The Ripple Effect by Jim Johnson

In the past, I have facilitated groups at work that I called “Emerging Leaders”.  I met with these groups for just 1 hour each week.  We worked through Jeff Olson’s book, The Slight Edge as well as John Maxwell’s The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth.

In one of our sessions, we discussed the Ripple Effect.  Olson explains this:

“When you create positive improvements in your life, you create positive ripples that spread out all around you, like a pebble of positivity dropped in a pond.”

And the ripple effect can impact others to do the same…

“When you reach out and positively affect one other person through your interactions and words, you create a slight change in that person, who is then more likely to reach out and positively affect someone else.  Simply put, one touches another,  who touches another, who touches another.”

Are you looking for improvements within your team?  Are you overwhelmed at the thought of moving the entire team towards better results, increased improvement?

Take the time to invest in a couple key team members who are positive influencers.  Help them see their potential.  Give them solid tools for success.  Fan their flames.

If they are truly people of influence, the ripple effect can work.  As these key team members demonstrate positive results, work habits, healthy collaboration, this can ripple to others.  As you coach all of your team, encourage growth and development.  Point out the positive and address what needs to improve.  But get your team to work together towards success.  Make this your culture within your department.

The ripple effect can work for you.

And our new meeting location is…

As I wrote in the last blog post, we will not be able to meet on the campus of Lutheran Hospital due to the corona virus situation. We are grateful for the opportunity to have met at such as great location during Season 3. The leadership of Lutheran Hospital were so wonderful to work with.

So where will we be meeting during Season 4?

We are going back to our roots. We will be meeting on the campus of Indiana Wesleyan University’s Fort Wayne Education Center across W. Jefferson Blvd. from the hospital. But with virus restrictions in place, the First Fridays Fort Wayne experience will be a bit different.

IWU Fort Wayne Education Center
  • The number of participants attending in-person will be limited to around 20. We may have an overflow room available – more on that soon.
  • To attend a First Fridays event in person, you will need to register via Eventbrite to “save your spot”. We will need to check participants in on the morning of an event and will check the Eventbrite reservation site so that those who made a reservation can get their seat.
  • At this time, masks will be required.
  • The room will be set up following social distancing guidelines.
  • If we can use an over-flow room, social distancing will be followed. Masks will be required as mandated.
  • There will be no coffee service on site.
  • We will also be broadcasting our events most likely via ZOOM as we did at the end of Season 3.

As we get closer to the September 4 event, we will be sure to provide updates. Be sure to follow us on LinkedIn ( This will be the best way to get the Eventbrite announcement and any other communication about the upcoming Season 4 sessions.

Thank you for your support of First Fridays Fort Wayne. Thank you for your patience in the ever-changing environment we are in. We are dedicated to continue to bring you the best in leadership development presented by local leaders here in NE Indiana.

Location, Location, Location

Season 4 for First Fridays Fort Wayne kicks off in September. We had been meeting at the Kachmann Auditorium on the campus of Lutheran Hospital. Then the pandemic hit and we pivoted to a virtual format.

We have received word that First Fridays will not be able to meet in the Kachmann Auditorium for the near future. So, where will First Fridays take place?

As of right now, we will still offer some form of a virtual format each month. We are currently working on another location. But please understand that with the fear of the corona virus still high, any physical location will have limitations as far as how many people we can host, mask requirements, and the 6 ft social distancing.

Once we get this all sorted out, we will announce a physical location. We will also communicate how you can experience First Fridays Fort Wayne virtually.

As always, our content will be on YouTube. If you have not subscribed to our channel, please do so here:

The Joy of Connecting Others

I know many of you love to network. Hey, it’s one of the reasons you have attended a First Fridays Fort Wayne monthly event! One of our goals has always been to help leaders connect/network with others. I want to challenge you to, ask Emeril Lagasse would say:

Find someone you can help connect with someone else. Why?

  1. You probably know someone who could add value to this other person. A simple introduction could literally change someone’s life.
  2. Someone may be looking for a new career. Listen to learn what they are seeking. Then work to connect them to the appropriate people who may have a lead or another connection that will take them further on their job journey.
  3. Someone may be seeking advice from someone else who has already been down the road they want to be on. You will find that leaders can be pretty generous with their advice when they know that they could play an important role in someone else’s life path.
  4. Connecting others also will broaden your own network. You will learn new things. You will meet new people. You will gain a new appreciation of your community.

How do you find people to connect with others?

  • Attend networking events to meet new people.
  • When you meet someone new, ask great questions to discover their:
    • Passions
    • Interests
    • Dreams
    • Career goals
  • And then think. “Who do I know that would make a great connection for this person?”
  • Then act. Contact that person(s) you just thought of and volunteer to set up a meeting between the two. If it is appropriate, be at this meeting to make the introductions and then simply watch and listen.

There absolutely is joy in connecting others. You help others find and add value. You encourage someone along their life’s journey. You help make leaders get better.

And when leaders become better, your community becomes better.

What’s Next for First Fridays?

About a week ago, Jere, Rob Kee, and Jim had a planning session where a new event was being planned. We have our assignments and will be sharing about this soon.

First Fridays Fort Wayne has always made it our goal to add value to others. This event is being designed to do just that. It addresses the economic environment we are all in currently. Stay tuned for more information.

The First Fridays Fort Wayne Board met yesterday. We are excited about Season 4 starting back up in September. We have our line-up of dynamic speakers. We have been in contact with Lutheran Hospital to find out how the pandemic might be still affecting our new location at the Kachmann Auditorium. When we find this out, we will be sharing this with all of you.

We appreciate your participation and support you’ve shown during this pandemic. We were able to pivot and keep our leadership content flowing virtually.

Don’t forget that First Fridays Fort Wayne as a YouTube channel. Our regular, monthly presentations can be found there as well as our very popular High 5 video interviews of local leaders. You can find us on YouTube at this link:

Please subscribe to our YouTube channel so you won’t miss any of our content there.

And remember, we have a LinkedIn page where we post about upcoming events. You can find us and follow us at:

Our Purpose:                                                                                                      

To encourage leaders to grow by:

  • Learning what leadership looks like in area organizations
  • Networking with area leaders
  • Being exposed to a variety of meaningful topics presented by dynamic, compelling leaders & organizations in the Greater Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Who attends First Fridays Fort Wayne?

Area leaders from any organization: 

  • C-Suite
  • VP, Executives
  • Business owners
  • Middle Managers
  • Emerging leaders
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Students preparing for leadership roles