vision

Sweet charity: developing charity leaders up, down and sideways

Sweet charity: developing charity leaders up, down and sideways

How can charity leaders develop the capabilities they’ll need in the 2020s? Charity leaders deal with complexity. Charity leaders in the 2020s will find themselves working at the edge of what they know. Many, perhaps, already are. There are no silver leadership bullets, not even donated ones. Which is why charity leaders must be good … Continued

Everything’s going to be all right: the power of leadership narratives

Everything’s going to be all right: the power of leadership narratives

  How to construct leadership narratives is likely to be a talking point on the new NCVO programme Charity Leadership in the 2020s that I am co-creating with Rebecca Nestor. Here’s what I’m noticing and thinking as the programme takes shape. If you have been into a gift shop in the last year or so you will probably have … 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

Why Maslow doesn’t satisfy real change-makers

Why Maslow doesn’t satisfy real change-makers

Why Maslow doesn’t satisfy real change-makers Years ago, well, towards the end of last century, I ran a training programme for a bunch of environmentalists. They were nearly all young leaders and visionaries who wanted to change the world. And change the world they did, every day, with exceedingly good humour. Beer, biscuits and extra large … 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

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

The importance of strategic ignorance by John Lewis, President and Founder of Intelligent Futures

The importance of strategic ignorance by John Lewis, President and Founder of Intelligent Futures

  “Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.” – Isaac Asimov One of our core areas of work at Intelligent Futures is community engagement. We aim to structure meaningful, authentic and transparent conversations with communities about issues, plans or developments … Continued

Leadership Tendencies in 2014: the banker, the nun, and the business professor

Leadership Tendencies in 2014: the banker, the nun, and the business professor

What’s new and good in the field of leadership and sustainability? It’s good that Barclays Bank boss, Antony Jenkins, is encouraging his staff to learn from the example of Sister Mary Owens, who cares for children with HIV in Kenya. The essence of good leadership, said Jenkins on BBC Radio, “is about having an impact … Continued

What real leaders really do

What real leaders really do

Once upon a time, when I thought I wanted to work in HR, I read a much reprinted article by John P Kotter, called “What leaders really do” (Havard Business Review, May-June 1990). In plain English Kotter described a step by step approach to helping people deliver the organisation’s vision e.g. involving people in decision-making, being a good role model, providing coaching and feedback, and praising people when they were successful. At the time Kotter made complete sense to me, and I was grateful to him for making leadership seem so simple.