Partners at Cascade Bluff

Navigating the Currents of Change

Our Mission

Partners at Cascade Bluff’s mission is to provide guidance for organizations, teams and individuals interested in building the resilience necessary to navigate the tumultuous currents of change. We describe ourselves as educators in independent practice, another way to say that our focus is on establishing a relationship with our clients to facilitate their capacity to more clearly see the world and themselves, on building insight into complex adaptive work, and strengthening our clients resources to continue to do their real work themselves.

Partners at Cascade Bluff engage highly skilled professionals predominantly in the healing professions and in the non-profit sector. As physicians who are also certified professional coaches, we provide a unique blend of shared implicit cultural understanding, professional experience and perspective for physicians and others in health care yearning for a more fulfilling path forward, whether in their professional or personal realms. We enjoy working deeply and broadly within organizations to facilitate transformative change. This work requires helping others in developing clarity of purpose, the steadiness to see reality yet remain hopeful, capacity to hold the tension of paradox and willingness to embrace a sense of possibility. We help organizations to build sustainable capacities in making progress on tough problems; guide groups and organizations to design staff and employee resiliency programs that really work; and coach individuals, leaders and leadership teams to enhance their personal and professional effectiveness.

What Informs Our Work

Building upon our collective experience as physicians, educators and leaders, we gratefully acknowledge thought experts in diverse fields of human development, psychology, organizational dynamics and many other areas. We find the following resources particularly useful:

Adaptive Leadership: In 1996, Dr. Ulstad had the opportunity to study with Dr. Ron Heifetz at Harvard University. Much of our work with groups is informed by the principles of his model, Adaptive Leadership. This model helps map the territory of human behavior, describing what people do and how they behave in systems. More importantly, it reveals what people can do with a deeper understanding of fear and resistance to change. This model applies so well to health care where there are complex, refractory problems, perceived scarcity of time and attention and a developing crisis in relevance.

Polarity Management: Building on the published works of Dr. Barry Johnson, author of Polarity Management:  Identifying and Managing Unsolvable Problems, we frequently identify fundamental polarities imbedded within adaptive challenges. Within the framework of Adaptive Leadership we teach ways to name hidden polarities and methods that optimize the benefits of both poles in the ongoing work of closing the gap from the current to the desired state. 

Professional Coaching: In 2007, Dr. Ulstad completed her training and became certified as a coach at the Hudson Institute in Santa Barbara, California. In 2016, Dr. Ogle was fully certified as an Integral Master Coach™ through Integral Coaching Canada based in Ottawa, Ontario. Drs. Ogle and Ulstad are certified in the interpretation of the CDR® survey tool, based on the work of Robert Hogan and others, which looks at an individual’s characteristics, drivers and risk factors. This tool is often part of their assessment of a coaching client’s distinctive strengths and weaknesses and can help guide an individual’s growth toward greater professional effectiveness and personal satisfaction.

Learn more: CDR®
Learn more: Hudson Institute of Coaching
Learn more: Integral Coaching Canada

Courage Work: In 2003, Dr. Ulstad was trained in formation facilitation by Parker Palmer (author, educator, social activist and founder of the Courage to Teach Program.) She developed and lead an annual retreat series called Courage to Imagine for physicians and their partners from 2004-2010. Courage work is anchored in the belief that one must do one’s own inner work to prepare one’s self for service to the community. Dr. Ulstad threads the principles of courage work–open, honest questions; reverence for one’s inner teacher; the insightful use of inspirational works of art, places, and poetry, so-called “third things”; and the value of individual contemplation in a community of supportive others–throughout her work.

Learn more: Center for Courage and Renewal

Integral Theory: Nearly four decades of the brilliant work of Ken Wilber cannot be easily summarized in a paragraph. Wilber has described a framework through which disparate ideas, insights, and disciplines can be approached and included. Integral Theory acknowledges that while various fields of knowledge and traditions have potential value in their perspectives, all represent only partial views. Only by systematically including as many perspectives as possible can we come closer to seeing the whole. Integral Theory is particularly evident as a foundation underpinning Dr. Ogle's training as an Integral Master Coach™. At its most basic, the wisdom of the perspectives of the individual and the collective, including both the subjective and the observable, is profoundly helpful to our work.

10551 Morgan Ave South, Bloomington, MN

10551 Morgan Ave South
Bloomington, Minnesota 55431
mobile 612 719 0635
fax 877 644 7324

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