Previous Sessions - From January 2017 to Present

April 5, 2019 

Get Along Better with Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere 

…. Leadership Communication is the Key!

Only 15% of your success as a leader will be due to your technical skills but 85% will be due to your communication, emotional intelligence, people skills, and your ability to get along. 

Arnold Sanow, “the get along coach” and author of “Get Along with Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere” has worked extensively with leaders and teams to improve their Leadership IQ.

No matter how well people get along, even a slight improvement by leaders in their communication, everyday interactions, and understanding of others can greatly enhance engagement, teamwork, productivity, client relationships, and contribute to positive work culture. 

In more than 30 years of working with leaders, Arnold has found over 90% of the problems in companies and organizations today are a result of communication breakdowns such as misunderstanding, misinformation, miscommunication, and mistrust. 

This highly interactive session will explore these areas with tips, tools, and solutions leaders can implement by improving their ability to get along with others.  

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • Is there a translation app to help understand the Boomers, Millennials or any of the generations inbetween (spoilier alert: it's NOT an app)
  • A very powerful aspect of communication is listening and understanding - Arnold has some tools to help you hone your effective listener skills
  • If you can't understand what someone is trying to say to you. it is highly likely that they cannot understand you either! Hard to share ideas if we can't find a common thread we each know well.   

About Our Facilitator:  

Arnold Sanow
Arnold Sanow, MBA, CSP (Certified Speaking Professional), The “Get Along” coach works with leaders and teams to help them get along better with colleagues, co-workers, employees, and customers by improving communication, emotional intelligence, relationships, and presentation skills. 

He has delivered over 2,500 professional development programs worldwide to organizations as diverse as Skadden Arps and Cleary Gottlieb Law Firms, to Lexus/Toyota, the FBI, Forrester Construction, SAIC, CVENT,  Leadient Bio-Sciences, Washington State Fire Chiefs Association, Lockheed Martin, and the National Governors Association. 

Also, he has coached hundreds of leaders. 

He is the author/co-author of 6 books to include, "Get Along with Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere" and "Present with Power, Punch, and Pizzazz". 
He is a former adjunct professor at Georgetown University and a frequent guest in the media. 

Arnold was recently named as one of the top 5 best "bang for the buck" speakers in the USA by Successful Meetings Magazine and one of the top "30 Global Gurus in Communication" by his peers.

Contact Information:

Arnold Sanow
Phone: 703-255-3133
Mobile: 703-869-1881

March 1, 2019 

The Future of 21st Century Leadership

In FebruaryJack led the group in an interactive session looking at the path to the present for leadership practices.

This gives us a quick study highlighting many of the ideas, concepts, and realities that leaders had to adapt to over the past decade. 

Continuing on from this point, our March session will be highly interactive and is designed to look at a complementary consideration—how might leadership needs and practices change in the future? 

Jim Burke will give us some tools to help cut through the haze masking the details of what is to come in the future. As you will note below from his bio, he is uniquely qualified from a career of gazing into the future and actually making sense of what he has seen.

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • The future is coming and leaders will be invited to adapt to its needs
  • The future cannot be predicted, but leaders can be better prepared for its inevitable changes
  • There are ways to collect and understanding clues about the future
  • And, for those who want to apply foresight, Jim will offer three relatively easy tools that you can start using in the afternoon of March 1st for you, your business, and your families.   

Homework assignment:

Jim invites you to prepare for this session by asking yourself: 

when in my life have I been surprised?

About Our Facilitator:  

Jim Burke

Jim Burke has thirty-five+ years in long-range planning, foresight, early warning analysis, organizational development, change management, innovation, operational user requirements, and identifying implications of advanced technologies. 

His active military career included operational assignments, system program offices and acquisition, advanced technologies and the Joint Staff. 

He is a former President of the Metropolitan Chapter of the World Futures Society, a member of the Association of Professional Futurists, and former Chair and President of several non-profits, including Virginia Interfaith Power & Light and the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy. 

Jim is the current vice chair of Ascent Virginia, Inc.,  (AVI), a collaborative effort involving economic development officials, workforce agencies, technology companies and entrepreneurs, universities, local communities and elected leaders at all levels to make Virginia a center for clean technology jobs that pay and stay. Jim’s AVI focus is on Southwest Virginia. 

He also regularly leads and teaches groups and organizations in ways to look at and understand the future. 

Jim has an undergraduate degree in history, and graduate degrees in Public Administration and Science and Technology Studies.

Contact Information:
Jim Burke

February 1, 2019 


With this meeting, we begin year 12 of the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland. Launched in the center of a black ice storm on February 1st of 2008 (what a coincidence…this session is also on the first of February!) and the LBMD has been actively exploring leadership issues ever since.

Many knowledgeable and experienced folks have been coming together monthly early on Friday mornings for 1.1 decades to share practical and interesting stories of and approaches to leadership prowess. And in addition, participants are meeting peers and other practicing leaders, and having engaging (and usually interesting) conversations on various topics. 

During the years the LBMD has been meeting, we have seen and experienced some mind-blowing changes and innovations emerge – some are spectacular in their own right, while others have turned established industries on their figurative heads!  Such as:

Uber has recreated local travel – displacing a large portion of taxi traffic

Additive Fabrication (3-D printing) – started as a hobby in the DIY space, it has evolved to the point that a company is using this technique to build 100% of a space rocket engine and all (launch targeted for 2020)

Smartphone & Apps – While the mobile phone was around well before 2008, during the period since, these phones have taken an important lead in the technology arena – we can bank, monitor health factors, watch streaming video of notable experts (TED), sports live &  movies/TV, and pay for purchases via phone apps

Text Messaging – instant communication with others for short notes going directly from your phone to theirs (unlike Twitter which goes through Twitter ‘central’).

Of course, the innovations do not stop here – the complete list is quite impressive (with major developments like: self-driving vehicles, drones, private sector space vehicles, self-publishing e.g., blogs, etc, and AI/Robotics).

Whew!!! The world – it’s been a-changin’ (even Bob Dylan says so). And leadership has been changing as well since 2008.

For the February 1st LBMD session, let’s devote our time to a retrospective view of changes that have had or will have a significant effect on our ability to lead others. 

Ponder the innovations and changes you have experienced or observed and come prepared to share your thoughts about the more interesting ones affecting leadership and management.

Drawing from the considerable experience of our group, what are the notable changes and innovations that have improved our ability to lead, or have raised the challenge of doing so? 

This will be a highly interactive session, with observations, experiences, and stories flying about like Harry Potter’s team playing Quidditch (for the Muggles in the audience, the game is played on flying brooms and it is quite fast).

The discussion will focus mostly on how a change has had a positive effect on the practice of leadership from different points of view. Where appropriate we may want to do a brief review of a void created by the change and what is being done to address it (more fun to stick to the positive side of change, however). 

One example of a problem which evolved from innovation is the growth of worldwide teams and the instant communication via Smartphone (with cheap/free calls to anywhere) … how does one manage work time and personal time for an optimal work-life balance?

“Work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls—family, health, friends, integrity—are made of glass. If you drop one of these, it will be irrevocably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered.”

– Gary Keller, founder of Keller Williams Realty International

Although the process started well before our recently completed decade, the command and control forms of leadership are in very short supply in current times – even in the military where it was developed. 

No longer can a manager or leader be effective by simply saying you do it because I say so! Likewise, with the proliferation of books about leadership and management readily available, the “boss” can’t just read something like The One Minute Manager and expect to have all the answers when the employees and followers raise questions or offer alternative solutions. Familiarization with theory no longer sufficient – the movement is toward mastery now.

So let’s compare notes about our experiences and what we have learned about the innovative changes in leadership and management since 2008. By discussing some of the more interesting innovations identified, together we can investigate what has worked for the better and what may need further tinkering. Perhaps there are some lessons to be learned here for future innovations and changes.

I believe the topic will be enjoyable and feel that during our discussions we will identify several practical approaches to innovation and change.

This session will help tee us up for the March LBMD meeting topic of about the future! 

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • Innovation, whether new approaches or disruptive changes, has altered the landscape of leadership and management
  • Change is not only inevitable, it can be empowering and create opportunities for advancement
  • The sharing and discussions with our peers during the session will give us a clearer perspective that others have faced similar issues and we can learn how they approached the issue.   

About Our Facilitator:  

Jack Gates
Jack founded and leads the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland, a membership group of experienced leaders - meeting monthly since February 2008; led the National Captioning Institute – a $22 M organization – as President & CEO; had senior executive roles with Union Memorial Hospital, Towers Perrin, Watson-Wyatt, and PRC in entertainment, healthcare, and human resources industries; and has hands-on experience in operations, human resources, finance, client development, association governance, and marketing/sales. He served for 10-years on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Smith School and taught business and technology classes as an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland for 8 years.

He is actively involved with intergenerational programs – activities bringing together individuals from older and younger generations to learn from each other and to expose each generation to the magnificence and accomplishments of the other generation. Jack served on the Board of Directors of Interages for over a decade, chaired the Strategic Planning Committee, and led its merger into the JCA, another non-profit with intergenerational programs. He is a mentor and Board Advisor to the HOCHA Foundation, a start-up established in June 2014, which works with elderly participants to capture their life stories through reminiscing interviews by college students.

Gates is currently focused on mentoring start-ups and the entrepreneurs that launch them, with an interesting mission and a unique approach to achieving results. In addition, Jack is COO of Sales Lab and is active in groups, such as DC Tech for start-ups and the Google technical user and developer group which use technology to gain efficiency. He periodically takes on interim assignments within organizations - his most enjoyable assignment was as interim general manager of a country club for about 4 months (doubled revenue from in-club food & drink orders). 

Jack earned a BS from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park and an MBA (Finance) from Southeastern University in Washington, DC.
He is a native Washingtonian and served in the U.S. Army in Viet Nam.

Contact Information:
Jack Gates
Phone: 240-424-0843
Twitter: @jacklgates
Google+ Profile: +JackGates

January 11, 2019 

Business Killers

This is a topic which focuses on several of the six common mistakes leaders often make that could compromise their business, their family, their followers, and their personal finances.  

The goal of the session is to help leaders identify, anticipate and avoid these pitfalls. 

Each of the identified pitfalls addressed during the session is supported by a brief video module dramatizing the critical mistake.

The discussion will explore some gaffs in planning or the perception of a real level of risk by the leader in identifying and mitigating the 'business killers'.

The interactive conversation will continue with some techniques to better assure continuity and sustainability of the leader's organization and the goals of helping the followers better achieve their future potential. 

This session will offer the opportunity to examine your own situation, whether you are a leader in a large organization or are a solo-practitioner, using an entertaining presentation format.

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • Building and growing a company as a great leader is half the equation.  Making sure the company can continue without you in any circumstance solidifies your great leadership.
  • If you fail to plan, your plan will fail!  
  • Things in life can change in an instant!  It is never too late to start creating a plan that is written and communicated.

About Our Facilitators:  
       Todd Feldman           Barry Weinbaum


Barry offers a variety of strategies to help meet insurance and financial needs, such as college funding, retirement, extended care, and lifetime income. In addition, he can provide securities as a Registered Representative through NYLIFE Securities, LLC

He is a serial entrepreneur, successfully launching and growing several organizations, and transitioning his vibrant firms to acquiring organizations and individuals.  

Mr. Weinbaum is the Founder and was Managing Member of B-TEK Associates, which provides strategic consulting in the areas of early-stage incubation, business planning, corporate strategy, fundraising, strategic and tactical brand positioning for growth and development. He Co-Founded and was COO of Social Learning and Payments, Inc. (Slap) that offers a software, marketing, and analytics toolkit.

He was President, CEO, and a Board Member of Lumenergi, Inc., a provider of network-controlled lighting management solutions. Barry was recruited by investors to turn-around this distressed company and arrange for its sale and investor exit – he did so successfully.

Mr. Weinbaum also led several other organizations from the CEO chair, all of this following a 21+ year career with Lucent Technologies/AT&T as a Vice President & General Manager!

Barry earned an MS from Columbia University, a BS from Union College, and additional programs at Penn State University, Tufts University, and AT&T School of Business.


Todd has developed a deep understanding of the financial planning process and a passion for the financial services industry. 

As a CERTIFIED EXIT PLANNER and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional, and for over 20 years, working both independently and for large, global organizations, he has managed an array of financial services.   

Mr. Feldman loves communicating with clients and believes strongly in the benefits of professionally planned financial services. The positive difference these services make in the life of a leader, business owner, individual, or family are profound. 

His career has been built on the foundation of this belief, coupled with a commitment to excellence in planning, delivering, and managing these services.

Contact Information:

Barry Weinbaum
Financial Services Professional
New York Life Insurance Company

New York Life 
Insurance Company

Phone - Office:  301-214-6600
Phone - Cell:      732-735-5413

Todd Feldman

Obsidian Planning Solutions
Phone:  301-990-9395

December 7, 2018 

Asking Powerful Questions

Leaders thoughtfully ask insightful questions as a powerful leadership tool. 

They help us coach others, diagnose problems and promote innovation. 

They can also trip us up if used carelessly.  

In this session, we will explore what makes for a good question, discuss and share some examples and consider the context around a question that can make it impactful. 

The session will sharpen our questioning skills and add some new questions to our leadership toolbox.

Do you have a question that has been particularly helpful? 

From our earliest years, we learn about the world by asking questions (sometimes to the annoyance of our parents). 

Since each of us has considerable experience asking questions, give some thought to questions that have been particularly helpful to you and come prepared to share an insight or two. 

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • Consider the context when asking a question to maximize effectivenes
  • Important considerations to get the most out of a question
  • New questions to add to your leadership toolkit

About Our Facilitator:  

              Doug Holly
  Eagle Management Group

An Engineer by training, Doug enjoys applying his analytical and problem-solving skills to help small businesses and start-ups grow and succeed.

As principal at Eagle Management Group, he coaches a number of companies with a particular focus on operational improvements, mergers & acquisitions and project management. 

He believes that simpler is better and the challenge is often to sort through the complexity to find the important few issues to focus on balanced with respect for the people involved.

He is also an Entrepreneur in Residence at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship in Columbia. 
There he mentors Entrepreneurs as they pursue new ventures and encourages them to navigate the challenges and opportunities they encounter. 

Doug also enjoys teaching and is an affiliate instructor at Loyola University where he has taught graduate level classes on the Leadership of Innovation and Mergers and Acquisitions. He also teaches project management at Montgomery College as part of the Introduction to Engineering program.

Previously Doug worked for IBM where he managed the development of avionic and system integration programs for aircraft such as the F-15, B-1, and E-3A. 

He also worked at a local telecommunications firm, TTC that started in Gaithersburg and was eventually purchased by JDSU where he managed the development of portable test equipment and through various assignments ending up managing M&A strategy and integration. 

The lesson he has taken away from this is, at the end, it is all about the people. 

Contact Information:

Doug Holly

November 2, 2018 

Power-Ups for Influence, Impact and Innovation

Innovation – the quest for new solutions – is at the core of many organizations and at the center of their strategy to stay competitive. 

When we think of innovation, we often focus on technology, on systems and processes. 

While this is important, it is the part of innovation that is easy to copy by a competitor and it does not lead to lasting competitive advantage.

What really matters, is the human side of innovation: our ability to create new solutions, to make change happen, and to engage our customers in new products and services. 

In this program, we will explore the five Human Elements that drive innovation and create sustainable new solutions.

With the increasing speed of change in technology everywhere, it’s now time to increase the velocity of our own disruptions and ability to bring new solutions to our markets.

In this program, you will discover immediately actionable steps to lead yourself, your teams and your organizations to increased innovation. 

Making simple, yet profound, tweaks in your leadership will empower your teams to fast-forward creativity and innovation. 

You will leave the program with a ready-to-use leadership toolkit that will increase your score on the five Human Elements of Innovation 

Be ready for a pants-out-of-your-seat program that is a high-energy, highly interactive experience with specific take-aways. 

Applying the take-aways from this program will power up your innovation: increase your top-line results, better engage with your team and deepen the relationships with your customers.

Take-Aways From This Session:

  •       What are the five human elements of innovation
  •         Ways to influence results, strengthen relationships with clients, and engage your employees to innovate
  •         Illustrations of the effect of human element innovation.

About Our Facilitator: 

      Josef Martens, PhD
     Katalysor LLC

Josef Martens, PhD, CSP helps organizations move their innovation efforts from good to great.

After completing his PhD in physics at the University of Cambridge, he was awarded several patents in the field of OLEDs, the materials used for high-end TV and phone displays. The spin-off company he and his colleagues founded became the first company from the University of Cambridge to go through an IPO, and it was later bought for US$285 million.

Josef now uses his expertise to help individuals and organizations power up their ability to implement new solutions at work and in life.

For nearly two decades, Josef has conducted programs in over 30 countries across five continents for client organizations such as Merck & Co, Daimler, AstraZeneca, Siemens, 4-H Council, NASA, the Department of Defense, ASQ, PMI, and many more. 

His fresh, provocative, and insightful content has also awarded him the experience of being a TEDx speaker.

Josef is a Certified Speaking Professional, the highest-earned international designation by the National Speakers Association. Only about 700 speakers worldwide hold this honor for speaking excellence. Josef is also a past president of the DC chapter of the National Speakers Association.

He has two teenage sons who provide him with plenty of opportunities (and reality checks) for innovation at home. In his spare time, he enjoys section hiking the Appalachian Trail.

Contact Information:

Josef Martens, PhD

Katalysor LLC


October 5, 2018 

Leading a Team of Customer Experience Superheroes

It's rare to employ those whom you trust to "act like an owner." 

Heck, sometimes owners and leaders don't even act accordingly when it comes to creating and deploying proper customer experiences. 

Yet in today's economy and unprecedented marketplace, one of the only proven methods of sustainability and growth is doing just that — 

intentionally and consistently crafting remarkable and memorable experiences for your prospects, customers, clients ... 

and — spoiler alert — 

your employees; the types of experiences that keep staff engaged in their work, fostering client relationships worthy of their return, and compelling enough people to send you their referrals.

As someone who's been advising, speaking, and training audiences and teams on CX (Customer eXperience) since 2006, Steve Dorfman also now serves as Chief eXperience Officer for a 100-person, 8-branch mortgage company — 

a proving ground for the concepts that he'd been teaching for a decade. 

During this interactive presentation, Steve will share how he has helped increase already-high levels of customer satisfaction and loyalty while also becoming a Washingtonian Magazine Great Place to Work in 2017.

Take-Aways From This Session:

  •       Actionable ideas for both customer and employee culture
  •       Tips on developing your own "Customer Experience Superheroes"
  •       Real-world illustrations of customer experience innovations

About Our Facilitator: 

Steve Dorfman

Before founding Driven to Excel, Inc in 2006, Steve spent 11 years as a sales consultant for a luxury automaker. Yes, the car business … not exactly a business with a reputation for impeccable customer service. 

So when he entered the business at 23, Steve was determined to make a positive difference by creating remarkable client experiences. 

His unwavering commitment to impeccable client service resulted in raving fans and increased profits. In fact, Steve went on to earn “Salesman of the Year” 7 years in a row, while maintaining a CSI (Customer Satisfaction Index) rating in the top 1% nationally. 

He worked by appointment only as his repeat and referral business rocketed to unprecedented levels and ultimately translated into 70% of his closed sales. 

All of this afforded Steve a very comfortable salary from his 35-hour, low-stress work week — far from the car business norm, as you might imagine.

Before the car business, Steve spent 8 rapid-growth years in the hospitality industry. 

While hosting the We Mean Business! TV show, Steve conducted more than 90 interviews with thought leaders, top executives, and bestselling authors.

Today, he advises, trains, and speaks on the topics of customer (and employee) experience. 

In addition, Steve serves as Chief eXperience Officer for Apex Home Loans -- a 5-star rated, Inc. 5000 Company with more than 100 employees across 8 branches.

Contact Information:

Steve Dorfman

Chief eXperience Officer


Phone: 301-996-9147


Steve's CX Quick Tips of the Day:

September 7, 2018 

Soulful LeadershipTM
A Visionary Leadership Manifesto for the 21
st Century

Can yesterday’s thinking on leadership and leadership development produce tomorrow’s visionary leaders? No. New times require new narratives. So the question is what kind of leaders and what type of leadership journeys are most likely to succeed and prove effective in today’s VUCA world – Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous?

Gaurav Bhalla unveils the answer to this question in a unique and unexpected way, one that appeals to both the mind and the heart.  He proposes  Soulful LeadershipTM, a new human-centric leadership narrative that reimagines leadership’s purpose and reshapes it outcomes. The foundation of his book, “Awakening A Leader’s Soul,” this new narrative declares that in today’s complex, connected, but conflicted world, the greatest asset of leaders is not their executive brilliance, but their humanity – who they are, what they stand for, what they are willing to fight for.

Leadership roles never come pre-packaged with “How-To” books. Even if they did those rule books would be worthless in today’s complex world. Today’s leadership challenges, paradoxes, and conundrums rarely lend themselves to simple-minded right-wrong, agree-disagree solutions. Because, frequently, the decisions confronting 21st century leaders represent choices between right vs. right, and wrong vs. more wrong. Where then should leaders go for answers?

With the help of a different set of teachers, the wisdom of immortal poems, Gaurav takes current and future leaders on a transformative journey of reflection and self-awareness to help them understand their own humanity and that of the worlds in which they live in search for meaningful and relevant answers, so their leadership journeys can increase the wellbeing and prosperity of the greatest many, not just the privileged and powerful few.

Gaurav doesn’t preach, nor does he prescribe. He merely holds up mirrors and asks, “What kind of leader are you, what kind of leader would you like to be, like to become?”

And yet the world is different from what it seems to be

And we are other than how we see ourselves in our ravings.

Czeslaw Milosz

Take-Aways From This Session:

The talk will inspire participants to:

  •       Explore their own humanity and explore how it scripts their own leadership journeys
  •       Confront three key barriers to the diffusion and adoption of human-centric leadership narratives
  •       Embrace and implement at least one idea and practice of Soulful LeadershipTM

About Our Facilitator: 

Gaurav Bhalla
                    Knowledge Kenetics
Gaurav Bhalla, Ph. D. is a globally acclaimed ‘thinker-doer, present-ainer’ in Leadership, Strategy, Marketing, and Innovation. 

A provocative, charismatic, and entertaining speaker, trainer, and coach, he delivers insight-packed audience experiences that take organizations, teams, and individuals on transformational journeys of greater professional success and personal fulfillment. 

In his 40+ years of global experience – 5 continents, 30+ countries – he has helped scores of companies grow their businesses, and thousands of executives, transform and energize their professional and personal purpose. 

In 2016, he won a global award, Executive Education Specialist of the Year, in recognition of his speaking and training services. 

Currently the CEO of Knowledge Kinetics, he has held senior management and C-level positions at Richardson Vicks, Nestle, and TNS Worldwide. 

His clients have included both large and small, for-profit and not-for-profit companies in a variety of sectors, such as Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, Technology, and Financial Services. 

A sampling of his clients include: Glaxo, Capital One, Citi, MetLife, Audi, Marriott, and Caterpillar. 

What makes Gaurav unique are his growth mindset, his diversity of thinking and experience, his passion for action, and his WHY – his purpose – that values the humanity of people more than their executive brilliance.

Contact Information:

Gaurav Bhalla, Ph.D.




Phone: 1-833-SOULFUL



August 3, 2018 

Business Innovation Sabotage: 
Steps That Can Prevent It

People can overcome bad habits that prevent them from achieving their goals… habits that make them feel comfortable and safe in what they’re doing, but which sabotage their efforts to change when better ideas are right there in front of them.  

It may be easy to identify bad personal habits that cause problems in behaviors like eating, lifestyle, and self-image. Unfortunately, we often hold onto what we already know as the only safe and comfortable standard.  As business leaders, this can mean being blocked from clearly evaluating new ideas as they are developed.  Like having a mantra of “we do things because we have been doing it this way for years!”

This session is about how our response to new ideas can change - whether the source is our own ideas or the ideas of others.

One Definition of a Good Business Leader

A good business leader has an open stance and belief that every idea coming to him or her is worthy of consideration. This kind of leader listens with an unbiased mind, recognizing that there may be value to discover and that there may be a seed of innovation that may come about as a result. This is a learned response.

Defining the Problem

The inability to look at change and appropriately respond to new ideas is the death knell to business and innovation.

Virtually all of us know of an idea being rejected before its completely heard or considered.

In this session we will explore the reason behind this tendency and a positive alternative.

To highlight this tendency and illustrate the alternative, we will look at two examples - a CEO from the book, Immunity to Change (Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey, Harvard Business Review Press) and a case study from my work.

With these as a backdrop, we will examine two paths that define a moment of truth and choice between the being open to new ideas path and the sabotage path - illustrating the difference of the paths with examples. As a result, with a better understanding of the chosen path, we can visualize how to change to get a different outcome.

The interactive activity for this session will be to explore known situations where an idea was presented but did not receive adequate attention or consideration (or an idea which was given active attention and consideration AND was a success). In groups of 4, the participants will determine the critical elements which derailed the idea (or created a success), and several groups will report their findings as time permits.

Defining the Solution

In conclusion, I will describe 5 Secrets to Stop The Sabotaging and Silencing – which offers clarity to what is possible when we open our mind beyond anything that doesn’t perfectly match the established mental picture. 

Take-Aways From This Session:

Participants will take-away some new ideas and additional clarity, such as: 

  •     Beneficial results can be available when a leader listens openly to new ideas
  •     Willingness to really listen and consider new ideas fosters business innovation
  •     Creating a path for sharing new ideas creates an environment of participation and sense of value for employees and followers.

About Our Facilitator: 


Kay Loughrey

Kay Loughrey is a speaker with a universal message.   She has been featured in major media including the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Men’s Fitness Magazine, Newsday, and television and radio stations. 

As a public health professional and dietitian-nutritionist, she was a frequent speaker on health promotion and disease prevention at conferences and professional meetings during 28 years of public service that included the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

As a business owner and health and weight loss coach since 2011, she now addresses inner and outer health and habit issues with private clients.

Contact Information:

Kay Loughrey, MPH, MSM, RDN, LDN

Sweet Life Wellness

Phone: 301-5869-1787 (option 3)


July 13, 2018  

PLEASE NOTE - The July 2018 LBMD Meeting is on the SECOND Friday 
- Friday the 13th of July, due to the 4th of July Holiday

“Is This a ‘NO’ I See Before Me?”

       Engaging Resistance

As leaders, we strive to make things happen, to make changes in our businesses and in our clients’ worlds. 

We come up with great ideas and plans to be adopted. 

But, of course, in both work and life, we regularly encounter resistance from others…a boss, business partner, peer, employee, client, neighbor, or even a family member.

What is our typical or even default response to this, particularly when we strongly desire someone's agreement and support? 

We spring into action and pitch our point of view and the benefits thereof. 

We work hard to counter and turn around their opposing point-of-view, to eliminate the opposition we face. 

But this rarely works. 

In the words of Dale Carnegie, “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.”

Expect a lively, highly interactive and thought-provoking session where you will learn a more effective strategy to engage and work with the resistance you meet–anywhere.

Take-Aways From This Session:

 In this lively session, you will be exposed to many ways to address resistance by Ian and the contributions from the knowledge and experience of the wonderful folks sitting around the room - here are three take-aways:

  • Experience the “top dog/under dog” dynamic in action

  • Learn a more effective approach for dealing with resistance
  • How you might apply this approach in your work and life.

About Our Facilitator: 

Ian Cook
Fulcrum Associates Inc.

Ian is a professional facilitator and executive coach. His expertise and passion lie in helping mid-to-executive level managers lead effectively at the “micro” level, in that interpersonal space between themselves and the individual employee. In Ian’s words, “Effective micro leadership practices yield macro results!”

Since founding his company, Fulcrum Associates, back in 1988, he has worked with thousands of managers from over 250 clients from the private sector, major trade and professional associations, small business, government, and not-for-profit organizations.

Ian is a Certified Speaking Professional. CSP is the highest earned designation conferred by National Speakers Association and the Global Speakers Federation.

He has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from McGill and, from Cornell, a Master of Industrial and Labor Relations. In addition, he has been a lecturer at Ryerson University’s Faculty of Business.

Ian channels his volunteer energies through the community leadership organization, Leadership Fairfax Inc. A 2004 alumnus of the LFI signature program, he has served on the Board of Directors and chaired their Program Committee. As a member of Faculty, Ian collaborates on the program’s curriculum design as well as leads two of the sessions.

He and his wife Linda reside just a rowboat’s ride across the Potomac, in Vienna.

Contact Information:

Ian Cook
Fulcrum Associates Inc.


June 1, 2018 

Extraordinary Presentations 

An Essential Leadership Skill

There is likely no leadership skill more powerful than the ability to design and deliver extraordinary presentations.  

Beyond the adequate or satisfactory, even beyond the good ones, extraordinary presentations are those special events that impact us in a profound way, tending to stay lodged in our memory often for years.  

The arguments they put forward somehow find a special place in our evaluative processes, moving us to an appreciation for points of view we might otherwise have dismissed.   

They accomplish this feat by pulling us so completely into the stories they weave that we travel beyond liking or enjoying the tales as they unfold, we find ourselves threatened by the dangers, uplifted by the aspirations and wishing for the goals of the heroes to be achieved.  

Build and deliver an extraordinary presentation and the audience will take part in the adventure on a visceral level, deeply and fundamentally sharing the experience, and the new ideas you put forward will appear to them as personal discoveries, as revelations, as a welcome surprise.  

In this presentation, I will endeavor to provide a sample.

Take-Aways From This Session:

 In this interactive session, Bob's goal is that you will leave with these three pearls to ponder:

  • We are in the business of changing opinions about the products and services people value and acquire

  • The road to changing opinions goes through the valley of personal experience

  • No opinion is irreversible, especially if it's held by someone else.

About Our Facilitator: 

Bob Keiper
Actor - Director - Author - Speaker - Coach

No business talent or skill is more valuable than effective communication.

My 25 years as a coach, speaker, and instructor in business communication began with years of experience in professional theater as a writer, actor and director where I learned to captivate and motivate the listeners.
Now, in applying those same skills to business audiences, I know the values presented must be expressed and clarified from the listener’s frame of reference.
To be compelling and memorable, the material must be organized to enter the audience’s awareness as a sequential series of logically related conceptual steps, in short in the form known as the story.
Most business presentations fail in at least one of these two ways.
Finally, to hold the listener’s unwavering attention, the presenter’s behavior must be authentic and appropriate. 

Contact Information:

Bob Keiper
Actor - Director - Author - Speaker - Coach


Office Phone: 703.378.4733 
Cell Phone: 703.201.0039

May 4, 2018 

Mastering The People Problem

Theory and Practice, Practice, Practice…

What are the realities of what we can and cannot do to deal effectively with ‘other people’? 

Human behavior consists of an array of adaptive strategies — including territoriality, status seeking, competition, cooperation, and reciprocal altruism — strategies that have helped us to survive and to thrive for millions of years. 

Directed intelligently, responsibly, and flexibly, these strategies can help us today at work, at home, and wherever we may roam, to do the best that we can do and be the best that we can be.

Insights from such diverse fields as management, philosophy, evolutionary psychology, and brain science suggest some answers to the ‘The People Problem’ that can make a difference in both the quality of our work and the quality of our life at work. 

In this session learn how to identify our long-held adaptive strategies and how we can use them – or not – for the benefit of ourselves and the people counting on us.

Take-Aways From This Session:

 In this interactive session learn:

  • how to identify our long-held adaptive strategies
  • how we can use them – or not – for the benefit of ourselves and the people counting on us
  • some of the answers to "The People Problem" suggested by insights from the diverse fields.

About Our Facilitator: 

Madelaine Weiss
This program will be facilitated by Madelaine Claire Weiss, LICSW, MBA. 

Madelaine has held front-line positions as a hospital-based health care provider, group practice administrative director and provider, insurance industry chief organizational development officer, and medical school educational program associate director. 

She is a trained mediator, executive coach, and organizational consultant. 

With a style that is warm, quick, and direct, she merges a successful career as a psychotherapist, with an MBA and direct management experience, to tackle the most basic question: “How does human nature interfere with or further the achievement of our goals? 

Madelaine speaks in a variety of settings in the DC area, where she also enjoys her family and private practice clients. 

She is a chapter co-author in the Handbook of Stressful Transition Across the Lifespan (Springer, 2010) and has co-authored numbers of articles in both the Across-Species Comparisons And Psychopathology Newsletter and the Massachusetts Council On Family Mediation Quarterly. 

Madelaine is currently working on a book as co-author entitled Get a Grip: Negotiating Great Narratives…to Succeed in Work, Play, Love, and Life.

Contact Information:

Madelaine Weiss


April 6, 2018 

Mindful Leadership

Mindfulness is the psychological  process of bringing one's attention to experiences occuring in the present moment - "live in the moment."

Leadership is a process of social influence, social influence, which maximizes the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal.

A mindful leader is someone who embodies leadership presence by cultivating focus, clarity, creativity, and compassion in the service of others.

Mindfulness has become a business buzzword recently with far more people talking about it than actually practicing it.  You will not be one of those people.  

Take-Aways From This Session:

 In this interactive session, you learn and experience more about mindfulness, participate in practice exercises, and take away some practical insights such as:

  • the science of mindfulness
  • how to remove the very real obstacles to showing up fully for your business, team, boss, employees, or partner
  • how to cultivate greater awareness about yourself and others that lead to empowered leadership

About Our Facilitator: 

Dawna Newcomb
Bold Strategies
Dawna started her career as a cell biology with a focus on virology and subsequently focused her 20-year sales career around growing revenue for companies in life science research, biotechnology, and healthcare.
Concomitantly with her sales career, she opened and ran a yoga center in Montgomery County where she taught yoga, meditation, and offered wellness workshops to a wide variety of students and clients. 

Dawna enjoys the energy of a well-run sales organization, coaching sales managers and their teams and training scientific sales professionals who are moving beyond technology evangelism to commercialize their products and services. 

She also has an unusual knack for helping clients (and business leaders) who are terrified of the word "sales" move gracefully and professionally into a more functional role that allows their ideas to reach the marketplace and generate revenue.  
Recently Dawna opened her own business, Bold Strategies, to give her more freedom to coach, consult, and train sales professionals and teams within biotech and emerging technology companies.  

Contact Information:

Dawna Newcomb

CEO - Chief Enablement Officer
Bold Strategies 
eMail: dawna@BoldStrategyCoach.Com

Phone: 301-466-2666
Website: www.BoldStrategyCoach.Com

March 2, 2018 

Discussion of What Changes In Leadership To Expect By 2030

[The weather on this day was hazardous and the scheduled session was postponed. The facilitated topic is an ad hoc substitution. The write-up below is a snopsis of the main ideas from the discussion by the group as a whole.]

Observations by the group:

  • Don’t look 12 years out – look closer for the substance of changes in leadership
  • Look – See – Just Do It…don’t overanalyze or over study possibilities – be adaptive and flexible NOW
  • Leadership Structure is changing radically - however, the core concepts will continue to govern leadership, but will require a much greater degree of mastery by the leaders - no more 'read a book - become a leader'
  • Selling (for example to the Federal Sector) has changed significantly – the mid-level functionaries are gone and the big contractors have a lock on the work – meter it out to the little contractors. The little guys can no longer sell direct. Most traditional avenues have disappeared.
  • There is a vast difference between the millennials and the other generations in outlook, applied technical knowledge, and goals – personal & professional. Likewise, there is a vast difference between these groups in communications, social interactions, and multi-leveled relationships (e.g., real, social media ‘friends’)
  • Leadership Skills will not change at the core level and above – they remain valid and effective…BUT… the leader must remain flexible, open, and adaptive in applying the skills to new and changing situations. While the skills remain valid, the situations and circumstances are changing.
  • Millennials have a short-term focus and outlook. Plenty of shiny things to attract their attention – makes it difficult to remain attentive to the dull and mundane. In general, they seek to be ‘in the know’ and to be taken seriously – with a desire to contribute opinions and solutions/options to the organization and project.
  • The discussion began with a tone of either/or – that we must make a choice between one idea or another…between one generation’s outlook or another’s outlook. The group agreed that the discussion of possibilities should be inclusive rather than exclusionary.
  • Leadership requires a flexible outlook. More leaders will need to achieve mastery, rather than merely read some books, articles, and blog posts and then play it by ear.
  • The concept of enlightened leadership is not limited to the big organizations – smaller organizations have unique needs for leadership skills as well.
  • An interesting observation: start-ups tend to be idea oriented and the differences between generations has a minimal effect – ideas rule and are NOT age related -  look for the results, not the differences.

About the Facilitator:

Jack Gates

Jack founded and leads the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland, a membership group of experienced leaders - meeting monthly since February 2008; led the National Captioning Institute – a $22 M organization – as President & CEO; had senior executive roles with Union Memorial Hospital, Towers Perrin, Watson-Wyatt, and PRC in entertainment, healthcare, and human resources industries; and has hands-on experience in operations, human resources, finance, client development, association governance, and marketing/sales. He served for 10-years on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Smith School and taught business and technology classes as an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland for 8 years.

He is actively involved in several organizations providing intergenerational programs – activities bringing together individuals from older and younger generations to learn from each other and to expose each generation to the magnificence and accomplishments of the other generation. Jack served on the Board of Directors of Interages for over a decade, chaired the Strategic Planning Committee, and led its merger into the JCA, another non-profit with intergenerational programs. He is a mentor and Board Advisor to the HOCHA Foundation, a start-up established in June 2014, which works with elderly participants to capture their life stories through reminiscing interviews by college students, creating a legacy memory book for the participant and their family.

Gates is currently focused on mentoring start-ups, and the entrepreneurs that launch them, which have an interesting mission and a unique approach to achieving results. In addition, Jack is COO of Sales Lab and is active in groups, such as DC Tech for start-ups and the Google technical user and developer group which use technology to gain efficiency.

Jack earned a BS from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park and an MBA (Finance) from Southeastern University in Washington, DC.

He is a native Washingtonian and served in the U.S. Army in Viet Nam.

Contact Information:

Jack Gates

Phone: 240-424-0843



Twitter: @jacklgates

Google+ Profile: +JackGates

February 2, 2018 

Create Your Future the Peter Drucker Way

You can think, hope and dream about it, but you can’t fully plan for the future without a future-focused mindset. The future is not guaranteed for individuals or their organizations. That is why it is critical to develop a systematic, organized approach to how you view the future, and how you will create a better tomorrow.

In this interactive session, Bruce will guide us through his five-point framework for future planning inspired by the life and work of Peter Drucker (1909-2005), “the father of modern management.”  We will learn practical and actionable strategies for developing our own future-focused mindsets. Although much of Drucker’s work was future-focused, he never organized that body of work into a framework, and never wrote a book about his future-focus. Bruce took up a challenge to create the framework, presented in his book Create Your Future the Peter Drucker Way, published in 2013 by McGraw-Hill/Brilliance AudioThis is his second Drucker-oriented book, based on extensive research in the Drucker Archives in Claremont, California; as well as interviews with Drucker, and Drucker’s students, family, professional colleagues and consulting partners.

Working in small groups, we will seek practical, actionable strategies for developing our own future-focused mindsets, and begin a Creating the Future notebook. From this beginning, you can add content in the days, weeks and months ahead as you refine your plan with additional detail and specific goals.

Drucker’s forward-focused mindset was a major factor in his professional success. In a career which spanned 70+ years he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom (the nation’s highest civilian honor); sold millions of copies of over 40 books; was a consultant to major corporations, nonprofits and governments; and was a renowned professor at the school named for him in 1987, the Drucker School at Claremont Graduate University.

Peter Drucker believed that the future can and must be created - day by day and step by step - rather than be left to chance, fate or the whims of others. The information you take away from this session will be crucial for LBMD participants in continuing their leadership journeys and planning for meaningful futures.

Take-Aways From This Session:

Participants will take-away some practical ideas, such as: 

  • Develop and cultivate a forward-focused mindset

  • Understand and plan for “the future that has already happened”

  • Become your own successor by building individual success factor

  • Help shape the future of your organization

  • Build your future through activities outside of the workplace.

About Our Facilitator: 

Bruce Rosenstein

Bruce Rosenstein is Managing Editor of
Leader to Leader, the award-winning quarterly publication of The Frances Hesselbein Leadership Forum, and Wiley/Jossey-Bass. He is the author of Create Your Future the Peter Drucker Way, published by McGraw-Hill and Brilliance Audio in 2013 and Living in More Than One World: How Peter Drucker's Wisdom Can Inspire and Transform Your Life (Berrett-Koehler, 2009).

He has studied Drucker's work for more than 30 years and interviewed Drucker for both USA TODAY and his books. He wrote extensively about Drucker for more than a decade, for USA TODAY and elsewhere, before the publication of his first book. He conducted one of the last interviews with Drucker, seven months before Drucker’s death, in 2005. He worked for USA TODAY for 21 years, from 1987 to 2008, as a librarian and during the final 12 years, also as a writer about business and management books for the Money section.

Besides USA TODAY, Bruce has written for Leader to LeaderPBS Next AvenueForbes.comLeadership ExcellenceGAMA International JournalAmerican Executive, Information Outlook and many other publications.  He writes the column “The Modern Knowledge Worker” for Management Matters Network

Bruce has presented for the Drucker Authors Festival at the Drucker School at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California; the Drucker Business Forum in Pasadena, California; the Wharton Club of Philadelphia, the London Business School Club of New York, the Rotman School of Management, at the University of Toronto; the Library of Congress and National Press Club in Washington; and in Tokyo, at the Drucker Workshop 7th Annual Conference in 2012, at Waseda University.

Since 1996, he has been an adjunct professor at The Catholic University of America. The Special Libraries Association (SLA) named him as one of two recipients of the 2012 Rose L. Vormelker Award for "dedication to mentoring, outstanding instruction in graduate school settings, and their own professional achievements." He received the 2016 Roger Summit Award from the Association of Independent Information Professionals (AIIP), and delivered the annual Roger Summit Lecture at the organization’s annual conference in Pittsburgh.

Bruce has a BA from The American University and a MSLS from The Catholic University of America's School of Library and Information Science. He is based in Rockville, MD.

Contact Information:

Bruce Rosenstein



Phone: 240-535-5805



Twitter: @brucerosenstein

January 5, 2018

Leadership or Management?
What's the Difference?
Does Anyone Really Care!

Due to the weather and difficult travel topic for tomorrow's LBMD Meeting (Friday January 5th) has a last minute change. 

The new topic and session will be a highly interactive approach to Leadership Or Management? What's the Difference? Does Anyone Really Care!

Sally Strackbein recently shared an observation with Jack about Leadership and Management - she notes that he says the topics for LBMD sessions are about leadership, but the content of the sessions seems to emphasize management. This session will give us an opportunity to take a look at what is labeled leadership and what is said to be management, as we take on the task of determining what constitutes either function and how they interrelate.

Jack Gates and Lowell Nerenberg are tag-team facilitators for the session, but the 'heavy lifting' will be done in small groups which distill their thoughts about the functions and share the findings with the group. A goal for the session is to develop a better understanding of both functions, and perhaps a catch-phrase or two which captures the difference.

Unfortunately, the program originally scheduled for January 5th must be postponed until the August 3rd LBMD Meeting due to unforeseen circumstances. We apologize for any confusion or inconvenience which may have resulted from the change in program topic.

Take-Away's from This Session

  • Practical functional traits of the terms leadership and management
  • Our collective wisdom about when and how leadership and management contribute to operational success
  • Answers to the question raised with the topic title: Does it really matter if we distinguish between the two terms?
About Our Facilitators:


         Lowell                  Jack
       Nerenberg            Gates

Lowell was the founder and CEO of Computer Graphics Distributing Company, an Inc. 500 (#144) firm.

He went on to roll it up with five other companies, which then went public. He also co-founded a similar New England distribution firm which the public company acquired. 

Since 2005 Lowell has been an executive leadership and management coach, first as a Chair with Vistage, leading and coaching CEO and key executive peer groups.

Lowell now works with individual companies’ CEOs and senior executives through his firm, Coach Lowell. He uses EFT as an effective tool to facilitate sustainable change for his clients.

Contact Information

Lowell Nerenberg

Coach Lowell

(301) 467-6224


Jack founded and leads the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland, a membership group of experienced leaders - meeting monthly since February 2008; led the National Captioning Institute – a $22 M organization – as President & CEO; had senior executive roles with Union Memorial Hospital, Towers Perrin, Watson-Wyatt, and PRC in entertainment, healthcare, and human resources industries; and has hands-on experience in operations, human resources, finance, client development, association governance, and marketing/sales. He served for 10-years on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Smith School and taught business and technology classes as an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland for 8 years.

He is actively involved in several organizations providing intergenerational programs – activities bringing together individuals from older and younger generations to learn from each other and to expose each generation to the magnificence and accomplishments of the other generation. Jack served on the Board of Directors of Interages for over a decade, chaired the Strategic Planning Committee, and led its merger into the JCA, another non-profit with intergenerational programs. He is a mentor and Board Advisor to the HOCHA Foundation, a start-up established in June 2014, which works with elderly participants to capture their life stories through reminiscing interviews by college students, creating a legacy memory book for the participant and their family.

Gates is currently focused on mentoring start-ups, and the entrepreneurs that launch them, which have an interesting mission and a unique approach to achieving results. In addition, Jack is COO of Sales Lab and is active in groups, such as DC Tech for start-ups and the Google technical user and developer group which use technology to gain efficiency.

Jack earned a BS from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park and an MBA (Finance) from Southeastern University in Washington, DC.

He is a native Washingtonian and served in the U.S. Army in Viet Nam.

Contact Information:

Jack Gates

Phone: 240-424-0843



Twitter: @jacklgates

Google+ Profile: +JackGates

December 1, 2017 

A Presentation about Innovation

Ideas are never the problem. 
Everyone has a bright idea now and again. 
What’s challenging-- and what’s also far more precious-- is the process of transformation. 

How does an idea transform from a moment of imagination into something real?

The process of bringing something new into the world demands perception, initiative, persistence, and creativity.  Taken together, its called innovation, and it’s one of the most elusive goals for a creative person. Where heartfelt emotions, dogged labor, or clever execution may make a person or business successful, innovation demands something else. It might concern the creation of a new, tangible product, or it might have to do with the intangible practicalities of a business plan, a financial strategy, or a philosophical concept. Innovation is less a function of the specific thing that's created than it is a function of how well this new thing integrates with the world. 

In this dynamic multimedia presentation, Michael will explore the process of innovation from a variety of angles.  Drawing from his experience as a filmmaker and media advisor, Michael will present historical examples, tangible metrics, and (most importantly) structured thinking about the process of taking casual observations and turning them into tangible innovations.

Our session will have an interactive element but will break the traditional structure with an innovative approach to sharing experiences following Michael's presentation.

Take-Aways From This Session:

  • A fresh look at innovation as a constructive action
  • A structured thinking process to convert casual observations into tangible innovations
  •  The creative joy and accomplishment involved with innovation.
About Our Facilitator: 

 Michael Starobin
Michael Starobin is President and Creative Director at 1AU Global Media, LLC, a multimedia production and consulting company.  His award-winning work has played at The Smithsonian, The United Nations, congressional and other federal presentations, national television outlets, and corporate venues. Two of his films have been finalists at the Jackson Hole Science Film Festival.

In 2006, Michael led the development of technology and procedures for delivering the world’s first movie created specifically for spherical screens. The resulting film, called FOOTPRINTS, continues to play around the world. Time Magazine named FOOTPRINTS one of the best inventions of the year. Michael and his team used these techniques to produce the principal film presented by the United States delegation to the Copenhagen climate summit.

Michael’s international production experience has taken him to Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center for a joint US/Japanese launch of a vital research satellite. Recently he accumulated more than a hundred hours flight time on NASA’s P3 aircraft over Greenland on a mission to measure ongoing changes in polar ice, and not long after he traveled to Chile for a month-long journey with scientists making similar low altitude research flights over Antarctica.

In addition to working with spherical and conventional screens, Michael and his team have produced for 3D systems, ultra-high resolution wide aspect video walls, and live events.  His most recent work has been with 360-degree video technologies, including augmented reality components, demonstrated at a recent launch event from NASA’s Wallops Island Flight Facility in  November  2017.

Earlier in his career, Michael worked in the Washington news corps, overseeing daily news and video distribution for Conus Communications, a national media company.  Before assuming a leadership position at Conus he started the company’s science and technology desk in Minneapolis, reporting on a wide range of subjects. Prior to Conus, he worked in Public Radio as a producer. 

Michael graduated from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota with a degree in anthropology and honors work in biomedical ethics.  His weekly blog on creativity appears on Mondays at

Contact Information:

Michael Starobin

Founder, Creative Director

Phone: 301-524-4404
Twitter: @michaelstarobin

November 3, 2017 

Put on Your CRFLPJS to Be a Better Leader

This session will explore the uses (and abuses) of “Neuroleadership."  

The “Primary Palette of Feelings (CRFLPJS)” will be offered as a paradigm for utilizing neuroscience in leadership, management, and consulting.  

Examples from the facilitator’s practice and the audience's group experiences will illustrate the advantages and limits of present-day psychological (mind) and neuroscientific (brain) concepts.

Take-Aways From This Session:
  • What CRFLPJS stands for and how it applies to neuroscience applications
  • Appreciation for using current psychological and neuroscientific concepts to better understand (and lead) our followers
  •  Limits of today's mind and brain concepts as tools to influence performance and results.
About Our Facilitator: 


 Dr. Thomas Hoffman

Thomas Hoffman is a physician scientist who completed a 20-year career in the United States Public Health Service at the FDA and National Institutes of Health as a research team leader, regulator, and science administrator.

Thomas combines his public and private sector experience in R&D and biomedical management with a thorough knowledge of classical psychoanalysis, contemporary psychology, and management theory.  

He is expert in individual and team dynamics, management science,  immunology, and neuroscience.  

He is a clinician with a private practice, an academic, and a practitioner, having founded the consulting firm PScience Associates that focuses on biotechnology and high-tech enterprises.  

He currently serves as the Co-chair, Committee on Corporate and Organizational Consultants, American Psychoanalytic Association.

Contact Information:

Dr. Thomas Hoffman

Phone: 301-493-8630

October 13, 2017

What the Best Leaders Do During Unseen Hours

I’m confident we can all agree that time is our most precious resource. 

While we can blame the minute-by-minute distractions life throws at us, the real problem can be found in our daily habits and what we do during the unseen hours. 

To solve this problem, we must learn to guard and protect our time and live in the present. 

Which means we have to train ourselves to be excellent in every moment. 


Having the awareness to ‘be where your feet are.’ 

This will instantly raise our ability to lead, influence and impact others.

Take-Aways From This Session:
  • Learn the '3 Steps to Change' and the '3 Barriers to Change'
  • Learn how to design a daily schedule that works for you, not against you
  • Learn the connection between caring, attention and connection, and why they are the foundation of effective leadership 
  • Learn why you are only two habits away from drastically improving your leadership.
About Our Facilitator: 

            Alan Stein Jr.

Alan is world-renowned basketball performance coach, corporate speaker, executive leadership coach, podcast host and social media influencer

He has spent the past 15 years working with the highest performing basketball players on the planet, including NBA superstar Kevin Durant and the #1 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, Markelle Fultz. Alan now teaches organizations how to utilize the same strategies in business that elite basketball players and teams use to perform at a world-class level.

He is passionate about developing genuine leadership, authentic team cohesion and true mental toughness, and works relentlessly to educate and inspire people to take immediate action to improve their mindset, habits, happiness and success.

Contact Information:

    Alan Stein Jr.



September 8, 2017

Understand Yourself and The People You Lead

Fifty percent of the employees studied by Gallup have left a job because they couldn’t stand their manager.

Effective leadership at work requires understanding the people you want to lead.

To understand others, you first need to understand yourself.

Understanding people requires both intellectual and emotional understanding; it engages both head and heart.

Dr. Maccoby will describe techniques for developing this understanding.

At this interactive meeting, using personality questionnaires that Dr. Maccoby has used with hundreds of managers and participants in executive programs at Oxford University’s business school, we will examine our different styles of leadership, their strengths, and areas that need work.

Take-Aways From This Session:

Different leadership styles & indicators to help identify them

Certain leadership styles which are most appropriate for specific environments

⦁ Shortcomings of different leadership styles in certain situations

About Our Facilitator: 

Dr. Michael Maccoby
The Maccoby Group            
Michael Maccoby is globally recognized as an expert on leadership. He is president of The Maccoby Group in Washington, DC.

For over 35 years, Dr. Maccoby has been consultant and coach to leaders in global corporations, unions, universities, the World Bank, and the State and Commerce Departments of the U.S. Government and the U.S. Army. He has worked in 36 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

Dr. Maccoby became known internationally both for his books on leadership and his pioneering projects to improve the workplace. His book The Gamesman (1976) was a bestseller and the first study of the new entrepreneurs and managers in high-tech industry. The Leader (1981) followed, presenting as an ideal, managers who developed both their organizations and people for a changing world. Why Work? Motivating the New Work Force (second edition, 1995), presents a new theory of motivation to fit the changing values of knowledge workers. It has been translated into 10 languages. Maccoby is co-author of Agents of Change: Crossing the Post Industrial Divide (2003), which describes his leadership of AT&T’s Workplace of the Future in the 1990s. His 2007 book, The Leaders We Need, And What Makes Us Follow, examines leadership from the point of followers as well as leaders. His 2015 book Strategic Intelligence, Conceptual Tools for Leading Change is based on his organizational experience and learnings from working with Russell Ackoff and W. Edwards Deming.

Dr. Maccoby’s article “Narcissistic Leaders: the Incredible Pros, the Inevitable Cons”, January, 2000 won a McKinsey Award, which recognizes the two best Harvard Business Review articles published each year. It was the basis for the book, The Productive NarcissistThe Promise and Peril of Visionary Leadership, published in 2003. In 2007, Harvard Business School Press published the paperback with a new introduction, re-titled Narcissistic Leaders: Who Succeeds and Who Fails.

Dr. Maccoby was facilitator of the National Coalition on Health Care in developing specifications for a comprehensive U. S. health care policy and is on the board of the NCHC. He has been a consultant on the management of change at health care centers, and received grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for the study “Leadership for Health Care in the Age of Learning”, which was published by the Association of Academic Health Centers in 2001. He is the senior author of Transforming Health Care Leadership, A Systems Guide to Improve Patient Health, Decrease Costs and Improve Population Health. (2013.)

Dr. Maccoby worked as a consultant, researcher, and lecturer in Sweden from 1973-2005. His book Sweden at the Edge (1991) described some of his work. In 2007, King Carl XVI Gustaf named him a Commander of the Royal Order of the Polar Star.

From 1978-90, Dr. Maccoby was director of the Program on Technology, Public Policy and Human Development at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He has taught at Harvard, University of Chicago, Cornell University, University of California, l’Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, Oxford as a Woodrow Wilson Fellow, the Brookings Institution and the Washington School of Psychiatry where he received a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. He received a B.A. in Social Psychology, and a Ph.D. in Social Relations, from Harvard. He also studied philosophy at New College, Oxford, and psychoanalysis with Erich Fromm and graduated from the Mexican Institute where he was a training analyst. With Fromm he wrote Social Character in a Mexican Village (1970, reissued in 1996). He has been a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, American Anthropological Association, Society for Applied Anthropology and the National Academy of Public Administration. He is a member of the boards of The Albert Shanker Institute and he coaches leaders at Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos, homes for orphaned and abandoned children in Mexico, Honduras, Haiti, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Bolivia and Peru. 

Contact Information:

Dr. Michael Maccoby

The Maccoby Group


August 4, 2017

The Independent CFO in Washington, DC and Change Leadership

The session will provide an overview of the unique history and roles and responsibilities of the District of Columbia’s independent Chief Financial Officer and the opportunities it provides for change management in government.  

The independent CFO is a position created out of the functional bankruptcy of the District in the mid-1990s and is a remnant of the Congressional appointed Control Board.  

The position is appointed by the Mayor, confirmed by the District Council, and approved by Congress to serve a five- year term and provides all areas of financial oversight for the District.

The focus of the discussion will provide an overview of how the experiences of good government - from lessons learned in Phoenix, Arizona - are being applied to Washington, D.C.   

During his 24-year tenure in Phoenix, Arizona, the city was a five-time recipient of the All American City Award and two-time winner of the Carl Bertelsmann Award for being the best-run city government in the world.

Mr. DeWitt will share experiences in defining strategic objectives, strategic initiatives and the development of an overall strategic plan for the Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO). 

This has led to the necessity to change to a culture based on accountability and continuous improvement.   

Culture change is very difficult in any business and can be even more challenging in government.  

The steps, experiences, and results of the journey over the past three years of culture change, driven by new technology, new business processes, training,  and change management needs, will be discussed as the OCFO strives to be a best-in-class financial organization for District government.  

Take-Aways From This Session:

Critical elements of successful organizational cultural change

What are the drivers of cultural change in an organization 

⦁ Lessons-learned which are applicable to private sector

About Our Facilitator: 


                    Jeffery S. DeWitt

Jeffrey S. DeWitt is the chief financial officer (CFO) for the District of Columbia and is responsible for the District’s finances, including its approximately $13.8 billion budget, the majority of which ($8.2 billion) is generated from local revenue sources. He also manages the city’s $6.6 billion capital improvement plan budget. 

Mr. DeWitt was appointed to this position by Mayor Vincent C. Gray and confirmed by the city council to complete Natwar M. Gandhi’s five-year term through June 2017. Mr. DeWitt was reappointed by Mayor Muriel Bowser and confirmed by the District Council for a full term through June 2022.

As the independent CFO, Mr. DeWitt manages the District’s financial operations, which include more than 1,000 staff members in the tax and revenue administration; the treasury, comptroller and budget offices; the DC Lottery, economic/fiscal analysis and revenue estimation functions, and all District agencies. 

In addition, Mr. DeWitt provides financial management and oversight of the United Medical Center, the University of the District of Columbia, and the Washington Convention and Sports Authority (EventsDC). 

He is also responsible for coordinating with congressional committees and the U.S. Office of Management and Budget staff that oversee District affairs. He regularly interacts with the financial community, including rating agencies, regarding the District’s financial matters.

Previously, Mr. DeWitt served as CFO for the city of Phoenix, the 6th largest city in the United States, with a $3.4 billion annual budget and nearly 15,000 employees. There he managed a $7 billion debt portfolio and more than $2 billion in investments. He was a member of the City of Phoenix Employees Retirement Board, the Phoenix Community Development Investment Corporation, the Phoenix Downtown Hotel Corporation and Arena Development Board.

As CFO for the District of Columbia, Mr. DeWitt sits on the boards of the Washington Convention and Sports Authority (EventsDC) and Destination DC.

Jeffrey DeWitt is a member of the Government Financial Officers Association (GFOA), the American Accounting Association (AAA), Association of Government Accountants (AGA), and the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

He holds a master's degree from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, and a bachelor’s degree from Eastern Illinois University.

Contact Information:

Jeff DeWitt
Chief Financial Officer

Government of the District of Columbia

Phone: 202-727-2476

July 7, 2017

Do Rules Make the Leader - OR - Does the Leader Make the Rules?

We simply LOVE to read articles or blog posts listing the best of things - like Top 10 Lists, or 25 Best Practices, or Leadership Rules of World-Class Leaders. 

We are also fond of inspirational leadership quotes from the thought-leaders - concise stories of the success factors.

Almost every book about Leadership contains the author's collection of leadership elements...boiled down to poster captions or brief mantras for chanting while administering Leadership. 

In this facilitated interactive session, we will look at some of the popular practitioners' favorite rules, as well as some of our own favorites as well (remember to bring your favorite Leadership rule or quotation to add to the discussion) - including the 50 Rules of Leroy Jethro Gibbs from NCIS.

With this information as a backdrop, and the innovative imagination of LBMD participants, we will attempt to determine the critical elements of successful leadership - if such a result is possible. A target goal is to create a Most Effective Leadership Rules list.

Take-Aways From This Session:

Critical elements of successful leadership

The existence of one-size fits all Leadership -does it really exist?

Scalable Leadership Rules for different size/types of organizations

About Our Facilitator: 

   Jack Gates

Jack says technology is how we do things – not the things we do them with...those are just the tools. He develops new technology (the how) to get spectacular results using the latest tools (the things). In addition to working with clients to increase sales and improve operations, his assignments include mentoring, strategic planning, acquisition assessment, fundraising strategy, executive mentoring, and even took on the role of general manager of a country club.

Jack’s experience as a CEO, Director, and Chairman includes the disposal of 3 organizations and leading 2 organizations that were the target for acquisition – mergers and acquisitions up close and personal. He initiated the establishment of the captioning industry association, served on the FCC Post 9/11 Emergency Communications Task Force, and is actively working with students at his alma mater - The Smith School of the University of Maryland. He ran an international non-profit organization and has headed numerous boards and councils in business and community sectors.

Gates blogs about evolutionary changes in business, leadership, and better communications. He periodically posts to Sales Labs Posts, Open Source Leadership, as well as Through the Browser and numerous discussion groups. Distribution of Jack’s posts is typically 250,000+ readers – however, his post When Will We Get Back to Normal hit a distribution record of 1.3 million recipients.

Jack founded and leads the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland, a membership group of experienced leaders - meeting monthly since February 2008; led the National Captioning Institute – a $22 M organization – as President & CEO; had senior executive roles with Union Memorial Hospital, Towers Perrin, Watson-Wyatt, and PRC in entertainment, healthcare, and human resources industries; and has hands-on experience in operations, human resources, finance, client development, association governance, and marketing/sales. He served for 10-years on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Smith School and taught business and technology classes as an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland for 8 years.

He is actively involved in several organizations providing intergenerational programs – activities bringing together individuals from older and younger generations to learn from each other and to expose each generation to the magnificence and accomplishments of the other generation. Jack served on the Board of Directors of Interages for over a decade, chaired the Strategic Planning Committee, and led its merger into the JCA, another non-profit with intergenerational programs. He is a mentor and Board Advisor to the HOCHA Foundation, a start-up established in June 2014, which works with elderly participants to capture their life stories through reminiscing interviews by college students, creating a legacy memory book for the participant and their family.

Gates is currently focused on mentoring start-ups, and the entrepreneurs that launch them, which have an interesting mission and a unique approach to achieving results. In addition, Jack is COO of Sales Lab and is active in groups, such as DC Tech for start-ups and the Google technical user and developer group which use technology to gain efficiency.

Jack earned a BS from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park and an MBA (Finance) from Southeastern University in Washington, DC.

He is a native Washingtonian and served in the U.S. Army in Viet Nam.

Contact Information:

Jack Gates
Sales Lab

Phone: 240-424-0843




Twitter: @jacklgates

Google+ Profile: +JackGates

June 2, 2017

Break●Away Leadership: "Business as usual" is over...AGAIN

Suppose you wake up one day, and discover that someone you've never heard of is delivering the same product, the same value or the same service as you. For free...

This is not a wild hypothetical exercise. This has happened countless times to companies large and small. It’s called “disruption,” and it’s not a question of “if” but “when.” As a leader, do you know what you would do?

For many people, when faced with a challenge, the instinct is to resort to what has worked in the past. Unfortunately, familiar tactics won’t equip us to handle the complexity of disruption. We need new leadership skills, new tools, and new ways of thinking and doing. We call this Break●Away Leadership.

Join us for a hands-on, roll-up your sleeves experience that shifts the agenda from competition- based to value innovation, and shows you how to lead your organization into the increasingly complex disruption-based world.

Break●Away creates a new platform for designing your firm’s future. This session will challenge you to consider the new power position you can create.

Take-Aways From This Session

In this session, we will:

  • Move your customer focus from loyalty to empowerment
  •  Change your operational focus from efficient to intelligent
  • Reset your playing field
  • Create a digital agenda
Break●Away will give you the opportunity to explore these concepts and develop a new leadership model based on proven innovation best practices that are embedded in our Breakaway Leadership Framework.

About Our Facilitators: 

Karen Maples
David Schulman          

Karen Maples
Karen Maples is the founder and President of Myutiq – an innovation strategy firm that helps companies build innovation capacity for long-term viability and growth. Karen also serves as Chief Catalyst of FutureForward, a national and global initiative to inspire women scientists to commercialize their technology and to accelerate the number of women-led firms at the cutting edge of emerging and advanced technologies.  Ms. Maples is the co-creator of The Pursuit of UniquenessSM, a repeatable innovation process. And she created DIVERGESM, a complementary methodology focused on the leadership skills needed for innovation to flourish. Ms. Maples has written extensively about innovation for a variety of publications including SmartCEO and Enterprising Women. Recent articles include “The Dynamic of Innovation in Growing Your Business” and “Challenge for Thought” about open innovation platforms.

Ms. Maples was recognized by Enterprising Women Magazine as one of the top women entrepreneurs in North America. She holds a B.B.A. and M.B.A. from the College of William and Mary.  She has completed postgraduate studies in strategic planning and marketing strategy at Harvard Business School and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. When she’s not installing Innovation Ecosystems she loves to play tennis and go to the ballet. 

David Schulman
David Schulman is Chief Cloud Strategist for ForceCounsel, a technology consulting firm helping business executives build a roadmap aligning their technology investments with their business strategy.  In addition to requirements gathering, system selection and implementation, ForceCounsel specializes in assisting organizations in evolving their digital platform from operations and information management to value creation. 

David has worked in aerospace, healthcare, communications, associations and nonprofits. Prior to launching ForceCounsel, he launched, built and sold two business technology firms. PracticeOne, a cloud-based service provider enabling physicians to manage patient care, scheduling and accounting for over 500 physician practices nationwide. Prior to that, he launched Business Engineering, a Microsoft managed services provider which he ran for 15 years. When weather permits, David teaches sailing, guided by the principle that while you can't change the wind, you can adjust your sails.

Contact Information

May 5, 2017

Hiring and Developing A-Players: A Cornerstone of Leadership

Have you ever chosen the wrong candidate for a job?  

Or watched one of your clients agonize over losing one of her top people because she hadn’t spent time developing them?  

Can you recall the quick demise of Coca-Cola’s former CFO turned CEO years ago, who was over-promoted without consideration of his true skills and qualities?  

These experiences are both painful and costly: last year, CareerBuilder found that 41% of companies surveyed said that a bad hire in the previous 12 months had cost them at least $25,000. 

Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh estimates that his past bad hires have cost Zappos “well over $100M.  That’s a lot of shoes!  

Further, according to an article in HBR last December, “A study of the world’s 2,500 largest public companies shows that companies that scramble to find replacements for departing CEOs forgo an average of $1.8 billion in shareholder value.”

The ability to identify and develop great talent is not a "nice to have," it is essential to great leadership. This session will help you learn strategies that the pros (like me) use to identify and develop A-Player talent for current and future roles.

Take-Aways From This Session

In this session, we will:

  • Learn how to use Scorecards, not job descriptions, to assess fit for a current role or future opportunity
  •  Develop interview techniques to get the information we need, rather than the information they want to give us
  • Identify strategies for useful – and critical – reference conversations
  • Learn the importance of calibration discussions to reduce errors and biases
Don’t miss this interactive, eye-opening session that will leave you in a better position to lead and create A-Teams! - for you or for your clients.

About Our Facilitator: 
          Dr. Ann Bowers-Evangelista

                 Llumos, LLC

Ann is President of Llumos, LLC, a Washington, DC-based women’s owned small business. 

Throughout her 18-year career, she has leveraged extensive experience as a consultant and business leader to help organizations successfully select, grow, and retain talent. Ann is an expert in executive selection, coaching, team development, and women’s leadership; she also speaks regularly on strategies to enhance leadership and organizational success. 

As a trusted advisor, she brings candor and critical insights to high-stakes situations to yield breakthrough results. Prior to Llumos, Ann served as Principal at Green Peak Partners and as Managing Director at TalentQuest, a leadership consulting and performance management firm in Atlanta. She began coaching while still in graduate school; her first client was the General Counsel of a Fortune 1000 company. Since then, she has coached over 100 executives, and completed several coaching-related programs, including Coaches Training Institute and Human Performance Institute’s Corporate Athlete program. 

Ann has a unique background that blends psychology, business, and an endurance athlete mindset. She is high-energy, caring yet no-nonsense, and action oriented, focusing coaching work on sustainable, positive change. 

Ann has worked with clients in the Fortune 1000 as well as smaller companies and nonprofits, including: Bayer Healthcare, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Coldwell Banker, Cousins Properties, Danaher Corporation, Fortive Corporation, Morgan Stanley, Mizuno USA, the Paperboard Packaging Council, TimBar Manufacturing, Turner Broadcasting, Vera Bradley, and Vital Voices. Ann attained a BA from the University of Michigan, and a Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology and an MBA from Widener University. 

She is a licensed psychologist and member of the American Psychological Association (APA), the Society of Consulting Psychology, the Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology, the US Women’s Chamber of Commerce, and the Alexcel Group. 

An Ironman triathlete, Ann and her husband Dave often use the sport of triathlon to raise money for Team in Training and Back on My Feet. They are also active supporters of Vital Voices. When not engaged in insane hobbies, they like to travel and to cook. 

Contact Information

Ann Bowers-Evangelista


Llumos, LLC



Twitter: @DrAnnieBE

April 7, 2017

Align by Design: 
Cultivating Balanced Leadership

Let’s face it.  

Our lives mostly consist of running from one task to the next, pushing ourselves way beyond our energetic limits. No matter how hard we work at getting more organized and proficient with managing our calendars, we’re still left feeling frustrated and drained at the end of the day.  

That’s because we’ve got it all backwards.  When we shift our focus from trying to manage time and start managing our energy, we’re able to harness our personal and professional power and unleash the potential in those around us.  

Join Mina Fies in this interactive session, as she shares innovative, yet practical, tools that empower us all to live an aligned life. 

Take-Aways From This Session

  • How to align physical environments with our personal energetic needs
  • Identify and honor energy rhythms for peak productivity
  • Secrets to creating and maintaining energetic boundaries with others 
Don’t miss this interactive and eye-opening session that will leave you in-action and empowered to run your day like a boss.

About Our Facilitator: 
      Mina Fies
Synergy Design & Construction

Mina Fies is the Founder and CEO of Reston-based Synergy Design & Construction and author of The Renovation Roadmap™ Her innovative approach to home remodeling and the client experience fueled her company’s success despite starting in 2008 against formidable economic circumstances.

Mina is often recognized for her trailblazing efforts, has won multiple design and construction awards, and had a home featured on the Reston Home Tour.  She loves to use her training in Interior Alignment® and as a Certified Green Professional (CGP) to help others embrace the spaces around them to live the healthy, happy lives they’ve always wanted. 

As past president of the Greater DC Chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), Mina’s passion lies in fostering leadership and innovation in others.  She is a sought-after speaker and is often featured in national, local, and online media outlets. 
Contact Information

March 3, 2017

Stories Leaders Tell

Great leaders are great communicators. 

Do you know the key to great communication? 


Scientific studies show that stories help us understand and remember concepts and facts. 

Human brains expect information to be delivered in stories. 

That's why fables, stories, and literature have stood the test of time. Parents tell the story of "The Boy who Cried Wolf" when they want their children to learn the importance of not lying or playing tricks.

Leaders who inspire people to action use the power of story to persuade, connect and motivate.

Sally Strackbein will cover some of the types of stories that you can tell to be a more credible, more charismatic, and more convincing leader.

Take-Aways From This Session
Stories that:
  • Share the Vision
  • Motivate and Persuade
  • Educate and Inform
About Our Facilitator:  

Sally Strackbein

Sally Strackbein inspires people to discover, clarify and express their value through speaking, writing, and storytelling. 
Her presentations, workshops, and coaching help her clients create and deliver messages that motivate, educate, or sell.

Contact Information

February 3, 2017

w Leaders Can Learn to Grow and Rewire their Brains to Achieve Break Through Results

In today’s hectic business world, understanding brain science and Neuroleadership is increasingly critical for personal, professional and organizational success.

In this dynamic and interactive presentation, Wendy Swire will focus on the exciting area Neuroplasticity – which is the brain’s ability to create new neural connections – to help achieve breakthroughs. 

The ability to literally "rewire your brain" has tremendous applications for senior executives, leaders, and managers in any organization. 

Wendy Swire has worked as an executive and leadership coach for over 20 years.

She will also draw upon her extensive background in the field, as head of the DC Neuroleadership Group and a member of the prestigious Society for Neuroscience. 

You will learn how to create new neural connections for yourself, your team and respond to increased demands. 

Take-Aways From This Session
You will learn the following three specific insights to apply Neuroplasticity: 
  • What are the most common myths of brain plasticity. 
  • The role of Hebb's Rule (neurons that wire together fire together).
  • How to turn the “ON” switch in the brain for learning, memory and habit formation -- that can be used to help your employees, teams,  associates.
About Our Facilitator:  

Wendy Swire

Wendy Swire is an author, speaker, executive coach and Neuroleadership consultant based in the Washington, DC area. Throughout her 20 years of experience, she has worked with over 1,000 leaders as an executive coach at all levels – from C-Suite to emerging millennials.   

Wendy has been active in the field of neuroscience and Neuroleadership since 2009 when she started the DC Neuroleadership Group (former through the Neuroleadership Institute).  Wendy has presented workshops and training seminars on the application of brain science to audiences ranging from Fortune 50 executives, executive coaches, congressional staff members, health care industry leaders and others. She is a member of the prestigious Society for Neuroscience and works with neuroscientists to ensure her workshop material utilizes the latest brain science findings.

She works with cross-cultural and international clients and groups, including delivering a five-day leadership course for Foreign Service Officers and nationals throughout the world. Prior to forming Swire Solutions, Wendy worked as an international economist for the Office of Management and Budget and the US Treasury Department and as a banker on Wall Street.

She is the Co-Author of Anytime Coaching: Unleashing Employee Performance, which has become an essential reference guide.

Wendy was trained in negotiation and conflict resolution at Harvard Law School where she subsequently was hired as a research and teaching assistant at Harvard’s Program on Negotiation. She also served as Adjunct Professor at Johns Hopkins Carey Graduate School of Business teaching negotiation and conflict resolution. She received her Master’s Degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts/Harvard Universities) and her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Mount Holyoke College. Wendy is married and the mother of two sons. She is a founding board member of the Conflict Resolution Center of Montgomery County and supports the NICL School in Leogane, Haiti where she has visited and volunteered. 

Career Highlights:
  • Coached over 1000 leaders, from C-Suite (CEO, CFO, SES), mid-level executives to millennials and new managers 
  • Adjunct Professor, Johns Hopkins Carey Graduate School of Business 
  • Developed and delivered leadership and conflict curriculum for over 10 federal agency programs
  • Designed and Delivered over 20 strategic planning sessions for senior leadership teams
  • Mentor coach to retired Foreign Service Officers 
  • Certified Bi-Lingual Mediator,  7th Circuit Court (MD)  
  • Leader DC Neuroleadership (Institute) Group since 2009
  • Nominated to and Member, Society for Neuroscience  
  • Guest speaker and presenter at over 50 conferences. 

Contact Information

Wendy Swire, MA, PCC


Swire Solutions, LLC

Phone: 301 - 652 - 1143



January 6, 2016

Communal Attention Patterns and the Big Breakthroughs

We are born with vital attention patterns.  

We don't even know they exist, and how they drive us through our day.  We learn many more attention patterns.  We get so used to those that we think we are seeing the world as it really is.

Attention patterns have been called a variety of things during the last few decades; the gestalt, and your input filters, among others.  They are meant to shorten the time it takes for you to understand your immediate situation and execute your best possible next move...often in an emergency.

If your attention patterns aren't actually tuned to your real world, however, they won't prompt the move you actually need to make in a given moment.  And the longer you have been using these patterns, the less likely they are to be tuned to your present situation.  After all, almost all of us hear daily complaints about the rapid rate of change in the world these days.  Maybe you make some of them.

In our session, we'll examine a primary childhood attention pattern and how it generates much of our experience in leadership roles.  

We will then extend those implications into other business applications, such as cracking long-standing problems, and learning how to lead change by changing the attention patterns of your crew.

Take-Aways From This Session
After this session, you will:
  • Understand how communally-held attention patterns contribute to and often lock in a corporate culture.
  • Be able to identify key parts of an attention pattern that need to be adjusted in order to effect a needed corporate culture change.
  • Be able to draft a short set of steps, for everyone to follow to help them adjust their personal attention pattern, for each key part of the pattern that creates a problem in/for your corporate culture.

About Our Facilitator:  

Tom Meylan, Ph.D.

Dr. Meylan is an astrophysicist by training who directed an international research center for NASA at Goddard Space Flight Center.  

He left the NASA environment to enter private sector IT consulting.  

Dr. Meylan is presently building a data science practice at AboutWEB, LLC, a HUB Zone Certified Small Business.

Contact Information