Psychologist, living in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. Founded MindSonar in 1995. Working as a trainer, coach and therapist as well as being director of the IEP, the Institute for Eclectic Psychology. Has written 10 books about NLP and Provocative Coaching. Most recent book: “Provocative Coaching” (in English), fall 2012 (Crown House)
(Jaap writes)… In 2011 I decided that I would like to have MindSonar available in more countries. I had two reasons: first of all, promoting synergy between MindSonar professionals in different countries and, secondly, improving the financial stability of MindSonar as a company.
The economic crisis here in Europe does not look like it will end soon, so it seemed wise to widen our base a little. Also, I figured people are doing great things with MindSonar that might be reproduced fairly easily in other countries. Say, for example, that Dutch MindSonar professionals have been coaching an Olympic team. This, by the way, they have actually done… MindSonar professional in other countries could then offer their services to Olympic teams in their countries. The advantage would be, first of all, that they could benefit from the experience and know-how of their Dutch colleagues and, secondly, that they could tell Olympic teams in their country that a MindSonar project had already been done with a similar team. So there you have it: synergy. And in terms of marketing: there is nothing wrong with great ideas, but tangible, concrete reference projects are usually more convincing. Especially when people haven’t heard about MindSonar before.
At the time we decided to internationalize, we already had years of great experiences with our Belgian distributors, Chris Minne and Pierre Bourgeous. They did some amazing MindSonar projects, one of which is in the ‘Show Case Projects‘ section of this site – and several more will probably be added. And they treated us to some fabulous lunches in Brussels. So I was quite honored and pleased when Tim Hallbom – of the NLP & Coaching Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah – invited me to start up the first US Certification Training. The first part of this training took place earlier this August, and it was well received. Participants were enthusiastic and they had some great MindSonar plans. Tim Hallbom will teach the second part of this training in October, and intends to sponsor more MindSonar trainings in the future. In the mean time we have also received invitations from Canada (from change agent Jaime Leal) and Japan to do Certification trainings there too.
It has also been interesting to see how preferences differ in different cultures. Many US respondents are reluctant to enter their birth date in an electronic system – being concerned about identity theft. And US respondents often don’t like the word ‘test’. Two things we hadn’t encountered in Europe yet, at least not to the same extent. We will change this in the next month or so, and give respondents the choice to skip entering their birth date and marital status. And – another interesting cultural difference – where here in Europe and the US there has been pressure to make trainings shorter to reduce cost – I am sure some of you will recognize this – in Japan there seems to be a preference for a longer training, with more training days….
Also, by the way, transformational poet Nick LeForce, who participated in the MindSonar training in Salt Lake City, came up with a new tag line for MindSonar. Our tag line was: “Understanding Human Thinking”. Nick came up with: “Getting to the Heart of Your Thinking”. Thanks Nick, this will be our new tag line.