Peace Practices+professional trainings

We offer executive consultation and training, group facilitation, classes and workshops offering the Peace Practices model, and public talks for professional audiences. Our current clients include:

  • a city council president (census over 400,000)
  • two locations of a Montessori school - all children and several adults
  • a non-profit officer and their staff
  • an international enterprise big data systems engineer
  • a community organizer
  • and, potentially, you!
This is training for the body and mind to respond to conflict as normal and helpful, especially when under pressure, and as an opportunity to celebrate difference. In this way, Peace itself can be practiced in personal and public contexts, rather than wished for Someday, and nonviolence learned for life, like one would learn a martial art.
 
Current context for this work:

 

 

+About the Founder

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Brandon WilliamsCraig, Ph.D. is co-founder and CEO of the Bay Area nonprofit, Association Building Community. He has extensive experience with private and public educational institutions, provides corporate leadership and group facilitation training, and has provided conflict management and community mediation services since 1998. His academic work focuses on the psychology of belief and the narrative construction of culture.

Brandon Sensei is a 5th degree blackbelt in aikido and head instructor of Free Aiki Dojo and Golden Bears Aikido at UC Berkeley. His students learn traditional aikido techniques paired with language that brings about the embodiment of aiki principles. His conflict facilitation method, called Martial Nonviolence, is the heart of the Peace Practices curriculum being practiced around the world by students from four to 74 years of age. He resides in Richmond, CA with his wife and two children.

 

Please contact us to learn what we can offer your community: 

 

 Please see examples of our work in the past below.

History of Service

As ABC, we have been working through conflict in management environments since 1999, offering exceptional communication tools and soft skills, and are comfortable engaging with C-level executives as they assess operational resources to assemble baselines, metrics, and recommendations. Our primary area of interest and process involves discerning the risks associated with "what we chose not to know" by investigating the culture and mythology of businesses, divisions, and project teams. Limiting organizational assumptions are uncovered and analyzed independent from individual agendas in order to push beyond self-justification. This work requires skills like ours, and we hope to put our experience at your service.

  • Work within senior management change commitments to provide assessment/analysis of program & project current-states that affect organization effectiveness.
  • Recommend & facilitate successful transition processes.
  • Focus on locating gaps in the capabilities of new and M&A business processes, especially organization change conflicts.
  • Specialize in working with key and extended stakeholders to identify and compensate for dissonance and cross-purposes.
  • Use narrative analysis to uncover the assumptions that prevent identification of necessary capabilities during early-cycle requirement analysis, capability testing, and training.

 

Primary capacities

  • Identify disconnects due to cultural differences and norms, and address them through sustainable strategies
  • Bring coherent teamwork to original, complex, or unstructured projects and initiatives
  • Identify and bring forward conflicts resulting from undisclosed agreements, stakeholder miscommunication, and the presumption of shared assumptions
  • Use narrative analysis to assist enterprises and teams to identify what holds them back by deconstructing hard to face differences, then configure and reinforce agreements that may be relied upon to move projects forward

 

Services provided

  • Creating mediation team and six month process to help three entrepreneurs in partnership successfully separate their enterprises without legal entanglement.
  • Facilitating the resolution of a dispute involving executive abuse of power and sexual impropriety in connection with a local business and a national non-profit. Success follows four months of shuttle diplomacy terminating in one lengthy facilitated meeting with all concerned parties.
  • Resolving issues including slander, misappropriation of funds, timeframe and scope of work disputes, exaggeration of capacity, professional and personal conflicts of interest, recovery from insufficient initial needs assessments, organizational systems clarification and role confusion, and a wide variety of misunderstandings and misrepresentations both in and out of contract.
  • Rescue (guarantee all necessary functions for) and analyze a local enterprise for reconfiguration. Release by management after delivering findings and recommendations. Returning upon management request a few months later to complete work and create an operations manual.
  • Originating and successfully managing administrative and technology systems for local and international non-profits, educational institutions
  • Directing day-to-day operations including: internet-based media; public presentation; facilitation of mission refinement processes; information technology use, design, and deployment; PR campaigns and branding; staffing, training, and supervision; inventory, ordering, book keeping, and fund-raising support.

 

Summary of consultations

 

Confidential Client - 2011 and again 2012-2013

  • Leading recovery from growth/consolidation driven business process dysfunction: restored performance of administrative business processes including communications, scheduling, project management, grant requirements, media products, HR/hire-fire, volunteer supervision and training, client liaison, coordination and conflict resolution between principle consultants, and process tracking/metrics
  • Providing analysis for organizational reconfiguration, existing management encounters issues making the changes internally
  • Renewing efforts after management realignment to complete work and create an operations manual

 

Confidential Client - 2010

  • Facilitate the resolution of disputes in connection with the overlapping interests of a local business and a national non-profit, abuse of authority, impropriety, contention over areas of responsibility, whose narrative would persist as the organization’s identity
  • Satisfaction of all parties’ requirements after four months of shuttle diplomacy culminating in a designed and facilitated meeting process

 

Joint Venture (Confidential Client) - 2003

  • Leading a three month process to help three entrepreneurs in partnership separate their enterprises without legal entanglement
  • Creating a three person mediation team with over 100 years’ experience
  • Distinguishing and working through miscommunications correctly and incorrectly perceived as malicious
  • Moderating discovery of legally actionable malfeasance on the part of all parties
  • Negotiating for leeway with stake holders depending on specific outcomes
  • Providing clarifying language and narrative context for whole-system understanding
  • All three continue today as individual successes

 

Mediations on behalf of multiple stakeholders 1997-2011

Community mediation for businesses and individuals, worked to resolve issues including:

  • Allegations having to do with character damage and inappropriate behavior with a minor
  • Misappropriation of funds within an Oakland nonprofit
  • Timeframe and scope of work disputes for an independent contractor
  • Exaggeration of capacity by an independent contractor, requirement gathering, and clarifying a proposed scope of work for an IT infrastructural equipment transition and change roll-out
  • Professional and personal conflicts of interest having to do with payment of officers and programmatic overlaps within the portfolios of a Board of Directors
  • Recovery from insufficient initial needs assessments wherein partners failed to account for new aggregate systems needing to include existing protocols and deliverables.
  • Organizational systems clarification and role confusion resolution in order to reconcile the need for both hierarchical reporting systems and collaborative team models