Below are a selection of FAQs which will help you discover more about the Sheffield Leader:
Who are the sponsors of the Sheffield Leader?
The University’s Executive Board (UEB) are active sponsors of the Sheffield Leader; they regularly attend the Sheffield Leader Community events as participants, and feature as guest speakers at the Sheffield Leader modules. The Sheffield Leader is a priority because clarity in leading change and developing people are even more important in these challenging times.
Who is considered a ‘leader’?
Leaders are by definition distinguished by their influence, as much as by their position or authority. An organisation does not choose its leaders, but it will normally seek to utilise their talent in leadership roles.
The Sheffield Leader develops the abilities of those recognised as being leaders. There is no direct link between participation and appointments. However, the Sheffield Leader broadens and better equips the pool for future leadership roles.
Will the Sheffield Leader make me a better leader? What new qualities will I gain?
Each Sheffield Leader level enables and equips participants with the confidence and capabilities to lead the University through the challenges it will face over the coming years.
There will be practical leadership insights, there will be a range of models of success presented that could be implemented, and there will be individual and collective reflections towards practical actions. Discovering new insights about leadership enables participants to immediately apply these discoveries to their workplace through improved behaviours, actions and processes. Participants gain a deeper understanding of the strategic issues facing HE and UoS and a range of practical responses.
The talent, energy and intellect required to address organisational challenges already reside within the University; Sheffield Leader helps leaders appreciate, learn from and expand their repertoire of practical approaches. Overall participants will build their leadership competence and confidence as part of the Sheffield Leader Community.
What are the expectations of Sheffield Leader?
The intended outputs can be divided into three areas (the 'me', 'we' and 'us' outputs):
i) The development of individuals.
ii) An increase in collaborative practice and new networks being established across the University.
iii) The impact on the organisation of having a broader, deeper, more capable and more confident pool of staff making a contribution to its leadership and governance.
What is expected of Sheffield Leader participants?
To recognise the qualities and accept the responsibilities of being a Sheffield Leader. Also to appreciate that these responsibilities are continuous and not necessarily tied to the possessing a particular leadership position.
More specifically relating to the modules and events, a commitment is sought to full engagement with your cohort, including the work-based elements outside of the modules. Also to implement and advocate practical actions that you think could be beneficial in your current and future leadership roles.
How does the nomination process work for the Sheffield Leader?
Nomination is by line manager only for levels 1 to 3 and for level 4 is by either Faculty Pro Vice Chancellor, or by the Registrar and Secretary (Professional Services staff). Further information can be found here.
How are places for the Sheffield Leader allocated?
Places are not allocated on a first come first served basis but rather are carefully constructed to ensure (as far as possible) proportionate representation by:
• Job role
How many places are available for each Sheffield Leader cohort?
Each cohort has a maximum of 18 participants. For current cohort dates please see the specific level pages.
How will the module days be filled?
More information for each level’s modules can be found on the specific pages and an outline of events will be circulated in advance of each module. Because the modules are responsive, flexibility has been built in, which is why detailed agendas are not circulated until after the preceding event has been reviewed. The fundamental components of each module are via inputs and provocations, conversations, facilitated sessions, group dynamics, leadership dilemmas, reflective spaces, and experiential and action-based work.
Will the Sheffield Leader include practical skills sessions?
There are a wide range of practical insights presented during the modules. How these might relate to individuals´ leadership challenges will vary greatly. The Sheffield Leader is about fostering fresh thinking and innovative solutions, not training per se. The work-based components provide experiential and action-based elements to the modules.
Who facilitates/delivers on the Sheffield Leader?
The Sheffield Leader benefits from both internal and external facilitators-more information on the Leadership and Management Development team can be found here.
How should I prepare for the Sheffield Leader?
You should ensure that you can make all the dates for your cohort which can be checked on the specific level pages. Discuss the reasons for your nomination with your line manager and explore what they and you personally would like you to get out of it.
These thoughts can be submitted in an electronic questionnaire once your cohort is confirmed. Some personal reflection on the aspects of your leadership role that you would like to develop is also helpful.
Will there be a lot of pre-work/reading prior to the start of the Sheffield Leader?
Participants are asked to reflect on their leadership challenges, their strengths and areas they would like to develop. There is no formal reading or other work required.
Will there be work to do between modules?
Participants may be asked to read a short article, look at a video clip or complete short self assessments/checklists prior to some of the modules to prepare for discussions which will take place in the workshops. These should take no longer than 1 hour.
Sheffield Leader 3 participants take part in Improvement Group projects and some groups do choose to spend some time outside the scheduled sessions working on these projects, particularly to prepare for the final presentations.
Sheffield Leader 2 participants are asked to apply their learning to a leadership challenge in their current role. They are asked to make a short informal presentation at the final event which may involve a short amount of preparation.
How should we describe/communicate the Sheffield Leader to others within our departments?
The value of leadership development, particularly in the context of the challenges the University will be facing, is something that already has wide recognition. The benefits will be demonstrable over time; when you are realising these yourself that they will be fully appreciated by others as well. The impact of the Sheffield Leader is not exclusive to those who have participated on modules but of benefit to the entire University.
Leadership development is also just one aspect of the holistic approach that is taken to staff development in the University. That support continues to be available to staff as they progress into leadership role is for the benefit of the whole organisation.
Will the Sheffield Leader have laid down rules of engagement, such as regarding confidentiality?
Confidentiality will be guaranteed. Points raised and examples given in sessions should always be anonomised and never attributed to an individual if later repeated outside the immediate group.
Can I expect to progress through each level of Sheffield Leader?
It is not the expectation that an individual will automatically move through each level of the Sheffield Leader sequentially.
Is the Sheffield Leader accredited?
No, not at the moment.
You will become a member of the Sheffield Leader Community, which will give you access to a range of Sheffield Leader Community events. You may be asked to contribute to the community by either speaking to future Sheffield Leader cohorts or becoming a coach/mentor to future participants.
How is the impact of the Sheffield Leader measured?
As an investment the Sheffield Leader is evaluated in a number of ways to ensure its impact across the University. More information can be found on our evaluation page.
What is the Sheffield Leader Community?
All past and present Sheffield Leader participants become part of the community-more information on what the community involves can be found here.