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About Cliff Kayser

Cliff is an experienced organization development (OD) consultant, executive coach, and leadership trainer overseeing Polarity Partnerships' east coast operations out of Washington, DC. In 2017, Cliff became a founding partner of the 501(c)3 organization the Institute for Polarities of Democracy and in 2018 the healthcare coaching/consulting firm, SixSEED Partners. Cliff is a faculty member at American University's Master's in OD and KEY Executive programs and is a Coaching Fellow for George Mason's Accredited Coach Training Program under the Center for the Advancement of Well-being. His past work experience includes VP of Organizational Development and Training for The National Cooperative Bank, Senior OD Consultant for The Washington Post, and Corporate Manager of Human Resources (HR) and Training for The Washington Post Company. Cliff earned Master's Degrees in OD (2007) and HR Management (1998) from The American University and his Coaching Certification from Georgetown's Executive Leadership Coaching Program in (2008). He is a PCC (Professional Certified Coach) and a graduate of the 2-year Polarity Mastery program (2010), and has served as the program dean since 2014.

High-leverage Action Steps in the relationship between Self And Other: The “Rogerian Multarity”: Unconditional Positive Regard, Empathy, and Congruence

By |2023-05-25T15:21:02-04:00May 25th, 2023|Multarities, Polarity Thinking|

NOTE: From Carl Rogers: On Becoming a Person (1961), Chapter 14. The “Rogerian triad” was created for the therapeutic relationship. However, it can be useful for Coaches, the Self And Other relationship, and one’s relationship w/“Self.” A “Multarity” is an interdependency of more than two. (See Figure, below): Figure There are three points in the “relationship triangle” [...]

The Mind Or Body Origin of Emotions Debate, “Solved!”

By |2023-05-25T15:11:24-04:00May 3rd, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking|

Walter Cannon suggested emotions originate in the brain and work their way into the body. William James theorized emotions originate in the body, get perceived in the brain, and we form stories to explain them. Welcome to the Cannon-James debate, ya’ll! Summaries of the two points of view appear at the end of this note, [...]

Why Leaders Need To Learn To Be Able To Handle Ambiguity

By |2023-01-10T17:40:08-05:00January 10th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking, Polarity Thinking and Problem-solving Thinking|

(Cliff Kayser of Polarity Partnerships, LLC is provides this summary w/additions from an August article in FORBES by Roger Trap.) So complex is the modern business environment that leaders are confronting paradoxes on a regular basis. They want to protect their core business at the same time as innovating for the future; they are looking [...]

Hate Friends’ or Colleagues’ POVs? Here’s the Secret to Getting Along

By |2023-01-10T17:36:47-05:00January 1st, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking, The Polarity Assessment™|

(Cliff Kayser of Polarity Partnerships, LLC provides this summary w/additions from an August 2022 article that appeared in NEWSWEEK by colleagues Marianne Lewis and Wendy Smith.) Today's world is becoming increasingly fractured. Confirmation bias abounds where people stay within safe circles of friends and colleagues who agree with them, and the opinions they hear mirror [...]

Hybrid work isn’t working: Here’s a better approach

By |2023-01-10T17:35:57-05:00December 27th, 2022|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking, The Polarity Assessment™|

(Cliff Kayser of Polarity Partnerships, LLC provides this summary w/additions from an August 2022 article in FastCompany by colleagues Marianne Lewis and Wendy Smith.) How can adopting ‘both/and thinking’ to move beyond a simple yet often destructive formula and develop more creative and productive solutions. While we want the best of home and work, too [...]

Applicable excerpts from the book, “Both/And Leadership: Embracing Creative Tensions to Solve Your Toughest Problems”

By |2022-09-11T08:11:08-04:00September 11th, 2022|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking|

The rock stars of paradox research, Wendy Smith and Marianne Lewis, just released their book, “Both/And Leadership: Embracing Creative Tensions to Solve Your Toughest Problems” in which they say early-on: From page 11: We draw from Eastern philosophy, such as that set forth by Lao Tzu in the Tao Te Ching and from Western philosophy, [...]

Summary: “Think Again” by Adam Grant

By |2021-05-12T08:22:47-04:00May 12th, 2021|Polarity Thinking|

Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Adam Grant (2021) is a new addition to the growing body of mainstream books about mental blindspots, cognitive biases, and thinking errors. Every individual possesses cognitive tools and accumulated knowledge that they regularly rely upon. But we rarely question or consider this knowledge which includes [...]

Empowerment In a Difficult Time

By |2021-01-09T11:41:36-05:00January 9th, 2021|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking|

A friend asked me for Polarity Maps that might be helpful in this difficult time. I’m sharing several that are part of a chapter for the Volume 2 of “And” Making a Difference by Leveraging Polarity, Paradox or Dilemma (which hasn’t been published and the attached hasn’t been edited for publication, FYI). Technically, I shouldn’t [...]

Thoughts from Barry Johnson on how Polarity Thinking can save lives, strengthen the economy, and speed the national recovery

By |2020-06-04T13:01:24-04:00June 4th, 2020|Polarity Thinking|

In the following two articles, Barry Johnson discusses: Individual Freedom And The Common Good Both are essential in the fight against COVID-19 for our recovery and our future. AND how we can go about: Winning On Two Fronts – Health And Economy Polarity Thinking can save lives, strengthen the economy, and speed the national recovery. [...]

White People — Here You Go

By |2021-05-12T08:21:59-04:00June 4th, 2020|Polarity Thinking|

Diversity/Inclusion/Equity -- REFERENCES: Battalora, Jacqueline, Birth of a White Nation Singh, Anneliese, Racial Healing Handbook: Practical Activities to Help You Challenge Privilege, Confront Systemic Racism, and Engage in Collective Healing THERE IS A WHOLE BOOK THIS IS JUST AN EXCERPT K. Kellogg Foundation, Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Implementation Guidebook, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, December 2016 [...]

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