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Thursday, August 6 • 10:45 - 12:00
Confessions of a would-be Org Shaman: How I Learned to Trust the World to Show me the Way (Michael Spayd)

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What I see in the hundreds of Agile coaches and leaders I teach each year is an urge to resist the circumstances they are in, followed by attempts to overpower their situations through skill, cunning, or worse. Many coaches are frustrated, bewildered, and at times despondent, mixed with a hope that surely if they just persist long enough, they will eventually be rewarded. In stark contrast, I have found a world that constantly provides direction, support, resources, and wisdom. It is there for the taking if only I will give up my preconceived ideas of what I think is right, and surrender to the crazy wisdom of the world as it is, rather than how my ego wants it to be. It requires surrendering my own desire to look good, to be in control, and mostly, to be right.
From an early age, I felt an odd calling to work with organizations as a 'healer.' For many years, I did not know quite what that might mean. Over the past 14 years, I have achieved a lot of success as an enterprise Agile coach and teacher of coaches and leaders; during that period, some clear ideas have taken shape. Many wonderful teachers have shown me how to work directly with the 'trend lines of reality', rather than, for instance, trying to manipulate or overpower forces and events beyond my control. This letting go process has led to what others experience as a quiet calm, and what some refer to as me acting like Yoda :-) . At first I thought they were being ridiculous, but as I surrendered to the reality of people's repeated feedback, I started looking closely at what's going on. What I discovered is that whatever coaching mastery I may have is fundamentally not "mine", but instead is the natural power of the world passing through me, giving me guidance, providing direction and help, at least when I get my own ego out of the way. I hope to give participants some insight into how that process works.
This will be a deeply personal talk, spanning the range of my spiritual training in meditation and shamanic practices, long struggles with personal demons, and eventual coming into my deepest purpose and alignment with my inner guidance systems. My intent is to reveal how I have worked with my self, how I have grown into a more mature understanding of the nature of service within the human transformation process, and how aligning with what is trying to happen has made me much more successful and happy. I will illustrate the talk with references to various methods that form the basis of an emerging organizational shamanic tradition: systemic constellations, process-oriented psychology, relationship systems coaching, and others.
(I realize the risk of coming across as terribly egotistical in this, but my intent is precisely the reverse: to provide personal transparency into my own growth process, warts and all, and how confronting our ego can lead to greater ability to be of real service to others.)

Learning Outcomes:
  • *Understanding the critical importance of working on your self to be effective at transformation work
  • *A personal understanding of how the development process unfolds in an individual

avatar for Michael Spayd

Michael Spayd

Chief Executive, Agile Coaching Institute, LLC
Since 2001, I have been immersed in Agile & Lean thinking and practices. From the beginning, I was drawn into large-scale transformation initiatives, especially the change and cultural aspects. I love to work at all levels of an organization, from teams and their managers to project... Read More →

Thursday August 6, 2015 10:45 - 12:00 EDT
National Harbor 4/5