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Welcome to
The Yoga of Leadership!

Healthy Systems is proud to announce The Yoga Of Leadership, an e-memo for leaders, managers, training and development professionals, and individuals involved in change.

The purpose of The Yoga Of Leadership is to provide regular and on-going tips, reminders and conversation on topics related to organization and professional development. We'll focus on organization identity, design and change, meetings, facilitation, project management, teamwork, training and development, systems thinking, business communications, working relations, and organizational health.

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Want to know more about Healthy Systems? Click here: www.healthysystems.net.

An Interview with Sara Grigsby

a story, a conversation, a case

Each issue of The Yoga of Leadership will include a feature article. We will begin with a series of interviews with Sara Grigsby, the founder of Healthy Systems and Senior OD Consultant for NW Natural Gas. Mira Ames, a communications specialist who writes for Healthy Systems, conducts the interview. She starts the series with a conversation about her organization development practice, and about the name, The Yoga of Leadership.

Click here for the interview with Sara Grigsby.

We are interested in stories about organizational health, culture and operational improvement. If you have a story to tell, please contact us at: info@healthysystems.net.

Successful Meetings

Information and Insights

Each issue will focus on one area of practice. We’ll give you a brief description followed by quick tips you can apply immediately. In this issue we'll focus on meeting management and facilitation and the role of the facilitator.

The role of a pure or classic Facilitator is a neutral one. A facilitator focuses on process (how the meeting is conducted), people (fairness, inclusion, candor, etc.) and results (the goals of the meeting). A true facilitator strives to remain neutral – releasing or suspending any bias for or against. A facilitator does not express opinion or preference for content, for example, options being discussed in a meeting. Neutrality ensures an unbiased approach to process, people and results. It minimizes manipulation of the team by the facilitator.

It is within your role to have an opinion on Process, People and whether the team will reach its desired Outcomes or Results. Conducting this role well is critical to the success of many meetings. If, for example, a group wants to stay on a particular agenda item longer than the time allotted, the Outcomes implication is that other items will not be covered or covered well. It is within the role of the facilitator to point this out.   In addition, if, during a brainstorming session, the facilitator hears one or more members of the group making evaluative comments (criticisms or advocacy for) while the rest of the group remains in a brainstorming mode (non-evaluative), it is the role of the facilitator to keep all members on the same step in the process.


• Take the time to define your role during meeting Start ups. It can as little as 30 seconds. “As I facilitator, my job is to remain neutral on the content of your discussions and decision-making. This means, for example, that I will not advocate for one option over another. My role is to assist you in reaching your desired outcomes (Results), to insure the members of the group have an opportunity to participate (People), and to keep you on track (Process).

• During Start ups, always review the agenda. The time you take at the beginning will pay off later in the meeting. Reviewing the agenda draws the members’ attention away from whatever activity they were involved in prior to the meeting and aligns the group’s attention toward commons goals. To prepare the group to stay “on track,” refer to the third column of the agenda, the Process column. This column tells the group what steps it will go through to reach its Desired Outcome. “We will move through these steps together.”


Each issue will include links, complimentary tools and downloadable products. For more information on any of the content focus areas, simply link on that content area. This month, you may want to visit the Meetings section of our site.

Sample Agenda: Download this complimentary tool. It will provide assistance for time management, goal setting, process and role clarification.

Thinking, Speaking and Acting Like Facilitator: Download this complimentary tool. It's a tip sheet of Words and Phrases to use in your meetings.

Principles of Facilitation: 12 guidelines, mental models and heart-sets that guide a successful facilitator. They'll support you when the agenda isn't enough. Click here for a product description.


Establishing a shared language

Each issue of The Yoga of Leadership will include working definitions of key words found in the issue. 

•  Yoga – to yoke, to control, to integrate; practice or discipline for growth and improvement

•  Health – a state of wholeness such that you feel whole and act from that wholeness; freedom in all respects; the ability to do the work required; peace of mind and wellbeing.

•  Organization development – a system-wide application of behavioral science and systems knowledge to the conscious development, improvement and reinforcement of the strategies, structures, and processes that lead to organizational health.

•  Desired Outcomes – the measurable, desired results or goals of a meeting.

•  Agenda – the pathway or roadmap used to achieve the Desired Outcomes of the meeting. Agendas generally include four columns for the time, the topic, the process and the person.

•  Principle – an experiential truth; a rule or law; or a guideline.

- subscribe to The Yoga of Leadership! -

•  Continue to expand your skillset for managing organizational change. Sign up to receive The Yoga of Leadership in your email box. You'll receive each new issue, full of tips, reminders and conversations on topics related to organization and professional development. To subscribe now, email us at: subscribe@healthysystems.net

•  Would you like to submit a tip or share something you've have learned about organizational improvement? Got a war story? Have a question or challenge you'd like help with? Do you have an improvement idea? Email us at: info@healthysystems.net

•  Would you like to be taken off our e-list?  Email us at: unsubscribe@healthysystems.net

•   The Yoga of Leadership is published by Healthy Systems, PO Box 146, Corbett, Oregon 97019