While Brazil is facing an economic crisis caused by moral misbehavior of politicians and managers of many reputable companies the first IMO CEO Workshop started in Holambra.

The 5 x 2 days program was organized by Josefina Lepri, Marcello Schoenmaker, Hermanus Meijerink and Lafayette Duarte, I was asked to facilitate the beginning of this program.

16 CEO’s came together to search for new ways of leading their organization in a horizontal way into the future. They reflect on how to use the inspiring, steering, coaching and intervening core-qualities of horizontal leadership in these times. By seeing their organization both in horizontal and vertical dimensions they each found entrepreneurial development steps to bring themselves and their company forward.

They balanced these dimensions by taking care of the organizational impulse, taking care of the client needs, taking care of the team and taking care of themselves as a basis for good results.

Meeting the successful CEO Flavio Morilla Camargo (participant CEO Workshop) in his company OPT Brasil; high specialized on coating pipelines and many other materials.

Three days later in the third workshop of Masterclass for Horizontal Leadership we focused on the topics of mission, vision and strategy. The 25 participants where inspired by the IMO methodology used in examples from Switzerland and Israel. They were encouraged to take action in their professional life.

It was great to experience the enthusiasm of these initiative leaders to bring the Horizontal Leadership approach in their practice. It is possible to act in a human, social economic responsible way.

In Sao Paulo I visited with my IMO colleague Jos Schoenmaker Estrela Nova, an organization for residents of the suburb Campo Limpo. Jos and his wife Hermien were the co-founders of this initiative.

In this district, live mostly migrants from the poor north-east of the country, who sought their luck in the big city. There is no job and housing for all, and the number of slums is still growing. The situation seems futile because they can not read or write. Murder is the biggest cause of death of young people in this immense city and costs thousands of lives every year.

Estrela Nova’s main activities focus on education, the family and healthcare.

Every day, 145 children from 0 to 4 years come to Estrela Nova’s nursery. For over 180 children aged 6 to 14, there is extra-child care. A lot of attention is paid to sporting and cultural activities such as singing, dancing, theater and painting.

For the youth of 14 to 21 years, vocational training has been offered since 2004, with the demand exceeding the supply many times. There are also capoeira lessons and a computer room with 15 computers, where courses has already been given to 1000 students. In the evenings, adults can also can follow classes.


After my ten days stay I am thankful and impressed by meeting so many fine, inspiring and initiative taking people. I went home back with the feeling that by these and many other people there should be enough reason to believe in the development of further social and economic growth. This gives hope for this beautiful country.

Hans Ruijs

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