Case Studies

Erin's story

How university leaders were inspired to think across boundaries

Erin Price, Northumbria University

In response to the changing environment in Higher Education, Northumbria University has been going through a cultural, structural and transformational change. In order to prepare their staff at all levels to embrace this change, the University created an internal development programme. Common Purpose tendered for part of this and were successfully awarded the contract in October 2012.

Common Purpose has delivered 18 workshops for staff from the Senior Leader, Professorial, Academic and Future Leader programmes. Each workshop aims to take delegates away from the university setting and into the local area to meet and hear from senior regional leaders, gain 'behind the scene' insights to examine how various businesses and services operate. These sessions have supported the staff to broaden their horizons, build networks and develop vital confidence and connectivity to lead change.

"We wanted to build something different into our Leadership Development programmes, something that would broaden perspectives and challenge assumptions about leadership in a Higher Education setting and stimulate new thinking. To do this we needed to offer our Academic and Professional Support Managers an opportunity to step outside of their own work environment and hear how businesses in other sectors across the North East operate and respond to real strategic and practical leadership challenges.

"Common Purpose was an obvious choice for us because of the extensive and diverse network of organizations and expertise they can tap into across the region. We have been delighted with the itineraries they have arranged for us. Their approach to both design and delivery is flexible with each programme customized to our specific brief and to the needs of the 'people in the room'.

"We wanted to inspire our leaders to think beyond the boundaries of their current roles and to understand more about the University's role and contribution in the region. Feedback we've received certainly supports that aim; 'It was a brilliant day, inspiring, useful, 100% relevant. Absolutely loved it. Thank You' "

Erin Price MCIPD
Head of People Development
Northumbria University