Oct 1, 2021
Introduction: Tom Goodell is the President and Founder of
Linden Leadership. His company offers Executive, Management and
Team Coaching as well as Leadership Development and Culture
Programs for a wide variety of Organisations. Tom is an author and
has written several books including, Linden’s Leadership Cycles of
Leadership, Three Practices of Collective Performance, Six
Practices of Personal Performance and most recently The Four Fields
Goodell received his CPPM certification in ontological coaching
from the Newfield Network, inc, in Boulder Colorado. He also
studied somatic coaching with Richard Strozzi Heckler, founder and
director of Strozzi Institute in Petaluma, California.
Podcast Episode Summary
This episode explores the impetus for Tom’s latest work The Four
Fields of Leadership. John Baldoni puts it well when he says of
Tom’s book “Leadership is an ageless proposition. What has changed
over the millennia is context. Goodell places Leadership with the
context of our times in ways that make it accessible and
actionable” The podcast underscores the importance of understanding
self in a quest to be with another, others and to thrive in
organisations. Tom shares how he combines his many, seemingly
disparate, interests in an intelligible whole to understand human
Points made over the episode
- Tom’s story began for him when he as 5 years of age and he can
remember playing the game called Go. It is a game that challenges a
player to cultivate his whole brain because of the amount of
possibilities -Chance is not involved but a person is minded to
develop intuition, form & aesthetics as well as logic and
- Tom’s early interest in Eastern thinking, spirituality has been
an integral part of this own thinking.
- His early experience in organisational life taught him that no
matter how elegant the enterprise architecture if human beings were
not getting along the organisation was impacted.
- Tom’s interest in human systems saw him study with Newfield in
Colorado and with Richard Strozzi Heckler at the Strozzi Institute
in California to become a Coach and Facilitator
- Declarations are an important constituent part of the training
at Strozzi and as a consequence and honed over many years Tom is
able to say that his declaration says he is “a commitment to
awakening the full power of the human spirit in organizations
everywhere” That declaration has been his guiding light ever
- The human spirit is what makes a life worth living and work
- We are all connected and have always been connected but we
forget. The space between us and the quality of our relations
determine whether we thrive.
- Tom began to recognise the “Tower of Babble” he encountered in
organisation with many multiple interventions/modalities of
learning and leadership that spoke different languages. He found
that many omitted the unifying principles on which their theories
are founded. His book attempts to illuminate these unifying
principles to squash confusion and allow for real
- If you understand the Four Fields of Leadership everything
- The four fields of Leadership include the Field of Self, The
Interpersonal Field, The field of teams and the Enterprise field.
There is a huge degree of complexity, subtlety & fragility
across each field as well as an amount of wisdom and
- Everything starts with an understanding of the Field of Self.
That means understanding and having an appreciation for awareness
in three minds, The Physical, The Emotional and The Analytic, our
responsibility to be in Choice and to take
- Humility is required to know that we are not always in control
of our state. It takes humility to step back and say “ I have some
work to do on myself”
- Tom’s approach with teams is present based. He always listens
carefully and senses into the field of teams. He often speaks with
each individual member of the team to see how they experience the
team. He simply starts where the team is and doesn’t lead with
content or theory.
- Tom notices patterns of behaviours on teams and intervenes to
help the team see its dynamic.
- He makes an important distinction between context and content.
If you can notice the context and work with that the content is
often that much richer.
- Tom shares The Cycle of Leadership suite of conversations-a
model for how effective conversations can happen.
-The first being a conversation for
possibilities where a leader taps into the wisdom of the
community or those around who might be impacted by his
-The conversation as Declaration. This is where
a future is declared, Conditions of Satisfaction are shared so that
everyone is clear about the COS that need to be met for
-Conversations for Requests- sharing the who
will take responsibility for what.
-Finally and importantly Conversations for
reflection This is where the team asks questions of
itself, not just the project. Questions like “how are we?” This can
serve as a healing conversation before a team gets too
- As Coaches and Practitioners we can be more influential on
teams if we are willing to be courageous and call out that team
members need to do work on themselves.