The Erhard Effect: Anne Peterson on Landmark (Part 1)

March 25, 2024

Landmark has been the most requested topic from our listeners since day one of this podcast. When we got eyes on Anne Peterson’s new memoir about her 15+ year journey inside its ecosystem, we knew our listeners would be pissed at us if we didn’t get her on our microphone, ASAP. ‘‘Is This a Cult?: Confronting the Line Between Transformation and Exploitation’ (available on Amazon) is a raw and gritty read, and tells the story of Anne’s heartbreaking journey from starry-eyed idealist to disillusioned leader in a way that gives us NXIVM déjà vu all over again.

 There are also some incendiary stories of the famous large-group awareness training (LGAT) company’s lurking ghost/guru/shapeshifter, the infamous Werner Erhard. In this first of two episodes with Anne, she shares what drew her to the organization and her whirlwind ascent through its ranks. And don’t worry, Landmark top brass, if you’re listening. We aren’t throwing the wonderful, transformational baby out with the dirty bathwater. Nor is Anne. Just the opposite, in fact. We think you could realize your full potential if you actually listened and learned from the bad feedback, instead of shutting it down. So maybe this time, you’ll make some meaning out of this before you start cranking out your latest cease and desist? Deep breaths. Good talk.

The Erhard Effect: Anne Peterson on Landmark (Part 2)

April 1, 2024

It’s part two of our chat with Anne Peterson, and we’re picking up again right at the part of the story where things really go sideways for her inside the Landmark ecosystem. She shares what it was like flying in Werner Erhard’s inner circle working as something of an Olivia Pope for the company’s high falutin’ events, and the moment that her dream gig turned into Red Flag City. Other highlights–or lowlights more like it–include: Erhard’s legend materializing into (volatile) human form, and the scandal-plagued guru going Full Metal jacket.

In this episode we also cover what it was like for her to confront the big lie behind the transformative work she believed in, and how she’s picking up the pieces now after emerging from Landmark’s dark side. Full disclosure: Sarah also rants a bit, and there are some cathartic tears. Landmark loyalists should know that Anne also expresses optimism for the company’s future, should it decide to face its demons. (FWIW: We agree with her…You could be a contender, Landmark. Maybe try using the criticism to grow, and think about taking some of your own tech as medicine. You got this. We believe in you!)


Anne Peterson

Anne has spent 20+ years selling, producing and facilitating transformative programs for an international personal & professional growth & development company, Landmark Worldwide.

Since leaving, she has launched a business of her own dedicated to the safe and ethical practice of providing personal development.

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