WSB 004 : How You Can Use Dynamic Facilitation To Save The World With Jim Rough

The WorkshopBank Podcast Session 4 : How You Can Use Dynamic Facilitation To Save The World With Jim Rough

In Session 4 of The WorkshopBank Podcast, I’m talking to Jim Rough who is the founder and originator of a technique called Dynamic Facilitation that we also explored in Session 2. He’s on the show to tell me the origin story of DF and how he believes that DF is the answer to all of the worlds seemingly impossible problems.

And you know what? I think he’s right.

I’m such a sucker for ‘change-the-world’ stories and so if you’re like me in this respect you’re going to love this Podcast.

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In this podcast session you’ll learn:

  • The unplugged origin story of the genesis of Dynamic Facilitation over the last 25 years
  • How Jim’s used Dynamic Facilitation to solve seemingly impossible and insurmountable real-life issues in both the workplace and in local government
  • Hear an incredible case study from Austria where 12 randomly chosen members of the public unlocked a long standing, often bitter at times, local issue for the where all parties are happy
  • How DF could / should be used by President Obama and across the EU to solve the current financial crisis
  • How you can get involved in the Dynamic Facilitation movement right now

Links mentioned in this podcast include:

Thank you so much, Jim, for coming on the show and being so generous with your time and knowledge here on WorkshopBank!

Get ready for the next session of The WorkshopBank Podcast coming very soon with something a little bit special. Here’s a hint. There are only 4 people in the world who are qualified to do this particular process. You’re not going to want to miss it.

Be sure to subscribe to the podcast below to get it automatically to your computer or device when it’s available.

Thanks and all the best!


Raw Transcript

WorkshopBank’s audio transcription is done by Speechpad

Nick: So, welcome, everyone, to the WorkshopBank Podcast. I’m very excited today because I’m joined by an absolute legend in the facilitation world. His name’s Jim Rough, and he is the godfather of Dynamic Facilitation. Some of you may have seen Session Two, that I did with Alex Nairn, a few weeks back. Alex took us through the process of dynamic facilitation.

Here with us today, we have the person who came up with the concept, who’s going to tell us the origin story of dynamic facilitation from over 25 years ago. He now travels around the world, teaching DF to his own community of followers. Certainly from my experience, they are passionate bunch, Jim’s followers, because since Alex’s interview, I’ve had a number of them reach out to me and say “hello,” and say what a great conversation that was. So, welcome and hi to them, I’m glad you’re with us. So, hi, Jim, nice to meet you, and welcome to WorkshopBank.

Jim: Nice to meet you, Nick.

Nick: Fantastic. Okay. So, I want to look at two or three things in this podcast, if that’s all right, Jim. I want to hear your origin story, hear where it all started, and I want to delve into one case study with you. What are your best case studies? You must have done quite a few now, in the last 25 years. But, I want to hear one, now, that’s had a major impact. Not only on the people that were participants, but also on you, I guess. It would be great to hear a bit of that side of the story, as well.

The people who listen to WorkshopBank want to hear stuff that’s actionable, and they want stuff that makes it real for them. So, as many real life case study scenarios as we can possibly get, we want. We learn so much better from real life case studies. So, tell me please, where did DF, Dynamic Facilitation, come from, and how did you get into it, and when did it become a thing for you? Because it was probably just something you were doing for a while, and then you realized it was an actual thing, a living being that was taking over your whole life. So, I’m really excited to hear about that.

Jim: Well, that’s exactly right. I was a consultant, an employee of a timber company, Simpson timber company, and I was also studying Jungian psychology, in my private time, obviously. And, I was also fascinated about the issue of creativity, and I was on the faculty of the Creative Problem Solving Institute. The task was. . . I was trying to get a Quality Circles group going in the middle, and management said, “No, no, no, we don’t want that. We don’t like. . . We want you to meet with those people, make them feel better, but we don’t want you to spend any money on training, and we don’t want you to spend any money on. . . We don’t want to be there. We don’t want the foreman there. But, we’ll pay the men to show up.”

So, what happened was the management of this mill. . . I accepted it, because I thought that I wanted to focus on creativity. I wanted them to solve impossible-to-solve problems. I mean, if creativity exists, then presumably, we can solve impossible-to-solve problems. So, I wanted to pursue that, and I really didn’t get it at the time, but management had given me the opportunity to have a laboratory, with real people walking in the door. I got to try out different processes, to see if I could get it to work.

I found that it didn’t work, that all this stuff that I had been learning about brainstorming, and I thought the Osborn-Parnes technology, and the Synectics, and different creative thinking strategies. . . They didn’t apply to real problems, not the kinds of problems these guys had, which were, “I hate the foreman, I hate my life, I want out of here, how do I make things work?” That kind of issue.

Nick: Right. So, it’s a fairly large-scale issue.

Jim: Yeah. So, I asked them to pick some impossible-to-solve issues to work on, and at the beginning they would choose issues like, “Let’s fire the foreman. If we could fire that guy, my life would be better.” I say great, let’s work on that. . . Which is not the kind of issue a Quality Circle program would choose. But, it was their issue, and they were angry, and they wanted action. So, I thought, well, fine, let’s work on that. In the process, I wanted to help them be creative in solving it. So, I just did whatever it took to help engender a creative spirit around this task.

They would eventually come to this realization, as they would talk, they would come up with data, for instance. I would write down, oh, that’s a piece of data. And, the data would be, “Gee, he’s not a bad guy, when I run into him away from the mill, in a bar or something.” So, that would be a piece of data, and I’d realize as I’d write it down that people would shift. Now, all of a sudden, they would have these insights that, “I’m not so interested in firing him anymore. The real problem is the whole mill. The whole management system.”

What would happen, and maybe we’re getting into the case study as it turns out, I wasn’t thinking about that. But, what would happen is that the problem would get bigger, but their feeling of empowerment would get stronger. They would shift from “firing the foreman seems do-able, but changing the management system of the mill seems bigger, seems more impossible.” And yet, they would be more excited, and more empowered, to go do that.

Nick: So, all positive as well? Would their general emotional state be feeling better that they’d got that position, or. . .

Jim: Yes, more excited about it, and more connected with one another, and people would go, “Yeah, that’s it.” So, it was an odd progression. The problem would get bigger, and worse, so to speak, but their excitement and sense of empowerment would get even more. . . I remember, they would test, they would also work on issues at the same time. They would work on “Why is lumber getting ruined at this machine center,” or something like that. They would have breakthroughs around that, too. They would have marvelous breakthroughs to fix that.

In time, what would happen is that the . . . Just by the way they were working, coming up with insights, they were changing the management system of the mill. So, they were tracking both of these, that they were solving impossible-to-solve problems in the mill, and they were changing the big one, which was solving the management problem. All of a sudden, now the employees would be managing their own equipment, and the foreman would not have to do all this work, and they would go do something else.

Nick: So, was the foreman involved in the process as well? Did the management come in at all?

Jim: What happened at the first was that the foreman missed the first year. When it finally became time to involve them, I asked them. It’s a time to get involved. Both of them . . . There was a moment of tears, actually. When they realized how they just didn’t realize these people could be like this. They were upset at themselves, and at the situation.

When it came time to join the group, both the night shift foreman and the day shift foreman got sick. Neither had ever been sick before, and they wanted to be a part of the group, but they were afraid, I think. I don’t know. They were really sick, but it was the only time they were sick, and they were both sick. I think it was a powerful time of transition, when they did join the group, and became full participants in the process.

So, the original problem was to fire the foremen, and what happened is there was a transformation in the foremen, there was a transformation of the system. Along the way, they were solving lots of impossible-to-solve problems, where I would tease them. I would say, they would say, there’s nothing you can do about it, we have to hire another employee, that’s the only thing you can do.

Then I would tease them, and we’d just start working on it. They would have a mind shift of thinking creatively. All of a sudden, they would say, “Oh, let’s go look at it.” Everybody would jump up, and we’d run downstairs, and look at how the machine was hanging up or something. All of a sudden, new ideas would start popping. Then you’d point to them later, “Remember these charts I wrote down, where you said it was impossible to solve this? Well, notice that you’ve solved it.” It was a lot of fun, really.

Jim: So, you weren’t just back sitting in a room with them, you were. . . Now I’ve got this picture of a group of people running around, from one problem area to another. Was it. . .

Jim: Well, I’d be sitting in the room, and I would have the flip chart. They would say something, and I would write it on the flip chart, and reflect it back to them. What happened over time was, that the group would feel, they would start to see opportunities. I was basically protecting people, because they wanted to criticize them, one another, they’d criticize themselves, they wanted to be angry at their situation. My role was to accept everything they were saying, but to keep everyone safe.

So that, when someone would say, “That was the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard, how could you possibly think that,” I would grab that person and say well, tell me what your concern is, and then I would come back to the other person and ask them what they had just said. In other words, nobody got to pick on anybody. It was always a puzzle that we were working on.

Nick: You would always make sure that the conversation would go through you, rather than themselves attacking each other.

Jim: Yes. Not always, but if it ever became delicate, yes. They would have lots of . . . What they did was they transformed the mill, the management system of the mill. Which is really what they started out wanting to do . . .

Nick: So, management complete bulletin. How long was that process, from start to transformation?

Jim: A year and a half. The foremen became involved, and it took about a year and a half, and people just realized, “Hey, we’re working in a different place.” We would have different problems that would come up, that were really. . . One that’s coming to mind now is, we had. . . These were big logs, and we had this crane that operated this monster log, that would place it in position for another machine. These guys would sit in their little glass booths. These two guys hated one another, basically.

So they would operate these monster log equipment, and I finally brought them in the room together, and we were working on the problem of maintenance, that we need another maintenance guy, that was it. They knew it was impossible to hire another maintenance guy.

The more we got talking, and thinking, and sharing . . . I didn’t know these guys didn’t like each other. I later got told by the foremen, but basically what they would do, is they would realize that . . . I forgot, I just remembered. I asked them, what was the number one problem that they had? So we worked it through, and it was this piece of equipment that would get hung up. We worked it through, and what they were able to do was cut out a little piece of metal, so that it no longer hung up at all. It wasn’t like, we didn’t have to clean up anything. It turned out that these guys started double dating. They liked each other.

The level of maintenance required was way down, the level of clean-up was way down, the level . . . Everything they touched. The heavens would part, and blue sky would come out, and it would just be like . . .

Nick: A beautiful saying.

Jim: So these guys were really liking one another. One time I remember, I was using some normal creative stuff, and I said, what are you thinking about? They said, “Oh, I’m thinking about this date I’ve got.” I said, well, what about it? The guy starts talking about how he wants to make love with this gal. I said, well tell me more about making love. What’s involved? Let’s take this machine center we’ve got here, and let’s make love to it. What do we need to do? It’s more than the other stuff . . .

Oh, it was a riot. They were laughing so hard, and they were coming up with “we need better lubricants, we need more foreplay.” It was just a joy. What they did is they did change lubricants, and then at a different procedure that they used to make this thing happen, they developed a new relationship with the union handling complaints about it.

Nick: Wow.

Jim: It was just. . . You’ve got me talking about something different than true DF. I teach Dynamic Facilitation, I don’t get into some of the traditional creative stuff, but it provides a perfect umbrella for departing into brainstorming, or departing into playing in these ways.

Nick: Getting wherever you need to go. So, after this experience, when did you start thinking that this was something you needed to now package up, and turn into a movement, which is what it is now?

Jim: A long time, really. What happened is that I would start seminars, and say in the seminars, well look, let’s practice this skill. I mean, this is a procedure that I’ve learned, just a different way of facilitating. I thought it was regular facilitation, when I started. In time, I discovered it was really different than traditional facilitation. My wife and I moved, and I started teaching seminars, and this process, and I realized, hey. This is something people should know about. But, I just thought it was facilitation. I called it Participative Leadership Facilitation, whatever.

But, as a way of practicing [inaudible 00:17:32] choose issues that society cared about. Just like the mill workers walking in and picking something impossible, I’d say, well, you pick something impossible, and we’ll get creative, and see if we don’t make progress on it. They would make progress on these big monster issues. It was really out of the progress from those issues that I began to get it, that I can’t talk about the regular facilitation. If you want to do this . . . You must have a good facilitator. Somebody can’t be a master facilitator and do this. They have to learn something different.

Often, in fact, some of the people that were known as master facilitators would come to the seminar, and we’d have beginners. And, the beginners would have a lot easier time picking up on Dynamic Facilitation than the credentialed master facilitators. I think you build up. . . All of a sudden you’re realizing, this is just not the same thing. It’s something different.

Nick: Yeah. It’s just something that you’d learned over time. So, it wasn’t something that you felt like you’d gone through a course or a seminar and picked stuff, it just evolved inside you.

Jim: Yeah. And I had these seminars, and I’d teach seminars now for 20, more than 20 years, and I’m with really bright people. We’re working on real issues. How often does that happen, when really, really bright people come together in a room and pick some issue, like global warming, inner city crime, or traffic, or whatever, and make headway in a brilliant way? People are looking at one another, excited. My God, we’ve come up with something. That something has narrowed down, too. Now I’m working headlong on something I call the “Wisdom Council,” which is really just tipping in cities in central Europe.

Nick: Yeah, it’s . . . Tell me about the Wisdom Council. How is that different from the process, or is it the same, with just a different direction?

Jim: One of the ways I think about it is, DF works great for a small group. You’re helping a small group. How do we make that happen for a large system, a very large system? Really, that’s what happened in the mill. When you changed the management system of the mill, even though I was working with this one day shift and night shift small group, somehow the whole mill changed system. So, in a sense, I was facilitating a very large system of people, although in practice I was only DF-ing one small group on day, and one small group on night. Really, the whole mill got involved, but they were involved anyway.

It’s kind of what’s happening in cities, really, in Austria in particular, and cities of western Austria especially. We randomly select 12 citizens, and they meet for a day and a half with a Dynamic Facilitator. In the process, people work on what they might think is impossible to solve. They won’t really solve it, but they’ll come up with a unified perspective that everybody’s excited about. It turns out, when they present that perspective to an assembled community, at a town meeting, everybody talks about it, and then we realized, gee, the whole room kind of feels the same way. We’re all on the same page.

Nick: So, you get consensus, just by having a sample size of 12.

Jim: We don’t call it a “consensus,” we call it “co-sensus.” It’s really different. This is one of the problems, that in Dynamic Facilitation, all the words that have meaning, like “dialogue” or “consensus” or “decision,” all these words, we just don’t use anymore. They really send us in the wrong direction. A decision, for instance, is something that happens . . . It means to cut away. It’s something that happens in my left brain, it’s a judgment.

What we’re doing, is we’re doing a creative process. We almost don’t have any judgment, here. Certainly people, and of ideas, we have limited judgment. We’re constantly in a creating mode, a co-creative mode, and we [inaudible 00:22:52] that we saw often, and notice that we’re all on the same page, we all know what to do. That’s like a decision, but we didn’t get there using any of the same mental processing. We got there through a totally different way of thinking.

Nick: Tell me about some example that’s happening in Austria, that’s maybe is going on, or has gone through the process, and they’ve created something amazing.

Jim: They’ve created something amazing, and it’s spreading, thank God, because in my mind this is how we’re going to solve the world problems and become sustainable as a society. We’re all of us somehow in one conversation, and we’re addressing these impossible seeming problems, and we’re reaching near-unity about what to do about them. So, that is win-win. That is the solution in my mind, the strategy for solving these global problems that we’re facing, and it’s becoming really important, to me, to realize that if we use words like “decision,” we use words like “consensus,” we use words like. . . Some of these words, they’re not the same. We need to keep the process pure, in order to be able to do that.

What they’re doing in Austria is that they have . . . Many cities have tried this, randomly selecting people, having them meet a day and a half, having them present in large town meetings, and it’s a way we can bypass the partisan gridlock. It’s a way for the legislators to feel connected with the mainstream citizens, and not just the usual people that show up and get mad at the public meetings. It’s a way to educate the citizens about the issues.

They’ve done it, and maybe an example, my favorite example, is in Bregenz, the westernmost city of Austria. It’s right on lake Constance. That city is very close to the lake, except there’s a highway and a railroad track that goes between it and the park and the lake. There’s a development right in the heart of- or there’s a parking lot right in the heart of Bregenz that should be a development, that developers want to develop. But, they haven’t, [inaudible 00:25:44], because the conflicts get so bad. So, they selected the 12 citizens, and they looked at what the development project was, and they came up with the unanimous perspective about how to change it, to make it work.

Basically, they said, “This is a one-in-a-hundred year opportunity for us as a community, to come into relationship with the lake, and that’s what we want. We have this highway and this train between us and the lake, and we want to be connected. This project should be a process of helping us connect to the lake. One way to do that would be to have the project be more on the second floor, and have us be able to spill over onto the lake, like with a Spanish stairs or something.” Basically, the developers, and everybody else in the room, said, “Yeah, that’s great, let’s do that.” It’s just, I asked them the big conflict situation that everybody anticipated, and it’s beginning construction this spring.

Nick: Wow, that’s amazing. So, the developers are using some of the land to develop whatever they want to do to make money commercially, and they’re giving some to the community at the same time? Or are the developers just doing whatever the community wants?

Jim: The community is basically saying, “here is the way this project should work.” The developers are saying, “hey, that’s even better than what we thought.” The mayor’s happy, and everybody’s happy. So, if I was President Obama right now, struggling with this partisan gridlock, break it.

Nick: He should get you involved. Has he not called?

Jim: I’d love for him to know about this. I’ve contacted all my elective representatives, and written him, and faxed him and stuff. To me, that’s a way to resolve a lot of these problems that we’re facing. It’s a way for the EU to deal with some of this banking mess that’s going on right now in Spain, in Italy, and Greece.

Nick: Yeah. And, it’s only going to get worse, especially in the economic crisis. The relationship between the public and the legislature just gets worse and worse and worse, doesn’t it.

Jim: It’s not only about . . . Yeah, it’s the relationship between the elected officials and the public, but it’s also a relationship between the system and the public. You see, what we’ve done is we’ve structured a system that is in charge of us. It’s a really goofy way to go. We can’t, we have people who want to teach schools, we have kids who want to be taught, we’re all together. We have a system that says, “Oh no, we can’t do that, because we have a budget crisis.”

So, how do we jump into the kind of thinking process where we are in charge? Where we, the people, come together, and say, “Oh, let’s set up a system that actually works,” rather than be subjects of this system? That’s the kind of break-through that is possible, if we enter into the space of what I call “choice creating,” which is what Dynamic Facilitation elicits.

Nick: So, why Austria, number one, and why not more? Why. . . I was talking to Alex in session two, and he saying that he’s found it really difficult to get government officials in the UK to say “yes” to Dynamic Facilitation. What’s the. . . And, that is possibly one of the reasons why you’re finding it hard to get to President Obama. Although, if you’re watching, Obama, you should be . . . Jim’s contact details are below this podcast, you can get hold of him through that link. I know you’re on LinkedIn, so . . .

Yeah, so why Austria, and why not the world?

Jim: Well, it will be the world. I don’t see a way other, yet. Maybe there’s other answers out there. But, here’s an actual answer. Part of your question is, why is it that people are so anxious about the environmental crisis, and the debt crisis, and whatever? Here’s a guy saying there’s a solution. Why is it that they turn and run? Really, it’s . . . Why is it that those people can leave the seminar so excited? Everybody leaves the seminar with their arms outstretched, ecstatic. How is it possible to get reabsorbed into the Borg, if you will? I don’t know if you know that expression.

Nick: Yeah, I do, yeah.

Jim: But, to me, that’s exactly what it is. It’s kind of like there’s a quality of thinking that we all know, that happens in a crisis often. Where somehow, we can pull together, be creative, and change everything. We know that quality of thinking, and it exists. I’ve given it a name, I call it “choice creating.” It’s different than decision making. It’s a quality of thinking where we break our walls of denial. We’re safe in our walls of denial, we have this denial that we live in, we say, “Okay, I can’t do this. I can do this, but I can’t do that. I have. . . There are certain things that are possible, there are certain things that are not.” We have, and we live in this, and it gives us a serenity. There’s even a serenity prayer, which is to me a way of setting up a wall of denial, that keeps me serene and calm. But, I know what I can do, I know what I can’t do. . . It’s sort of like a denial of the creative possibility that’s in me.

People, when they come into touch with that creative possibility, it’s scary. It’s scary. It’s not normal, in a way.

Nick: Because they feel like they’re losing control of their reason for being? Or . . .

Jim: Well, I don’t know about that. I think it’s that we’re really not in control, period. I mean, we really aren’t. But, there’s this kind of man- made, or human-made, concept that life can be controlled. So, we set up situations where we can actually do that. But, they aren’t very long lasting. . .

Nick: Or, at least, have a shot at doing that.

Jim: A shot at doing that, yeah. . .

Nick: I don’t think anyone actually does it, do they.

Jim: Well, we can go to the moon and come back, and it worked. But. . .

Nick: Yeah. We’re not going to do it again, though.

Jim: So, there’s a quality of thinking in us, where we drop the denial, and we just see a certain. . . We have access to our potential, and we surprise our self with our potential. It’s dangerous, too, because it’s traumatic. I mean, when there’s a crisis like that, it can be traumatic. I don’t have the answers on this, but those are hints in my mind about what’s happening. What could explain that we are collectively terminal? And yet, we’re happy to stay in this space of denial and continue to pursue economic growth as though this could go on forever.

At some point, there’s a waking up to . . . There’s a reaching the crisis plate, and then we wake up, or we can begin the wake-up process through a facilitation. That’s what . . . I think Dynamic Facilitation offers that capability, and the Wisdom Council offers it at a large group, a large system, in a large system way.

Nick: And, is the wisdom council only happening in Austria? Is it a body, or is it a company, or what is it?

Jim: We have some people in Austria, in particular [Origgle] and Rita Trattnigg and a few others, that get it. They are paid a salary, and they are incredibly respected people. And, what about the Austria experience, is that . . . I just attended a conference in Austria, sponsored by the government, on the topic of ending this dependence on growth, economic growth. You can’t mention that in the US. You can’t even mention that, and it was sponsored by the government.

The fact that they don’t have to have a defense industry . . . They don’t do that, and they’ve accepted their shadow in a way that the rest of the world hasn’t. They know that there’s evil out there, and that they have participated, and they’re basically saying, “Hey, let’s do something better.”

I think the German-speaking lands are going to be the leading element in the future, here. They’re pioneering, I mean they’re taking the ideas that I came up with on other people, that I know, that are pioneers. And, they’re listening. They’re working with it.

Nick: Has it spread across the border into Germany?

Jim: Yes. Yeah, Germany too, has had a number of Wisdom Councils, and seems to be . . . In fact, in Switzerland, too, it’s beginning. I think . . . There’s a great talk that [Manford] gave in Sweden, and I know that there’s going to be a group from Asia that’s coming to take a look. I just feel really optimistic that this is. . .

Nick: Saving the world’s great, but I would just really like Skype to work consistently. That would be really nice.

Jim: I appreciate your curiosity, though. That’s really nice.

Nick: I think it’s a really interesting solution to some massive problems. You’re right, we absolutely do need solutions to one of the biggest problems that we’ve faced, in a long, long time. This isn’t . . . These recessions that the world is going through, they’re not just going to suddenly go away. They’re going to be around for a long, long time. Way longer than the life of this podcast. So, we need to solve them.

Jim: The way I think about it is it could end tomorrow. It could end tomorrow, because what we’re doing it we’re just holding on to an existing system, and this system is terminal, and it’s really about people with resources, with desires, with needs, with shared needs coming together. That’s really what an economic system is supposed to be. What our current economic system is doing, is it’s preventing that coming together.

It’s set up as though we don’t have collective needs. That we can compete. It’s based on competition. I believe what’s going to happen eventually, and maybe sooner rather than later, is we’re all going to look at one another and say, “Hey, our economic system isn’t working, to give us what we need, and we need to do something else.” Just in saying that, just in thinking that, we’ve created a new economic system. As soon as we start collectively thinking what we need, that and working toward it, that is an economic system. But, that thinking process is prevented in our current system.

Nick: Yeah. So, Jim, how do people get involved? How can listeners reach you and meet you, and come to your seminars? What’s your schedule like in the coming months?

Jim: Well, we’re going to be going back to Europe. I guess we’re teaching a seminar in Northern California, and then we’re going to Northern Europe again. We’re going to Southern Europe again. Wherever it is . . . Central Europe.

Nick: Central Europe, yeah.

Jim: Austria, Switzerland, and Germany. And, we have a seminar scheduled in the UK. But, the website is. . . There’s two websites. One is, and the other is The Wise Democracy is our non-profit organization, and it’s about how to really set in motion a new system of democracy, really. As far as I can tell, it’s really working, and it’s going to happen.

We need people like you, that kind of get it, and get involved. Part of getting it, I think, is to come to the seminar. It’s a three-day seminar, and a four-day seminar sometimes, when people come back. Then there’s an understanding about choice creating, and an understanding of the principles of Dynamic Facilitation, and you can start practicing and bringing it forward. Then, hopefully, there’s an understanding about the wisdom council, and how we can come together as a society, how we can come together as communities.

Nick: Then, do you personally support, whenever you can, if a large company, or a large body, or a government, wants the man himself, the godfather, to be involved? You’re available to . . .

Jim: Absolutely. Absolutely, yeah. I haven’t figured out how to earn . . . I know how to earn a living, if my focus is on serving corporations. I don’t know how to earn a living if my focus is on saving the world. There’s nobody in our system that’s willing to pay for that. It’s an odd system. So, what we do is we charge, really, for the seminar, and then don’t. . . Try and just give everything, most everything, away. That’s kind of the way it seems to work out. Then, for people that can’t afford it, we work out something else for them to come too.

Nick: Well, that’s great. I’ll make sure all those links are below this video, below this podcast, so people can get hold of you and reach out to you. Is LinkedIn the best place to get you, or through your websites?

Jim: No, it almost took me about 15 minutes to figure out how to read your e-mail message.

Nick: Okay. Don’t contact Jim through LinkedIn.

Jim: I should. . . Probably just e-mail, I think.

Nick: Okay. And, what’s your e-mail address?

Jim: Well, one is, and another is

Nick: Okay. Fantastic. Well, Jim, thank you so much for your time, and I’m really glad we managed to get through this, and I’m glad Skype let us get through this, and I’m really glad that we worked out the time difference between us as well. All the best, and maybe we can do a catch-up again at some point in the future, and see what’s been happening in the time between now and then. That would be great.

Nick: Yeah, that’d be great, good. All right. Nice to meet you, Nick.


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Nick Martin helps leaders & consultants improve team results with resources, advice & coaching through