Deb’s Speaking Events

Prepared to Lead, 5 Ways Adaptive Leadership Creates High Performing Teams, Ann Arbor

Deb presented at the A2Y Chamber of Commerce Leadership 2.0 day this past March. Synopsis: Recent and surprising research illuminates what it takes to deliver 21st century leadership through high performing teams. Learn the four leadership behaviors, five norms and five skills to lead successful teams through adaptive change. This SlideShare features what’s current in:

    • Change fluency, mastering adaptive change
    • Top leadership skills needed in working with high performing teams
    • What distinguishes top teams and top leaders
    • Lessons learned from coaching senior leaders


21st Century Leadership, Mexico City

Sun Sculpture, from Mexico

Sun Sculpture, from Mexico

Deb presented and facilitated an Open Space Technology session on CPA firm leadership in a changing world at the 33rd annual  Russell Bedford International conference, with an international accounting consultancy consortium, in Mexico City in October 2016.

Deb’s plenary session focused on CPA leadership and adaptive change. Here’s a preview:

The post-heroic leader (Huey, 1994) is one who knows how to oversee co-creative as well as bottom-up transformative change. The 21st century no longer is served by 20th century hierarchy as the primary mode of leading.

We see this in:

  • leaders now relying more on their teams to cope with ever enlarging scope of rapid change and complexity
  • senior leaders judged on their ability to develop their leaders while serving as senior leadership team coaches,
  • shared power and community building into transformation, rather than installing change, and
  • the rise of social media, social product reviews in retail, and the citizen journalist.

These are examples of what the 21st century demands as work changes. Leadership has become more fluid, distributed and action-oriented (Nirenberg, 1993) so that leadership is shared, as it exists within relationship and within community.

Deb, during an Affinity Diagram (Open Space Technology style warm-up) in Mexico City, October

Latin American cultures understand relationship deeply, yet they cope with challenges of letting go of hierarchy and “machismo” that is deeply engrained in long standing views of what represents authority. Starting a leadership conversation, within relationships, can be the key that unlocks the door to:

1) letting go of old practices and beliefs that are now outdated and get in the way of high performance and intrinsic motivation

2) opening head – heart – and hands to embrace 21st century leadership learning, what is needed now, and

3) letting new beliefs, vision and actions emerge from stakeholders and in the leadership community, now ready to do something different.


See Deb’s other speaking engagements here on a range of topics including:

Preview: What's coming next, letting go, replacing with new thinking.

Preview: What’s coming next, letting go, replacing with new thinking.


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Contact Deb via email: or  LinkedIn or phone if you are interested in a chat about these and related topics for your organization

Stay in touch.  ~  Deb