Better World Leaders shares experiences, journeys and insights with leaders who are making our world better.
Each episode we explore their stories, what they have learnt through their lives and careers and what they are doing to contribute to making our world better. From these conversations we can all learn from their example and experience to improve ourselves and enhance how we as leaders can make the world better for all.
Introducing Season 5 - Nurturing Conditions to co-create our better world...
Welcome to Season 5 of Better World Leaders! This season we shift our focus to nurturing conditions, following on our past two seasons of catalysing and sustaining change. Let's go a little deeper, into the foundational elements we need to cultivate in ourselves, our communities, societies and institutions in order to bring to life the better world we are striving to create.
I've been deeply honoured, energised and inspired to co-create incredibly insightful conversations with our guests this season, and here's a sneak peak at some of the conversations you can look forward to in this season;
•David Drake, Phd, pioneer of Narrative Coaching and Integrated Development on nurturing new ways of learning
•Professor Wayne Visser, on the range of elements we need to embrace to systemically transform into Thriving societies
•Lauren Tucker, on the role of developmental communities for systemic regeneration
•Hugh Mackay on why we need a Kindness revolution
•Charlotte Connell on climate action through nurturing scalable technologies
•Steve Moir on nurturing purpose and values to foster professional networks for collective climate action
•Ben Newsome on educating the leaders of tomorrow
I'm really looking forward to sharing each and everyone of these conversations, and more, as we move through this season.
As always, please join the Better World Leaders community in LinkedIn (link below) and share this and any of our episodes with someone who you believe would benefit from the wisdom contained therein.
David Drake shares practices to return to our sense of common good and common humanity
Welcome to the fifth season of Better World Leaders. Throughout this season we'll be focusing on the theme of conditions, and considering what conditions do we need to nurture for leaders to co-create a better world.
I'm delighted and honoured to bring you the first conversation of the season with a man who has devoted his life to creating conditions for people to discover themselves, transition liminal spaces and learn in ways which are much more conducive to life now (and in the world of the future) than our conventional approaches to learning. Welcome to the conversation with David Drake.
David is the pioneer of two bodies of work - Narrative Coaching and Integrative Development - which share the same philosophical and pedagogical roots and are mutually generative. I've been aware of David's work in Narrative Coaching for around 5 years since being deeply moved by one of his coaching exercises in a training program. I have gravitated more and more to his work - culminating in enrolling in two of his developmental communities at the beginning of this year.
This episode was recorded in December 2021 prior to me joining those spaces. I have been even more inspired now that I am in the programs. I feel deeply privileged to have spent more time with David, and I look forward to doing so for what I hope will be years to come. David is a wonderful activator of powerful learning experiences. His work steeped in a brilliant combination of research and evidence-based frameworks, and applied through constant practice in each individual's context.
Here's a review of the key messages from this episode:
Systems & Cultures
- Most of the drivers of behaviour in a workplace have less to do with the people, and more to do with the cultures & systems in which they are working
- The systemic and complex nature of the needs we face requires us to work across multiple disciplines and at multiple levels so we don't keep sending changed people back into unchanged environments.
- We need to help people place their individual stories and journey within a broader and more inclusive context so they can make sense and meaning in new ways
- Developing people is less about teaching with better curricula and more about facilitating with better conversations
- There is a need to create new, larger narratives that will keep us from driving each other further apart
- We've over-emphasised our differences and lost much of our sense of the common good and our common humanity
- The business models for many of the platforms is based on enraging people, exacerbating differences, and narrowing our focus.
- We need to honour & respect people for who and how they are as the only place to begin
- My value is less about telling others what I know and more about coming alongside people and the journey they are already on to help them grow
- The big work we need to do is found in from the unknown & the uncertain
- The fundamental question in our work is, "What does this person need most right now?"
- The need is for more safe places for practice based learning rather than more content
- The resolution that someone is seeking is already present
- We have to let go of 'we have to study before we do' to free ourselves to learn and adapt faster
- We need to free people up for serious play. To play with serious things.
Follow David via the links below;
Wayne Visser invites us to thrive by moving from breakdown to breakthrough and from laggards to leaders
Rarely do I get the opportunity to welcome a guest with such a wonderful range of frames that have been used to describe their work - especially in combination! Our guest today is Wayne Visser, a professor, a poet, a possibilist and a pracademic.
Throughout this season of Better World Leaders, we'll examine the conditions needed to co-create our better world. This conversation with Wayne provides a thorough exploration of the layers of shifting consciousness, discovery of new frameworks and creation of new structures through which we can create not just a better world, but a Thriving one.
Wayne has been deeply immersed in the world of sustainability as a corporate advisor and Professorial academic for many years. His revelation is that despite decades of work by millions of well intentioned people, the variety problems we face and the scale of the challenges are greater than ever before - requiring fundamental changes in systems, ethos and beliefs.
To usher in Wayne's vision of a Thriving world, we need new leaders to rise, with different capabilities, values and ethics striving to co-create new forms of society, through embracing nature, technologies and practices which in combination provide an opportunity to give life to a world which is far better than me might think. This is an inspiring tale, not only of what's possible in the future, and of what's already here - Wayne's work showcases hundreds of examples of thriving practices that are transforming the world for the better right now!
Here's a review of the key messages from this episode;
- Recognising that we're living a contradiction, as we all are in the world of paradox
- You have to confront the brutal reality without giving up hope that a better world is possible
- What we need is to up the game because so many of the problems have gotten so much worse
- We don't need to change the whole world. All we need to do is change our world.
- We see the emergence of purpose in business, not just profit.
- Having something to believe in is a powerful force that can get you through anything
- Bringing solutions to the worlds biggest problems is the role of business
- The underlying principles of thriving are living systems. Relationships. Circularity, creativity, coherence, convergence & continuity.
- We currently rely on things running perfectly. That's not life.
- All of life is about relationships
- Creativity comes from diversity, flexibility and permeable boundaries.
- Creativity always comes when we have overlapping fields
- We need to think about nature as an ally in our search for resilience
- What does leadership mean? To be a leader is someone who can take us on a journey
- 6 attributes of leaders. Systemic. Inclusive. Strategic. Ethical/Moral. Innovative. Courageous.
- To thrive is to flourish & prosper, to go beyond surviving
- We've had a failure of storytelling because we've had a narrative of change that's all about sacrifice
- Sustainability has failed because it's boring and not inspiring
- The way to up the game is not to scare, blame or shame people. Rather it is to give them something inspiring to go after. That inspiring thing is thriving.
- The companies that are going to be winners are those that will invest in thriving.
- The future will be better than you think
- The momentum is unstoppable, the more we spread the solutions, the faster it will occur.
- Imagine workspaces full of waterfalls, mini-forests and ...
Lauren Tucker asks how do we shift the role of our business to create the conditions for regeneration?
Have you ever been in a session when someone shows up who you sense you recognise the essence of?
You can't place them, you know you've not met them before, yet something connects you that seems somehow familiar.
That was my experience the first time I met Lauren Tucker.
Part way through a Regenerative Business Summit in which Lauren was Resource for our team, I joined the dots, that I knew of Lauren and her work as Founder of an organisation I had long supported and admired - Kiss the Ground.
What I emerged from our brief conversation that day, and germinated in following conversations - most expansively in the conversation shared here - is that Lauren was being called to evolve the the work through which I knew her. She explained that she was now being drawn into another space, a disruptive, systemic transformational space, where in bringing a community together to explore new ways of thinking and enter into new ways of being - deep regeneration would be possible.
Welcome to the conversation with Lauren about how we regenerate one of our most vital, connective and nurturing systems - our Food system. What will it take for us to shift away from our embedded industrial capitalist frameworks of food as mere commodified calories, and into something so much more generative...listen on and let's explore together!
Here's a review of the key messages from this episode;
- I realised that the system itself wasn't changing very much
- We were focused on making things so simple that we weren't bothering to disrupt anything
- Something disruptive happens so you see something in a different light, that you can't unsee.
- We're setting up a community where we are intentionally creating a disruption
- We assume we can only work on one thing at a time. Really we need to work on things in a whole way.
- I've been compelled by this sense of wanting to evolve culture
- Food is something we all share & is our most direct way to think about our connection to being living beings
- It's not education that shifts culture. It's mindset. Then, it's small communities of people creating different conversations through a shifted mindset, that then create actions from a different perspective.
- There's enough duration for the integration to occur
- What we need is not better function, or more intelligent business plans or better strategies. We have to change our thinking.
New ways of being
- I really wanted to challenge myself to work in a new way.
- How do we work on our thinking first to see new potential?
- There's a reflection around what that means in your own life. That often results in a shift in how you want to live, but you only integrate and sustain this shift if you build a new capability.
- We're not living multiple lives. You don't have a work life, a home life, a life with your kids, a philanthropic life. You have one life.
- What's essential in this community? What does this community want to evolve into? Now how would we create those conditions?
- What is living systems thinking? How do living systems work? How do we hold complexity instead of reducing & simplifying things?
- I realised I had a deep desire to work on how do we hold more complexity and regenerate these systems
- I got really excited by disruption and how do we regenerate our systems
- What we've been talking about as regeneration is not really the essence of regeneration
- What if instead we went back to the original essence of something and regenerated our understanding of it. Then we could see so much more potential.
- How do we ...
Hugh Mackay would like us all to start a revolution by making kindness our way of being in the world
In the midst of a CoVid lockdown, I discovered a book that it felt like was speaking directly to me, and in doing so, touching my soul. The author and I shared a desire to see a significant shift in the country we both love, and in the wider world. That shift speaks of rediscovery. Of a way of being that all humans know, and many appear to have forgotten. What is called for, the author proposed is in fact nothing short of a revolution. A Kindness Revolution. I was moved to write to him, expressing my deepest gratitude for what I received in reading his work over the years, my appreciation of the shared meaning I discovered in his words, and my shared hope for a future filled with kindness. In that note I invited him to co-create a conversation here, which I am deeply honoured that he accepted.
Welcome to the conversation with Hugh Mackay. His latest book, The Kindness Revolution, brings together many of his views shared in previous books based on over 6 decades of work, becoming one of Australia's best known and highly regarded social researchers since the publication of his first book, Australia Reimagined. Hugh's journey as a researcher began before the popularisation of television, and his career has witnessed 3 significant social revolutions, including the most recent rise of social media influence on social interaction.
As Hugh says in The Kindness Revolution, he's come to recognise the potential transformative value of kindness, and that in fact what is needed is a more radical, revolutionary brand of kindness. The significance of Hugh's work is profound, a gift to Australia, and the world, and it was a great joy to explore with him the potential meaning of kindness in contributing to creating a better world.
I hope our conversation brings you joy and provocation, as well as reflection on the potential for you to bring more kindness into your life, and what you might create in the world, and the change you might activate, as you do.
Here's a review of the key messages from this episode, based on extracts from the dialogue;
- We are the social change. We drive social trends.
- These trends are pushing us in a direction which takes us away from our true nature.
- No revolution ever started at the top, because the people at the top think everything is terrific.
- Do we need memetic evolution or violent revolution?
- Change needs to start with us living as though it was the kind of society we want to see.
- We happen to be members of a social species. We need each other.
- A sense of belonging is vital to a social species hardwired for collaboration.
- Our shared humanity is far more important than a focus on our individual personal identity.
- Be more accepting of difference, because we all share a common humanity, any difference is trivial.
- One thing that's driven us in this dangerous direction is economic prosperity.
- We have had leadership celebrating individual prosperity.
- We've had the wrong kind of leadership & too much prosperity.
- Make kindness your way of being in the world.
- Kindness is anything we do for another person which acknowledges them & their needs.
- Ask yourself, does this act pass the kindness test?
- As a kindness practice, we need a conscious reflection - was I kind enough today?
- We've all been wounded, and are walking with tragedies large or small. The universal balm is kindness.
- When I listen to someone, they receive it as a therapeutic gift.
- Every act of kindness makes the world a better place.
Introducing Season 4 - Sustaining Better Things - sustaining change to create our better world
Welcome to Season 4 of the Better World Leader's podcast!
Following right on the heals of the conclusion of Season 3, Doing Better Things - Stories of Transformative Change, we bring you a series of co-created conversations all focused on experiences, approaches and frameworks for sustaining change.
We are at a vital moment as a species, one where radical transformation seems the bare minimum requirement, where disruption and adaption have become the norm, and where change-induced burnout is on the increase.
How do we, as leaders striving to create a better world, sustain the change that must become not a moment, but expand over months, years, even decades to come. How do our stories become ones not of fleeting individual shifts, but of embedded systemic evolution.
What awaits you in Season 4 is a series of conversations with Better World Leaders across the world - in Asia, Europe, the Americas and yes, here in Australia.
We are very much looking forward to sharing these stories with you...the first of which will be broadcast on November 8th 2021.