Incubator of compassionate action.

 ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 


One year ago, we piloted a "pod," with the intention of cultivating deeper, contextual relationships within the virtual constraints of the pandemic. It was a total experiment. We didn't have the technology or curriculum; just a few dozen change-makers looking to lead with love amid a ranging pandemic pivoting all aspects of work and life. We called it "Laddership Pod" -- and 4 weeks later, we were stunned at the emergence. That built on itself, and many dozens of pods later, with thousands of alumni and tens of thousands of volunteer hours, a very unique platform and field of innovation has manifested.

Next week, we are hosting a Laddership Pod again. It's a 4-week immersion into ServiceSpace values, particularly for change-makers. How does our inner transformation affect our external impact, and how do we design for discerning the dynamic "middle way" between emergence and planning, grit and surrender, self-care and self-sacrifice, money and wealth, humility and conviction, transaction and trust? All in a peer-learning context of global community, held skillfully by alumni.

As part of the journey, we're thrilled to be joined by five inspired leaders as weekly guest speakers for this Laddership Pod. Consider their non-traditional journeys ...


Evan Sharp is the co-founder of Pinterest, and a designer that Jony Ive called "technologist who will change the future." When he joined our Gandhi 3.0 retreat, we asked him to share on a topic of his choice. Instead of technology, he shared how he found the ending of an original poem in our circle, for his 2-year-old: Gardener and Carpenter. It opened the question: how can technology be kinder, how can it help build bridges?


Shay Beider has spent decades with terminally ill kids, pioneering the use of "integrative touch". Once, while in the ocean, a group of whales surrounded her boat as one looked squarely in her eyes. It felt like a ceremony. She wept. As did everyone else around her. And it left an indelible mark, and the inquiry: what can non-human forms of life teach us about teamwork, at the intersection of spirit and matter?


Coleman Fung is a serial entrepreneur. Growing up under extreme duress, his silver lining was his schooling. After years of paying-it-forward, today, 400+ UC Berkeley engineers graduate from his Fung Institute at UC Berkeley every year, and he's on a mission to make education multi-dimensional. As a Taoist, he finds controlling life to be a losing battle; instead he wonders how we might invest in "serendipity capital". He is asking: how do we educate the heart?


Sister Lucy is a world renowned ... mother. "When God shows me a need, I serve." Quite literally, if she encounters an abandoned child or elder on the streets, she'll bring them home (as she has countless times). She runs a massive organization, while stating: "I don't have a plan. That's not my job. Our motto is: Always Room for One More." Few years ago, when she was able to fulfill a lifelong dream of meeting the Pope, she asked for his blessings. Much to her astonishment, the Pope tells her, "No Sister, I seek your blessings." How do blessings intersect with a hands-on operation?


Stephanie Nash is a Hollywood actress by trade, but such a cultivated meditator that Harvard asked to study her brain! Since first grade, she's had constant ringing in her ears; "But that doesn't bother me. In fact, it's become a lullaby that puts me to sleep." An untiring advocate for meditation as a drug-free solution for physical pain, she invites us to ponder: beyond pain and pleasure, what conditions awaken a compassionate mind?


To join a peer-learning group of change-makers asking uncommon questions and probing uncommon solutions, apply for the upcoming Laddership Circle.





Having just completed multiple pods in the last couple weeks, we've seen a flurry of activity. Below is a fresh quote from Steve in our Business Pod:

At my car repair shop, we don't work on cars – we work for people who happen to own cars. This motto was the result of 6 months, quietly thinking about why I fix cars; and I discovered it was not because I like fixing cars but because I liked serving people that needed their cars fixed. A person with a broken car can be like a person with a broken heart. Our Business Pod has helped me see that a person in crisis is a person ready to grow; a person primed to be surprised. And there's a deep satisfaction to be found in being of service to the needs of the other person, being the giver, even when customers are difficult. As an entrepreneur with employees, I am now asking, how can I turn car repair into meeting human needs where our hearts meet?

Thank you, all, for connecting hearts.


ServiceSpace is a unique incubator of volunteer-run projects that nurture a culture of generosity. We believe that small acts of service can nurture a profound inner transformation that sustains external impact. To get involved, you can subscribe to our newsletters or create an account and complete our 3-step process to volunteer.