Sunday, June 15, 2008



Dear Friends,

In 1978, two weeks after the Jim Jones massacre, I participated in EST. Friends begged me not to go but I had a certain ambivalence about life. As 500 of us walked into the LA Convention Center and the doors shut, I thought, "At least I'm not in Guyana." This past week, I watched a stunning documentary, "Transformation" and I suggest anyone touched or interested in the history of the human potential movement take a look. It is about Werner Erhard, the controversial founder of EST and Landmark Education. I kind of forgot how much Werner Erhard and EST actually influenced our culture. Yes, it was coarse, rude, vulgar, visionary and optimistic. The 70's were the same. EST produced almost a million graduates and its successor touched millions around the world. In watching the documentary my "take away" is that before EST, Erhard abandoned his own family. At least to me, this represents a failure that exceeds virtually any failure or disappointment I could ever have found in my own life. This deeply flawed and charismatic figure didn't use that failure as a reason to settle for a failed life. He went ahead and created his training, the organizations that perpetuated and a couple of charitable institutions. In others words, Erhard found a way to use his own brand of brilliance for the good of the world. In listening to the rhetoric of EST in the 70's, it dawned on me how much of our current culture, like it or not, is influenced by what happened. Virtually any modern talent management - organization development program embraces the move from the militaristic management model to at least beginning the partnership of uncovering possibilities together. Much of today's marketing and language of aspiration was characterized in the 70's as so "EST."

Prior to the late 70's and early 80's, how common was it for people to be talking about making a difference? Were there shortcomings to the process? Of course, it was the 70's. I watched so many people stand up and make commitments to change the world but the vision wasn't specific and personalized enough to gain traction. Plus, the support behind a real vision needs to be well designed. Back then, we'd throw ourselves into these huge volunteer groups. But, just one support or networking group isn't going to make anyone fully successful. Werner made a certain kind of mess out of things. But, look at the impact of his taking action. Much of the media payed attention to the mistakes he made but paid little notice when he reconnected with his family and sought forgiveness and integrity. And for the rest of us, how many times have we been conditioned to settle for mediocrity in our purpose, our satisfaction and our ability to touch others because we failed once, twice, three times? In the years since, many of us have found that life represents an extraordinary platform with absolute choice between whether we settle or pursue meaning, growth, joy, love, beauty and fulfillments. These are characteristics that define my life today and those closest to me - so, I know it is possible. Can we make a mess out of things? Yes and we will. But let's explore the possibility that simply doing nothing will make more than a mess, it will create a nightmare.

Of course the choice of making a difference, of pursuing the greatness within ourselves, our coworkers, our friends and family requires courage. And yet, in the wake of that pursuit, if we persist and try again, and again and again and we when prevail, gratitude emerges. That is the measurement.

So, if you are so inclined, here a few questions to potentially answer. If you choose to participate, take out a piece of paper and take a few minutes to answer each question.

1. If I was going to make a difference today, who would I touch and what would I do to make their world better?

2. Where have I felt any sense of failure and how could I elevate my response?

3. What parts of my own mission, vision and purpose are worthy of persistence?

4. If I was going to transform the way I work, what would I change?


David Harder


THE INSPIRED WORK PROGRAM - July 12 & 13 - Saturday & Sunday

How many of our waking hours are consumed getting ready for, being at, driving home and recovering from work?

How much does the quality of your work impact your personal life, your love relationships, your family and the way you feel about yourself?

Life is indeed, short. We want you to know that if you give us two days, forty-eight hours, you will emerge from the Inspired Work Program with a new relationship towards your life. During the program, realizations take place:

- Immediate breakthroughs in your entire relationship towards work

- Clarity in how to use all that you've learned

- A move beyond day-to-day frenzy to fulfillment and greater success

Many participants characterize the program as the single most profound seminar they've ever experienced. It's our promise - give us two days and we will deliver more than you expected and more than you dreamed.

INSPIRED PRESENTATIONS - September 25 & 26 - Thursday & Friday

Perception Matters.

Once we establish any kind of success, over 85% of our ability to sustain and grow that success is based on our ability to influence others. Inspired Presentations builds expertise across the entire spectrum of human communications. In two days, six participants transform their ability to present to all audiences, regardless of size or makeup. In this program, everyone experiences and connects with themselves at such a deep level that presentation comes from authenticity. We've learned that so many people fear presentations because they believe, at some core level, they have to turn into someone else. Inspired Presentations represents a sophisticated blend of science, common sense and expert's knowledge born out of that highly competitive industry: Advertising. During this revolutionary experience, each participant learns how to persuade individual and collective audiences to connect effectively and without fear. Consider the profit and success opportunities.

Inspired Presentations is limited to six participants.

Please note: We have received a number of inquiries for a program prior to September. If you want to participant in Inspired Presentations prior to September, contact our office and we will confirm the date for an additional public offering.

INSPIRED SALES - August 9 - Saturday

In seven hours, learn how to get business without making a pitch.

Double Your Income in 2009 - Four Ways to Make it Happen!

Meet extraordinary people in an environment that moves well beyond traditional networking. We match attendees effectively and consciously. Alumni programs are limited to individuals who have participated in one of our programs and their guests.

The evening's topic:

Regardless of whether you are self-employed, have a job, work in a large company or small; this information is unexpected and will serve you for the rest of your career. We have found four ways to significantly increase income. They are practical. Each one produces immediate benefits. And, we will make it fun for you to learn. The curriculum, as always, is informative and there will be a great deal of engagement with everyone.

The event requires pre-registration and there is a program fee of $75/person - refreshments and food is included. To register, please call or e-mail, Paula Plotnick, Chief Enrollment Officer at (310) 277-4850 or

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1 comment:

seo service Chandigarh said...

I saw this film two nights ago and have watched it twice. I am having friends over this week to watch it. I can think of nothing else right now. I had a chance to take the est training in the 80’s, but was scared off by the bad press, now I am so sorry. I know everythin