COVID-19 update: May 2021

In recognition of the level of pressures felt across the health service, we have decided to delay the re-start of the Senior Leadership Development Programme.

We are now planning to re-commence the programme from July 2021 and are hoping that this will take place face to face with social distancing measures in place. See below for our current dates for 2021.

We have refunded places in full for anyone who was due to attend in 2020 and will ensure you have priority for places on this year’s programme. If you want to apply to join the programme in 2021, please contact

We will continue to review the impact of the pandemic, update our plans accordingly and keep all those who are planning to attend updated at all times. Thank you to everyone for their understanding and flexibility through this time.

To make you a better leader and to know what being a better leader means.

In order to
Ensure that the way you lead the delivery of healthcare is of the highest quality.

We deliver three courses for senior leaders, ‘Leading Self,’ ‘Leading Others’ and ‘Leading Systems.’ You can attend just an individual module, attend the courses consecutively, or in any order you choose, however we recommend attending them in order if possible.

We believe that leadership is both deeply relational and profoundly personal. As such we focus on the development of individuals’ ability to understand themselves first through increasing their self and social awareness, understanding the impact and influence they have on others and their personal insight into their patterns and assumptions in order that they make leadership actions based on informed choices rather than unconscious habit.

Senior leaders are often engaged with complex problems that can’t be solved just with management processes and tool-kits. In order to make these problems better, leaders have to work with others, investing time in the development of stronger relationships to enable this to work. In order to develop effective relationships we must first understand ourselves.

Individuals develop this heightened awareness on the programme through the video review of team exercises, coupled with straight-talking peer to peer and faculty led feedback.
The programme is based around the core values of learning through insight and experience. Themes are introduced and developed through a mixture of cohort lectures and small group working.

Each module builds on the previous, supporting individuals to move on to considering how they lead others in teams before looking at leading across boundaries, sometimes in positions without formal authority, and developing a collaborative approach to leadership whilst developing the personal resilience required for leading complex adaptive systems in uncertain times.

Leading Self

Upcoming Course Dates

Wed 7 July – Fri 9 July 2021

Deadline for applications:
Monday 17 May 2021

To develop a deeper awareness and accountability for managing your emotions, behaviours and assumptions.

In order to
Make leadership actions based on informed choices rather than unconscious habit.

3 days

Learning Outcomes
• Understand your personal leadership context and challenges within the healthcare system.
• Become aware of personal values, principles and assumptions.
• Notice how you manage your behaviours in group situations.
• Gain awareness of how personal traits can influence performance of self and team.
• Begin to develop your personal reflective practice.


Read the evaluation report from our Leading Self module in March 2019

Read the evaluation report from our Leading Self module in September 2019

Leading Others

Upcoming Course Dates

Wed 13 October – Fri 15 October 2021

Deadline for applications:
Monday 23 August 2021

To develop your ability to influence and be informed by others.

In order to
Be a more effective leader of teams and groups.

3 days

Learning Outcomes
• Gain greater understanding of your own leadership context and challenges within the healthcare system.
• Understand roles: leader, deputies and followers.
• Deeper awareness of presence – how personal traits impact or fail to impact on the performance of self and team.
• Notice the nature of key intra-team relationships.
• Understand the dynamic demands of task, team and individual priorities.
• Further develop your personal leadership strategy.


Read the evaluation report from our Leading Others module in May 2019

Read the evaluation report from our Leading Others module in November 2019

Leading Systems

Upcoming Course Dates

Wed 10 November – Fri 12 November 2021

Deadline for applications:
Wednesday 22 September

To understand the nature of healthcare systems and to develop your own intuitive abilities to recognise patterns and appropriate points of intervention.

In order to
Move from managing the consequences of systems to actually improving them.

3 days

Learning Outcomes
• Gain greater understanding of your own leadership context and challenges across healthcare systems.
• Understand how structural elements (i.e. organisational design, hierarchy, roles, workflow, policy etc) impact behaviours and leadership.
• Consider how to make learning and improvement continuous instead of episodic and integrated rather than fragmented.
• Identify the right culture for your system and how to promote it.
• Map the key local, regional and national relationships needed and develop a personal plan for developing these.
• Further develop your personal leadership strategy.


Read the evaluation report from our third Leading Systems module in December 2019

Read the evaluation report from our second Leading Systems module in December 2018

Read the evaluation report from our first Leading Systems module in December 2017

Moments of real revelation, learning that I will take back to work and implement. I will be a better leader as a direct result of this course and the College.

Challenges and develops the kind of collaborative leadership the NHS needs.

It is a course that can benefit anybody as the self-immersion in practice promotes personal responses and challenge.

Thank you. I found it a very valuable three days in ways I had not anticipated. The Faculty were particularly excellent and generous in approach in how they facilitated sessions. It felt that they do the course because they truly believe in its value.

I have not felt as invigorated or as challenged in a long time. I feel I have been shown important aspects of myself and given tools to improve.

Gave me space to consider and explore things I needed to address in a really effective way. I had underestimated how very effective the course would be for this.

Impact for individuals

The impact programmes have for individuals of course varies person to person. Some key themes members report are:
• Greater awareness of their emotions and the impact they behaviour has on others.
• Better at managing their behaviour in difficult moments with fewer knee-jerk reactions.
• Greater personal resilience.
• Greater ability to listen to others and understand things from different perspectives without feeling that differing views are personal criticisms.
• Develop stronger relationships with others.
• Greater confidence and ability to give and receive feedback to peers and subordinates.
• Greater ability to have difficult conversations and hold others to account for their performance.
• More consideration of what can only be done by them and what can be delegated to others so that they focus their energies more wisely, micro-manage less and empower their teams to do more.
• Leading better meetings and spending less time in poorly led meetings.
• Greater awareness of their wider context so that they can think more deeply about where to focus their energies, rather than being very busy working on things that aren’t making a difference.
Increased confidence in their ability to lead and greater enthusiasm to lead necessary change

Impact for organisations

The impact that investing in individuals’ development can have for their organisations will vary depending on the individual, what they choose to do with their learning after and the environment they go back into. Some recurring themes are:

• Engaged leaders who feel valued and invested in, and who feel more compelled to go above and beyond as a result.
• Senior leaders who understand the impact they have on others and who behave better towards their colleagues, developing an environment for their teams where constructive and honest discussions can be had, and better and more informed decisions can be made.
• Senior leaders who have greater awareness of the wider context and challenges and who focus their energies more effectively on the areas they can lead meaningful change.
• Leaders working to the top of their ticket who spend less time doing things that can be done by more junior members of the team.
• Leaders who are more likely to lead change successfully and improve services in order to improve patient outcomes.
• Teams and more junior leaders who feel empowered by their senior leaders to step up to the plate and take on more responsibility, developing them as individuals and helping them to feel more valued and committed.


Confidence in abilities
Evaluation of our Senior Leadership Development Programme modules delivered in 2019, 97% of those who attended were very confident or confident in their abilities against the learning objectives after attending modules, as opposed to just 47% who were before attending.

Progress towards goals
• 86% of members felt they had achieved their personal goals or made progress towards them during the course. 2% said that they would need time to tell. 2% said this was not applicable. And 9% did not answer the question.
• 81% of members felt they had achieved their organisational goals or made progress towards them. 29% didn’t provide a response to this question.
• 56% of members felt they had achieved their clinical goals or made progress towards them. 2% said they were not sure and 2% felt it was too early to tell. 7% said this was not applicable and the remaining 33% didn’t provide a response.

Overall ratings
93% of those who attended rated the programme as excellent. With the remaining 7% rating it as good.

93% said they would definitely recommend it to others with 7% saying they probably would.

Further details
You can find out more about the impact of the this years programme in our evaluation report 2019

Case studies
Our case study from Dr Jane Jones shares her reflections of attending the course, and the impact it had both on her and the service she leads.