Company of Experts, Inc.
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     Mother's Day Edition
Words Create Worlds
May 2009
I began the first paragraph for this Mother's Day Edition last Friday morning. That evening, as I was searching for a way to handle a difficult situation, one of those you just don't want to even think about. My Blackberry buzzed and I quickly glanced at the message subject line - Announcement regarding Patti Lawrence. I read the note even though I did not know Patti Lawrence.

Today, I feel as connected to Patti as one could be to someone they never met. Holding my phone and looking at the brief message - I was stunned. This was my reminder to take the high road, to not be distracted, to cherish family and friends, and to stay focused on my strengths.
By the brief email I could tell that Patti was the type of person that brought honor and compassion to her profession and personal life. I now know that Patti was a Professor of Congregational Studies at the Starr King School for the Ministry. The school honored her a few short weeks ago for her service to the school. Patti gave freely of her love and her energy. I share this with you so that you too will know Patti. And that you will let the Patti in your life know how she (or he) contributes to your joyful life. That Patti was so honored and so loved was evident in the tender words of the person who had updated her email with Patti's final goodbye. Patti, had at some time expressed and interest in our work with Appreciative Inquiry, as the message was an auto response to an announcement of a new AIFT date set.

This is the email that I received: 
"Subject: Announcement Concerning Patti Lawrence
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Our beloved Patti took her last breaths at about 12:50 pm today. She went very peacefully and was surrounded by her closest family and friends.

I will be posting more details of her memorial service here on the blog we have them. We also want to make a slideshow of pictures so if you have any pictures please start gathering them and I will post how to get them to me soon.
For more information please visit and"
If you are blessed to have a Patti (male or female) in your life - be joyful and loving to them. As an educator Patti knew that each one of us has an impact on others - in ways we may not even know.

Reach out, breathe deep and embrace your passions.
In This Issue
AI Book
Free Online Workshops
New AI Facilitator
Appreciative Inquiry
Online Workshops
Meet Us at Your Favorite Hangout
Halley's Net
Nancy Stetson's AI Book - a Winner
The League for Innovation Conference in Reno this year was  an opportunity for new and experienced faculty, administrators and staff from all 50 states, Canada, Bermuda and other points to meet with colleagues to check out new ideas and network with colleagues. It is so great to be a League Partner.

So many people stopped by our booth to tell us that great things are going on at their campuses and that they consider the AIFT to be the foundation of change. As one person said "I am a believer".

With three presentations, our schedule was packed and the AIFT graduates attending became the presentation! We had such a good time and were wowed with the positive changes that we heard. We thank all of you who attended and who shared your great stories. Speaking of stories - Nancy Stetson's provided autographed copies of her book for our drawing. We are happy to announce the new owners of Stories of Positive Change in the Community College: Appreciative Inquiry in Action are:

             Amber Charmer, Los Positas College
             Jennifer Lange, Chabot College
             Katrina Mann, Truckee Meadows Community College
             Jean Stavrue, Hawaii Community College

Happy reading to each of you.

You can purchase a copy for your library.  Or, if you would like the green alternative, there is a very reasonable download version as well. When you link to the purchase page, you will have that option.
 Free Online Workshops
Staff development and training for organizations is at a new frontier. A well designed program, training, seminar or workshop will have defined intended learner outcomes, be interactive, engage the learner and include take-away and immediately usable skills. The Company of Experts offers customizable training solutions that that are cost efficient.

Our professional development workshops online are facilitated, include office hours and.... Available for all organizations and individuals as well. Our great face to face training now available on-line.

The following people won the opportunity for a free workshop on-line.

Ann Turoczy, Gary Hartley, Diane Nicolet, Jennifer Lange, Cynthia Ross, Las Positias and Cindy Adams
New Facilitator Announced
Amie Sieberlich recently completed her practicum and is now a certified AI Facilitator! Amie worked with members of the Denver, Colorado metro area Deaf community. 

Participants included current Interpreter Preparation Program (IPP) students at Front Range Community College (FRCC), former FRCC IPP students (now working as interpreters), Deaf individuals that utilize interpreting services, and FRCC IPP faculty and staff.  

Amie reports her "personal best experience facilitating this project was actually not just one experience, it happened several times, when you can almost always visibly see the light bulb go off when a new understanding has sealed itself in someone's being.  That being said, there is one day that always makes me smile when I think about it; the day the group created visual representations of their dreams for the future.  It was like being in a room of kindergartners - the room was buzzing with excitement and laughter - and the relief around being given permission to dream without limit was almost palpable.  Amazing! "
Congrats Amie. Your hard work has paid off. Keep us posted on your work!

July 20 to 23, 2009 - Las Vegas, NV

August 18 to 21, 2009 - Cape Town, South Africa

October 13-16, 2009 - Hilo, Hawaii
November 18-21, 2009 - Vancouver, British Columbia


I want to thank you and your company for a wonderful training experience.  The true value of a training is not the event itself but what you can do with your new learning.  Since trained, I have experienced multiple successes using appreciative inquiry.
I credit the invaluable professional development designed by your company and delivered by quality personnel as the major reason for these successes. Thank you.
Penny Masden

If your organization would like to host this amazing program, please email Kathy or Natalie.

Calendar of Events

Department Chair Institute
Las Vegas, NV - July 15, 16 & 17 2009 ($650.00 Special Summer Rate). This is reduced from $1,200.00.

The DCI is a recognized program that always receives great reviews from faculty, deans and department chairs. With techniques and skills that are immediately useful at work, it is worth the investment. Visit: Department Chair Institute site.

Here are a couple of reviews:

"Here's a story I'd like to share with our group regarding my first class meeting with my Public Speaking students after attending the Institute.  Instead of laying out to the class my class policies (such as on absences and lateness), I allowed everyone to take part in discussing and agreeing to the Ground Rules.  Everyone did (and the rules ended up being the same as those I would have dictated to them otherwise).  Guess what?  Everyone shows up on time!
  After 33 years of teaching, it took our conference to teach me this technique.  So it looks like old dogs can learn new tricks."
Jerry Bello, Ph.D

"I wanted to share a great success story, I had my first meeting with the department and we had to summaries the accomplishments from last Fall. I used our mapping exercises and you should have seen the department go to work. The day before I had come up with about 25 major accomplishments, the department as a group came up with 60. Wow it works and the most important part was not the process but the underline affect, they all feel better about the group. Thanks you all for letting me learn, Have a blessed year!"  Jose J. Fernandez M.S.
Online Workshops

Online workshops that are led by Experts in the field. Quality programs delivered to you - anywhere.  Collaborative - Proven workshops partnered with new technology develops learning communities like never before! Online is global with professionals from every type of organization and country-just a click away!

We can customize any of our workshops to meet any organizations needs. Company of Experts workshops are delivered face 2 face, online, or hybrid-the choice is yours!
Workshops currently at capacity (we hope to see you registered next time):

Managing Professional Relationships at Work
Managing Conflict

New Workshops to be added soon.

Learning Styles
Emotional Intelligence
If you would like to see a workshop or subject added, please contact Kathy.
Happy Earth Day!

Kathy Becker
Company of
Let's Connect
Cutting down on travel, expenses and still want feel connected? Let's stay in touch. Lets you be "friends" on Facebook, "join" others on Linkedin or  "follow" with Twitter. Oh, and email works too.


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Hallie's Net
Hallie searches out new and vital stuff we cannot and should not live without. Hallie will enlighten us, teach us and make us laugh. With boundless energy, Hallie is always on the hunt. If you have something to share - email Hallie.
On this new journey of developing online workshops and webinars we are having a great time. I have joined new groups and they send me cool and useful information like links and free stuff. If you were jazzed about Power Point Zen and have developed a full set of I-Stock prints to re-create your Power Point presentations, then you might be wondering - how do I convert my Power Point to Flash? Believe or not, iSpring's iSpring Free 3.2 does just that and IT'S FREE. They have other versions with more bells and whistles that you can buy, but this is an amazing way to learn. For details on iSpring