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Future leaders for the voluntary and community sector

ASPIRE is a 12 month leadership development programme that will bring 15 people from the Voluntary and Community Sector in Essex together to create a strong cohort that will learn together through an accelerated development journey.

The programme has been commissioned by the Essex Partnership in recognition that growing the skills and capabilities of a cohort of leaders for the voluntary and community sector is a long term investment that will support delivery of the county’s shared vision – The Future of Essex – and foster a new generation of leaders for the benefit of the sector and everyone who calls Essex home.

Building a New Generation of Leaders

Increasingly voluntary and community services in Essex are suppliers of public sector services and are essential and valued partners in the Greater Essex system. It is therefore in everyone’s interest to support and develop the sector and ensure they are equipped with the skills needed to tackle future challenges.

System wide leadership development is being provided through the Greater Essex Leadership Collaborative, but there is also a need for sector specific opportunities. Together these opportunities will build a new cadre of voluntary and community service leaders to contribute to succession planning for the sector.

Developing sector leaders who understand both sector specific and system wide issues, and have the skills to operate more effectively as a result, will build a step change in the capacity of the sector to deliver services that meet commissioned requirements and deliver better outcomes for people.

The ASPIRE programme is aimed at senior professionals that are currently employed within the Essex social sector, working for a voluntary or community organisation, social enterprise or charity.

It is most relevant for aspiring and developing leaders that have the desire to forge a future leadership career in the sector.

How it works

ASPIRE offers a chance for individuals to design a bespoke leadership plan building specific personal leadership skills and practicing them through on the job experience. Everyone will benefit from a mix of group residential days, individual 1:1 coaching, group webinars and optional external placements. Individually, participants will receive additional development aligned to personal goals and leadership vision. However, leadership isn’t just about the leader – leadership isn’t done in a vacuum. They will also learn about the nature of the people in the teams they lead, how they can create great environments, enable high performance, and develop and coach their teams. These opportunities will allow participants to develop new skills both through more formal learning and also to apply them in a practical way on real-life issues by providing ‘on the job’ experience in the workplace.

The development programme will leave participants challenged, supported, engaged and ready for more with a valuable learning network to support future growth.

The programme will be delivered by Humans Being, a leading Organisational Psychology Consultancy that works with global clients including PwC, Zurich, UNICEF and Big Society Capital to attract, hire and grow their people.

Apply to Aspire

Good leadership is a skill, and like all skills it can be developed, learned, mastered with the appropriate attention to explicit development opportunities.

Over 12 months we Humans Being, on behalf of the Essex Partnership, aims to deliver the most effective leadership development programme for the voluntary and community sector. No dumbing-down, no corner-cutting. The team's experience from working with blue-chip organisations worldwide has been used to carefully curate a programme that will allow every individual to develop their leadership.

ASPIRE is looking for applicants that can demonstrate the potential and personal commitment to grow their leadership capabilities and have an appetite for change and to bring innovative practice to their organisation.

Applicants should currently fulfil a senior role within their organisation in a position that directly affects decision making and influences business direction and should have the support and sponsorship of the Chief Executive / or Board to participate.

Applications can be made at until 18 December 2018 where more information can also be found. The programme will commence in February 2018.

Last updated 25/10/17


Learn more about participating in the Aspire development programme

Growing Leadership in the Voluntary and Community Sector