Framework of Practice
Over the years of our practice we have identified critical components of successful consultation with traumatized systems. We believe effectiveness in helping organizations to heal from trauma is rooted in:
Embracing love as motivation and value in consultation practice
Understanding the dynamics of sudden and cumulative trauma and their effects on organizations
Utilizing organization development practices customized for traumatized systems
Cultivating joy and sustainability as a practitioner
We believe that love, acceptance, and forgiveness enable organizations to move forward and heal. Offering ourselves as companions on a healing journey is an act of love. We join organizations on their path of discovery and addressing their trauma. We add our optimism and energy to the organization’s own resources. We help contain organizational grief, shame, and guilt and rekindle members’ hope and confidence to move forward.
Consultants help identify kinds of trauma experienced by teams or organizations, whether the trauma is a single devastating event, a long-standing unaddressed trauma, or a more complex intersection of sudden trauma’s immediate aftermath, historical unhealed trauma, and insidious impacts of cumulative trauma. When practitioners share these ideas with organizational leaders and members, those in traumatized systems begin to make sense of their experience and gain constructive ways of thinking about organizational dynamics.
Utilizing understanding of individual trauma, organizational culture, the work-culture connection, trauma-informed practice, and principles of organizational change consultants can offer wise counsel and practical ideas, help organizational leaders navigate the layers of harm, find organizational strengths, and persist in healing efforts. Consultants can also assist leaders in addressing worries about persistent unhealthy organizational dynamics and the risks of unaddressed trauma. They can also help leaders understand their organizations’ strengths and shadows and utilize their insights to bolster resilience.
In order to act with love and compassion as well as bringing a strong conceptual foundation to situations of trauma, consultants need to cultivate their own health and sustainability. For us that means making sure we nurture joy, compassion, and loving relationships in our lives. We also recognize the power of a community of practice. We regularly meet with like-minded colleagues to share ideas, advance our understanding of the dynamics of organizational trauma, ask for and offer counsel, and support each other’s emotional health and capacity to offer compassionate healing.
Praise for Pat and Shana’s book