Life-affirming leadership: Developing the skills of insight and compassion – Warriors for the Human Spirit Training Programme

Applications for this programme have now closed.

We need leaders who put service over self, who can be steadfast in crises and failures, who want to stay present and make a difference to the people, situations and causes they care about.

Margaret Wheatley “Who do we choose to be”

Scotland’s ambition for its future, as outlined in the National Outcomes, is inspiring. We know that doing more of the same but quicker is not necessarily going to achieve the results we want to see, but how do we change our deep-rooted patterns of behaviour? When the scale and complexity of the challenges can feel overwhelming, how do we stand our ground in a way that allows us to take positive and perceptive actions?

Leaders are confronted with complex change in the internal and external environment. In response to these increasing pressures, the majority of which are beyond any individual’s control, good leaders face both personal and organisational challenges.  As a result, they can feel exhausted, overwhelmed and, at times, faced with a sense of meaninglessness. In order to be effective in today’s increasingly complex and uncertain world, there is a clear recognition that leaders need a new set of skills.

Collective Leadership for Scotland has been exploring and building capacity for collective leadership in Scotland for many years now.  The new skill set that this leadership environment requires includes a level of personal mastery, sometimes missing from leadership development efforts. It is this area of personal mastery which Meg Wheatley focuses on in her work.

In March 2020, we welcome Margaret Wheatley back to Scotland after her two-day event on Perseverance. This time to train a cohort of 35 system leaders in her approach to developing the skills to lead with insight and compassion. Margaret is a world-renowned leadership expert. She writes, speaks, and teaches globally about how we can accomplish our work, sustain our relationships, and willingly step forward to serve in these turbulent times to do good work maintaining the best of humanity – treating people with compassion and dignity. Meg refers to these leaders as “Warriors for the Human Spirit”: people “dedicated to serving people without adding to the aggression and fear of this time”.

This is a different form of training than that offered by many other leadership development programmes. Therefore we ask you to take the time to read Margaret’s text and carry out her activities on the following pages before deciding whether to commit to this programme.
Please note that applications for this programme have now ended.

This was drawn by Linda Hunter (@LidnaStitt) at WorkForce Scotland’s learning event ‘Perseverance’ with Meg Wheatley in October 2019. The event was co-sponsored with Healthcare Improvement Scotland ihub.