The Power of Conflict by Brian DeCook

brian decookBrian DeCook was one of our speakers in Season 1 of First Fridays Fort Wayne.  He is an expert on conflict management/resolution.  Below is a recent article he posted on LinkedIn.  


The power of conflict is amazing. It can humble and humiliate us. It can expose our selfishness and arrogance. It can take a gifted and talented team and turn it into a band of dysfunctional misfits. Conflict can hinder relationships, diminish productivity, and destroy morale.

But the power of conflict can also energize and elevate us. It can take the coal of our character and create a diamond. It can turn a mediocre team into champions.

So why do some teams elevate their performance during a conflict when others fall apart?

To learn more about Brian, his services, and to finish this article, follow this link:  The Amazing Power of Conflict

Defining Leadership by Dr. Matt Lucas

img_2736-1Dr. Matt Lucas was one of our guest speakers in 2018.  He is the Chancellor at Indiana Wesleyan University – National and Global.  Here is an excerpt from a recent article he published on LinkedIn.  You can read the entire article and follow Dr. Lucas by clicking on the link provided below:

“I have read hundreds of definitions of leadership, from the very academic to the practical, from paragraphs to single words (Influence à la John Maxwell). As I think about leadership and observe effective leaders I want to follow, I see them answering four questions as they define and embody leadership:

1.      How does the leader interact with followers?

Leaders are always answering this question. How they answer this shapes the culture of their team, department or organization. From dictate to serve, there is a range of verbs (command, direct, guide, empower) that reflect the leader’s heart. Of course, there is a time for each, but the leader’s true self is revealed in times of stress. And we have all been around the leader who professes one verb but lives another.

2.      How does the leader describe those who follow?

I am always listening for the way the leader describes those around her. On one end of the continuum are words like partner, colleague, team member—terms that shrink the distance between leader and follower—and at the other are words like subordinate and supporter that increase the distance and draws attention to the gap.

3.      What does the leader add to the relationship?”

Read the rest here:

IWU National Global logo


Invest in YOU Each Month

First Fridays Fort Wayne is designed with YOU in mind all the time.  We strive to bring in compelling, interesting, and challenging speakers each month.  This is your opportunity to invest in your own personal leadership development.  All it takes is a 1 hour investment once a month.

Remember, in April we will be meeting on the 2nd Friday due to Spring Break.  Our guest speaker will be Dr. Eddy Shigley from Indiana Wesleyan University.  Eddy has presented on leadership issues all over the world.  You will love his approach and his insights.  To register, click on the image below.  And remember to invite someone to attend with you!


Leadership Development – a One-and-Done Approach? by Jim Johnson

Since November, 2017, we have hosted the First Fridays Fort Wayne leadership development/networking forum almost every month (we take July/August off).  At each of our events, we have brought in dynamic, local leaders from Fort Wayne and NE Indiana.  Your feedback and support has been very positive to all of this.  We’ve been exposed to great leaders, great organizations and great ideas:

  • Entrepreneurship – Nate Reusser & Jeff Hoffman
  • Innovation – Karl LaPan
  • Coaching & our Leadership mindset – Jordan Langs & Dr. Matt Lucas
  • Financial Wellness – Don Cates
  • Thriving – Brenda Gerber Vicent
  • Business Success – Wayne Robison
  • Leadership Under Fire – Matt Konkler
  • Leadership Legacies – Marlin Stutzman
  • Finding Your Purpose – Barry Schrock
  • Leadership Capacity – Donovan Coley
  • Communicating Like a Pro – Heather Herron

There were more.  And much more is coming!  But is this all there is to it?  We just attend a forum, listen, and then leave?

In my opinion, there IS more.  Indulge me as we learn something from a Greek grammatical tense – present perfect.

What is that?!  Present perfect simply means “an ongoing result of a completed action.”  In other words, we hear one of the lessons above (the completed action) but then we realize the results of what we’ve heard by putting it into practice (our ongoing result).

Let me suggest some ideas that you can employ to make sure you are getting to most (the ongoing result) from your First Fridays Fort Wayne experience:

  1. Take notes.  Write down something new you’ve just heard during a presentation.
  2. Re-read your notes.  At some point after the forum, review your notes.  Jot down other impressions or follow-ups that come to you.
  3. Share your thoughts.  Share what you have learned with someone else.  When you write something down, review it, and then verbally share it with someone else, you are embedding that information into your mind giving yourself a better chance at creating your “ongoing result.”
  4. Watch the YouTube presentation again.  In Season 2, we have begun to provide the presentations on our YouTube channel (First Fridays Fort Wayne).  Listening to a presentation again allows us to “catch” something we may have missed the first time.
  5. Do it.  You’ll hear outstanding insights.  Now put them into practice (ongoing results).  Put your knowledge into action.

In the New Testament, the book of James says this about this ongoing results practice:

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only… James 1:22

Our desire at First Fridays Fort Wayne is to help leaders grow and network.  Our goal in this post is to help provide some further insight in the growth arena.

Remember this:  when leaders get better, their companies/organizations become better.  When that ongoing result happens, our city, county, region, state, country, and world becomes better.

Thank you “doing” First Fridays Fort Wayne – and continually doing the work in your personal, leadership journey.

ongoing results