Reflecting on Three Years of Shared Leadership

We are three-plus years into our CoDirectorship. MAG is strong and we are strong. And there are many places we are still growing and learning. In the summer of 2015, when we assumed the roles of CoDirectors, we were clear about our intention to shift the culture of MAG to one of shared leadership – not just a structure of sharing power between two people at the top. We were clear that this is an experiment for staff, for our board, and in some ways for the field.

At the onset, we committed to doing a bigger reflection process at the three-year mark and with the support of our coach, staff, and board, we have completed that process! What follows are some highlights of the process as well as some learnings that have emerged so far…

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Strengthening Emerging Social Justice Groups and the Intermediaries that Support Them

Every day, new social justice groups emerge led by youth, people of color, members of the LGBTQI community, immigrants and other groups outside of traditional spheres of power. They are bringing their leadership and much-needed vision to address long-existing struggles for equity in their communities. Supporting these emerging groups - and integral to their important work - are intermediaries. 

 

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Emergent Coaching: Becoming Nimble in Complex Times

In a recent article published in the Nonprofit Quarterly, we explored the question: how can coaching support individuals and groups to be nimble in complex times?


Organizations, networks, and individuals are using coaching in different ways to foster flexibility and agility in these unpredictable and contentious times. As coaches, we have noticed a trend: when coaching broadens to a critical mass within a group, it can help build the group’s capacity to navigate emergence and complexity. We wondered, what is it about coaching that supports this capacity?

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The World is Hurting

This past week's events have heightened a sense of despair and grief that has too long been close to the surface. We are holding space for this at MAG and want to extend this space to our partners, clients, friends, and colleagues. To do so, we share an excerpt from Warsan Shire's poem, "what they did yesterday afternoon," which we read at our staff meeting this week. 

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Creativity and cultivating intactness as ways forward through complexity

At MAG we believe that influencing complex systems requires embedding multiple ways of knowing, making space for inner work, and cultivating leaderful ecosystems. Below we share how art-based storytelling, the concept of “intactness,” and creative visualizations were integrated into the design of network gatherings in order to support connection and align cross movement leaders on conceptualizations of north stars.

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