Developing leadership capacity for complexity

Here we share development practices for leaders who want to enhance their capacity and skills for leadership in conditions of complexity and uncertainty

These resources help you ‘become the leader of tomorrow, today’ – to navigate leadership and organisational dilemmas by thinking more fluidly, to make sense of the complexity around us, and to take multiple perspectives when in complex situations.

These two videos immediately below review the nature of today’s context for leaders and previews our online practices.

Our introductory digital resources to start developing the key capacities for complexity can be viewed below or alternatively on YouTube

Making sense of situations – an introduction to Cynefin

With this video, Mike Vessey introduces the Cynefin framework to help leaders think about and explore the different levels of complexity and uncertainty they face in their day to day lives. This sense-making framework helps you, in your leadership role, to look at the cause and effect of problems and find the appropriate approaches for the increasingly complex and uncertain situations you may find yourself facing. 

Introducing fluid thinking 

In this video Mike Vessey introduces the idea of polarities, addressing issues with two valid answers that are interdependent, as a way to increase your capacity for fluid thinking. Here we move from ‘either/or’ thinking to ‘both/and’ thinking which enables leaders to successfully navigate the best of both possibilities. We also look at how to mitigate the overuse of one opposing option over another.

Seeing more perspectives

With this video, Kate Oliver introduces how perspective shifting strengthens a leader’s capacity to respond creatively and skilfully to situations of complexity and conflict.  

Learning to learn

In this video Mike talks about the naturally occurring journey of personal growth and development and how to make this a conscious and intentional process.  If leadership is about envisaging future possibilities, it is also about change and therefore learning.  We might think that development stops when we reach adulthood.  Here we suggest the process of growth, and specifically how we make sense of the world and ourselves, continues throughout adulthood.  And, given the ever increasing complexities of today’s world, growth has never been more important.

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