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Mindfulness for Leaders at Activate Learning

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Mindfulness for Leaders at Activate Learning

Monday, July 3rd, 2017

Activate Learning is a training and education group with more than 500 teachers focused on training and education for 16,000 students and 1,200 business clients. Its Learning Philosophy underpins development of all students and staff, including leadership development. Activate Learning trains its staff in a wide variety of disciplines to help them help the students and to ensure that everyone in the organisation shares the same vision of what the organisation wishes to achieve and how they want to achieve it.  Included in this training is ‘mindfulness’.  As part of the organisation’s Leadership Development Programme for its top 40 staff, Pablo Lloyd, a Group Executive Director, decided to give a ‘taste’ of mindfulness to the management. So that they would understand what their front-line teachers were doing and also be able to use mindfulness to support themselves during changing times.

Verve Consulting Ltd (Verve) was referred by a well-respected business acquaintance, as a company that could provide such training in a professional environment. The whole process was tailored to Activate Learning’s need. Vari McLuskie, Director at Verve, met with the top management to discuss options and approaches before the session was scheduled.  The objectives of the ½ day workshop were clearly defined:

  • Help top management to understand more about mindfulness and what the organisation is offering to learners
  • Instil an appetite to use mindfulness to support the changes in the organisation

The session itself involved around 40 individuals and began with an explanation of what is actually meant by ‘mindfulness’ and the science supporting this. Then, Vari began by ‘learning through doing’ and led the participants through 3 different, mindfulness exercises with time for a review and debrief on the experience.

When asked about the success of the day, Pablo Lloyd responded “I am very glad we did the day. It met all its objectives. It was interesting to see that – while most people enjoyed the process and the entire top team bought into the idea – there were a few who really struggled. Having said that, this workshop is part of a longer process of creating a relevant business culture and there may be those individuals who find this change difficult.  I would definitely recommend Vari McLuskie and Verve Consulting to anyone who wants to explore the application of mindfulness to their business or organisation.  I thoroughly enjoyed the process.”