1st Friday Favorite Guru: Margo Murray

This month we start on the First Friday of February 2013 with another of my favorite gurus…

Margo Murray

Since 1974 Margo has been consulting on performance improvement to business/industry, government, and non-profits in 26 countries.

She is the author of the best-seller, “Beyond the Myths and Magic of Mentoring: How to Facilitate an Effective Mentoring Process,” and has published a dozen more skills development books and workbooks.

She is recognized as originator of the facilitated mentoring process.

She is the recipient of first-ever award of Personal Excellence by Emotional Learning Systems, 2007

Margo Murray, MBA, CPT

I’ve personally known of Margo since 1980 – the year of my first NSPI Conference.

I got to know her a little better over the years, sitting in on her sessions at conferences and by working on various NSPI Committees together. I got to know her much better when I became President-Elect of (then) ISPI in 2002, and with the Board even visited her in her home in Oakland after one day of meetings.

We’ve served on many committees over the years. I helped get her to my ISPI Charlotte chapter for an evening program and a full-day workshop back in June 2011. So regarding my relationship with Margo, I am a fan.

Margo was the President of NSPI – the National Society for Performance & Instruction – back in 1986/7.

She was the recipient of NSPI/ISPI’s highest award, Honorary Life Member in 1985!

Margo’s Other Honors and Awards

  • Director Emeritus, International Mentoring Association,
  • Honorary Member, (only 3 awarded) International Federation of Training and Development Organisations,
  • Beta Gamma Sigma, National Honor Society in Business,
  • Member for Life: Outstanding Member; President; Certified Performance Technologist; ISPI,
  • Outstanding Member, Society for Advancement of Management,
  • Personal Excellence (First) Emotional Intelligence Institute

One of the Many Things I Learned From Margo

The importance of clear expectations in mentoring/ coaching.

The importance of negotiating that agreement – deliberately.  And starting with a template for adaptation.

What I Also Learned From Margo

Is in a word: perseverance.
Committee work can be very tough, with lots of complex decision making involved  for anything of consequence. Margo keeps working hard for the good of ISPI – for the focus on Results, through people. She walks her talk – that’s for sure.
Margo does a lot of International work, and always brings an open mind to all her endeavors, and respects the views of all.

Some Great Resources for You

A Video interview she and I did back in April 2009 – 16 minutes

(sorry about the Conference noise going on in the background)


Margo is probably best known for her work and her excellent book on Mentoring – Beyond the Myths and Magic of Mentoring – this is the second edition (2001):

Beyond the Myths and Magic of Mentoring: How to Facilitate an Effective Mentoring Process, Revised Edition

Go here for the book at Amazon.com.

Here next is the cover from the first edition (1991) – and you can still sometimes order that – check here.

Beyond the Myths and Magic of Mentoring: How to Facilitate an Effective Mentoring Program (Jossey-Bass Management)

More Resources

Find a PDF of the following Articles on her Web Site – here.

pdf icon Upgrading Core Competencies with Mentoring – “Downsizing Doesn’t Mean Drop Your Skills” In this article Margo Murray, MBA, CPT, international consultant, and Beta Gamma Sigma member, suggest facilitated mentoring as a highly-effective strategy for improving the bottom-line in leaner, flatter organizations.

pdf icon Building an Environment for Total Quality – Margo Murray discusses what can happen in organizations today when the quality function is separated from the workers who deliver the services or products. She offers eight guidelines for building a foundation for quality results and creating an environment to sustain that quality.

pdf icon Strategic Planning – “Senior Peer Professionals Meet in Review of Strategic Planning” This article summarizes a brief review of the forward and outward focus essential to successful strategic planning for a leadership team. A six-step approach is described that lays the foundation for the strategic planning process from stakeholder analysis to placement of necessary functions.

pdf icon Mentoring is Performance Improvement – This article reviews the origin of the concept of mentoring relationships, and some of the myths existing today. Examples of where mentoring processes are used successfully are provided. Measured results from a variety of organizations are cited.

pdf icon People Helping People to Learn – In this article, published in Business Executive, Margo reviews the evolution of the mentoring concept and the reality in best practices today. Results with any intervention don’t happen by chance or magic. They come about with careful design and facilitation of the processes and resources for people helping people to learn.

pdf icon Analysis Techniques for Management Skills – Here is an overview of the purpose, procedures, and products for management training and development. Strategies and examples are provided for Target Population Analysis, Goal Analysis, Performance Analysis, Task Analysis, and Skills Analysis. “Margo Murray’s highly successful method of analyzing management skills is stylistically attractive and substantively important.” Thomas Schwen, Editor, P&I

pdf icon Alum Of The Year (California State University Sacramento) – The interviewer for this article asked Margo to describe how her cultural upbringing and education prepared her for leadership at the International level. She emphasizes the importance of a multi-skilled and flexible workforce for organizations with global operations.

My Favorite Memories of Margo

Include breakfasts, lunches, dinners and late night night caps, out with other NSPI/ISPI members at conferences and other occasional meetings. There have have been many, of each category.
She always brought a sense of purpose and fun, to everything I’ve ever been co-involved with her. She gets things done.
She is always willing to share. She had a great impact for several at my ISPI chapter that were involved in a mentoring effort at the time she came through Charlotte (NC) – and they found it great guidance for what they and their teams were doing. I heard about it, unsolicited, for many chapter meeting afterwards. She is the master of mentoring.
Her web site is here – and her LinkedIn Profile is here.

Share Your Stories

If Margo has been a valuable influence and/or resource for you – please share your stories about that in the comments section below. Or leave a URL to other resources.

And thank you for sharing!

Next month – Judy Hale – and then in April, Jane Bozarth.

The Series so far …

  • Neil Rackham – January 2013 – here.
  • Robert (Bob) Mager – December 2012 – here.
  • Joe H. Harless – November 2012 – here.
  • Thomas F. Gilbert – October 2012 –here.
  • Sivasailam Thiagarajan – September 2012 –here.
  • Geary A. Rummler – August 2012 –here.
  • Dale Brethower – July 2012 – here.

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11 comments on “1st Friday Favorite Guru: Margo Murray

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