This training will integrate trainng from our Transformative Collaboration training with our recently developed work on Leaderful Organising. It will help you to collaborate, communicate and make decisions effectively. It will help you to draw out the best in yourself and others, stay in healthy relationship, build teams based on shared values – and get things done! It will explore the role organisational culture plays in building effective collective power.
Working with others is not always easy. It can feel frustrating, draining and unproductive. Meetings drag, personalities clash, power conflicts arise, chaos reigns and all this gets in the way of achieving what the group or organization set out to do at the beginning. But collaboration is key to collective agency and empowerment. It’s a basis for effectiveness, a crucial means of embodying our values, and it can bring forth emergent and creative qualities that alone we could barely imagine. Collaboration is not only a root of social transformation, it also provides a vital context for individual transformation, enabling us to share and live out our deepest values.
In whatever way we envisage contributing to the wellbeing of our world, for most of us it is going to mean working with others. It is going to mean collaborating. Collaboration is key to collective agency and empowerment. It’s a basis for effectiveness, a crucial means of embodying our values, and it can bring forth emergent and creative qualities that alone we could barely imagine. And collaboration is not only a root of social transformation, it also provides a vital context for individual transformation, enabling us to share and live out our deepest values.
But working in groups is not always easy. It can feel frustrating, draining and unproductive. Meetings drag, personalities clash, power conflicts arise, chaos reigns and all this gets in the way of achieving what the group or organization set out to do at the beginning.
This training will help you to learn how to collaborate, communicate and make decisions effectively. It will help you to draw out the best in yourself and others, to stay in healthy relationship, build teams based on shared values – and get things done! This course and related resources provides you with the tools and know how to make your group effective, fun, brilliant, and inspiring.
Effective collaboration requires an understanding of how groups work, it involves learning the skills for organizing and structuring our work together, it also requires deepening self-awareness, the honing of our ethical sensibility and the means to transcend our limiting habits in order to bring forth more helpful and creative capabilities. So this course integrates practical skills and approaches to group and organsational development with reflective and group practices that make the personal-interpersonal interface a truly creative place to be.
This training is for anyone working in a community or organisation, in a social change project, social enterprise or business and who wants to work creatively, dynamically and effectively with others.
Through a blend of participatory education and immersive learning you will learn how to:
What is Leaderful Organising?
Leaderful organising sits within a broad theory of change that sees the building of collective power and agency as a key driver of social transformation towards greater social justice and ecological integrity. Organising is the activity of building that collective power and agency.
It aims to address the challenges involved in bringing together the best aspects of leadership with the best aspects of more horizontal ways of organising. It includes both a critique of traditional leadership and power, as well as a critique of leaderlessness and the limitations of merely horizontal forms of organising. It seeks to nurture the qualities of responsibility, initiative and accountability in individuals, while honouring the values of solidarity, inclusion, mutual empowerment and equity.
The practices of leaderfulness draw on renewed and expanded notions of leadership, such as the idea of “group-centered leadership” articulated by Ella Baker, who was critical of a leadership style which tends to centralize power, decision making and responsibility for meaningful action in a single leader. She claimed that “Strong people don’t need [a] strong leader”.
Leaderfulness goes beyond leadership as merely the quality of individuals, to engender a culture of leaderfulness in which power is distributed appropriately and all members of an organisation or network are supported to grow into leaderfulness. In addition to supporting the acquisition of leadership qualities by individuals, a leaderful culture requires structures and systems that enable the distribution of power and influence – and nurture leaderfulness in us all. These structures and systems are rooted in the values of solidarity or what the systems scientist Donella Meadows calls ‘going for the good of the whole’.
“Go to the people, learn from them. Live with them. Love them. Start with what they know. Build with what they have. The best of leaders when the job is done, when the task is accomplished, the people will all say we have done it ourselves.” – Lao Tzu
We will explore ideas and practices related to:
The aims of leaderful organising training are:
So, these aspects of the workshop will help participants to:
Who is it aimed at?
Anyone involved in socially engaged action addressing ecological, political and social justice issues. We embrace a broad definition of activism, including: Resistance – action preventing further damage to ecosystems and social justice; Renewal – action focused on developing and creating alternatives for healthier societies and communities; and Building Resilience – action supporting increased resilience in communities to weather the uncertain times ahead.
skills, insights, and practices for creating transformative teams and effective collaborations
new stories to change the world
Agency, theory and strategy - a deep inquiry
1. A thorny-evergreen flowering shrub, with a high capacity for regeneration and resilience. Its seedpods open in contact with fire and it reshoots from charred stumps. A successionary plant that grows well under challenging conditions. It improves soil fertility through nitrogen fixing, preparing the way for renewed biodiversity.
2. A traditional choice for igniting fires. Burns hot and bright.
3. A networked project adding nutrition and fertility to European social movements through training and capacity building. It kindles the realisation of social justice, ecological intelligence, and cognitive vitality.