Conference Speaker Presentations

Speaker Title Abstract
Nancy Rosenfeld Daly The Neuroscience of Shifting from Chaos to Calm
What triggers you resulting in feeling your breath shorten and heart race? Why does that physical response happen? Discover what is arising in your brain during stress, how to intervene, and a simple practice to rewire the trigger response! Given the complexity of projects and people-dynamics, inner resources are needed in the moment to help shift from chaos to calm as you manage teams and programs. Acting with focused, clear, calm strength takes awareness and practice. To take confident, harmonious action during challenging times, we must be able to easily access positive alternatives for ourselves to stay calm. By understanding what occurs in the mind and how we can help ourselves during chaotic times, we can choose strategies to shift to calm and thrive, no matter what is going on around us. A national speaker and author, Nancy will share insights, provide tools, and her three books will be available onsite for signing: Finding JOY Amidst the Chaos, A Left-Brain Thinker on a Right-Brain Journey,
and, A Path to Higher Self: Ancient Tribal Wisdom Shows the Way. Free excerpts and more details at:
Session Learning Objectives:
  • Explore brain science to discover what happens after each thought and how the brain can support or interfere with our intentions
  • Discover ways to interrupt the whirling mind, especially during turbulence, to create a more productive result for all
  • Create your own plan for what to do and how to respond that brings the most calm to you and the situation!
Pattie Vargas Leadership: The New Management Reality
In an environment where the workforce may range from age 18-75, where work is typically accomplished by teams rather than individuals, where communication must be as agile as the changing business dynamics, the need for a new kind of leader emerges. Today’s Project Leaders find that relational skills and strong emotional and social intelligence are emerging as “must-have’s” in the behavioral skills inventory.
Let’s look at some common vocabulary in EQ: awareness, communication, connection,engagement, accuracy, accountability, discomfort, emotion, feelings, awareness, breakthrough, satisfaction, accomplishment. EQ is not primarily about numbers, intellect or conceptualization. It’s about focusing on and harnessing our own and others’ emotional attention, vitality, energy, resources, etc.because emotions are the source of both our power and our obstacles.
By the end of this largely interactive hour you will have laughed a lot, gotten some insight and determined at least one skill worth working on in your own EQ practice.
David Winkelman
Diving Into the Deep End:
An Accelerated Interactive Exploration of EQ in Project Management
EQ is a set of skills and practices each of us already has and can learn to master that directly influence our success in the workplace. Moment-by-moment each of us is more or less conscious of our own and others’ feelings. In this way, all of us already operate at a particular level of emotional intelligence depending on the situation. The purpose of EQ as discipline is to raise that level of operation, so that we’re more effective and successful at anything we’re focused on achievingespecially activity with others. EQ is a major success factor for all managers and leaders.
Let’s look at some common vocabulary in EQ: awareness, communication, connection, engagement, accuracy, accountability, discomfort, emotion, feelings, awareness, breakthrough, satisfaction,
accomplishment. EQ is not primarily about numbers, intellect or conceptualization. It’s about focusing on and harnessing our own and others’ emotional attention, vitality, energy, resources, etc.because emotions are the source of both our power and our obstacles.
By the end of this largely interactive hour you will have laughed a lot, gotten some insight and determined at least one skill worth working on in your own EQ practice.
Kimberly Wiefling
Overcoming the Global Epidemic of Workplace Dysfunctionality through Mindful Project
There’s a global epidemic of organizational dysfunctionality. Employee engagement scores in the US are less than 30%, and worldwide they are 10%! Regrettably most organizations are failing for entirely predictable and avoidable reasons.
Behaviors that contribute include:
  • teams with unclear goals, unclear communication, unclear priorities
  • managers distracting themselves with busywork instead of focusing on the organization's most important priorities
  • employees taking refuge in cynicism to avoid disappointment
  • organizations where the org chart has become irrelevant, but their people haven't yet mastered the concepts of influencing stakeholders regardless of position or title

Research on global teams by an MIT professor revealed that 82% of global teams considered their teams to have failed, and the top 4 reasons for their failure were:
  • failure to build trust
  • failure to overcome communication barriers
  • goals of team members and the team were not aligned
  • goals and vision of the team were unclear

These failures are DESIGNED IN to most organizational structures, a big reason why companies like Morningstar, W.L. Gore, Valve and Semco have rejected traditional ways of managing and organizing businesses.
RIDICULOUS??!! Even boring?!! Yes! WE CAN DO BETTER!!
  1. Be clobbered over the head with the FACTS about why teams are failing
  2. Confront your own contribution to these causes of failures
  3. Commit to changing your behavior so that if you and your team fail in the future, it’s for new and more exciting reasons!
  4. Use your (extensive) power as a project leader to create a new reality that makes this dysfunctional way of operating irrelevant and obsolete.
As project leaders,we are uniquely positioned to create a new future, a future beyond this culture of disengagement, forging alliances, partnership, and possibilities across borders and boundaries of every kind. Let’s do it!
Mike Oboczky Leading Projects with Emotional Intelligence
The Project Management Institute’s Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) provides an outstanding framework, methodology, and set of tools and techniques to manage projects. In addition to technical skills, producing repeatable project success requires Project Leadership through the knowledge and application of interpersonal skills.
Emotional Intelligence is arguably the most important and effective interpersonal skill that will enable you to get the most from your personal and professional relationships, and your project teams.

In this presentation, you’ll be introduced to the following keys to understanding and applying Emotional Intelligence in Project Management including:
  • Physiology of emotions
  • Four components of Emotional Intelligence
  • How to use Emotional Intelligence to lead more effective project teams
Nelson  Zagalsky A Holistic Approach to Accelerating Leadership & Personal Effectiveness
In this informative and entertaining presentation, Dr. Nelson Zagalsky, an Integral Coach and former corporate executive, describes how personality-rooted blind-spots, competency (e.g., emotional intelligence) gaps, and problematic behaviors limit effectiveness in responding to leadership and life challenges. Orga nizations that promote awareness of these personality-rooted impediments, as well as the special strengths associated with each individual’s personality type, can significantly improve leadership-team effectiveness. The presentation describes a holistic approach to accelerating elimination of the impediments.
Such changes not only support improved company-performance, but dramatically improve theability to deal with life challenges (e.g., career transition, work-life balance). This engaging and interactive presentation will have the audience deeply engaged in
  • Looking at their Enneagram personality-styles
  • Reflecting on their stereotypical strengths and problematic-behaviors
  • Learning how to apply holistic behavior-modification principles to helping advance their effectiveness

The presentation concludes with a case study that includes a description of practices that the audience can self-apply to help deal with a very common leadership and life-challenge; avoiding being overwhelmed by multiple stakeholder-demands
Results through Project Team Relationships
This session focuses on the interpersonal drivers of successful projects. We begin with a mindful alignment of purposefor the organization, the project, and the individual members of the project team. From there, we will explore the importance of self-awareness and self-managementas aprerequisite to building and sustaining healthy and productive project team relationships, even in stressful and conflict-ridden situations. The session will conclude with a dynamic activity that engages participants in a conversation about the type of culture theywant to create for their project team.
Kai Dickens Team Bonding through PLAY: It's not your Grandma's team building
Let’s face it, most of the time when the word teambuilding is mentioned often times leaders are met with eye rolls and grumbles. Yet the truth is as leaders and managers, it is our responsibility to create opportunities for the team to foster relationship and bond. Being able to understand the dynamics of a team make this a much easier task to accomplish. We’ve put a unique spin on the old school way of team building just by creating a space for your team to play and we are excited to share how this simple concept can make a huge impact. In this interactive session you will walk away:
  • Understanding why play is important to connect a team
  • Knowing why team bonding activities have to be planned and intentional
  • Learning about how different play personalities, motivators and communication styles impact a team
  • Experiencing three fun and simple “play” energizers that you can take back to your meetings to immediately up the level fun, participation and connection
Alicia McLain The Active Retrospective –
An appreciative inquiry approach to organizational continuous improvement
The tactics of the retrospective are 'just do it', but how can we inspire and engage teams to engage in the change that matters.
A key to building high performing teams is continuous improvement via a regular practice like the retrospective. The agenda is simple: what worked, what didn't work and what needs to be fixed. By taking an appreciative inquiry approach to transformation you build leaders in your organization.
In this session, we'll explore a functional approach to collecting insights and a way we can turn the things that are working into the basis to drive meaningful organizational change.
Your takeaways:

  • A new approach to conducting a retrospective that focuses on functions
  • A method to leverage the good and build it into positive change for your organization
  • How mindful facilitation can create an environment of psychological safety
Alex Winter
and Manisha Maker
What I hate about Project Management
You love being a project manager, however there are aspects you hate.  
Okay, hate is a strong word! No matter how much we love project management, there are always some aspects of the work that we dislike. Traditionally, project managers go through every day “Challenges” that test our resolve.  
Once we recognize the challenges that we can control and start thinking of challenges as opportunities, we can develop a strategy to be a Mindful Leader. In this interactive session, participants will learn skills that will support our transformation from “organizers” to “energizers”, “task & issue trackers” to “motivators” and “project planners” to “Leaders”.  
Barbara Gunning
Build your EQ skills in 1 hour by learning Perspective Taking
Why do two people react differently to the same meeting? Why does one team seem to breed drama while another runs smoothly and efficiently? This session dives into zzle and this interactive and fun session will teach a framework that will give you a shortcut to solving that puzzle. The goal of this class is to give project managers the tools to “shift perspectives,” a method which builds trust and respect between people. Spend an impathese questions by introducing you to innate personality differences. People are a puctful hour building your EQ skills and learn how to bring out the best in your teams. 
Mindfulness & Stress Relief
TuneUp with
Cath DeStefano
 Interactive. Reflective. Fun, not stuffy.
It’s a big challenge at the workplace today; how to get the job done without wearing yourself out. This session doesn’t ask you to re-do your entire life in the next 21 days but it does ask you to relook at your life and what needs to be transformed.
True or false? Stress can kill you. True or false? The idea of stress management is to eliminate stress from your life. Join your other program managers for answers to these two essential questions and an exploration of what works when you need stress relief.
  • Welcome!
  • The Frenetic Woman Story
  • Connect Mindfulness and Stress
  • Complete Your Stress-Relief Mind Map
  • Clarify Life/Work Values
  • Participate in the Grape Experiment
Leave with practical help for a less-stressed life, feeling revitalized, and ready to take on the world again.
Jeffrey A. Fillmore
Tactical Project Management
Even the best planned project may experience situations in which unexpected issues or performance results create a turbulent and rapidly deteriorating conditions with which the project team cannot cope. In these situations, it may be more important to make a decision and incorporate it into the project plan in a timely manner, than to spend time analyzing the issue looking for a perfect solution while the project falls into “crisis management” mode.
There’s an old military cliché that states “No plan survives the first engagement with the enemy”. This reflects similar challenges faced by project teams when the project transitions from planning space to execution space. We will review some lessons learned from military tactics and history in the context of project management decision making, and discuss the requirement for accurate and up-to-date project “intelligence” in order to make the decision making process more successful.