Mary Phillips


Mary Phillips


Raised in the suburbs of Northern California in an Italian-Irish catholic family. I have 4 brothers and a sister. I earned a Bachelor's degree in American Studies from San Francisco State University (1986) and came close to a second in Information Art. I occupied myself and time as a conceptual artist and didn't see myself as a "career type" until very recently. I have spent much time exploring the "inner" world after doing some experimental work in dream mapping and sand tray. I found out the "inner" life is as infinite as the outer one and earned my way to the natural flow. Since, my life is defined by process…so that became a lenz for the "survival" jobs I was working as an Office Manager. Office Management is all about process–or so I approached it–and I began to understand that all those processes (running the business) are linked to all the other processes that happen in a business, or as I finally understood, a human system. I read about lean and six sigma and TQM; efficiency, supply chain etc and was hoping to continue as a Human Resources Manager under an Operating Office who employed these approaches. As that opportunity did not fruit it did point me in the direction of Human Resources or human alignment or human engagement within a system and that is something I have considerable experience with. So-alignment-the inner and the outer now meet and I am trying to build a career.. What a surprise ; )


Oakland, CA USA

What draws you to the STIA conference?

"Systems thinking" as an organized endeavor

What are you hoping to experience?

To meet new people,with like-thinking and thinking that challenges me, network in Human resources from a systems approach, have great discussions about operations and, basically, act like a sponge..

What are you most passionate about?

Narrowing down a set of technical skills that will enable me to bring my considerable awareness to aligning people within their system (work)..and helping to get them to their flow and finally their joy. There is absolutely no reason work is not about joy. Joy is not fluffy. Once you "click in" (you can call it inspiration or fulfillment, too) and apply your skills- it has this way of rippling outward and back like feedback loop.

How do you see transformation occurring from this conference?

Transformation for me has already occurred…though I prefer to express this as having been earned. I hope this conference inspires and enables.I would suggest that "transformation" is a continuous process…small changes continuously.I imagine people attending will come away with a "small" change to apply to their work.

What’s your bigger vision?

To create 7 principles and write about the nature of a human system. I don't know my angle yet.

What needs to happen for you to evaluate this STIA+ experience as a success?

I'm not sure yet. It is my first one.