News & views

A collection of videos exploring Inclusive Leadership and an exciting opportunity!

Being an inclusive leader is an aspiration for many, and we know is rarely something that ‘just happens’.  In our work with teams and individuals developing inclusion, we often hear a strong desire and commitment to be inclusive, and concern or hesitancy about how to do it well – authentically, consistently, when you perhaps know there are difficult topics to consider and conversations to have.

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Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust – being there for their people

A year on from the beginning of this pandemic, like so many, I have been inspired by the generosity and support people have offered in this unprecedented time of COVID-19.

It has been a positive experience to see that question ‘what can I do to help?’ asked and be answered and I’m pleased to work with people who, like others, have done just that.

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Women in Diplomacy 2020-2021 programme FCDO DIT

Last month saw the launch of the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) and Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Women in Diplomacy 2020-2021 programme. WDI Consulting are delighted to be in partnership with FCDO and DIT and to have designed and be facilitating this exciting online programme.

Now in its third year as a programme, the design has moved online to reflect the changing nature of the way we interact, and to provide greater flexibility without any loss of deep learning, skill development and connection across the European network. The programme is being delivered through interactive webinars, small group coaching, specific learning assignments and extensive 1:1 and group networking. Our visually striking workshop materials tap into the energy and engagement of the participants to lift the content and the learning from the page into each woman’s experience. After the Launch and first Module in December, the programme will continue through a total of six modules until March 2021.

After only a few interactions so far with this talented group of women Diplomats across Europe, we have experienced a commitment to their own deep learning as leaders as well as the culture they are building to unlock potential talent and new ideas. We are already looking forward to supporting the participants extend the depth and breadth of their learning.

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Back to Better

We launched our online Women’s Leadership Programme in 2020 and are proud to have already delivered the programme to women leaders in 13 countries and across sectors. We have been reflecting on the challenges we all faced in 2020 and how we can best support organisations to achieve a vision of 2021 that sees them returning Back to Better.

If gender equality remains a priority for your organisation in 2021, we ask you to take a few minutes to watch our Back to Better video and hear our thoughts on how you can ensure you continue to attract, retain and develop your female talent.

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Coaching Success Stories: The authentic leader

In this article Paul Lawrenson, Global Talent Leader at Expedia Group shares the experience of his coaching journey and how he has benefited from his partnership with WDI.

Paul views coaching as one of the key differentiating factors in securing two significant promotions, retaining his work/ life balance and continuing to thrive as an authentic leader.

His leadership impact is visible in last year’s annual employee engagement scores where Paul’s team rated the highest.   He believes this was aided by “not shielding them from the situation around them, and enabling and empowering them to do great work.”

However, as he says, this hasn’t always been the case.

“In the past I used to over plan for literally every single conversation.  I wanted to have all the data, context and answers ahead of time; it was a sort of security blanket for me.  I would show up as rigid, more focused on the process than building the relationships, and that really inhibited my ability to be fluid and have a free-flowing, high trust conversation.”

“As I reflect now, I realise I acted as though I did not trust my team to deliver – seeking to control and limit risks around their performance.  I also recognise that Imposter syndrome was definitely a thing with me; I paid far too much attention to the things I wasn’t good at.  However, through our coaching work, I now focus far more on my strengths and how I achieve the outcomes I want rather than worrying about one underdeveloped trait.”

Over a 2-year period, Paul had a series of coaching sessions with Lynn White, WDI and some of the development areas included:

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Women leaders: How to break the habits holding you back

In How Women Rise: Break the 12 Habits Holding You Back (Amazon UKUS) authors Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith identify 12 habits that commonly hold women leaders back as they endeavour to advance to the next stage in their careers. This article provides a summary of those 12 habits, plus a list of powerful questions posed to you by myself and Lynn White, leadership expert and Principal Partner at WDI Consulting.

We hope this summary, and our questions, will help you to explore and unleash your full leadership potential, and the potential of your team and organisation.

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Masthaven launches Women in Leadership programme

We are pleased to share with you this article, featured in 'Financial Reporter'. We would like to acknowledge Masthaven Bank for their vision and commitment and the women in the leadership team who are engaging with such energy in this programme. We are excited to share this journey with you all.    ...

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WDI’s Women’s Leadership Online Programme

We are so proud of the launch today of WDI's Women's Leadership Online Programme. A huge thank you to the WDI team for making this vision a reality and enabling us to share our passion and expertise with so many. If you would like to discuss this programme with us, please contact us - we are very proud of the content and would be delighted to speak with you about it.    ...

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Insider Progress Launch Event

We want to share some of the key themes to emerge from the launch of the Insider Progress initiative. These provide valuable insight and a ‘pulse check’ for the insurance sector. Read more ...

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A Heroine’s Reinvention

We are pleased to share with you this article, featured in 'Women In Leadership Publication - The Power of Influence edition'. In this article Clare Russell, Consultant WDI Consulting explores the value of offering coaching and leadership development from the heroine's perspective.  Of using this article to generate discussion with your colleagues. 'Women In Leadership Publication' contains valuable perspectives from a wide variety of influencers and thought leaders....

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Futures Coaching

A well-known aphorism, probably made most famous by Stephen Covey and earlier by an American monk called Thomas Merton, runs something like this: “We may spend the whole of our life climbing the ladder of success only to find that when we get to the top, our ladder has been leaning against the wrong wall.”

So how do we know?  Probably the most asked question arising in my coaching practice, in some form or other, is: “What might I do in the future?”  It might be framed as where am I going?  What might my next job/ career role be?  Is it time to push for the next big job? Is it time for a new opportunity?  Or maybe there’s a completely alternative future out there for me?

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The unseen role models that inspire women leaders

At 18-months old, my daughter is a playful, curious, vocal tot who loves to boldly crash her way around the kitchen with her walker, offers regular cuddles to her soft toys and with focused concentration builds her stickle brick structures.  She is (of course especially in my eyes), totally adorable with a winning smile, regularly told by everyone that she is cute, and validated for being clever.  However, I also notice the absence of words such as ‘bold’ or ‘brave’ that subtly add stereotypes on what a good girl is or is not.

I greatly want to protect her from the programming of gender, and equally know that I won’t be totally able to. But, I have a plan; to introduce her to the many amazing role models and female super heroes who give her a map to develop her potential without false limitations.

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