Online discussion on ‘Connected Leadership’

With the help of brilliant panellists from Balfour Beatty, Imperial College Business School and William Hill, our discussion on leadership and talent development through social impact projects looked at why it is valuable to get people out of their comfort zones, the relevance of social and environmental issues to leadership development and what makes a ‘connected leader’.

Our big talking points were:

• Experiential learning – and a reminder that it is only a game-changer when we take time to reflect on the experience. But reflection time can be hard to come by in fast-paced environments. The Covid crisis has at least given some people the chance to slow down and reflect.

• Out of the comfort zone – working in an unfamiliar environment is a highly effective approach to development, but there is a fine line between discomfort (healthy) and disengagement (unhealthy). • Touching the heart as well as the head – exposure to social issues can result in an emotional reaction, which is by nature more memorable than a purely rational response. The project can be an emotional journey.

• Social and environmental engagement – giving future leaders exposure to social and environmental themes can guide their decision-making as leaders; it can become “part of how you think and do things as a leader”.

• Connected leadership – ‘self’, ‘others’ and ‘business’ are not the only development areas for leaders; an understanding of society is also critical. Command and control is old-fashioned; “you achieve high performance not from positional authority but from being connected.”

We’ve produced a brief summary of the discussion here and if you’d like to watch the whole event you can do so here.

Please do contact us if you’d like to know more about how we develop leaders through social impact projects.


Our panellists for the discussion:

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