The Global Leaders Programme

January. A fresh start. 

A global transition.

January is an experiential global leadership programme for senior leaders from business, governments and social sectors across the world as they transition to become global leaders – at work and in society. Immersed in global cities, they develop the skills needed to thrive in a diverse, disrupted and disjointed world. 

The transition

January participants are highly effective in their specialism or geography and want or have to step up or out to lead effectively at a global level – a transition which many find to be one of the most challenging of their career. It requires them to lead increasingly diverse teams and stakeholders from multiple cultures, to adapt to meet rapidly changing demands, and to broaden their horizons – constantly positioning and repositioning themselves within the global context. 

Shuvo Saha, Director, Google Digital Academy

“In a global landscape characterized by constant disruption, leaders today need new approaches to leadership. January, and its proposition around Agile Creativity, is a unique opportunity for any leader who wants to thrive at a global level.”

Why January?

Common Purpose

Diverse group

Participants join a global group of diverse and dynamic leaders who help to deepen their understanding and widen their perspective of the rapidly changing world that they all want to thrive in. A group which might include:

  • The next CEO of a major Nigerian corporate
  • Assistant Commissioner of Bangalore Police
  • Pro-Vice Chancellor of a major UK university
  • Permanent Secretary from the Rwandan Government
  • COO of a Boston-based corporate
  • Director of a development company in Dubai
  • New CEO of a global NGO in Frankfurt
  • Deputy Governor of a state bank in Africa
  • A Colonel from the Argentine Army
  • London-based Head of Department in a global financial services firm
  • Director of an award-winning Environmental Social Enterprise in Auckland

Powerful outcomes

Agile Creativity – the ability to adapt and innovate at speed. Common Purpose, working with Google Digital Academy, has developed an approach, which enables leaders to change direction fast and thrive in complex and ambiguous environments.

Cultural Intelligence (CQ) – the ability to cross boundaries, between sectors, specialisms, geographies, generations, backgrounds and beliefs – and thrive in multiple cultures. Common Purpose’s unique CQ methodology develops leaders who are more inclusive, so they build more innovative and resilient global teams.

Broader Horizons – leaders develop a wider perspective and position themselves within a global context when making decisions and tackling challenges.

Cities as classrooms

January takes leaders out of the classroom, immersing them into places they would not normally go and exposing them to unfamiliar situations, communities, contexts and organizations. These experiences are disruptive; Common Purpose’s learning frameworks and their peer group make sure they are transformative.

Reconnect to purpose

As a result of the real experiences, challenge and new relationships they form, many participants reconnect to their purpose in a powerful way. This reinforces the difference they make to others and renews their drive to make a wider impact in the world. 

Nnaji Igwe, Chief of Staff, Nestoil (Obijackson Group), Nigeria

“Being immersed in an incredibly diverse environment with Common Purpose has better equipped me to work with diversity, to deal with people from different backgrounds, perspectives and ways of thinking.”

The programme

Leaders tackle a global challenge – one that is real, complex and unfamiliar. The challenge for 2020 is 'How do we develop innovative approaches to healthcare that support access for all?'



Now Open

An online module introduces the group to our leadership frameworks, which deepen the learning process.

Can be completed in the participant’s own time at any point before Deep Dive One in June. Takes 2-3 hours.


24–26 March 2020 (Three days)



  9–12 June 2020, Jakarta (Four days)

Participants are immersed into a rapidly developing global city. Using Common Purpose’s InnoVenture technique, participants explore how leaders foster Agile Creativity. They also hear from senior leaders around the world who share how Cultural Intelligence has helped them transition to global.

They translate both for their own leadership, testing their learning as they investigate the challenge before presenting the outcomes to a panel of global leaders.



Participants complete a peer assessment, followed by an online session that helps them to translate their learning into tangible actions.



  4–6 September, London (Three days)

Participants explore what it takes to lead in a completely different context.


January alumni continue to broaden their horizons and expand their global network by attending further deep dives into different global cities as part of future programmes.

As Common Purpose alumni, they also gain the opportunity to continue their learning in an alumni community of over 85,000 leaders worldwide.

The impact

Feedback from our programmes for senior leaders:


are better able to adjust their behaviour to adapt to culturally diverse situations


are better able to lead a diverse team 


are better able to create the conditions required for innovation to occur


feel more prepared to contribute to their organization, city or community

Paul Polman, Co-founder & Chair, IMAGINE

“There is no question that this world is changing faster than ever and that the pace of change will only increase. Companies and leaders who will survive – and thrive – are the ones who are agile, resilient and can continually reinvent themselves. They also have a deep sense of their purpose that anchors them. Common Purpose is truly unique in that it focuses on the leadership behaviours that will make this world a better place, for people, organizations and society.”

Programme information

Key dates
  • 23–27 March 2020, Google Digital Academy, London
  • 10–12 June 2020, Jakarta

Participant fee:

£8,000 + VAT

There are some partially funded places for participants who are genuinely unable to meet the full fee.

For more information, contact us.

Selection criteria

Each individual’s application needs to evidence that they:

  • are transitioning to a global role, either from local to global (physical or mindset shift) or from depth (specialist) to breadth, and need/want a more global perspective
  • operate at a senior, strategic level in their organization and/or society
  • hold significant power or influence in their current role
  • are excited about the opportunity that January provides