We are proud to introduce Sara Mehalick to all of you! She is our current intern and has taken on the role of Course Producer! She’s doing an incredible job at holding all the logistics and details. Lets get to know her!
She grew up in upstate New York and has lived in Vermont for 16 years, mostly in Burlington, where she currently lives. Outside of her part time work with us, she is a self employment coach at her own business, The Flashbulb. She runs courses for low income Vermonters starting their own small businesses who are looking for support with developing business plans, budgets, communication & time management skills. She work with folks to get organized, clarify their visions and figure out the steps to bring them into reality. When asked about her work she says: “It’s really a dream job and I feel lucky to work with motivated solo entrepreneurs!”
For unpaid work, she organizes and volunteers with local social and environmental justice organizations like Rising Tide Vermont, the Vermont Workers Center and Migrant Justice. In the last year or two, she’s stepped back from leadership roles to focus on building skills in organizational psychology, group dynamics and conflict resolution.
She also meditates a lot and hangs out with her dog in the woods.
I, Rebecca, did a short interview with her so that we all could get to know her a little better. Read on below!
Rebecca: Thanks for joining me Sara! So tell me, how did you find about Round Sky Solutions? And what kind of involvement have you had with our work?
I’m not sure how I first heard about Round Sky Solutions. I think Cecile, one of the founders, reached out a few years ago to collaborate on a small project and I’ve had them on my radar as an amazing organization ever since. When I heard about their Collab Level 1 Certification course being offered a couple years ago I decided to sign up to dive more deeply into understanding their toolkit for building healthier, more effective, less hierarchical organizations.
My introduction to Collab through their 6 month training program was pretty mind blowing! Round Sky had developed solutions to many of the problems I had faced and seen organizations facing and wrapped them all into a comprehensive program, complete with a binder and note cards and tracking spreadsheets. I’m pretty into spreadsheets!
“Since then, I’ve been able to implement several of the tools from Collab into my coaching practice and have found them to be very effective for clients working on business model development and strategy.”
This fall I reached out to see if I could join Round Sky as an intern and was excited to be invited to support their work and get to deepen my practice with Collab tools. I’ve loved the opportunity to observe Collab in action and participate in the standard meeting practices.
Rebecca: Nice! I love hearing about how people use Collab in their work and life. Is there any piece of information, theory or tool that has left a lasting imprint on you?
I’ve been especially drawn in by the Power Matrix and the Seven Conversations (find those here). I really appreciate that Collab articulates power dynamics in a way that is honest and cuts out jargon that I’ve found inaccessible in more politically focused organization. The Seven Conversations has been really useful to explicitly describe the various aspects that are happening in any business, project, or really any time anyone is bringing an idea into reality. My clients have found the business model brainstorm and purpose brainstorm questions super useful!
Rebecca: How does this come out in your daily life? Can you share a specific story?
Well, the most obvious way is in my work with clients. I refer to Collab tools almost daily. And personally, I think the connections that Collab makes between the work we do in groups and organizations to the interpersonal and personal development edges I’m pushing as a human being.
Just yesterday, I had a client meeting and during our check in, it became obvious that she was having an emotional day and struggling with some heart ache. We made some space to touch into this for the first part of our session together before moving into the marketing plan we were working on.
I’ve found it profoundly helpful and relieving to remember that we are all complex humans and we bring our whole selves to the work we do. Having this celebrated and made explicit in Collab is something I appreciate daily. I’ve encouraged myself to be more vulnerable with coworkers and collaborators and this has led to more fulfilling work and personal relationships.
Rebecca: Thanks for sharing! You’ve been generously volunteering some of your time with us, can you share what you’ve been working on and what’s been exciting you about our work?
Yes! Like I said before, I’ve been really excited to observe such a competent team using all the Collab tools in the running of the business of Round Sky!
I’ve also gotten the chance to help develop a new offering, the online Collab™ 101 course. This is a more accessible, shorter, more affordable introduction to Collab than the Level 1 Certification program I participated in. I think this is a genius idea to get people the basic concepts in a more approachable online work from home format that I hope will allow these ideas to spread to a larger audience. There are just so many organizations that could benefit by beginning to start thinking about their organizational processes, group dynamics, and the individual growth that is so important to remember when working with other people.
Rebecca: Thank you so much for your energy and work Sara. It’s been so great to get to know you so far in the process. Is there anything else you’d like to share with the Round Sky Solutions Community?
Thanks Rebecca!! Yes, it’s been great working together the past few weeks. I think I just want to appreciate all the folks who are working on finding better ways for us to work together and build healthier organizations to do all the amazing work we want to do together.
And, of course, I would highly recommend checking out Round Sky’s offerings!! They have made such a difference in my work and life. The Collab™ 101 Online Course that’s coming up is a simple and affordable way to get introduced to this framework and I’m excited to have more and more folks get familiar with Collab™ and experiment with applying it in their work!
Alright! Thanks again for sharing Sara.
Round Sky Solutions Community!
Does this excite you? Are you searching for the next step to expanding your leadership capacity and the process to facilitate an energetic and effective team?
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