challenge

How to be a leadership catalyst

How to be a leadership catalyst

D A Henderson Head of the WHO programme that eradicated smallpox “I was reading about this guy who showed incredible leadership,” began Hugh, and I knew exactly who he meant. Although Hugh lives near Montreal and I live in London, both of us had locked on to a leadership story about Donald Ainslie Henderson, an … Continued

Plain English introduction to U Theory: how to create innovative solutions collectively

Plain English introduction to U Theory: how to create innovative solutions collectively

U Theory in plain English U theory is a process that is profound, powerful and practical. But it seems to me that U Theory believers use so much jargon that they are in danger of turning it into a cult. One day I decided to try to explain U Theory in plain English. The is the result. U … Continued

Six Training Hats

Six Training Hats

People who work with groups wear different hats. I’ve learned a lot from the gym instructors at the London Central YMCA who don’t actually wear hats, yet. “Don’t give up now, push yourself, see if you can work just a little bit faster” The YMCA instructors motivate and manage groups of people – mainly office … Continued

Building Capacity Systematically: 12 Steps towards designing and delivering training collectively

Building Capacity Systematically: 12 Steps towards designing and delivering training collectively

It’s one thing to be a trainer. It’s quite another to explain how you do it to other people. Here is what I have learned from trying to pass on training skills and knowledge to other people. Key message: Be systematic 1 Be systematic in your approach to training needs analysis, design, delivery, evaluation, and follow-up. … Continued

Four ingredients of a successful training programme

Four ingredients of a successful training programme

Many trainers use acting skills to get their message across Growing up in Scotland, I was fascinated by the eponymous heroine of Muriel Spark’s novel ‘The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie’ which is set in an Edinburgh girls’ school. Miss Brodie gets her pupils’ attention by telling stories to bring history to life and – this … Continued

What have self licking lollipops got to do with sustainability leadership?

What have self licking lollipops got to do with sustainability leadership?

Remind me about the 5 Ps? I’m reading a book by a former British Army Officer, Frank Ledwige, about the British Army in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ledwige is highly critical of the army’s culture and approach. He blames the generals and the politicians for failing to plan for what would happen after the invasion of Iraq. … Continued

‘Don’t ask me to lead’ by Del Redvers, Head of Sustainability at BMT Group

‘Don’t ask me to lead’ by Del Redvers, Head of Sustainability at BMT Group

I’m sitting on an A380 Super Jumbo. The seatback screen says that we are at 35,000 feet, travelling at 576 miles per hour with almost 6,000 miles still to go. I should be trying to get some sleep. Instead I am idly watching the cabin crew bustle around, clearing away half-eaten meals. For me, this … Continued

2013 Transitions

2013 Transitions

January Taking myself to market This is a blog about how I made the transition from employed to self-employed. According to Dan Pink, to sell is human. So I took myself to market and I sold! I try to sell myself quietly, and I also notice how other people sell themselves to me. One day, after a … Continued

How to give a good graduation speech: a tale of three speakers

How to give a good graduation speech: a tale of three speakers

In my time, I’ve taken part in quite a few graduation ceremonies, including the one where the guest of honour told her audience to stop singing, and listen to what she had to say. I’ve made speeches, handed out certificates, smiled, shaken hands, and mispronounced names. Fortunately, graduations being a time to celebrate achievements with … Continued

Natural Facilitation: How to design better meetings

Natural Facilitation: How to design better meetings

Who likes going to meetings? Honestly? Good facilitation can make the difference between having a productive and enjoyable meeting, and having to start all over again. As a facilitator, my aim is to create the best possible experience for my client, and for the meeting delegates. Here are some of the principles and approaches I keep in mind when designing meetings.