical language, we create concepts and frameworks that distract us from this tiny bits and from this connection. And so we’re talking about leadership in one of the comments in the chats was it seems to be more about self leadership, about me than leadership of others and trusting others. So if you were to design a leadership program for your favorite organization in the world, so you get that call you and say, Sarah, we need something and it’s leadership program and we need some systemic smartness, some some systemic intelligence, what would you absolutely put in it? What would how would you design it? What would be important to you? What would you think is crucial to make sure that the leaders of now in the future incorporate in their in their ways? I know it’s a big question.
Sarah: Hmm, well, I’m just going back to this comment, so maybe I’ll come a funny root of your question. We often hear this notion about self leadership and then. Trusting others and leadership and trusting others, and there’s an interesting. Thing here, if if we if we can’t listen to our own system. And and have the sovereignty over our own system. We’re not going to be very good with others. There’s a there’s a prerequisite there. That actually, it was interesting because I actually did yesterday, I saw something on Facebook about a systemic training and I thought, that’s brilliant. And I spent the first module on the self. In my training, I put the last module on the self. But but this was the first module on the self. And understanding our own system and what are our attachments in our own system where the. Where are the resources in our own system, where the obstacles in our own system, so this first really understanding yourself as an instrument is is a key piece. And how what your tendencies are. Because if you’re if you’re going to trust others, that that house needs to be someone in order, at least you need to have awareness of it and an ability to manage it. And that’s certainly what I see in leadership, if the leader isn’t really aware of their own system and how it plays itself out and where the vulnerabilities are, then there’s a projection onto others and the doubts and the fears and the insecurities about the flow of life, etc., then show up in the way in which they engage with others. And when they land, that’s good enough, because I I see it in those programs as well, and it’s always a huge part of the work of the programs yourself and your own history on systems. A.
Siets: But I also always feel a little bit of I understand it, of course,
Sarah: but I also feel a little bit of resistance to it because
Siets: how much is needed and when is it enough?
Sarah: And I also think there’s many different.
Siets: Lines of thought of as
Sarah: many different schools to follow and each school, each line of thought, a different interpretation of what it means to know oneself. So what is really. I love what? Yeah, I love what you’re raising. And that’s partly why I put my self work at the end. Because it’s woven all the way through the self, workers walking all the way through, but that’s not what the focus is. The focus is on the system itself. And so I have a very strong stance in my work that the system is in the first position, Ms. And possibly this comes from from working so long with organizations because they’ve been doing that now for. Thirty eight years, so. I don’t know how you can lead a system without putting the system in the first position, so. Because. You’re there to serve the purpose of that system, that that’s what you therefore they certainly in an employment situation, that’s for sure, the case, there’s no reason for you to be employed unless it’s got to serve the system. And what that system services to society. So and in organizations, this is a key piece, if you if you get too focused on the self, you’re not paying attention to what you’re there for. So I think it’s a it is a really good question. And I’m I’m not sure that any particular school of thought has dominion over any any other school of thought. Each each has its own. An offering has its own value and the question is, is, is that and again, this is kind of if we put our mind in the first position and the mind says, I believe in this, we should do it and you’re not listening to the system. And what does the system need? Things are out of order there, so there’ll be a certain amount of benefit that you get out of it, but there’s also potentially limitations from it as well. So that that listening to and tuning into and paying attention to the flow of life, but also the systems messages is really important. So, yeah, I mean. For me, when you say, what would you put in, that’s it’s almost like I can’t answer that question because which system are you talking about? Hmm. OK, fair enough. I can’t know until I make the system. And in fact, this is one of the challenges I have in my work. I’m currently doing an assignment where everybody wanted to know, well, what are all the modules and I said, I don’t know. I know the first three, but after the first three will create what follows together, because I only know where to begin, I don’t know where we’re going to go. So I can give you a blueprint. I can give you a sense of what it might be, but what it is specifically. You know, to Sonya, your point of all the straight up and down, you know, I couldn’t actually deliver all of that. I could only deliver the beginning of that. Yeah. Yeah.
Siets: So you’re actually saying to the system first and then make sure that the leaders within the system know themselves well enough in order to trust others and work from their.
Sarah: And by the way, that’s me embodying trusting of others as well, like. And I think this is it’s the biggest challenge to me is to live systemically and everything that I do and notice when I don’t and what happens, you know, and I love that challenge. Like, it’s it’s a it’s takes me right out of my comfort zone, but there’s a freedom with it. You know, there’s there is. And it’s like it’s literally like being a child. You know, how when you were young, you didn’t know what the day would bring, you’d just get up and and see what it brought and and then be surprised or delighted or frustrated with what the day brought, you know? And I quite like living like that. Yeah. It’s it’s it’s freeing and enlivening. You know, I that means every day is a fresh day. Apps are
Siets: now that I have had a quite endearing experience exactly like that in
Sarah: a business context, because when Jack asked me to take over his publishing company, I said yes without knowing anything about publishing.
Siets: And then I looked up on the Internet. What’s on
Sarah: training? What kind of training do publishers take? What are the subjects? What are they talking about?
Siets: And then I looked at, my God,
Sarah: that’s so boring.
Siets: I really do not want to learn this. And then I thought, how
Sarah: am I going to manage? Because now all of the sudden, I have this company of suppliers, I have stock, I have all kinds of
Siets: things I know nothing about. And then I decided to apply everything I understood about how
Sarah: systems function
Siets: without any conditions. So I decided I’m going to apply everything and I’m just going to trust that process. And that’s how I make it fun and interesting for myself. And by the way, I get to check whether it’s actually true, what I’m working from and I in three years time and what the the revenues twice. And when I had achieved that point, I lost my interest in a way. But that process of trusting how it works and really trusting it, that was so much fun. And I made every mistake one can make. So but I made them happy because they were connected to something else. They were pulled from something else.
Sarah: I think there’s something very important in what you say seats, and this is a game when I talked about the frontier in terms of organizations, it’s moving away from certainty and into experimentation. You know, how can we return to that joyful experience of trying something? Being free to make mistakes, not with I mean, obviously, you don’t make mistakes with the fundamentals, that that if you made mistakes with that, it would collapse, you know something. But how how can we discover where can we play and experiment and explore? Because if we’re trying to bring new things into being, we don’t know how to. And if we if we believe we know how to, we just repeating the past. Yeah. So how do we bring this way of being, which I love. Sonia, your idea of the you know, if we ruled by this up and down, there’s no flexibility, there’s no spaciousness, there’s no expansiveness in that. And if we bring the things that flow through those structures and so there’s actually much more life in the system, you know, then we bring the very best of what human beings have to offer, which is what’s unique about human beings, is that creativity is no other species on the planet that does this creativity. And that’s that’s how lifeforce energy, you know. So how do we set that free in a system? And if it’s too up and down and contained and we see this when people go to work and there’s a lifelessness about going to work rather than a, you know, a joyfulness about going to work, that it’s an expression. I mean, the fundament. I’m an occupational therapist. So it makes sense that I’d say something about that. But the the fundamental thing about going to work is to express ourselves. You know, it’s a chance to express something that wants to come to life in this doesn’t matter what our work is, by the way, I’m not I’m not prescribing that going to an office or an organization is our work. It’s in whatever form. And in fact, you know, a lot of people won’t go to organizations because it doesn’t feel alive. And they and they run their own businesses and do all these sorts of things so that they they do feel fully alive in. But how do we have that vibrancy, that vitality that runs through a system? And I think that’s the challenge for leaders today is to create places where they’re full of life and vibrancy and vitality. Yeah, yeah.
Siets: Yeah, it makes me think of what we were talking about before, about being fearful. And I have to. Things in my mind. And each time I get fearful and think there’s no problem that cannot be solved, problems that cannot be solved don’t exist. So each problem can be solved. And I don’t know if you can prove that, but it helps me a lot to believe it. And the second one is things don’t explode because of what I’m doing. So if I’m working in the business and working with a team, coaching the team or teaching a team and something huge happens that is completely unexpected, this cannot happen because of my intervention. This was already about to happen. And I was the only person available who made that happen. And thinking about it in that way has two main effects. It takes away the fear and it makes me able to sense again. And it also puts the system itself in the center. And then I can work in a more free way, so that’s really helpful to me. And when I was listening to you, I was also thinking about old systems. So we have had some huge scandals in our tax system for different reasons. But if you think about it, it’s one of the oldest systems we have. And I’m just wondering, I don’t know what your thoughts are about this. Again, this isn’t right. It’s green in my head. But I was wondering if a system really evolves and is aging, then there’s so many connections that in a way, these connections can be entangled with each other. And if these connections are intimate and when it’s a lot, then it cannot evolve freely anymore. So it’s it’s almost needs to explode or it needs to implode for that matter, which is the same only in the opposite direction in order to create room for something new. So I’m just thinking about perhaps because it’s it’s been a while since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. Perhaps some systems are getting too old.
Sarah: Yeah, this is I love what you’re raising because, again, gorgeous human condition, this comfort seeking tendency that we have when things become known and predictable and we, you know, it’s comfortable and then we don’t want things to change because they’re comfortable. But actually everything will become destructive if it doesn’t evolve, you know. So. Things that. And yeah, if we put it off and we put it off and we put it off, it builds and builds and builds and then suddenly we’re going to have something shocking. And I always feel a deep sense of compassion for anybody who’s caught in those moments because it’s an accumulation and they just happen to be present at the when it all crystallizes. And so we can get righteous and indignant and blame all the people at the at the point in time. But if you look from a systemic perspective, this is where it had to go and this is what has to happen. And then and then the question is what can rise out of that? You know, so and again, it’s how do we harvest what’s there for us to learn from that? Rather than going into judgment or whatever the things that we might go into now that that’s not to be a Pollyanna, that’s not to pretend things aren’t what they are. They are what they are. So we need to face the truth of what they are and do that. But to do that with an open heart and an open mind so that it doesn’t I mean, from my perspective, it doesn’t actually produce trauma, but that’s unnecessary. Then then we can actually get the richness of the learnings and that becomes the source of innovation. And and so a rebirth or a transformation of something becomes possible. But if we keep hanging on, then certain things will need to extinguish. They will need to die. They will need to cease to exist in order that something new can arise out of that. And I think, you know, it’s like we don’t as a society, we’re not good at death and dying and things ending. We love new beginnings, but we we don’t dignify and honor and respect endings in the way that would create new, really strong new beginnings that arise out of an ending. And that’s another thing that I love from the systemic work is about how do we actually appreciate the cycle of life and what is a good beginning and what generates a good beginning and what is a really dignified, honouring, respectful ending. And you know this just so that if you go to somebody’s funeral and it’s done really, really well, it’s an extraordinary honouring of somebody’s life and their contribution and it’s very dignified. But if it’s done really poorly, it just is it makes the grief extended. It just makes the process so much more difficult. And it’s the same whatever in life, you know, whether it’s a business or whether it’s a season of, you know, even a political party being in power or whatever. How do you. How do you create really, really good endings so that things life goes on in a good way because of it?
Siets: Someone talking about leadership, we say the leader is part of the system, puts the system in the center, knows him or herself and knows how to trust others, but also knows how to end things if he were to make a systemic definition of leadership. These would be elements of the definition.
Sarah: Absolutely, yeah.
Siets: Yeah, and maybe if you’re watching and listening, maybe you can sense how it takes you to a different level with different possibilities, of course. So there’s like 15 minutes left. And we’ve only heard Soniya about her experience in a breakout rooms, and I’ve thought about that. So let’s use the rest of the time in order to share some experiences. So let’s create an open frame. If there’s anything you’d like to say, to share, to check, to ask, to comment and all these other words I can think of now, please do so. Turn on your microphone. Raise your hands. I’ve seen some comments in the check box, so if you want to say something more about it or connect it to something, please, please do so. And let’s have this conversation. Yeah, yet, Scott, I see you’ve raised your hands up. Actually, what I brought to the
Sarah: table is how do I
Siets: trust life? And when do I trust life? And actually, what I
Sarah: figure it out is that I trust life when it can play. I have a lot of knowledge and experience and I’m very well
Siets: valued for
Sarah: that. But the part of being able to play makes me
Siets: feel alive and
Sarah: makes me trusting
Siets: in life. So it really connects
Sarah: to what you just said, Sarah, that it’s
Siets: giving room to experimentation and giving
Sarah: room to explorations and to let go
Siets: of what makes you uncertain and feel the uncertainty, of course, but not act upon it,
Sarah: but be able to look beyond it. And the funny thing is that what makes me feel powerless is
Siets: the moment
Sarah: of not knowing. And what I tend to learn more and more is accept that moment and all the stress
Siets: and all the tension and all the
Sarah: what comes with it within me
Siets: and all the actions I want to take and just don’t do anything and just feel
Sarah: when there’s a
Siets: moments and when there is something
Siets: wants to be sure no one wants to be seen and then act on that. And it takes a whole different feeling of
Sarah: timing and
Siets: also on time itself.
Sarah: So what you just brought to the table makes it
Siets: all just kind of round for me in my head. So that’s what
Sarah: I want to share. And thank you all. What you Chaton specific this, but everything actually. Thank you. Thanks. It’s so lovely to see you when I listen to you, I realized how much I’ve missed you.
Siets: Oh, you’re always welcome. You know, you and I are
Sarah: also personal friends. So that’s what I’m referring to. Thank you. Something you’d like to share or react
Siets: to, maybe I can react to what Jessica was saying. I think it’s really interesting she said that the
Sarah: moment of not knowing. There was a moment when she
Siets: had more difficulty. And exactly the same then just no way for me to think I broke into the club. What makes me stronger just to be able not knowing is letting it be there and just stay in the moment and
Sarah: feel and act in the flow.
Siets: It’s nice to see it’s the same words. I think it’s something different
Sarah: or just coming and what I meant.
Siets: So this is the part where the conversation takes place without words. Thank you, unit. Yeah. So who else else wants to add something builds up upon a chef?
Siets: My English not from real, but I’m going to try
Sarah: to also speak that I will translate for you.
Siets: I’m going to try a couple of years ago, I. I stopped working at a place and hour from a person at a place. I got a broken free of Milton Erickson. And he wrote this biography because he made a canoe trip and he had polio hogwash, say polio
Sarah: in English, polio under control.
Siets: And the ADA in the diary, he tells about this and he tells about trusting life and trusting himself. And and I never understood the diary. And and now it’s it kind of makes another kind of sense. And. It did the the systemic few shows, like you told us, Sarah, is something that’s so familiar to me that I that I, I couldn’t understand why the diary was so special. What’s what’s trying to be set. And and somehow now I, I, I comprehend. Understand. That’s the experience I have had in life and the way I, I, I make
Sarah: myself be a
Siets: neutral caretaker, a caretaker, it always was about the system of the clients, the system, the people around them. And I’m I’m only the instrument who is there. I’m I’m something somebody who comes by to do some action. And I’m I’m gone. And now I’m at I’m beginning to understand there are people who I why people say I’m I’m first and then the system. And. Thank you.
Siets: Your English is more than good enough, chef. Yeah, I
Sarah: think let me assure you, your English is far superior to my Dutch
Siets: or I believe.
Siets: Yeah. Thank you for bringing that up on the show. Is there anyone else who’d like to add something, anything unclear or needs to be tested?
Siets: By Frida
Siets: Frida. So your microphone on?
Siets: Yeah, and I’m a bit puzzled about the whole thing. I think personal leadership is very important and I’ve worked in large organizations. And now I’m a bit confused. I know it’s well, because my right brain site is working very hard. How do I fit in without cutting and I’m working as an entrepreneur and I’m exploring how to be connected to organizations as an entrepreneur, so I’m not how you call it in Dienst? I’m not in service, in service of the company, but I do. OK, Dr. Iman’s. Uh, yeah. So I’m a bit confused about leadership in organizations because I, I have a large leadership potential everywhere I go in my personal systems and in business as well. And now I don’t know how to comprehend the whole system. How do you call it? It’s. System manifestation, and I don’t know, it’s just a puzzle. I don’t know how to formulate a question in it all. So this is what it is. It’s beyond words. That’s clear.
Sarah: I would say how perfect freedom be.
Siets: Yeah, I know it’s very warm, I’m getting it warm reaction on my back. It’s all warm, like it’s very energy flowing. So it’s very lively.
Sarah: Yeah. Yeah. So to me, this is the perfect condition for you to listen and have it reveal itself to you. Yeah. And I thought it’s so appropriate that a number of people have spoken about the moment of not knowing and being in a playful, exploring, discovering relationship with the very state that you’re in, because to me, that’s the moment of something new, being able to emerge. And if we try to offer you anything, we are not your system. So, you know, this is this is actually the real point of systemic intelligence when I find myself in this moment, how do I listen, pay attention and wait for it to reveal itself? And the temptation would be to give you some wisdom or some something or other that would not serve you in any way, it would just fulfill expectations that if you ask somebody a question, you should give them an answer.
Siets: Yeah, and that’s a pattern I know so well in the organizations where I work. So I was always tuning into the hierarchy, the hierarchy of the organization, and where should the answers come from and rebelling against this stuff. And now I know everything’s OK. I’m just here now on my spot and I wait till the movement starts and I trust that a movement will start, but I don’t have to think and know.
Siets: Yeah, and the way Sarah answers is hers, her leadership early in this conversation, thrusting herself, trusting you and trusting life. And being time, being fully confident that that’s enough. Yeah. So thank you for this beautiful example.
Siets: They didn’t know it was coming, so it was always like this.
Sarah: This is the importance of creating a space that seats create by by having these sessions. How do we create a space that actually what we’re doing? Is creating a legitimacy for operating this way. You know, and that that that that it works and only when we get together and create a space where it’s possible to talk about this can we actually create a community around it that gives us the confidence to stand in it and the courage to stand in it. Yeah. And the world needs it and the responses to cover to the illustration that there’s so little of it. Yeah.
Siets: Yeah, and we didn’t know what we were going to talk about two hours ago, so this is a beautiful example of what we just experienced. Yeah, to finish this conversation, Sarah. In what place you talked about the new frontier, and I think we stop thinking about it, we can see examples of it everywhere, and I’m just interested to know where do you see good examples of the type of leadership we’re talking about? Where do you see good examples emerging out of any specific fields or generations or places, or do you see it emerging anywhere?
Sarah: Well, interesting, I do see it emerging in I don’t even know what the generation the current leader for the generation is, but I do see it emerging. In the end, the younger generations. In leadership, where. There’s there’s a deep interest in this notion of emergence. And where people do create the spaces for dialogue. And that you can actually explore things with this experimental, you know, with the notion of exploring something. You see this systemic way of knowing, and I’m not sure that they know what they’re doing, but I certainly see this systemic way of knowing. The love of the exploration. And combined with a desire for it to go somewhere, to have some sort of purpose to so you don’t just explore for the sake of exploring, you’re actually looking for the impulse that will take things forward. So I think there’s a. You know, those who are in positions of authority creating those spaces. So there’s a willingness to be in this dance, you know, the tango that I was talking about. I do see it like green shoots across organizations where that is being created. And I do also sorry, go. So if you talk about the younger generation, to which generation, which ages are you referring to? I’m I’m talking about people who I see in organizations that are probably in their 30s, late 20s, early 30s, and some of the places that have seen it is where they’ve been. They call the millennial groups. You know, they’re not you know, I never know which. I mean, I love that quote. It doesn’t stay in my brain, but. So this this awareness that there is a big divide between baby boomers and how they lead and the millennials and what they’re looking for and what’s provoked, this, of course, is the difficulty with finding talent and realizing the importance of retaining talent in the millennials basically move on. If things are not if they’re not learning and growing and developing, then they move on. And so they are. Provoking that kind of how do we start to create spaces for this kind of exploring, playing, growing, developing, emerging, so there’s a it seems like there’s a consciousness that that’s needed. Arising, so something’s happening systemically to provoke it, so and that represents a challenge to more senior leaders because how do they retain people? I mean, it’s come up with covid where people started working at home. I don’t know if you’ve had this challenge in the Netherlands or in Europe, but certainly here in Australia, trying to get people back to the office is a big issue because they’re more productive at home. They’re enjoying working from home. Some people are missing the community, but when they come back into the offices and half the people aren’t there, the community isn’t there. So it’s it’s it’s and leaders are saying, oh, we’ve got to get them back in the office. And what I’ve been saying to them is, no, you’ve got to lead differently for them to want to come back into the office. Now, if you if you want them to come back into the community and that to prosper, they now have the evidence that they can do their job and meet expectations by not coming in, you know, not being part of the community. So here’s a beautiful provocation because it means you need to lead differently. If you don’t lead in a way that generates community, then they’re not going to want to come back. So to me, those are all systemic forces. And I think covid covered potentially is actually one of the forces that play systemically confronting what sort of transformation needs to occur. These are sort of unintended things that we don’t look at in terms of when things happen. Do we know they a good or a bad thing? You know, there are many things about covid that are shocking and terrifying, but there’s many things about covid. They’re actually very good in terms of what it’s shaking up and disturbing and provoking. Yeah, so I it’s it’s not sort of like in the traditional way of saying, oh, I’m saying ladies like this or I’m saying situations like this, it’s more like I can see things happening in the system that are all pointing to something. I don’t know what they’re pointing to, but it feels like a big reorganisations going on. And that’s certainly how I look at these things. I’m very much going what’s what patterns are emerging, what things are getting disturbed, what connections are being made, what you know, how are things changing? And when I see all of those patterns, what’s up? Communicating. Yeah, and it doesn’t mean I’m right. But if I have those conversations with others, then something emerges out of that that conversation.
Siets: And even if
Sarah: you think you’re right, you’re also allowed to change your mind. Of course. And that’s. Well, that’s the whole point, isn’t it? You can you can share something with me like like you’re sharing with me about about the vaccine. Oh, that’s a really interesting idea. And it’s stimulated a whole different way of thinking for me. Yeah. You know, so that’s another question. How do we stay open to be surprised, to discover something new, to have our thoughts disrupted and delight in the disruption rather than. Anything else?
Siets: For me, an important outcome of this whole process. And thinking about leadership is. That I used to think about leadership in terms of positions and people somewhere in an organization who holds that’s that’s a very specific position. And, you know, I had to have that place. It was something that I had outsourced. And now I feel much more sovereign and taking my own leadership and almost not caring how others interpret that or how others find their way of leadership and have their definition. So I really feel I’ve taken it back in a way and finding my own place and said, this is what I believe in. This is what I’m being led to or connected to and work from there. And that’s. I cannot say it’s hard because it’s very fulfilling, and especially when I feel I’m connected to something larger than myself, that it doesn’t take a lot of effort and it’s not the kind of leadership I’m it it has to bring me to a certain place. Just as many previously didn’t have that specific goal. But it’s more this is the way I lead my life. And I think it’s not even about is it an organization or is it in a person? It’s more this is the way we do things right now, even if I’m not a millennial from a different generation. So there’s lots more to think about and lots more to talk about. But we’ve been working two hours over two hours. I think it’s time to close at six o’clock your time zone. I think so. This means early breakfast or hiking. What’s your plan or are you going to sleep again?
Sarah: I think I have a young dog downstairs who insist on a walk in the forest. So that’s what that’s what is more than likely what will come next. That’s nice. I am very grateful. Sarah, thank you for being here and thank you for sharing. It’s been a pleasure and joy. I feel really grateful. Thank you all for being part of this conversation. Thank you for your courage, your presence. And we’re not knowing
Siets: I will send you an email or actually will probably send you an email tomorrow or Friday with a suggestion for the what I call Deeping, where you can work in little groups. Next week you’ll get the email addresses of two to three other people with an assignment of me inviting you to do some extra explorations on this topic. If you don’t want to be part of that or you don’t want your email address to be shared. Please let us know before tomorrow, 4:00. So then we’ll leave you out of this. But it’s an invitation to explore further. I know some people had some resistance to the inquiry. I said last time and did it anyway with great results. So if you feel any resistance to it, just just look at it and be kind to yourself and to me, of course, but mostly to yourself and see where that leads you, where it brings you. It’s an invitation. And then after next week, you’ll get another email with a new blog post and a reading tip as a preparation for the next conversation, which will be with Elmer Hendricks. And this will be about following rules. And I know Almar has some very specific thoughts about that. So it will be very interesting. Thank you for being here. And I’ll see you next time. Bye bye.
Siets: Bye bye. Thanks. I think I sleep well
Sarah: and have a nice, warm welcome.
Siets: I think I’m fine. Thank you. Bye bye. Bye. Thank you very much.