ABA Division for Bar Services

Thank you very much for kicking off the BLI in a way that will make our participants think and ac in exciting new ways. They will think more collaboratively and more holistically about their approach to serving their members and the public interest. Working with you has been a rewarding and enlightening experience. The care you took in your preparation and delivery was nothing short of memorable. We look forward to a continuing relationship.

Elizabeth Derrico
Associate Director

DNA of Great Leaders… Moving Beyond Fear…


Even though technologies enable us to dissolve boundaries of space and time and connect us in exciting ways, we still face the same old challenge: to dissolve boundaries among colleagues, to build trust, and to engage our people.

We-centric leaders lift people out of fear, frustration, and anger, which cause people to disengage from each other. They create a culture that enables colleagues to be connected, involved in living the values and vision.

When people feel disconnected, they become reactive, project their anxiety onto others, create more fear, blame others for what is missing in their lives, reject first to avoid being rejected, and disengage.

When colleagues work in concert, they learn from each other, develop higher level skills and wisdom, meet performance goals, and turn breakdowns into breakthroughs.

When leaders turn to others for suggestions and value them, they create a community that looks forward to coming to work.

To Strengthen Your Organization’s Leadership DNA, learn to manage three Dynamics…

First, learn to manage your own reactions— bullying, intimidating, and micromanaging don’t get results; inspire others to higher performance.

Second, put your ego behind you— what matters is what “we can do together” not what “I” can do.

Third, let go of the past; focus on the challenges facing you and build healthy, mutually beneficial relationships.

Mastering these three dynamics changes everything. Your ability to lead will increase exponentially, and you will enhance your ability to create inspiring environments where people work together for mutual gain, growth, and understanding.

Rather than get tangled up in conversations about blame, fear, and frustrations about what is not happening at work, you establish a positive context for transformation by engaging people in ongoing conversations about what has, can, and will work to create a transformation. In doing so, you focus on what needs to happen to address the challenges and, with that focus and commitment, you develop into the best company possible.

Rather than trying to fix the past, create the future with others!

Experiment: Triggering Oxytocin in the Workplace

One way to catalyze greatness in your organization is to learn to move from fear to co-creating. Read this article from American Express Open Forum to give you some tips on how to do it… You’ll find a Conversational Intelligence™ Neuro-tip to help you pave the way… Learn how Oxytocin trumps fear!!!


Human Dignity and Humiliation Institute

YOU make the world a better place for all of us!

YOUR vision, YOUR dedication, dearest Judith, is what gives also me the courage to continue on our shared path to a more sustainable and dignified world!


Evelin Linder, MD, PhDs
Founding President

The Business of Being Nice


By Darren Dahl | Open Forum: Powering small business success
Published August 8, 2012

OPENForum-Random-Acts-of-Kindness-at-Work widescreen heroIt’s easy to think of the workplace as something like a battleground—a place where only the tough survive. 

But what if the tables were turned? What if, instead of rewarding harsh and ruthless behavior, the most successful people among us were actually, gulp, kind?

It Pays to Be Kind

“I grew up in the Bronx and I’ve heard a lot of four-letter words,” says Linda Kaplan Thaler, chairman of ad agency Publicis Kaplan Thaler and co-author of the book, The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World With Kindness, “and none of them are as powerful as n-i-c-e.”

Case in point: Back in 1999, the insurance company Aflac approached Kaplan Thaler’s tiny firm and asked it to pitch an idea for an ad campaign. When she asked how they found out about her, it turned out that she had been twice referred by influential people she had been kind to by taking time to give some free advice over lunch. Kaplan Thaler won the lucrative contract and the Aflac goose has since become a TV sensation.

“Many people don’t recognize that so much business can be generated from positive deeds and actions,” Kaplan Thalersays, whose firm now has 700 employees and accounts worldwide.

The truth is that no one wants to work in a hostile environment. When people enjoy where they work and feel trusted and appreciated for their efforts, they become more engaged and productive in what they’re doing. That, in turn, leads to better results—and better interactions with everyone from co-workers to customers. It’s also easier to recruit new superstars while keeping your existing stars on board through lower turnover. 

“Business is all about building relationships,” says Paul Spiegelman, the co-founder and CEO of The Beryl Companies, a patient experience service and thought leadership organization located in Dallas. Spiegelman’s book, Why is Everyone Smiling?, stresses the importance of treating people with kindness and respect. “And the best way to build relationships is to be kind and to show interest in and compassion for the people you work and interact with. Ultimately, that’s how you build trust, which is the single most important factor in business and in life.”

It turns out that our brains are actually hard-wired to respond to kindness and trust, says Judith Glaser, the CEO of executive coaching firm Benchmark Communications and author of Creating WE, delves into how neuroscience helps explain our relationships in the workplace. “When someone is kind and respectful to us,” Glaser says, “our brains produce more oxytocin and dopamine, which helps us relax, feel open to others, and be more sharing and cooperative.”

But, when we feel threatened or disrespected, Glaser adds, the opposite effect occurs, what neuroscientists calls an “amygdala hijack,” where our fight-or-flight instinct kicks in—not the best recipe for fostering teamwork and productivity.

 “Negative impressions are like germs,” Kaplan Thaler says. “If you say something nasty, you’ll have a hard time getting back on track. It takes five compliments to negate a single insult.” You also can’t fake kindness, she says, noting that most of us can easily pick out false acts of kindness through body language and facial cues.

4 Ways to Kindness

Everyone can reap the positive effects of kindness in the workplace. Here are four tips from Kaplan Thaler to foster a kinder work environment:

 1. Share the credit. Harry Truman once said “It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” Kaplan Thaler adds that when you share credit, co-workers and customers feel a sense of ownership in an idea.

 2. Don’t talk down to others. Kaplan Thaler says it’s tough to get fired from her company because they invest so heavily in the hiring process. But the quickest way to get the boot is by berating or belittling someone—especially a subordinate, such as an assistant or a messenger. “You can’t have a negative vibe in a company where ideas are currency,” she says. “Every time you shut someone down, you might be shutting down a money-making idea.”

 3. Focus on the positive. Even in worst-case scenarios, Kaplan Thaler says it’s important to find something positive to focus on. “We encourage people to be honest and say what they feel, but to do it using what we call a ‘Yes sandwich,’” she says. “That might mean telling someone no, but in a way that encloses it in a way that is positive and empowering.” For example, if a talented employee is always late with his or her work, start by complimenting their ideas. Then, address the tardiness problem before sending him or her off with another boost by, say, letting them know you believe in them.

 4. Be courteous. “Mark Twain once said he could live for two months on a good compliment,” Kaplan Thaler says. “It doesn’t cost anything to give a compliment or say thank you. You can accomplish great things in business with just a positive comment and some humor.”