1. Expert development commissioning and delivery
Karen has commissioned, designed, managed and delivered leadership development over the last 25 years. From large scale, multi-million-pound consortia led national programmes, to coaching registers, board and team development, management development and organisational development interventions. During that time, she has learned what works for different organisations at different times, how to identify the right partner for delivery, how to manage programmes so that you get the outcomes you need, what good facilitation and expert developers can do, and how different interventions can be designed to be the most effective.
As well as being critically time poor the commissioners of most development programmes, particularly for Boards and senior teams, although being expert on the requirements, are not expert in commissioning effective team development interventions. Making a mistake when commissioning these programmes can be wasteful of both time and resource as well as the opportunity lost from the making this difference you were seeking to make.
Working with Karen can provide significant benefits for you in securing the right development, by the right people.
- Help you refine and specify the nature of the support you are looking for, and advise on how best to procure that support.
- Source and sort of received proposals for the offer, including securing additional proposals if necessary.
- Provide briefing and shortlist interview for all prospective bidders to ensure capability, capacity and suitability of approach.
- Identify 2 or 3 potential providers for matching interview with sponsoring commissioner.
- Once successful bidder has been identified review approach suggested and test for effectiveness.
In addition, if required support can also be offered to:
- Brief into, observe and debrief matching interviews.
- Run review and feedback sessions with providers and CEO/sponsoring director after each intervention.
- Advise on programme design and selection of successful bidders chosen facilitators.
Benefits of approach
- Make best use of time of sponsoring executives.
- Ensure all bidders are appropriately briefed, assessed and evaluated.
- Provide expert and external overview of any potential design issues.
- Ensure any future interventions have desired impact – resource implications of appointing the wrong provider, in monetary, opportunity and engagement cost is significant.
2. Learning Sets
When people talk about development and learning they often talk about the 70:20:10 rule. 70% of learning from work, 20% from other support such as mentoring, coaching, project work and stretch assignments etc. and 10% from more formal education opportunities such as courses and academic learning. It is reasonably evidenced based and not a bad rule of thumb.
But – there are some inherent assumptions in there. Firstly, that being at work is a learning experience. It can be, but only if you approach it as such. That takes reflection and review, thinking about what you did, saw, experienced, practiced and so on and then making sure you reflect on those things and consciously think about what you have learned from that. So: what worked well, what didn’t, what could have gone better, was it better when I did this, or this, what did she do that helped that go so well, what did he do that made that so uncomfortable and so on. Secondly, that the learning you do off the job is well structured and evidenced based, high quality, properly attuned to your learning styles and your needs. Thirdly, that you have support from those around you that gives you lots of personal reflection and feedback – what does it feel to be on the receiving end of your leadership?
This is where really effective learning sets can become invaluable. Well run they provide four key areas of learning:
- A safe space to do your reflection and review, to critically analyse your experiences and think about what you learn from them.
- Colleagues who can provide skilled, supportive and focused feedback and challenge; to stretch you, to support you and to re-energise you.
- An exceptional learning environment working with colleagues from whose experience you can learn, be inspired, be recharged and celebrate.
- A warm, fun, engaging, positive and inspirational space where you can be your whole self and learn how to be an even better version of yourself well.
We run our learning sets in groups of 6 sessions over a 12-month period, each running between 10.30am and 4pm (face to face or virtual, or a blend, whichever suits the group) We take contracting seriously and expect each member of the 6-8-person group to commit fully to their own and their colleagues learning during that time.
You can join for any number of reasons – you might be at a career crossroads trying to work out what you want to do next, you might have been a long time in your current role and want re-energizing, refocusing, reminding why you did the job in the first place. You may be feeling positive and upbeat about work and want to share that learning with others while stretching yourself to be even better at what you do. You may be feeling exhausted and under pressure and need a safe space with supportive colleagues to be able to talk about strategies for reviewing your work and life balance. Whatever you are looking for we can help create the right group to support and work with you and can provide a learning space that is right for you.
We only run 4 learning sets per year – if you are interested please do get in touch.
We want to hear from you!
If you'd like to know what we can do for you, your team or your business please get in touch.
Karen has been directing the WIG Senior Leaders Programme since 2018, over that time the programme has gone from strength to strength. Karen has led a team of three Facilitators working with Directors from across business, civil service, public sector and charities to work collaboratively on the leadership challenges and opportunities of the day. Karen has brought significant rigour and expertise to the overall programme design. Her own executive experience and development skillset has enabled her to create a learning environment for senior leaders that offers collegial support within an environment of stretch, provocation and challenge. Her style is direct, easily getting to the heart of issues, articulately challenging assumptions and warmly stimulating dialogue and debate which engenders huge respect and deep insights among senior leaders. As the commissioner of Karen for this work, she has always been a great partner, one who understands the broader picture and has taken great care to understand the ethos of our organisation. The WIG Senior Leaders Programme has been engaging with leaders across the sectors for over 20 years and Karen has skilfully built on that legacy to ensure its relevance and longevity for the years to come.
Head of Leadership, The Whitehall & Industry Group