The Journal Gazette
Sunday, August 01, 2021 1:00 am

Speakers for summit bring value

LISA GREEN | The Journal Gazette

When leaders ranging from author and personal development coach Henry Cloud to retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal get behind a microphone this week, 2,000 northeast Indiana residents will be listening.

That's how many had registered as of mid-last week for this year's annual Global Leadership Summit, which is Thursday and Friday.

Willow Creek Church in suburban Chicago hosts the annual event that will be broadcast via satellite to some 500 sites. Cloud and McChrystal will be among more than 15 speakers, including Juliet Funt, Craig Groeschel and Shola Richards.

Funt, known for her direct, tough-love approach, is CEO for WhiteSpace at Work. Her consulting firm helps organizations focus on creativity and productivity instead of just busyness. 

Groeschel, senior pastor of Life.Church, has embraced technology including apps to expand ministry reach and has locations in about a dozen states. 

Richards is founder and CEO of Go Together Global, also a best-selling author, and considered a workplace civility expert. 

Last year's summit was virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, northeast Indiana attendees could stick with the remote option or select from 13 area sites, including Sweetwater Sound, Brotherhood Mutual, Vera Bradley and Blackhawk Ministries.

For several years, Fort Wayne has had the highest registration numbers among U.S. satellite sites and GLS & Beyond Executive Director Jeri Purdy said Warsaw has been in the top five.

Fort Wayne-based GLS & Beyond, the nonprofit that promotes the summit, in March announced a merger with GLS Warsaw.

Warsaw-area residents account for 450 of the 2,000 summit registrations so far this year for northeast Indiana, Purdy said through email. 

“With our combined efforts we have solidly secured the No. 1 site in the country,” she said.

About 700 among the Fort Wayne-Warsaw individuals registered will view the summit online. Purdy said many corporations are still avoiding in-person gathering due to rising coronavirus cases.

Last year, more than 2,100 people associated themselves with the Fort Wayne location for summit registration.

Nationally, feedback from those who attend is generally upbeat.

More than two-thirds – 68% – report improved productivity and 74% reported improved work quality, the Global Leadership Summit website currently says. Also, according to independent research by Excellence in Giving, 81% reported improved job satisfaction.

More voices for United Front

A change of pace is often welcome – even if what you've been doing is good.

United Front, a yearlong program that stresses cultural awareness and inclusion, tweaked the format for its June and July presentations. Organizers incorporated additional on-stage voices with trainer Pascal Losambe of Synergy Consulting Co.

Kristal Walker, vice president of employee well-being at Sweetwater Sound, joined Losambe onstage at Embassy Theatre in late June for the monthly session. She and Losambe continued the chat format at the Clyde Theatre for the first part of last Wednesday's session. Later onstage, Losambe was joined by Chris Freeman, pastor and founder of City Church Fort Wayne.

A couple of highlights from Walker: 

• A great sense of responsibility has been placed on employers to resolve diversity, equity and inclusion issues, but responsibility and accountability is shared. It is incumbent on organizations to make sure “those issues don't exist,” but also requires individuals to grow in “self mastery,” learning to take greater responsibility for self esteem and feelings.

• One thing that makes conversations difficult is that people haven't had the same experiences and may be concerned they do not have a “big solution,” but the “stand-alone solution at the time can actually be empathy.”

From Freeman:

• Humility is a must. “It's important for all of us to not try to lead beyond where we've learned.”

• You can focus on keeping people or leading people.

To share a thought, a favorite quote or other wisdom about leadership, email Lisa Green at Lead On also appears online as a blog at

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