Making change, or being made by change?

Jul 13, 2023

On 12th June 2023 we were delighted to be joined by so many friendly faces at our summer event in London. The event – ‘Making change, or being made by change?’ – brought together a wide variety of leaders from across all sectors in an interactive, exploratory session followed by a drinks reception at the Local Government Association in Westminster.

The session kicked off with an introduction from Mark Rogers, CEO of the Leadership Centre, who outlined the format for the afternoon. Guest speakers led sessions prompted by the three strategic themes in the Centre’s new strategy –’Innovate, Inspire, Invest’.

Hamida Ali and Peter Fleming

The first of these three segments was a session ‘In Conversation with… Hamida Ali and Peter Fleming.’ Hamida shared with us her experience of being appointed Leader of Croydon Council, the systemic challenges they faced and the way her leadership developed throughout her time as Leader. Peter then took to the mic to share his experience as Leader of Sevenoaks District Council, explaining his leadership journey and the personal impact of taking on the role of Leader. We then opened the floor to questions which ignited some fascinating conversations across the room.

Anna Mouser with John Jarvis

John Jarvis, Chief Operating Officer at the Leadership Centre, subsequently took to the stage to talk about our work within the ‘Innovation’ space. John explained more about a new programme, Leading the Impossible, created in collaboration with Impossible Ideas, which will create the opportunity for a small group of people who are passionate about their area of work to experiment with leading change in a way which creates genuinely new possibilities. John was then joined by Anna Mouser from Impossible Ideas who encouraged us to think about reinvention and redesign within the public sector. Anna challenged us all to consider how we can inject imagination, redefine risk and develop the architecture to support experimentation. She was joined by Tassos Stevens, from Coney, who led us into a fascinating immersive game which tested leaders’ appetite for risk, prompting lots of competitive energy between the teams!

Ken Perry with Debbie Sorkin

Finally we heard from Ken Perry from Do Well, who did a wonderful job of talking about public narrative and its role in the context of change. Ken reflected on the value of public narrative as a way to build leadership because it can establish core values, culture and trust – but believes it stops short of, on its own, being able to make change.

The evening finished with closing remarks from the Leadership Centre’s Chair, David Lloyd, before a drinks reception on the terrace where some very valuable networking and enjoyable re-connecting continued for several hours. Thank you to everyone who contributed to such an interesting, energising, thought-provoking afternoon.

If you would like to learn more about any of the opportunities discussed during the event or have thoughts about ways in which we could work together, let’s talk!


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