We offer this reflection as a brief insight into our thinking, and to begin the conversation with others.
We have followed three strands of inquiry:
- What’s not working with leadership development right now? Have demands outstripped the notion of ‘development’? What different (new and perhaps ancient) approaches are we being invited into?
- What are the consequences for us in our work as coaches, facilitators, guides, OD practitioners, …? How must we ready ourselves, be prepared to let go of or evolve our offerings and practices?
- What are the themes that run through the insights from both above?
Certainly (sadly), we have delivered programmes where the utility seems to decline as soon as the check-out finishes. And there have been many when the initiating context changes dramatically part way through. This is in part about expectation management, contracting, pre- / post- programme design, but that’s surely not the whole story.
The themes that have emerged as important for us and in our work are:
- Reframing the paradigms and titles we work with and offer. Crafting journeys that continue over time and with good cadence. Repositioning our role from one of being some form of expert and separate from, to for example sherpa and companion.
- Building multiple awareness’s and intelligences - somatic, systemic, collective, neural, …, field. Understanding the natures of complexity and building the capacities to work within it. Understanding and working with systemic influences (individual and organisational).
- Promoting both conscious leadership and the expansion of consciousness. Recognising the creative powers of stilling and slowing, of individual and collective self-reflexivity. Understanding the value of a community of leadership, a community of practice, and how to craft a good container.
- Bringing the work into the practice, and the practice into the work. Understanding the potency and alchemy of conversations where we leap into and are the questions and challenges, rather than attempting to get beyond them or outside of them/us.
- Modelling the wisdom and stance we aim to promote, and crafting our preparation and approaches to bring that to life in the room and in the conversation.