Stretch Leadership
and Management

December 9-11, 2015

Building Effective, Adaptable,
Resilient and Purposeful

Stretch is a leadership and management conference to learn from the best and stretch yourself. Join us in Budapest, Hungary this December and get inspired by stories from leaders in great organizations as they talk about the challenges of leadership.

In 2013 we learnt about beautiful teams embedded in learning organizations. We focused on team leads, managers, founders who wanted to scale up their organization and we invited speakers who had already succeeded. In 2014 we coined the term “teamdividuals” as great teams are built of great people, and our main topic was how to become a great individual performer and a great collaborator.

After focusing on teams and individuals in the past two years, we are now targeting organizational challenges. We would like to cover topics like organizational agility, experimental mindset & learning organization, change management, embracing self-organization, making the organization more personal and finding the purpose of the organization. Come and learn how you can build more effective organizations.


08:00-09:00 Registration and breakfast
09:00-09.05 Opening
09:05-09:50 James Clear: The Surprising Power of Small Habits
09:50-10.00 Sponsor Introduction
10:00-10:45 Christine Wank: From Ego- To Eco-Systems: Leadership and Collective Awareness for Facilitating the Emerging Future - Inspirations from Theory U
10:45-11:05 Break
11:05-11:50 Rene Kottlowski: Change the evolution - The elephant wants to be a mouse
11:50-13:20 Lunch
13:20-14:05 Beáta Kalamár: Transformational Leadership – Leader in the mirror
14:05-15:50 Open Space
15:50-16:10 Break
16:10-16:55 Tim Steigert: Don't blame the goats. Get a Goatherd.
16:55-17:40 Niels Pflaeging: Organize for Complexity. How our organizations will become agile, radically decentralized, and networked. Sooner than we think.
17:40-19:40 Dinner
08:00-09:10 Registration and breakfast
09:10-09:55 Doc Norton: The Experimentation Mindset
09:55-10.00 Sponsor Introduction
10:00-10:45 Christian Hausner: On the way to a teal school - building purposeful education
10:45-11:05 Break
11:05-11:50 Joseph Pelrine: Coaching "self-organising" teams
11:50-13:20 Lunch
13:20-14:05 Brian Robertson: Introducing Holacracy: A New Management System for Purpose-Driven Organizations
14:05-15:50 Open Space
15:50-16:10 Break
16:10-16:55 Ádám Bankó, Gergely Orbán: Holacracy implementation in Hungary
16:55-17:40 John Blakey: The Trusted Executive: Nine leadership habits that inspire results, relationships and reputation
17:40-19:40 Dinner
19:40-23:40 Party
08:00-09:10 Registration and breakfast
09:10-09:55 Anne Loehr: Future Focused Leaders Create Cultures of Purpose
09:55-10.00 Sponsor Introduction
10:00-10:45 John Bunch: Zappos' evolution towards teal
10:45-11:05 Break
11:05-11:50 Madai, Soós, Kállay: The future of leadership
11:50-13:20 Lunch
13:20-14:50 Éva Rambala: Introduction to Nonviolent Communication
14:50-15:30 Break + Book Dedication with Niklas Modig
15:30-16:30 Niklas Modig: “One” lean operations strategy – How to resolve the efficiency paradox
16:30-17:00 Closing


James Clear
James Clear
James Clear Holdings

The Surprising Power of Small Habits

This session is about the hidden forces that shape our behavior at work and at home. We will cover the psychology of how habits work and practical strategies for how to stick to good habits and break bad ones.

About James
Niklas Modig
Niklas Modig
Author of This Is Lean - Resolving the Efficiency Paradox

'One' lean operations strategy - How to resolve the efficiency paradox

Lean is the most spread management concept of all time, yet academically, there is not even a generally accepted definition of lean. When it comes to 'what' lean actually is, the confusion is overwhelming. A variety of management concepts, with different origin and purpose, are today competing for attention within organizations. What improvement concept is the best? How can we achieve consistency when new concepts are almost launched every year? How can we achieve congruence when we adopt different concepts in different contents?

In this lecture, Niklas Modig - bestselling author of 'This Is Lean' - shares his latest insights on lean. Niklas sheds new light on what lean really is about and pragmatically helps you sort out the various aspects of the management philosophy into a coherent whole - one strategy to attain effectiveness and efficiency throughout your whole value chain. Niklas will inspire you why and how to develop a flow efficient and 'self-fishing' organization.

Niklas Modig has offered a free copy of his ground-breaking book 'This Is Lean' to all conference participants. A dedication session will be held on the last day, right before Niklas will speak.

About Niklas
Brian Robertson
Brian Robertson

Introducing Holacracy: A New Management System for Purpose-Driven Organizations

Organizations are the most powerful force for progress on the planet. Yet even the most consciously run business is often limited by an organizational structure that’s not designed to support a dynamic, purpose-driven company. Sometimes those within achieve great results despite the organization’s management structure, but rarely because of it - more often it subtly works against efforts to nurture a conscious, empowered culture. There has to be a better way.

Holacracy is a fundamentally different 'operating system' for an organization, with a new approach to clarifying accountability, distributing power, and structuring an organization’s functions and flows. It operates without a traditional top-down management hierarchy, and yet its alternative approach to structuring a company allows the alignment, clarity, and rapid decision-making that are often lacking in 'flat' organizations.

This session introduces the core principles and practices of Holacracy through presentation, Q&A, and stories of companies using the method. Participants will leave with a vision for a completely novel way to structure an organization, and key questions to consider around how their organization’s structure interplays with building a conscious culture and purpose-driven business.

About Brian
Kriszta Madai, Judit Soós, Natalie Kállay
Kriszta Madai, Judit Soós, Natalie Kállay

The future of leadership

We’ll never know where we’re going until we start our journey, look back and see where it has led us.

People sense that the way organizations are run today has been stretched to its limits and is about to change.

Organisations adopting the coaching approach have found that they undergo a kind of 'detoxification' - which means developing a culture of open feedback, more effective communication flows, increased resilience, stronger corporate identification and commitment, higher intrinsic motivation and, consequently, an increased level of efficiency.

But when organisations reinvent themselves, what happens to leadership? Where do the organisation's purpose, its goals come from? How much more powerful is 'sense and respond', compared to 'predict and control'?

Behind a facade of success, many top leaders are tired of power games, unsolved conflicts and infighting; despite their desperately overloaded schedules, they feel something is wrong. The vast majority yearn for better ways to work together - for more soulful workplaces where talents are nurtured and deepest aspirations are honored.

How can organizations become living entities, oriented toward realizing their potential with people who fully express themselves, bringing unprecedented levels of energy, passion, and creativity to work? We believe it depends on the leaders' skill set and mindset.

Doc Norton
Doc Norton

The Experimentation Mindset

Among the traits that distinguish a good team from a great team is their ability to innovate. Despite the rhetoric in favor of innovation, most organizations are stuck in an implementation mindset, stifling creativity, excellence, and the resultant innovation. The experimentation mindset frees us from self-imposed constraints, allowing us to continually learn and improve. In this session, we'll talk about how we learn as individuals and how we learn as organizations. We'll take a look at some examples of the experimentation mindset happening in the agile community today and we'll talk about how you can foster such a mindset in your own organization.

About Doc
Niels Pflaeging
Niels Pflaeging
Influencer, author, advisor on leadership transformation, management exorcist

Organize for Complexity. How our organizations will become agile, radically decentralized, and networked. Sooner than we think.

Business, markets and societies have changed, but the principles, methods and concepts of organizational leadership and haven’t, by and large. Rigid and erratic performance management processes like planning, budgeting, project management, fixed-target setting, rigid meeting agendas, individual employee appraisal, and so-called “pay for performance”-pay, combined with autocratic decision-making, org charts and micro-management from the top – these techniques from the industrial age are still widely established standards. But are they still adequate? And if not, how can we adapt our organizational models to the ever-changing environments of the information age and do things better?

In this session, you will learn how any organization, by moving beyond command and control, and by abolishing the entire mindset of management, of functional organization, planning and bureaucratic hierarchy, can become sustainably more successful and profitable. Niels Pflaeging shows how the transformation towards an organization model for the complexity of the knowledge economy really works and how people, teams and organizations can be unleashed from the burdens of bureaucracy - freed from management by command and control.

About Niels
Christine Wank
Christine Wank
Facilitate U; Presencing Institute

From Ego- To Eco-Systems: Leadership and Collective Awareness for Facilitating the Emerging Future - Inspirations from Theory U

We live in a world of change as never before. Forces like population growth and global migration, climate change, internet and other technologies are reshaping markets, social structures and natural environments organizations are dealing with. On the one hand we sense incredible opportunities for bringing forth a world a much happier world. While on the other we still seem collectively to produce results nobody wants. How do leaders and organizations navigate into a more purposeful, brighter and connected world?

In this lecture Christine Wank, senior practitioner at the Presencing Institute, mindful leadership expert and management consultant will introduce Theory U, a globally used social technology for creating change.
Theory U is both:

  • A framework/lens/language for seeing and talking about our deeper levels of experience.
  • A methodology for shifting the place we come from as we work in the world, and for operating from deeper levels more effectively (a process for making it happen).
  • A phenomenon--part of a larger social movement that is about waking up to operating from Source (its latest online course called U.Lab is attended by over 40.000 participants that work both off- and online).
Meeting the challenges of this century requires updating our economic logic and operating system from an obsolete 'ego-system' focused entirely on the well-being of oneself to an eco-system awareness that emphasizes the well-being of the whole.

About Christine
John Bunch
John Bunch

Zappos' evolution towards teal

In December 2013, CEO Tony Hsieh announced that the company would change its organizational model to Holacracy. Over the past 2 years, John Bunch has lead Zappos transition to Holacracy. John will tell the story of Zappos' evolution towards teal, especially reflecting on the lessons learned during this exciting and trailblazing journey. He will elaborate on the systems and procedures developed to help support self-management, touching on examples for both software and non-software apps.

About John
Éva Rambala
Éva Rambala

Introduction to Nonviolent Communication

If something happens and you don’t like, speak up, without being critical!

  • Would you like to be able to stand up for yourself in a way that evokes cooperation and deeper connection?
  • Are you fed up with trying your best to communicate, only to find that your intention is not getting through and that you end up with more issues?
  • Would you like to be able to hear not just what people are saying but what is in their hearts?
  • Would you like to know when respectful understanding is enough and when it is important to come to agreement?
Nonviolent Communication (NVC) has been called the 'language of life'. It was developed by US psychologist Marshall B. Rosenberg in the sixties, and is now practiced in more than 70 different countries worldwide. By focusing on each person’s feelings and needs and by working with these, NVC helps people to find common ground beyond their cultural differences, as needs are neutral and shared by all of us. NVC is effective in helping people suspend judgment, freeing them from prejudice and culturally-patterned expectations. This greatly facilitates intercultural interaction.

About Éva
Rene Kottlowski
Rene Kottlowski

Change the evolution - The elephant wants to be a mouse

Are perfect companies really places where people like to work? Can these companies offer a long term perspective or is there a point when they have to rethink how they are organized and how they could and should work?

Growing, increasing productivity, becoming the market leader: this is what many companies have as their main targets.

During their corporate development, they start to build up departments, and a lot of other important or not so important things arise. From the outside, these companies appear perfect, well organized and able to withstand every storm. They have some well-known leaders, who represent the company to the inside and to the outside world.

In my presentation I'd like to share some challenges we have been faced during our organizational life cycle over the last 20 years. What mistakes did we make and what did we learn from them? What did we try out without knowing if it would really work? How did we manage to involve the whole organization and why was this necessary? What is our current situation and why do we still have so much room for improvement?

About Rene
Joseph Pelrine
Joseph Pelrine
MetaProg GmbH

Coaching 'self-organising' teams

Self-organisation is one of the most misunderstood concepts used in agile practice. If people really understood the dynamics of self-organising systems, they most probably would avoid trying to use it. Instead, they (mis-)apply some ideas, close their eyes, wish real hard, hope that magic happens, and then use the term 'unintended consequences' to describe the - often unfortunate - result. Nevertheless, self-organisation is a basic Agile principle, which teams are expected to use, so this talk will help you learn to understand how it works, and how to implement it in your teams.

About Joseph
Anne Loehr
Anne Loehr

Future Focused Leaders Create Cultures of Purpose

Are you looking for ways to increase employee engagement and improve organizational culture? Then focus on using purpose. Purpose-driven, future focused leaders create a culture of purpose-driven work and employee engagement. In this talk, you’ll learn how to define purpose, what is needed to create a purpose driven DNA and how your own leadership values will add depth to work.

About Anne
John Blakey
John Blakey

The Trusted Executive: Nine leadership habits that inspire results, relationships and reputation

Many of us are tired of reading in the media about one business scandal after another. Trust in business leaders is at a low ebb; undermining performance, damaging relationships and destroying reputations. A new breed of executive will regain our trust by stepping up to a broader, braver role in the world and mastering essential trust-building habits. This session will explore a model of trust based on three pillars; ability, integrity and benevolence. Beneath the three pillars lie the nine habits that inspire trust; habits which will enable the trusted executive to deliver outstanding results, inspiring relationships and a positive contribution to society.

About John
Christian Hausner
Christian Hausner

On the way to a teal school - building purposeful education

Schools are the counterexample for effective, adaptable, resilient and purposeful organizations. The DNA of our school systems stem from the century of industrialization. Children are objects, being processed in rather soulless factories, and being treated as interchangeable units that need to be channeled through a predefined curriculum. The factory spirit has massive effects on students as well as staff. A fundamental change in school culture throughout Europe is desperately needed to build purposeful education.

The Evangelische Schule Berlin Zentrum believes that youth today have to be prepared for uncertainty, be actively linked to their surroundings, have to embrace failure and have to practice appreciation and empathy. Schools have to be transformed by radically putting students in charge.

The school, founded in 2007, holistically puts known pedagogical best cases into practices (i.e. school students learn in inclusive and age-mixed groups, pupils are defining and monitoring their own projects and use teachers as coaches), but moves far beyond that. From mere knowledge transfer to the ability to process knowledge and apply it to one’s own actions, from teaching children to do something to putting children in charge of shaping their own education and life. In school assemblies pupils learn to publicly praise their peers - to cultivate feedback and empathy. One of the subjects is called 'Responsibility', centering on civic engagement in the local community. Also, every student has to annually (for three years in a row) master a self-chosen three-week 'Challenge' outside of school with almost no budget, like hiking across Germany or help building something in a social institution. Although students have not been selected for intellectual ability, their GPAs in A levels are comparable or better than in other German high schools.

Christian Hausner opens up a 360 degree view on the school, pointing out the main success factors for the school in terms of pedagogical practice and work culture.

About Christian
Beáta Kalamár
Beáta Kalamár

Transformational Leadership - Leader in the mirror

Leading and being the change in the organisation.

'Everything changes. Everything is connected. Pay attention.' - Classic Buddhist teaching

Transformational Leadership is a new must nowadays! Today’s organisations are in a constant move in order to respond to the needs of unpredictable, continuously changing business environment. Every day is full of complex challenges, which require developing answers and solutions that are yet unknown. Today’s workforce is diverse with different needs and ambitions, therefore, the composition of teams are dynamically changing and uneven. Leaders must respond to these challenges in a way to expand their leadership capacity to be, think and lead in a transformational way.

About Beáta
Ádám Bankó, Gergely Orbán
Ádám Bankó, Gergely Orbán

Holacracy implementation in Hungary

See a talk about two different journies to Holacracy.

'One is an experimental transition in Doctusoft, changing the operating structure of a division from conventional to this new adaptive system.

'Other example is Lab.Coop, an 18 person employee-owned company built from scratch on the priciples of Holacracy.

About Ádám and Gergely
Tim Steigert
Tim Steigert

Don't blame the goats. Get a Goatherd.

What can you do, working for a 130+ year old behemoth that employs more than 300.000 people world wide across many different industries to not drop into obsolescence in these VUCA times?

Tim Steigert is sharing some insight on how GE has set out to reinvent itself in a time where people try to understand what 'digital disruption' is really all about and where the average age of companies on the Forbes 500 has dropped from 70+ to 15 years since 2000.

About Tim
George Pór
George Pór

George Pór is a strategic learning partner to visionary leaders business, government, and civil society. He is a Fellow of Future Considerations, the London-based global transformation agency, and is the founding publisher of Enlivening Edge: News from Next-Stage Organizations, and has been publishing the Blog of Collective Intelligence since 2003. George is also the founder of the Teal Practice Group in London. A select list of his articles and book chapters on the fields of collective intelligence, organizational and social renewal can be found here. More about George’s work is here. george(at)futureconsiderations(dot)com


Creative Collaboration: Tools for Teams
Creative Collaboration: Tools for Teams
with Doc Norton

Even high functioning teams occasionally have a hard time making decisions or coming up with creative ideas. There are times when the conversation seems to drag on long after a decision is reached. There are times when we have too many people involved in the discussion or the wrong people involved. There are times when we're not sure who's the actual decision maker. And there are those times when we just seem to be out of synch with each other. This creative collaboration workshop provides tools that help resolve all of these issues.

Workshop tickets
The Art of Reinventing Yourself: Teal Principles and Practices
The Art of Reinventing Yourself: Teal Principles and Practices
with George Pór

Our habitual ways of sensing, thinking, working and leading will fail us in a VUCA world of increasing Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity. We need to meet that challenge with our VUCA of increasing the power of Vision, Understanding, Clarity, and Adaptability. It is a challenge that leaders can ignore only at the peril of their organizations. It is that imperative that this workshop will address.

The core questions that we will work with are defined by the three foundational breakthroughs necessary to personal reinvention. They are patterned after Frederic Laloux’s "Reinventing Organizations":

  • Committing to an Evolutionary Purpose. How do I realize my fuller creative potential for the common good that is personally meaningful to me?
  • Embracing Personal Wholeness. Are the intelligence of my head, heart, and hands aligned? Do I bring them to all situations?
  • Enjoying Self-management. How can I choreograph my energies for a well-balanced conscious life, even under stress and facing unexpected challenges?
What you will learn
  • A practical, 10-word definition of Teal consciousness, which can frame and guide your developmental journey
  • How to use the Teal Maturity Self-Assessment instrument
  • Resting in your core intelligence and co-creating from it the next upgrade of yourself
  • What an “evolutionary purpose” is how you can discover yours
  • The difference between work/life balance and work/life integration and why it matters
  • How to find a Teal coach and why you need one
    • What a Teal practice group can do for you and what you can do for it
  • How to start “going Teal” with your team/community/organization.
More details about the workshop and how to prepare behind this link.

Workshop tickets



Budapest is closer than you think

only a short flight away

Conference venue

Uránia Film Theather See it on a map

Uránia Film Theather is located in the centre of Budapest. It was built in the 1880s as a music and dance hall. The building is a combination of Eastern Moorish and Venetian Gothic styles. It was first used as a movie theatre in 1899, when the Uránia Scientific Society hosted a presentation here, illustrated with moving pictures. The name Uránia has been used ever since.

Uránia is not only a beautiful building but an important landmark too - this is where the first independent Hungarian feature film was shot in 1901, and where the first film screening was held after World War II. Today, Uránia is a showcase for Hungarian film, hosting several film festivals and cultural events.

Need an accommodation?




Special partner

Stretch is a non-profit conference. We are looking for sponsors who help us make this conference happen.
Take a look at our sponsor packages and contact us at


Stretch Conference is organized by

Bernadett Otterbein
Bernadett Otterbein
Event organizer, Ustream
Medea Baccifava
Medea Baccifava
Event organizer, Prezi
Bálint Köves
Bálint Köves
Program committee, chief organizer, Ericsson
Gergely Hodicska
Gergely Hodicska
Program committee, event organizer, Ustream
Attila Balogi
Attila Balogi
Event organizer, Prezi
Laszlo Csereklei
Laszlo Csereklei
Program committee, event organizer, Ericsson
József Pletser
József Pletser
Open Space Organizer, Ericsson

Contact us if you have a question at

Code of Conduct

TL;DR: Be excellent with each other

All attendees, speakers, sponsors and volunteers at our conference are required to agree with the following code of conduct. Organizers will enforce this code throughout the event. We are expecting cooperation from all participants to help ensuring a safe environment for everybody.

The Quick Version

Our conference is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion (or lack thereof), color, national origin or genetic information. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter and other online media. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference without a refund at the discretion of the conference organizers.

The Less Quick Version

Harassment includes offensive verbal comments related to gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, color, national origin, genetic information, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention.

Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

Sponsors are also subject to the anti-harassment policy. In particular, sponsors should not use sexualised images, activities, or other material. Booth staff (including volunteers) should not use sexualised clothing/uniforms/costumes, or otherwise create a sexualised environment.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the conference organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from the conference with no refund.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a member of conference staff immediately. Conference staff can be identified as they'll be wearing branded t-shirts.

Conference staff will be happy to help participants contact hotel/venue security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the conference. We value your attendance.

We expect participants to follow these rules at conference and workshop venues and conference-related social events.