Executive Leadership Series

Please note that applications for the Executive Leadership Series are now closed. We will run the series again in 2023, if you wish to be added to the waiting list please contact e-learning@cdn.ac.uk.

Who it’s for

The Executive Leadership Series has been developed to support college colleagues who currently fulfil executive roles, as well as those looking to work at executive level in the future. The series is an opportunity for aspiring senior leaders to build their skills and network, with the option to select different workshops; it offers executive leaders the chance to upskill in specific areas and to work collaboratively with others.

How it works

Based on feedback from the sector, the series is made up of nine workshops and is designed to offer choice and flexibility. Participants can sign up for the whole series or select any number of workshops they believe will best support their own development.

Online workshops will be delivered using Zoom, and face-to-face workshops will be delivered in Stirling.

Please note that accommodation is not included for any of the face-to-face sessions.

Purpose of the series

Through the pandemic colleges collaborated far more frequently than they had previously. This has resulted in a systems approach to the challenges faced by colleges: more co-operation, more support, and a collective voice. This new programme builds on that experience, and its design is rooted in systems thinking. It will help to deepen understanding of the wider context in which we are working, and support us in applying systems-thinking and systems-leadership models and approaches. This also chimes with the Cumberford-Little Report, which emphasises the importance of systems thinking and systems leadership.

What you will learn

  • The first session, Stepping Up, with Roger Wynn Jones focuses solely on the individual, their leadership aspirations and how they can prepare themselves to move to the next level.
  • Communicating in High Stakes and Listening for better results also focuses on the individual and their personal development.
  • Territory Mapping helps participants better understand the landscape they are working within, and supports them in recognising the visible and invisible leadership practices they need to apply.
  • Three Horizons helps participants recognise the patterns that are playing out in the system. It enables participants to identify the components of our current system that serve well, and the changes we need to see in order to evolve and grow.
  • Following on from that, the Systems Leadership workshop enables participant to apply systems thinking and tools to some of the real challenges being faced by the sector.
  • Managing a Crisis is an immersive learning experience which hones decision making and collaboration skills; and Media Training helps prepare leaders for interacting with external stakeholders.

The flow of the series provides insights that can be taken away and applied in the workplace, or carried forward to the next workshop and applied in a collaborative and supportive environment.

Full Programme

Face-to-face (Venue) / Online Title/Description Facilitator Cost
22 September 2022 Face to face


Stepping Forward and Stepping Up

This session helps emerging and established leaders to rethink their approach to their own development. Often used at the start of leadership programmes, it helps to focus attention, prioritise development work and to track progress over time.

Roger Wyn-Jones, Saïd Business School

Roger has acted as programme designer and facilitator and tutor for High Performance Leadership, and the Oxford Advanced Management and Leadership Programmes. He has worked with clients including BAE Systems, Pinsent Masons, Deloitte, ETF, and overseas government departments.

21 and 28 October 2022


2x 3hour sessions

Online Territory Mapping

This practical workshop in 2 parts guides you in creating a map of your leadership reality. By the end of the sessions you will have a new clarity on the context in which your leadership is most needed, insight into where you are in relation to this need, and which wisdom and vital relationships you need in order to protect and grow.

Anthony Willoughby, British adventurer, practical anthropologist and founder of the Nomadic School of Business, and Doutzen Groothof, Dutch Sociologist and Coach, based in Rwanda, who brings modern and nomadic leadership lessons together £100
4, 11 and 18 November 2022  Online Three Horizons of Change

The process for these sessions draws on the Three Horizons framework as a way of working with the future to guide systems transition over time. The framework enables a conversation that embraces the present system, vision and aspirations for the future, and the pathways and that will help make the transition within a wider systemic context.

Graham Leicester,  Founder, and Cath Cooney, Development Director, International Futures Forum £250
19 & 20 January 2023

Two full days – residential

Face to Face


Systems Leadership

A two-day residential programme including one-to-one intake and follow up session. This programme includes practical exercises, demonstrations, and application of systems tools, alongside feedback to support develop your systems leadership toolkit. It will include a digital toolkit.


Joan O’Donnell,  Associate Lecturer Open University, UK,  MSc in Systems Thinking
Doctoral Researcher, Maynooth University, Ireland  and

Bob Williams, Experienced Monitoring and Evaluation professional, systems thinker and practitioner, facilitator and author.

10 February 2023

One full day

Face to face


Communicating in High Stakes

This workshop will help raise awareness of your default communication behaviours, helping you make sense of those behaviours. It offers a framework within which you can reflect on the likely impact of your default behaviours – helping you ‘read the room’ and recognise stuck patterns of conversation. The workshop also offers an insight into ‘high stakes’ behaviours and their impact.

 Margaret Williamson specialises in board, executive and non-executive development, development of women non-executive directors, facilitating multi-national, multi-cultural and multi-lingual groups. She also has expertise in communication patterns, which is the focus of this session.  £150
Date TBC 2023

3.5 hours

 Online Listening for Better Outcomes

Leaders who listen well build trust and get results. This workshop will explore the power and impact of generative listening. Recognising our listening ‘bad habits’ as well as the cost of bad listening is the starting point for this work. We will then learn and practise different levels of listening awareness to generate the best performance in others

Julian Saipe is a Leadership Coach and founder of Julian Alexander & Associates. He is a Forbes Contributor and Member of the Coaches Council, as well as Adjunct Professor in the School of Human Sciences & Technology at IE Madrid. £100
17 March 2023

One full day

Face to face


Host Leadership

Host Leadership is about building relationships to engage others. This engagement is the key ingredient that leads to increased performance and results. The art of hosting can provide a rich and inspiring framework for many practical leadership skills. It also provides flexible, agile leadership paradigm for those who want to lead better and seek better engagement and responsiveness.

Dr Mark McKergow started his career as a scientist and engineer in the nuclear industry and for the last 30 years as an international consultant, speaker and author, and director of the Centre for Solutions Focus at Work (SFWork).  He is author of The Solutions Focus, co-author of Host: Six new roles of engagement for teams, organisations, communities and movements and The Host Leadership Field Book. £150
27 April 2023
One full day
Face to face

Tulliallan Police College

Managing a Crisis 

Participants will experience an immersive and participatory real-world crisis management scenario.  Working together in small groups to respond to a real-time drip-feed of unfolding information, they must draw upon their knowledge and skills to make critical decisions under pressure and maintain effective communication.  During the workshop, participants and the facilitators come together to reflect on the experience. In a summative plenary session, experts from Police Scotland dissect a real-world case study and discuss how the crisis was managed; what went well and what was learned.

Police Scotland £250


25 May 2023
One full day
Face to face

Tulliallan Police College

Media Training

During this session participants will learn body language awareness, the ability to manage messages and narrative confidently and media engagement; including working with cameras and microphones.

 Police Scotland £250


For information about the series, and to find out how it can work best for you, please contact valerie.jackman@cdn.ac.uk

We are delighted to offer the full package bundle of nine workshops at a cost of £1500,
at a great saving of £200!

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