Margaret Wheatley, EdD, began caring about the world's peoples in 1966, as a Peace Corps volunteer in post-war Korea. In many different roles-- speaker, teacher, consultant, advisor, formal leader--her work has deepened into an Margaret Meg Wheatleyunshakable conviction that leaders must learn how to invoke people's inherent generosity, creativity and need for community. As this world tears us apart, sane leadership on behalf of the human spirit is the only way forward. She is co-founder and president of The Berkana Institute, (, an organizational consultant since 1973, a global citizen since her youth, and a prolific writer. She has authored nine books, including the classic Leadership and the New Science. She has been honored for her ground-breaking work by many professional associations, universities and organizations.

NJ Social Workers:
Approved for 15 General hours by NJ ASWB.

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Who Do We Choose To Be? Facing Reality, Claiming Leadership, Restoring Sanity
July 23-27, 2018

This course summons us to be leaders for this time as things fall apart, to reclaim leadership as a noble profession that creates possibility and humaneness in the midst of increasing fear and turmoil. It is possible, in this time of profound disruption, for leadership to contribute to the common good. It is possible, as we face the fearful complexity of life-destroying problems, to experience recurring moments of grace and joy.

It is possible, as leaders of organizations, communities, and families, to discover deep and abiding satisfaction in our work if we choose not to flee or withdraw from reality. It is possible to find a path of contribution and meaning if we turn our attention away from issues beyond our control and focus on the people around us who are yearning for good leadership and engage them in work that is within reach. It is possible to use our influence and power to create islands of sanity in the midst of a raging destructive sea.

Twenty-five years after the publication of Leadership and the New Science (1992), Margaret's newest book uses the new science of living systems to explain why we ended up in this harsh, life-destroying world, in spite of our years of efforts to create positive change. She also tracks our current culture against the very well-defined pattern of collapse as described in the work of several historians and economists.

There are those who welcome in this time of disruption and chaos as the means to create healthier, more humane and life-affirming ways of living on this planet, (for as long as the planet will have us). But Meg's work directs our attention to how we need to lead people through the falling apart stage. We cannot simply leap to new ways of being; first we must prepare for disintegration and collapse and the strong emotions that accompany them. First we must learn how to use our power and influence as leaders to create islands of sanity, where the best human qualities can be maintained rather than succumbing to fear and aggression. As leaders, we can respond with sanity, partnering well with life's organizing dynamics to create cohesive teams and communities where people feel motivated to be generous, creative and kind.

This course provides a rich and provocative learning environment, with time to: explore the dynamics of your own organizations and/or communities; gain awareness of your personal experiences/learnings as leaders; gain greater understanding of the pressures and dynamics of current culture; and learn practices that reintroduce us to the pleasures and possibilities of working well together, no matter what is occurring in the external environment.

What time is it on the clock of the world?

The pattern of collapse: Lessons for leaders

The dynamics of living systems: Lessons for leaders

Leading an Island of Sanity

Who do we choose to be?

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We are delighted to welcome Meg Wheatley back to the Institute!

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