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OD Partnership Series - Learnings from the Field: Navigating A Complex Organization - Impacting Meeting Culture & Effectiveness

  • May 10, 2023
  • 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
  • Zoom Meeting


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Learnings from the Field: Navigating A Complex
Organization - Impacting Meeting Culture & Effectiveness

In this session, you will: 

  • Learn how the Community Consultant Project team helped their clients drive healthy system-wide movement to alter meeting culture and impact meeting effectiveness 

  • Gain insight in how to maintain presence and patience with client systems: partnering to uncover their core issues and linked root causes  

  • Learn to navigate interpersonal interactions and manage responsibilities between internal and external consultants 

  • Be introduced to consultant behaviors and inquiries that help expedite communication amongst three levels of the client system

Does this sound familiar? You, your clients, colleagues and executives are looking at your work calendars and seeing days of colored meeting squares. Your executive says, “This is ridiculous! I have no time for deep thinking, lunch breaks or even the bathroom! I can forget about preparing for all these meetings – I have to figure out what’s happening, and why I’m even there when I get there.” 

As an OD practitioner, how do you stay present with your clients to help uncover critical issues, root causes? You may take the executive’s remarks to your professional circle and ask for feedback. Someone says: “Sometimes, the problem is surface level. With proper training about meetings we can focus on – who to include, what to focus upon, when to meet, where to meet, and why a meeting is appropriate? One could free up considerable time and attention for necessary breaks, meeting preparation, and deeper thinking needed to be our best work selves.” 

Someone else asks: “What if the issues are more deeply rooted?” Too many and unproductive meetings are often symptoms of fundamental workplace challenges - challenges addressed by our Organization Development field’s approaches, engagements, models, methods, and ideas.

Want to creatively and actively engage with your peers to share insights about all this?

On Wednesday May 10th from 4-6 PM, we invite you to discuss, dissect, and understand how a team of OD practitioners met the challenges above. This included assessing the meeting-oriented needs of an organization, working as external OD consultants with internal OD team members, establishing effective communication and accountability strategies, and implementing a coherent change management model. 

Dr. Glen Fahs serves as an elder advisor to many in the Oregon community, bringing great depth and breadth as expert in Organization Development. He was also Director of Training and OD for Cascade Employers Association’s 500 member organizations for 22 years until his retirement in December 2017. He has served on seven nonprofit boards, including 16 years with Habitat for Humanity’s local boards. He has taught for ten colleges and universities with a focus on Leadership, OD, Organization Behavior and Organizational Communication.

Erin Newton is an OD practitioner with an MBA in Nonprofit Management. She is also on the Board of the Young Nonprofit Professionals of Portland (YNPN). In the nonprofit sector, she worked on nonprofit programs and volunteer management. Her recent OD work has focused on employee engagement and values development.

Nadine Ambrose is a consultant, facilitator, trainer, change agent, and coach. She thrives in continuous L&D and OD practice learning. She brings a long history contributing to many small to large organizations, deepening her commitment to leader support and their teams’ successes. She believes in the value of quality communication in life, and in the workplace: to create inclusive, collaborative, motivating, and innovative environments. Providing deep knowledge in management and talent development, organization development, and human resources, Nadine focuses on root sources for improvement. Most of all, Nadine loves working with people – bringing out the best in their ongoing success.

Mary Cogan seamlessly blends her coaching, teaching, consulting, service, sales and market research with experiences in healthcare, technology and telecommunications industries. She actively serves organizations, service lines, leaders and teams – creating space for transparent conversations that result in sticky learning and healthy change. Mary took the journey at American University/NTL to complete an advanced degree in Organization Development.

Global OD Competencies

1)     Credible Strategist: Collaborative Communicator

  • Communicates clearly, concisely, and tailors communications in ways that meet the needs and motivations of client groups at all levels
  • Listens actively and attentively to ideas and concerns to realize win-win solutions
  • Seeks and offers clear, open, and honest feedback
  • Designs and delivers effective communication strategies by utilizing the full range of communication vehicles and channels
  • Leverages technology and social media to connect people and ideas, especially in a virtual environment
2)     Systems Change Expert: Systems Change Leader
  • Comfortably works within a whole system and advises on inclusive strategies for organizational change, transformation, and alignment
  • Decides and acts when there is not enough information and swiftly shifts direction comfortably while handling risk and uncertainty
  • Effectively assesses risk, readiness, and resistance
  • Establishes structures and processes to plan and manage the effective implementation and impact evaluation of change
  • Develops interventions and solutions that support equity and inclusion for leaders, teams, and organizations to lead change proactively within a rapidly changing environment

3)     Informed Consultant: Equity Advocate

  • Works to bring equity, voice, empowerment, and fair treatment to all in the workplace, especially those who are marginalized
  • Lives out values including: respect and inclusion, collaboration, authenticity, self-awareness, empowerment, sustainability, capacity building and corporate social responsibility
  • Brings and integrates a strong foundation of equity, inclusion, and diversity theories, frameworks, and methodologies to guide all elements of the practice of OD
  • Seeks out and engages with diverse views and opinions and supports others in doing so
  • Creates an inclusive environment for people of all identities to feel valued, respected and able to contribute


$15 Members when pre-paid & pre-registered

$25 Non members when pre-paid & pre-registered

$10 for students/seniors pre-registered 


3:45 - 4:00 pm Join Zoom Meeting

4:00 – 6:00 pm Training

Please be aware that our trainings could be recorded or photographed.

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