9.26.2006

How MKP Works for One Man, After NWTA

Below is a snippet of a long interview. I cut out the part that pertains to this man and his experience with the NWTA.

I hope it's helpful to you to see how the ManKind Project works in a man's life.

I'm out.
Old-faithful Wolf

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Robert Powell: A Valuable Asset to Both SRA and the Mankind Project

Robert Powell's Managerial and Community Involvement is Shaped by His Work with Two Progressive Organizations

By Roy Barnes

Q: How did you get involved with MKP, and what was the first major career change, if any, that you undertook after completing your first ManKind Project ("The Weekend")?

A: I did the NWTA in November 1992 at the suggestion of a fellow volunteer in a community mental health center where we facilitated group work for male batterers. The NWTA experience intensified my interest in personal work, which had originally led me to volunteer at the center. I actually began moving toward a second career in counseling. I completed both my masters and postmasters training, with an emphasis in family and marriage therapy between 1993 and 1998. I had every intention of switch careers until events in my personal life made it financially impossible to make the switch.

Q: What distinguishes the New Warrior Training Adventure from other self-discovery retreats?

A: First of all, it's far more intensive and transformational than anything I've encountered. Therapists, for instance, frequently equate it with six to eighteen months of individual sessions. Second of all, it's not an end in itself, but only the beginning of a process of self-discovery and growth. Central to the MKP curriculum is the on-going Integration Groups (I-Groups) that most men join after "The Weekend". This is a facilitated ten-week program, but for the most part, the groups are self-led and men can go as deep as they wish. Some men stay for a year or two, [but] many have been in an I-Group for ten years or more. I've been in my I-Group since my "Weekend" in 1992.

Q: How does "The Weekend" change a lifetime of ineffective living and/or add more to someone who is pretty much, for lack of a better term, "all together"?

A: Each man's journey is his own path to discovery. Our goal is to activate his personal mission in life and to support him in pursuing it. Men who judge themselves to have been ineffectual before "The Weekend" often report a major change in their life after their New Warrior Training Adventure. Men who come to the training with awareness of their mission usually deepen their commitment and find their energies and drive magnified.

Q: Does MKP offer programs and retreats for corporations?

A: ManKind Project (MKP) has often discussed the possibility of bringing the training into the corporate setting. Nothing official has developed, though many individual NWTA graduates work in the Organizational Development (OD) and corporate training fields. The lessons taught in the NWTA have found their way into such programs. And, of course, as individuals, many men, including me, have incorporated its basic teachings of personal integrity and direct communications in our management practices.

Q: How does the corporate philosophy of SRA complement what you have done with MKP; that is, are you able to apply the things you've learned through MKP into the way you manage your staff and approach your projects?

A: SRA International has proven to be an ideal culture for what I've learned and teach in MKP. It is a company whose motto is "Honesty in Service" and whose corporate culture is built on the axiom that caring for its clients, its personnel, and (since going public) its shareholders are its core business, and that everything else will follow. Every new employee attends a half-day training on culture and ethics, and every performance evaluation includes explicit ratings on ethics and caring for others. While the terms of our contracts set the parameters for what we are expected to do and what we must and can do, there is an ethos that we do whatever it takes to support our clients and our staffs in their professional and relevant personal goals.

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