TIME pic participantsThe Global Leadership Community has grown rapidly. What started an an experiment in distributed leadership has quickly grown into a supportive community in support of other communities interested in co-creating a shared future. A member recently commented that, “do you realize what we have done? We have created a safe place in Tokyo for anyone to join and be accepted for being themselves.” “We are a community where people can come together to contribute their greatest gifts,” was the comments of another member. Some of the personal benefits people have said they have gained include:

  • better skilled at listening to what wants to emerge in a group
  • greater confidence and assertiveness
  • more trust working with in teams
  • greater courage and willingness to engage in challenging conversations
  • better organizing skills

If you are interested in joining but unsure how to contribute, here are some responses to common questions:

  1. Why you should join
  2. How to start contributing
  3. Social networks
  4. Governance
  5. How to join
  6. Your first…

1. Why you should join us

Some of the benefits members of the leadership team have reported include: – being better able to listen to what wants to emerge in a group setting before reacting – better organizing skills – discovering one’s own purpose and passion – learning effective ways to collaborate – taking more courageous action. If you are interested in challenging your leadership edges, please contact us via the “Join us!” form below.

2. How to start contributing

Start contributing to our community is easy. There are three main areas where you can contribute:

  1. Join our leadership body
  2. Join one of our events
  3. Join in our online conversations.

Join our leadership body

We are currently looking for support in the following leadership body areas (contact us via the “Join us!” form to join or to get more information): Gordon pic

  • Promotion/press
  • Film
  • Event planning
  • Sponsorship Management
  • Community outreach
  • Community management/leadership
  • Community coaching
  • Web site management

3. Social networks

Please contribute to the conversation on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Your voice is valuable!

4. Governance

We are creating a new form of governance that values everyone’s voice as a contribution. We have created a safe environment for people to be themselves, to share openly their leadership challenges and develop and contribute their greatest gifts. We adapt teachings from sociocracy, nonviolent communication, deep democracy, holacracy, adaptive enquiry and transformative coaching. In our community no one holds power over anyone else, and perhaps because of that the organization ends up considerably more powerful. Our code of conduct governs how we behave in public and private:

  • Be considerate
  • Be respectful
  • Be collaborative
  • Take responsibility for words and actions
  • Listen for what wants to emerge in the group conversations
  • Encourage, but don’t force, everyone to participate
  • Share knowledge
  • Respect the decisions that has been made by the group
  • Value decisiveness, clarity and following through with commitments
  • Ask for help when needed

Our code of conduct was inspired in part by Ubuntu’s code of conduct.

5. Join us!

David shaking handsIf you are interested in joining or if you have any questions please add your contact information below with a note on how you would like to contribute or questions. We will get back to you soon!

The moment we think of others, our mind expands.

– The Dalai Lama

Join the Global Leadership Community!

1 + 6 =

6. Your first…

Once you joined us what could you expect the first time you… attend a meeting, arrange and host a meeting, or facilitate one of our events? We have put together a few short descriptions below that hopefully will help you feel more comfortable when you do something in our community for the first time.

Your first… Meeting

The way that we run our meetings are key to the success of our cafes and our culture of support, inclusion and growth. We bring to the meetings the same curiosity and focused interest you experience in the cafe conversations. Our meetings are engaging, collaborative and respectful. People often tell us that they look forward to the GLC meetings because they are generally left feeling inspired, motivated, energized and connected. Most of our meetings are open to everyone. Those who participate generally get more out of the Cafe conversations that follow. They also report that they learn more by being active participants and what they learn is transferable to their work and life. We try to create the same envioronment of safety and respect in the meetings that people experience in the Global Leadership Cafe events. We honor authenticity and realize that authentic sharing can only happen if people feel safe and they know their voices will be respected and heard as a contribution.


We start our meetings with a Check-in. The purpose of the Check-in is for each person to let go of whatever they need to let go of to be fully present in the meeting. Each member does this in their own way. Generally it is a thought or a feeling that needs to be expressed. Sometimes a member only needs to say “it’s great to be here,” or “lets go.” Other times a member needs to share a bad run-in with their boss or what happened to him or her on the way to the meeting. The Check-in is usually verbal but it doesn’t have to be. It is not a time for dialogue. Instead it is an opportunity for each person to say what they need to say in order to be fully present and focused. It brings each person fully into the room and sets the tone for the meeting.

The meeting

After the Check In the Meeting Facilitator reminds people of the proposed agenda and checks with those present whether agenda items need to be added or changed. Our meetings are usually carried out in a open dialogue using the agenda as a guideline. Everyone’s voice is heard as a contribution. Disagreements are voiced with respect for one another. Facilitation is often handed around during the meeting depending on if someone has a specific interest in a specific topic. For instance, if an agenda item is planning for the next event the Community Manager for that event may take the “leadership baton” for that particular part of the meeting. The exact structure of the meeting is continuously changing as we practice new approaches to conduct meetings. This is part of our purpose as a community, a “Leadership Laboratory” to experiment with ways of developing leadership within ourselves, as teams and organizations, to maximize learnings and share knowledge.

The meeting dialogue

Skillful dialogue is integral to our meetings. Some of the dialogue practices we incorporate into our meetings include: thinking before speaking, noticing when someone wants to say something more than you do and allowing them to go first, stating you opinion with confidence and being willing to change your opinion after listening to the response of others, appreciating other’s ideas before critiquing it, using silence, separate the person from the problem and humor. We have all gotten better at proactive listening and hearing for what wants to emerge in the group. We try to allow some time in each meeting for free flow conversation to take place. This is where time seems to stop and generally is where our best ideas emerge from. Before checking out we will often give feedback to the group of how the meeting went and how it can be improved.


The purpose of our Checkout is to allow everyone the opportunity to reflect before concluding the meeting. It’s an opportunity for the facilitator and the team to understand the impact the meeting had on each member. Everyone is free to share their reflection and conclusion in their own way. People say whatever they need to say to be complete. It could be recounting the actions you committed to, acknowledging someone else’s contribution, or bring up something that felt uncomfortable.

Your first… Cafe

There are no “rules” for participating in a global leadership cafe. We simply ask that you show up curious and willing to be changed! We have all experienced thinking that what we thought we knew about a particular topic wasn’t necessarily the only truth! Please join us!  The more people contribute the more they grow.