David and The Grove (as they are affectionately known) are pioneers in the visual-interactive method of working with groups and organizations. David first coined the term “Group Graphics” to define the visual niche back in the 70s and he and his merry and evolving team of “Grovesters” have been going strong ever since.
They are celebrating their milestone anniversary next month as they host a party open to all their “staff, associates, interns and Grove champions who’ve worked with us over the years to help celebrate David Sibbet’s and The Grove’s 30 years of Visualizing Change” – as the invitation I just received says.
David and others from his Grove team (particularly Ed Claassen) were instrumental in my entrance onto the graphic scene. I began my association with them in 1995 as an graduate school intern. Did my thesis project on their Strategic Visioning Process (applied to a group of Canadian entrepreneurs) and then had the lucky fortune of being hired as an internal Graphic Recorder – enabling me to travel the world and work with top-notch companies, social and government agencies and with very skilled consultants and facilitators.
With my own entrepreneurial call vibrating within me, I departed Grove after five years to launch an independent graphic recording and graphic facilitation practice (Make Your Mark, LLC). Since then I’ve developed a sub-set ‘graphic coaching’ niche with my second venture, SHIFT-IT Coach, Inc. – and I train other consultants, facilitators, trainers, graphic recorders, coaches, etc in the underlying basics of the interactive-graphics methodology. No training is complete without a hearty recommendation of Grove’s work to my attendees as they have been such an instrumental part of my own development – and have such great tools!
Creating unique work is always made easier by having role models and people who break the path before you. Seeing others who live vibrant and creative lifestyles makes one hope that they might be able to do it too. David has certainly been that kind of thought leader and cultural creative role model to me. And has inspired thousands perhaps even 10s of thousands of people (through the cascading ripple effects of his influence).
What was once a very tiny niche field has grown into a much larger international community. The future of this diverse field is very bright, thanks in no small part to this creative and brilliant pioneer. Cheers to you David and The Grove. Thanks for being such a believer in the graphic/visual way of working and for following your dreams to the interesting places they have lead you. Us from the waves behind you, salute and thank you!