I sit with Dr Mark Mckergow to talk about his work over three decades, has been about humanising organisations in learning, changing and leading. He is the co-author of six books including The Solutions Focus and Host: Six new roles of engagement.
We talk about the old Arabic proverb, "the host is both the first and the last: first to arrive and last to leave" and how this applies to leading. This idea of host fits perfectly with kindness. I wanted to encourage people to be kindness hosts. Some of you may already be doing this. The idea of a host stepping forward and stepping back when necessary and creating the conditions for guests to feel comfortable. One way to do this, is to explore how you welcome people. We create a recipe for how to welcome a stranger. Practical ways that you can observe and pay attention and help someone in a moment of need.
One of his latest ideas combining his experiences is The Village In The City as a post-COVID initiative to encourage people to build on the micro-local communities which emerged during the pandemic. As a response to the local connections which appeared in his own street during the pandemic. Neighbours talked, email and Whatsapp groups started, people ran errands for each other and even entertained one another from their front steps. He thought that it would be good to build on this connection, by moving up a level from the street to the ‘village’. Using his background as an organisational and leadership consultant, Mark devised the Village In The City Manifesto to set out the benefits and building blocks for connection. People responded from all over the world, and a community of Village Builders is forming around the idea. Watch his tedtalk.