Leadership Montana Classroom Reflection: Indigenous Immersion Initiative Reflection: John Morrison, Helena, Class of 2005 and III 2022
Flagship Session: Leadership MT participants learn about Glendive
April 30, 2022
Masters Class Session: Sara Smith
June 30, 2022


John Morrison, Helena, Class of 2005 and III 2022

Masters Class Reflection

Session 3

Aimee Grmoljez, Helena, Class of 2012 and Masters 2022

Closing the Gap
What do you want to be known for?

This was a question the Masters Class of 2022 pondered at our April meeting in Helena. We discussed how to close the gap for each of us on what we are known for and what we WANT to be known for. Closing the Gap. That is the theme for me that resonated at the April 2022 Masters Class. This idea is evident in all of the work that Leadership Montana does across its programs, meetings and conversations.

In my 2012 Flagship class we learned about the two sides of our strengths and our weaknesses (also called our shadow strengths). We asked ourselves, how do we use our strengths and weaknesses to build ourselves to be the people we want to be for ourselves and our communities. In the Masters class we started out this year discussing how to “embrace the suck”… whether it was pandemic related or not. The ability to face the Leadership Practices Index (LPI) that is done prior to, and evaluated during, the Masters Class is one that takes each of us classmates on a journey of evaluation. Through this LPI of ourselves and by others it helps us work on “closing the gap” on some of our leadership strengths and weaknesses and places to expand in our leadership journeys.

I have learned from my classmates that I need to hone my leadership in ways that they each shine and they have all given me examples of how to do that. One way is to create an easy to remember statement for my leadership. I will evolve mine I am sure, but for now mine is …. “Courageously challenge myself and others to attain our shared and individual goals and values. Give one another flexibility and independence in a transparent and gracious space to make a difference in the world.”
We each have a leadership philosophy and the masters class creatively encourages you to find it and embrace it- at least the 1.0 version!

Our class in April was also graced with Pat Hughes, the author of Gracious Space, coming to teach us and lead us. It was a whirlwind of learning to impromptu network, build trust with the blocks of safety, relationship, collective creativity and risk. We learned about the inner work of the helix of one’s individual practice of the change agent and work of the group. We had fun looking for pattern detection with being aware that situations and behavior impact the outcome. We learned about adaptive leadership and how to bring it to our teams after the Masters Class. We now understand that adaptive leadership is the practice of mobilizing people to tackle tough challenges and thrive.

Isn’t that how we move people to Close the Gap? I believe it is and that is what the Masters Class taught us in April. What a gift it was for me to be part of this class and I am grateful for my classmates and teachers for the blessing of this time together. I hope this article gives you food for thought on how you can “close the gap” on your leadership journey!