Building your authority: Influencing beyond your role

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We know that it is no longer enough just to have a good idea; now it’s more about how to work collaboratively with others to use that idea to create change. This programme will enable you to work more effectively in the gap between your passion, commitment and enthusiasm for change and the practical realities of making things happen within the constraints of both your role and prevailing system priorities. It will help you to understand how to play a role in those relationships and develop approaches that will help you navigate the complexities of the health and care system.

Is this the programme for you?

You may be at an early stage of your leadership career and have had some experience of leadership development, but you are also starting to recognise that your knowledge and intellect alone are not enough to deal effectively with the complex, often relational problems you are faced with in your organisation and in the wider system.

Perhaps you are clear about your principles and intentions but feel somehow there is always a gap between these and what happens in practice. You are curious about how to work in this space and want to find ways to lead change that are both effective and compassionate.

You may know what you want to do and have lots of ideas and energy, but don’t yet have enough positional authority or feel confident enough about your personal authority to really shift things. While you may lack the formal authority of a senior job title, you have the responsibility to lead and are expected to work across your organisation to deliver change.

If this sounds familiar, then perhaps now is the time to consider joining this programme.

In this article Allison Trimble discusses the challenges leaders in health and care face when they begin to grow their influence, and how they can overcome them.

Who will you learn with?

This programme is suitable for you if you are a head of service, manager or assistant manager, lead practitioner, nurse or care manager. You may have recently been promoted or be on course to become a senior leader. Participants who have been on a management or graduate scheme, had some management and leadership experience, and are ready to move to the next stage, are particularly welcome.

We aim to represent the diversity of the health, care and wider community system so welcome participants from NHS organisations, local government, social care and housing organisations, private and third sector providers, as well as patient and community-based leaders.

How will you benefit from this programme?

  • This programme will equip you with tools and strategies to:
  • better understand your own leadership and how you take up your role in relation to others and to complex problems
  • work more effectively with colleagues, patients and communities who exercise different kinds of authority and bring different perspectives
  • create space to really think about what is going on when you meet resistance or encounter limitations – both your own and those of others
  • build your personal resilience and capacity for learning and explore how to create resilient learning cultures
  • develop a network of peers who can grow together as a cohort of future senior leaders.

What will you do on this programme?

The programme offers a blend of conceptual, experiential and applied learning to help you develop your personal leadership authority and build your capacity for working across groups and systems.

The programme draws on the well-established tools and group relations approach of our Top Manager Programme (TMP) which has been running for more than 35 years. It is delivered through a mix of:

  • group work to help you understand how you take up your role in groups and systems and to explore what it is like to be on the receiving end of you
  • workshops to introduce and develop key relational practices
  • conceptual sessions – introducing tools and frameworks to support your experience on the programme and to apply to your leadership practice back at work
  • peer work in relation to current practical challenges and developing a future network of peer leaders
  • one-to-one coaching with a programme director.

The programme stands alone, but it can also provide a foundation for the TMP journey so that leaders can begin developing the personal awareness and reflective practices that underpin the Top Manager Programme.

Programme team

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Allison Trimble

Senior consultant, Leadership and organisational development

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David Naylor

Senior consultant, Leadership and organisational development

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Matthew Rice

Senior consultant, Leadership and organisational development

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