What Color Art Thou…?

Are you the life of the Party?
Or maybe you are the one who put it together.

Either way you add your own unique color to it. Wonder how? Read on…

The Final Celebration with Leaders from the first I-House Intercultural Leadership Initiative

The Final Celebration with Leaders from the first I-House Intercultural Leadership Initiative

The deadline to sign up for the Intercultural Leadership Initiative is just around the corner.  This reminds me of a wonderful Leadership Colors workshop I attended as part of the first ILI cohort. Each of us has our own unique way of leading and this is so wonderfully associated with colors.

How is that possible?” I knew you would be skeptical. Hence, I decide to reproduce a reflection I wrote after the workshop to give you a crash course in it. Here it goes:

Activity: Leadership Colors with Cynthia Gordon

It is beautiful to see the colors of the world outside. It is even more enriching to discover the colors within. Precisely, that is what happened at the Leadership colors workshop. Conducted by Cynthia Gordon, it was a two hour fun filled journey of self-realization, where each one of us explored the hidden colors within ourselves. Using a shade as a metaphor for so many innate qualities we were amazed at how much they resembled our preferred personality and thinking styles.

Details, Analysis and Discussion:
Cynthia tied us all up in couples to begin the workshop. Our first task was to escape the bonds like our favorite animals trapped in a zoo. Quite a funny experience and with a pretty simple solution, it turned out to be a very good indicator of how we respond so differently to any situation. After a brief introduction about how colors came to be associated with different leadership styles, we did a self-assessment to find our true colors. I ended up as primarily a green like the majority of the group. Then we explored the positive traits of each of the four primary colors – Orange, Green, Gold and Blue.

There were two main tasks that made this exploration very interesting. First, we designed our ideal vacation. Through this the different approaches of the color groups were brought out. Next, we did another self-assessment where as a group we had to list out what were our strengths (as perceived by us) and weaknesses (as perceived by others) and how we would want someone to react to us. After an intense discussion we ended the workshop by finding out about the other side of leadership colors.

Pretty short and enjoyable though it was, the workshop left a deep impact on me. I realized how different colors and their related traits come out when I react to different kinds of situations. The colors relate so perfectly with the type of personality they represent.

How do you lead?
How do you lead?

For example – Orange is supposed to be the color which stands out in any kind of combinations (*Trivia time – that is why the Black Box in an airplane is Orange) and interestingly people whose primary color is Orange tend to stand out with their humorous, creative and spontaneous nature. I could actually connect the traits of each color and their representative strengths and this whole connection was quite mind-boggling. Personally, it was like suddenly realizing something that should have been so obvious all the time.

However, the most interesting part of the Workshop came after it, when I met different people and guessed their colors and after giving them a shot at the assessment, my guesses turned out to be right. Same was true when people tried guessing my color. The workshop was a very good experience to gain but it was an even more fulfilling experience to spread the message and see the awe on others’ faces.

The Leadership Colors turned out to be an apt ending to our activities for the Intercultural Leadership Initiative. To summarize what I gained from the workshop and also to end the reflection with a double entendre on my color, if I might call it so, I would just say –

“Go Green…”

The applications for the Fall 2014 Intercultural Leadership Initiative are due on Monday, September 8, 2014. Feel free to talk to me, other alumni and the CIL team at the Coffee Hour this Wednesday, Sept. 3 at 9pm in the Great Hall.

To find out about requirements, eligibility or to apply visit:   ihouse.berkeley.edu/ILI

About vishwab

Live it ! Love it ! Thats in short about me. For the keener audience, currently a PhD student in Systems Engineering at UC, Berkeley, I come from the holy city of Varanasi in India. I am passionate about teaching, music, writing, travelling and meeting new people. My time at Berkeley living at International House has both reared and been reared by the above. For the professionally oriented, I did my undergrad in Civil Engineering and Masters in Structural Engineering, have taught Physics at Berkeley for 5 semesters and at Stanford for 2 summers and my research is currently focused on Vehicle to Grid Systems and Persuasive Technology. For the even more interested, keep an eye on the blog..:)
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One Response to What Color Art Thou…?

  1. Pingback: I-House Resident and Alumni Blogger Awards | I-House: Where UC Berkeley Meets the World

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