The shortage of senior women at the most senior levels in institutions is still a challenge, despite some improvements at executive and board levels in recent years.
The 2015 and 2018 McKinsey reports on ‘Diversity Matters’ clearly illustrate the positive impact on organisational performance of diversity at the most senior levels, particularly in relation to strategic decision making. Leading, influencing and managing change at a senior level within a complex HE environment requires specific skills and an understanding of many factors including organisational structure, culture and politics.
Developing female senior leaders
Our Senior Women’s Leadership Development Programme aims to support women who are seeking to enhance their political and leadership skills by exploring the contemporary contexts and challenges of being a senior leader. You will develop your knowledge and technical ability in the leadership of people and organisational process for finance and governance and the management of change and will leave the programme with a much better understanding of how to enhance your impact as a leader, enabling progression.
I found the programme invaluable, with space to explore the challenges of women’s leadership in HE as well as to examine critical issues such as university governance and finance. I especially enjoyed the opportunity to be amongst other senior female leaders in HE.”
Dr Emily McIntosh, Director of Student Life, Student Experience Team, University of Bolton
Who is Senior Women’s Development Programme for?
This programme is designed for those who identify as women in senior academic and professional services roles such as professors, heads of department, deputy directors and directors, who are not yet at executive level but may aspire to be executive team members or be working closely already with their senior executive team.
How is the programme delivered
Taking place over the course of 4 months, the Senior Women’s Leadership Development Programme consists of two, two-day face-to-face modules and an action learning set focusing on:
• Demystifying the financial, legal and governance context and structures in higher education institutions.
• Exploring and building confidence at navigating the culture and politics in the higher education institution context.
• Influencing key stakeholders and strengthening external partnerships.
• “Real play” scenarios to explore decision making as an executive member
• Building and affirming your unique leadership purpose and personal narrative in order to increase leadership presence.
What are the programme outcomes
The programme supports participants in developing a powerful sense of their unique purpose and values as a senior women leader. It also explores how to create influential relationships with stakeholders and external partners, increasing confidence to navigate the culture and politics of their organisation and translate intention into strategic action. Participants will have the opportunity to build a network of senior influential women, supportive both personally but also in helping to influence best practice within institutions.