The power of virtual collaboration

Virtual collaboration — and adjusting plans — is the theme for this week! It’s amazing the collaboration – and creation – that can happen when people work together, even if they are not physically co-located.

This topic has been on my mind a lot this week as many companies are closing their offices to only “work from home”, limiting group gatherings, and cancelling in-person trainings. It’s also been interesting to read articles about how Japan is having to grapple with – and change long-held – believes about the importance of putting in long hours in person.

I had planned to put out out a post about insights from my January travels in Japan, but this is the post that wanted to be written. Stay tuned next week for photos and reflections from my recent trip!

1+1 = Way More Than 2

This quote has become a favorite of mine, and how my friend and K2C2 coaching partner Karyn Ross and I describe our collaboration and partnership! In fact, it’s the quote we highlighted in our Gemba Academy podcast about our “Katie and Karyn Coaching Community” development last year. When it comes to people, collaboration produces way more than the sum of its parts.

It was so fun to have Karyn visit me in person last week and collaborate on a few initiatives – her “How to Coach for Creativity and Service Excellence” workshop for my AME San Francisco Bay Area Consortium group, hosting the first Women in Lean – San Francisco Table event, and doing a kindness event for 70 kindergarteners at my children’s school.

Virtual collaboration is great – but getting together in person is also fantastic. Here is a photo of the first Women in Lean – San Francisco Table event.

While I love to see Karyn in person, most of our work together happens remotely – such as our K2C2 events and our regular Facetime calls. Virtual coaching and collaboration is so easy these days.

Just this week we had the Session #2 of our K2C2 Cohort #4!

Isao Yoshino, my book partner and subject of the forthcoming book “Learning to Lead, Leading to Learn”, was the person I first heard say a version of this quote too. Back in 2018 when reflecting on our partnership, as I wrote in this post, he said to me that it’s important to build together and take advantage of each other’s abilities because “1+1 = 3 or 4”.

When I saw Mr. Yoshino in person in January, it was hard for either of us to believe that we hadn’t seen each other in person since the previous May on my Japan Study Trip! We talk together so frequently on video calls that it feels like we are together.

Announcing K2C2 Intensive!

And today both the quote “1+1 = more than 2” and the concept of virtual collaboration are applicable again.

In the past 20 hours, I’ve found out that some upcoming work events — including on-site client work and a conference for which I was scheduled to teach a workshop and lead breakout learning sessions — were cancelled or postponed. While understandable given the current global uncertainty, I was nevertheless a bit disappointed. I get joy and energy from leading learning sessions — especially helping people practice new ways of  thinking and acting that are in alignment with their purpose and intention.

But I didn’t linger in disappointment too long. I called up Karyn and we immediately came up with a new virtual offering that we are calling K2C2 Intensive. We are blending our usual on-site workshop offerings and added extra learning experiences from our usual K2C2 schedule to offer an intensive – and fun – learning experience.

In 60 minutes we went from initial idea to session posted up and registration live on Eventbrite. K2C2 Intensive was born!

If you too are disappointed with having some learning experiences cancelled or postponed, or just are looking for professional and personal development in the comfort of your home or office, join us for the K2C2 Intensive (March 19 & 20 with follow up coaching sessions) or an upcoming K2C2 cohort.

Karyn and I offer “right sized pricing”, so don’t let your budget be a barrier to you joining us.  Seriously!

Virtual collaboration in book writing

While writing this post, I realized too how much my entire book writing experience has been one of virtual collaboration (and hundreds of hours locked in my office writing!). Most of my interviews with Isao Yoshino were conducted in the evenings on video calls over the past (nearly) two years, and my entire editing and writing support team is dispersed across North America!

Isao Yoshino and I continue our weekly or biweekly video calls and it is always a joy to talk with my dear friend. Just a few days ago we talked about how excited we both are to get the books into your hands.

Doesn’t Mr. Yoshino have the best smile? Here is a screenshot from our conversation this week.

Book launch information coming soon

This week I’ve also been moving forward with my book progress (iterating on final title and subtitle, starting design of the cover, and diving back into the manuscript for final edits).

I’m looking forward to sharing more details with you in the next few weeks. You’ll have an opportunity to join my launch team to support the book launch, as well as get insider information in advance of the book’s targeted release at the end of May 2020. Invitation coming soon!

Virtual conversations with John Shook too

I’m incredibly honored that John Shook is writing the foreword to the book, and has a great conversation with him earlier this week about the book content and his foreword. He has some other fun stories about his time at Toyota with Isao Yoshino! Stay tuned. 🙂

Chatting with John Shook about “Learning to Lead, Leading to Learn”

Planning for book launch events

We are making plans for book launch events in the Netherlands the last full week of June, and I’m starting to make arrangements for Mr. Yoshino to come out to the U.S. West Coast for a mini “book launch tour”. We are also talking with AME about being part of the AME Toronto conference program at the end of October.

And given today’s theme of virtual collaboration, I am just now inspired with the idea that we should do some virtual events!

Japan Reflections and Book Launch Team information coming soon

Next week I’ll share more reflections, photos, and insights from my intensive (and fun) week in January of learning and traveling over 1000 km by car and 1000 km by train throughout Japan. Plus stay tuned about how you can join our book launch team!

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