Course Description

We all know, from our own visceral experience, that the world is complex and unpredictable. Many of us, and our clients, are in the midst of tremendous challenges. And yet, most of us are conditioned from an early age to believe that with enough training, skill, expertise, and hard work, we can figure things out, find reliable solutions for any challenge, have certainty.

The dissonance between our yearning for certainty and the reality of the world we are facing can provide a catalyst for significant developmental shifts. To benefit, we must first see our context for what it is– endlessly complex—and be willing to sense the dissonance between how we’ve been conditioned to see the world, and how it is actually showing up. And, we must develop the personal strategies and capacities to not only tolerate, but embrace, this dissonance so that we can lead in ways that are better adapted for a complex world.

In this training, which is based on Doug Silsbee's latest book, Presence-Based Leadership, we explore how complexity challenges our very identity, how we naturally selforganize to defend that identity, and how embodied reactive behaviors often make things worse (albeit with the best of intentions!) We work in the present moment with coaching interventions such as somatic practices and unconventional perspective shifts to build a self that can function with clarity and resilience in the midst of complexity and uncertainty.

We will work, in highly experiential ways, with a new model that offers pragmatic coaching and leadership strategies focused on:

• Distinguishing complex contexts from complicated and obvious contexts
• Sensing habitual reactions to complexity through emotions, body, language and meaning-making
• Resourcing the self by cultivating internal states of awareness and resilience
• Developing action learning strategies for engaging with complexity
• Working with multiple perspectives and integrative practices within the self and with clients

This course has been approved for 21 International Coach Federation Core Competency Continuing Coach Education Units.

Course Objectives

The three day program will offer a multi-layered and rich approach to learning that addresses multiple learning styles. Components of this integration include:

• Brief presentations of cognitive frameworks and distinctions that support new observation and perspectives
• Direct experiences of complexity in which participants witness their own reactions
• Individual and partner somatic practices built around state-shifting for resilience in complexity
• Large and small group conversations that evoke meaning-making
• Practice coaching conversations in which participants apply these methods with a partner dealing with real complexity
• Application and ongoing practices for participants to integrate this work into the complexity in their own lives, as well as into their coaching practice.

Program Prerequisites
This practitioners’ workshop is for practicing coaches with a significant level of training and pragmatic experience under their belts. Pragmatism, application, and evidence-based practice provide the grounding for this leading edge synthesis. It is also crucial that participants are willing to engage in experimenting and practicing on themselves.


Graduates from the School of Continuing Studies at Georgetown University are eligible for a 10% alumni discount on select ITL courses, workshops, and seminars (certificate programs excluded). Send an email to itlprograms@georgetown.edu to learn about your eligibility.

Early Registration
Participants who register at least 21 days prior to the course start date will receive a 10% tuition discount. Please note that only one tuition discount can be applied at time of registration.

Course Registration
This course is an open enrollment course. No application is required and registration is available by clicking "Add to Cart." Current students must register with their Georgetown NetID and password. New students will be prompted to create an account prior to registration.

Please review the refund policies in our Student Handbook before completing your registration.


Beatrice (Bebe) Hansen, MSSW, PCC is the Principal of Presence-Based® Coaching and has taught and developed the curriculum for many years with Doug Silsbee, PCC, the program’s founder.  She teaches all levels within this cutting edge, ICF approved coach-training program. She also delivers PBC and Presence-Based® Leadership development training in the Washington, DC metro area, in the US and internationally.  Bebe integrates her extensive family business experience with her psychotherapy background to support leaders, teams and organizations in building leadership skills and capacities. She has worked with leaders in the private, non-profit and government sectors. Bebe holds certifications from ICF, Strozzi Institute, The Enneagram Institute, and The Institute for Integrative System Dynamics, among others.

Sarah Halley is senior faculty with Presence-Based® Coaching and a PCC with the ICF. Sarah is a management and diversity consultant, leadership coach, improvisational theatre artist and experiential educator with a passion for learning and social change. As a former engineer, Sarah is both pragmatic and strategic while at the same time she brings creativity, compassion and a deep understanding of human development into her coaching practice. She is known for her ability to consistently create a supportive and creative space for people to develop themselves as coaches, leaders and human beings.

Thank you for your interest in this course. Unfortunately, the course you have selected is currently not open for enrollment. Please complete a Course Inquiry so that we may promptly notify you when enrollment opens.
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