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RLND Orientation Seminar

Members of RLND Class VI (2013-15) gathered for their Orientation Seminar November 21-23, 2013 in Bismarck. The 20 participants started their RLND experience by meeting each other and meeting spouses/significant others of class VI participants over lunch.

Thursday morning participants learned about the Abilene Paradox, a phenomenon called mismanaged agreement where groups of individuals actually agree but don’t realize they agree because no one in the group speaks up and shares their views. Participants discussed various aspects of the RLND Program as well.

Mel Nelson presented information on the DiSC Behavioral Profile Thursday afternoon. Participants learned about the four main styles in the DiSC profile and how to modify their behavior, depending on the situation, to be most effective.

After dinner participants and guests were part of a teambuilding exercise where small group worked to build a bridge. The exercise asked team members to build a bridge out of newspapers and masking tape that would support a pitcher of water and was tall enough for the pitcher to go under it. The five teams worked hard to plan and then build (without talking to each other) their bridges.

Friday morning’s activity was an appreciative inquiry (AI) interview with another RLND Class VI participant. The AI interview process provided an opportunity for participants to learn about each other in a different way by asking questions about what make them happy, what they wished for in their future and sharing information about a time when they felt really good about something they were part of.

Lunch on Friday was with RLND alumni from the first four RLND classes. Participants and alumni visited over lunch as they started to create new networks.

Friday afternoon Class VI participants discussed ideas Kouzes and Posner present in their leadership book, Leadership Challenge.  Class VI participants also discussed and made decisions about the values (operating principles) they want to live by as a class over the next 18 months.

Friday night was a time to help RLND Class V participants (now alumni) celebrate their accomplishments by attending their graduation gala. The gala event featured a class perspective about what they experienced during their ten seminars. The gala was also a time to recognize individuals and organizations who have contributed greatly to the RLND Program.  

Saturday morning Class VI participants heard from RLND alumni about what to expect from their RLND experience, ideas of how to make the best of their RLND experience and a chance to expand their network by meeting RLND alumni.

The seminar ended by having Class VI participants talk about the issue/project they are passionate about and are willing to work on over the next 18 months as they continue their RLND experience.

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