The CILIP Leadership Programme - An overview and case studies
Introduction Luke Stevens-Burt, CILIP
Speakers Jo Maxwell, BDS (participant)Kirsten McCormick, Glasgow Life (participant)
Plymouth Library ServicesCity University LondonNational Museum of WalesRoyal Northern School of MusicLilian Baylis Technology SchoolSwindon LibrariesSwansea UniversitySouth Essex UniversityManchester LibrariesUniversity of DerbyBibliographic Data ServicesGlasgow LibrariesManchester Mental Health & Social Care TrustUniversity of SheffieldBazian LtdHalton Borough CouncilCILIPCambridge University LibraryHeriot-Watt UniversityBrooklands College
20 Participants drawn from a wide range of sectors including public, academic and health as well as commercial services.2
Programme Launch Liverpool 1st July 2016
On the first day provided an opportunity for everyone to lay out their stall and share their hopes and fears around the programme.There were lively discussions around what makes a leader, leadership styles and famous leaders.CILIPs Nick Poole, Simon Edwards and President Jan Parry all spoke about their personal leadership journeys and we all discovered that imposter syndrome is actually quite prevalent in the world of leadership. Their participation in the opening event and frankness in describing their leadership experiences sent a really positive message to the group.In the afternoon we broke out into our groups to start planning our projects.Member network engagement projectDeveloping members networks CPD offerMember network equality and diversity strategySupporting Solo workers project
By the end of the first day no-one was left in any doubt that they had entered in to quite a major commitment but the community spirit was somehow there right from the beginning and we all left knowing that there was plenty of support available from CILIP and from our peers.
Imposter Syndrome! Wikipedia has the following definition of Imposter syndrome: high-achieving individuals marked by an inability to internalizetheir accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a "fraud".Despite external evidence of their competence, those exhibiting the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved. At the start of the course, a large proportion of the participants (me included!) felt as if they were imposters and didnt deserve to be on the programme. We were counting down the hours until we were found out but that never happened. It is quite normal to feel overwhelmed at the start of something new, especially when it involves a lot of self-reflection and critical evaluation, but the Leadership Programme gave us all the space and time to understand our self-worth and develop confidence in our abilities as leaders.4
Through discussion, personal reflection and professional reading everyone was encouraged to consider their own leadership experience. From the start it was clear that many of us were facing similar challenges in trying to lead as well as manage. Recurring themes included understanding and adapting to new team structures; tackling old and embedded cultures within organisations; adapting your own vision to the organisational context and taking your team along with you. Negotiating and influencing are clearly important skills for successful leaders and throughout the programme we were introduced to tools and strategies for improving and developing in these areas.At the start of the programme everyone submitted a completed PKSB focusing and we revisited this a number of times throughout the course of the year to reflect and report on progress. Throughout the course of the programme participants were encourage to take advantage of other new tools that CILIP are developing and making available on the VLE. As well as the PKSB, the Impact Toolkit was another tool that we used over and again during the year. The Impact Toolkit has many useful excercises to help leaders and managers measure and demonstrate the value of our services, and of ourselves as information professionals.
SMART goalsMission statement / visionprioritiestimescales
Strategic planning was something that felt quite new to many of us. There was a general perception of strategic planning as the big and lofty ideas that are identified in organisational mission statement and vision documents. Penny Bailey of Bailey Solutions delivered a webinar that helped many of us to re-think our ideas around strategic planning. It soon became clear that we have all in fact been strategic planning for some time. SMART goals was a concept that resonated with allSpecificMeasurableAchievableRelevantTime bound
We all have experience in managing change within our personal lives, but do we all feel experienced in leading and managing change in our organisations? This question was asked at the change management workshop held in London and enabled course participants to reflect on their own experiences of organisational change management and discuss both positive and negative outcomes. Michael Maher, Librarian at the Law Society for England and Wales, gave an insightful presentation on his experiences of leading change in an organisational setting. According to Michael, projects fail when people arent ready, which rang true in our group discussions. As a training manager, his statement resonated with me because I am responsible for developing the people which change management directly affects.
Manager vs leader - Searching what is the difference between management and leadership? on Google finds over 44 million online resources, and was a question I Googled myself before starting the programme! I always knew they were distinct concepts, but within our day-to-day roles it can be hard to differentiate between the two. We often view managers as leaders since they are in a senior position within organisations. The course content has helped participants to understand the key differences between management and leadership, and also the many different leadership styles which exist. Carol Brooks, from Chrysalis Coaching and Development, led an interactive workshop in Newcastle which focussed on identifying our own dominant leadership style using a fun Jigsaw Discovery Tool.
Elevator pitches As information professionals we all know how important good communication skills are but how often do we have the chance to analyse or receive feedback on how we communicate? Suzanne Wheatley, from Sue Hill Recruitment, held a webinar for course participants on effective communication and elevator pitches. We had to create an elevator pitch for the final workshop in Brighton and practice it on our peers. I think we were all filled with a sense of dread but the practice exercise turned out to be fun, informative and essential in honing our pitches. It really brought home how important brevity, accuracy and persuasiveness are in todays working environment. Those of us who stayed on for the CILIP Conference were able to put our newly found skills to good use when networking with fellow delegates!9
Group projects The programmes coursework involved a mixture of online exercises, webinars, face-to-face workshops and also a group project. The projects were commissioned by CILIP Special Interest Groups and outcomes were presented at the end of the CILIP Leadership Programme in Brighton. I think it is correct to say that a lot of us, if not all of us, struggled with the group project work. Mainly due to the fact that fellow group members were spread across the country and it was hard to maintain good communication and stay focussed when we all have full-time jobs and some of us have families too. We did all successfully complete our projects and delivered presentations to CILIP Board members and Directors in July. I was part of the CIG group project and our outcomes were well received by the Special Interest Group. We were invited to present our findings at the recent CIG Conference in Swansea and are also in the process of writing an article for CIGs journal, Catalogue and Index.
Al most three months after completion of the programme participants were asked to reflect on how their practice had changed or how they planned to utilise some of the learning and skills acquired. Responses were all very positive some focusing on practical outcomes.12
The leadership programme has given me more professional confidence that any other course. People at work have commented that I seem much more able to handle myself in certain situations now and that I'm not afraid to share my opinions! I feel the course has given me a number of useful tools to help me cope with how stressful the next few months will be
Others reflecting on an increase in professional confidence more generally and a greater willingness to speak up and be heard even when ideas or opinions may not be popular. There was also much reporting of feeling better equipped to give a good account of ourselves and our services in front of senior managers and decision makers.13
My development As I previously mentioned, at the start of the programme I was definitely feeling like an imposter and not entirely sure of the development of my role at BDS. My job is to develop other