In celebrating 11 years as CIELARKO, we have updated our logo to give it a stronger and more focussed look. We are proud and grateful to have grown into CIELARKO Coaching & Consulting, supporting our clients – individuals, teams and organisations – in their growth. Thanks to everyone who has been part of our journey so far. Let’s stay in touch.
Layo Seriki and Lieuwe Koopmans are teaming up to run this training beginning in May 2019, ending in August 2019. The training is open to coaches, counsellors, trainers, psychotherapists, leaders, HR managers, and other “people professionals”, who support the development of individuals and teams.
The training will have two modules of two days each. Module 1 is scheduled to be on Friday, 31st May and Saturday, 1st June 2019, while Module 2 will be on Thursday, 22nd and Friday, 23rd August 2019. A 1 day introduction to TA for participants, who have not done a TA 101 course is scheduled for Thursday, 30th May 2019.
If you are interested in this training, you can find more information here and/or contact us.
In her article published in the August edition of Leadership Magazine, Layo reflects on the possibilities of turning the world around – with women in the lead. Enjoy reading the full article here.
For those interested in further exploring female power, Layo Seriki and Linda Hennings (Forging Ahead) are offering a workshop with horses for women who lead in completely different spheres of life. Have a look here for more information on this workshop, planned for November 2018.
On Friday, 13th and Saturday, 14th July 2018 Karen Pratt (TSTA Education and Founder of TA Matters) introduced a group of 10 professionals (including myself) to Transactional Analysis (TA) language and tools which we can use in our daily and professional lives. For a few months, I’d been exposed to TA through working at CIELARKO. However, I was mainly involved as an admin person who did not fully understand the TA terms and language. And now, after having gone through the TA 101 with Karen, I feel empowered that I will start reading TA materials with appreciation, understanding, meaning and attachment.
One tool that stood out the most for me was ‘Life Positions’ (Windows of the World). This model describes our attitudes to ourselves and others, and a respect for our common humanity. It has four views that represent fundamental stances a person takes up about the essential value he perceives in himself and others. The views are briefly explained below:
I’m OK, You’re OK – when I look at the world through this window, I view myself as valuable to self and others, and good to have around.
I’m not OK, You’re OK – when I look at the world through this window, I see myself as a victim and not as good as others.
I’m OK, You’re not OK – when I look at the world through this window, I see myself as better than others. I have a negative perception of others and my actions therefore put others down.
I’m not OK, You’re not OK – when I look at the world through this window, I believe I am no good, no one else is either and that life is full of despair. I will live and experience rejection throughout my life.
One specific example I can think of where I was looking at the world with the view “I’m OK, You’re not OK” is my experience a few weeks ago with a Grade 6 pupil I teach Xhosa. The learner did not bring their Xhosa book to my lesson and we were running late already. The learner came to me and said “Sorry Sir, I did not bring my Xhosa book, can I use scrap paper?” I responded aggressively to the learner and said, with hostility, “Why do you ask me such a question when you know right well you are coming to my Xhosa lesson? Do you still want to continue learning the language?” My assumption was that she did not want to learn and this class is generally difficult anyway. The learner ran out of the room and went to fetch her book. She returned and I felt tension between us in the next few weeks. This one learner confirmed my view about the class being not OK and I was triggered into reacting automatically. Now that I am empowered with this tool, I could have easily changed my attitude and response. I could have looked through the “I’m OK, You’re OK” window, seen these 12 to 13 year-olds with their strengths and challenges, and responded “It is your responsibility to bring your Xhosa book in all my lessons, so I suggest you go and get it while I continue with my planned lesson.” I would be OK, owning my responsibility as a teacher, and she would be OK and able to take her responsibility as a learner in the situation.
Our two days at the TA 101 were filled with so many honest reflections and wisdom both from Karen and attending participants. Karen’s passion about TA made her a natural in helping us understand the new tools and language. She held the space with power of freedom and inviting firmness. I look forward to adapting and changing some of my behaviours in my work, at home, with friends, … to improve my interpersonal skills. I feel empowered, inspired, free and ready to use some of the TA models and tools.
Layo contributed to the February 2018 edition of the Leadership magazine discussing the difference between Supreme and Effective leaders and how we can either empower or dis-empower the people we lead. She used Star Wars (the movie) as reference to discuss the differences in these leadership styles. The article is available here.
When I first started my internship with CIELARKO six weeks ago, I was unsure what to expect. I was very excited and curious as to what my tasks would be and who the people were that I’d spend the next one and a half months with. On my first day, I was pretty nervous, so sitting down with Layo and starting to get to know each other face-to-face helped me to relax, but also to clarify for myself what I expected to get out of this experience. Namely to acquire an inside look at what being a consultant really means and perhaps also to find out if I want to further pursue this profession in the future.
Since I did not know much about the specific work of CIELARKO, apart from what Layo told me and what their website revealed beforehand, I spent a lot of my time during the first few days of my internship reading through websites and manuals. Having attained more detailed knowledge on the topics and clients CIELARKO is working with, I began feeling more comfortable and confident with the subjects at hand. This is a pattern that would repeat itself quite a few times during my stay. For instance, when first meeting the different clients CIELARKO works with, I often found it difficult to follow for different reasons. One of which definitely is that English is not my first language, but another one was also that I had not been in contact with the topics they discussed so far. Here it was very helpful that my questions were always welcomed and additionally, Layo explained to me that my questions were also a good opportunity for herself to organise her thoughts and sometimes also to question things herself.
During the following weeks, I spent a lot of time at the Muizenberg office with Layo and Sim, who also helped me whenever I had questions. While stationed at Muizenberg, I also accompanied Layo to see various clients, ranging from NGOs to large corporate businesses. Like so often during this great experience, I was astonished at the huge amount of trust they put in me. Of course, I had signed a confidentiality agreement and yet I was amazed that I was allowed to participate in confidential client meetings. This experience offered me an even greater appreciation for the importance of trusting and earning the trust of colleagues.
On top of that, I felt very honoured that Layo always gave me the feeling that my thoughts and opinions are valued. Obviously, Layo did not always agree with me but I felt that my contribution is wanted and valued and I am very grateful for that. This is another aspect that made my internship such a great experience.
Now, at the end of my internship, I look back and realise that I would never have thought that six weeks could fly by so fast. I am so deeply thankful to CIELARKO and especially Layo for granting me the opportunity to attain first-hand insights into her job as a consultant and for doing so much more for me than I could have expected or even hoped for. During the past one and a half months I accompanied Layo to various clients, took lots of notes at meetings, expanded my PowerPoint and LibreOffice skills, got acquainted with the TIFF model, attended a family constellations workshop, received an equine coaching session and much more. Finally, I also want to thank my colleague Sim for answering so many of my questions and for letting me accompany him to his Xhosa lessons at Forres Preparatory School every Wednesday, which made my stay even richer than it already was.
Stefan Graebe was recently interviewed by SA FM to discuss his new book entitled ‘A Doctorate and Beyond: Building a Career in Engineering and the Physical Sciences’. In the Literature Show interview, he talks with Nancy Richards about how he got to start writing the book with fellow author Graham C. Goodwin and shares his journey to getting a Doctorate and moving beyond. To hear the interview, Click the play button, below, to listen to the interview.
Towards the end of last year, Layo had an interview with a German publication company, Business Spotlight, to share her insights on the journey having a business and living in South Africa. She shared a bit about her ethnic background (having a Nigerian father and a German mother) and how she identified South Africa as a country that brought both worlds together hence her move to SA. She also opened up briefly about her observations and experiences having a business in South Africa and how one needs to embrace the different cultures the country has. You can read briefly about the interview here. Otherwise you can order past issues of Business Spotlight at their cover price plus postage and packing. You can call (+49) 89-85681-16 or send an email to email@example.com