All-Star Break

Approximate Read Time: ~6 minutes

This week, in Major League Baseball (MLB), the National League prevailed over the American League in MLB’s All-Star game for the first time in 11 years. The margin was only one run but, hey, a win is a win.

We’re going to take our own All-Star break this week as well. Recently we’ve been diving into some substantial topics like preparing for controversy in the U.S. Culture War, strategy planning, and creating more durable organizations and movements. We’ve got a lot more to cover but, for this week, let’s take a break and watch a video (see above).

Whenever we find the time, we like to do Change Maker videos featuring people who know who are making important contributions in their fields. The most popular of our videos features Louise Lex, who, in her 90s, still works full-time for the State of Iowa and is a real All-Star in public health. On July 1, the Iowa Department of Public Health, in which she has worked for many years, became the Iowa Department of Health and Human Services as a result of a merger of multiple state agencies. She is a community health planner and, for much of her career, she was the facilitator for the creation of the state’s overall health plan, Healthy Iowans.

Frankly, Iowa is a tough place to be in public health these days. On June 21, a meteorologist on Des Moines’ top rated TV news station resigned because he and the station had been receiving intense harassment. It all started when he began “connecting the dots” between extreme weather and climate change. Just yesterday the Iowa Legislature, in a special session called by Governor Kim Reynolds, banned most abortions after about six weeks.

In the midst of all this is Louise Lex, whom we’ve come to know and appreciate as a “happy warrior” on behalf of public health and the well-being of the people in her state.

If you haven’t seen the interview with Louise, please take a few minutes to watch it now. Because of her long life and career, Louise can truly see “the long view.” We think you’ll find the video to be inspiring and encouraging for this time. Frankly, we’ve fallen behind schedule for doing these Change Maker videos because we’ve been busy serving clients. We have a waiting list but if you know of others you’d like to recommend, let us know. On our YouTube channel you can also find several other Change Maker videos we’ve done over the past couple of years.

Did you know that from 2003 to 2016 the All-Star game determined which league received home field advantage in the World Series? Since 2017 it has been mostly an exhibition game and a chance for the players to play the game again just for fun. Of course, that’s how most of us play baseball anyway, right?

Tenacious Change Coming to Substack

We are going to start offering this weekly posting on Substack over the next few weeks. We’re going to be working with the formatting and learning the process of posting there by “rerunning” some of our earlier posts on Substack, just to get the hang of it. When we are fully ready to start publishing there, we’ll let you know!

Scheduling for Fall 2023 and Winter 2024

We are currently scheduling consultations, workshops, and training events for late summer and early Fall as well as for this upcoming Winter. Visit our website to learn more about everything we offer. You can even download and share this handout with your colleagues. Then schedule a time to talk to us.

Now Available!

Preparing for Controversy in the Fog of (Culture) War does not hold all the answers but it has some that will be helpful. It will help you understand:

  • the difference between a controversy and a conflict
  • the stages of conflict
  • the cycle of intractable conflict
  • the value and importance of Strategic Controversy Management
  • when to intervene so that a controversy does not become a conflict
  • how to slow or stop a controversy, even a conflict, when it occurs

Ninety-one percent (91%) of people completing the evaluation after the live April 2023 seminar told us they felt more confident in their ability to manage controversy as a result of participating in the seminar. Specifically, here’s what they told us how they benefited most from it:

  • Five big steps in controversy management.
  • The rules of civil conversation.
  • Understanding how controversy and conflict are different now from the 90’s and understanding where and how conflict can be deterred.
  • Learning about when more people are likely to “get on-board” with your issue. This helped me think about where my energy and efforts can be used more effectively.
  • Tom’s historical observations about the Culture War and how things have changed…or not changed.
  • The cycle of intractable conflict.

In addition to the video, there are downloadable PDF resources. All are available at no cost, though you will be asked to sign a guest book before accessing the video and downloads.

Click on the link below to see a brief trailer video and then access the full video and all resources.

What Controversy Could be Brewing In Your World?

sticks and pine cones near a coffee maker
Photo by Ron Lach on

Please follow this link (or click on the button below) to complete a brief Google form where you can tell us.

  • What controversies are emerging that you might be able to head off?
  • What controversies are you actually facing at this time?
  • Can you share a situation with us that we can turn into an anonymous “case study” and explore in an upcoming blog?
  • What specific questions do you have about getting prepared for controversy or managing controversy?

Remember, you can also access our video Preparing for Controversy inthe Fog of (Culture) War on our website and we also offer a day-long training event on managing controversy – on-site or online.

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