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Transference Article - 06/05/2016

Good leadership is one of the most important competitive advantages for an organisation - thus business literature often has a leadership focus. However, it is important to remember that leaders need followers, and followers are motivated by their own intrinsic drivers.

Followers follow for both rational and irrational reasons. Rational motivations include hopes of getting money, status, power or prestige by following a successful leader – and fear of missing out by not following. Irrational motivations can be even more in uential, but are often unconscious and therefore beyond our control. Such motivations arise from the way people project powerful images and associations from past relationships onto the present. Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, called this tendency “transference”.

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Progress Over The First Three Months (Jan – April 2016) - 27/04/2016

ISO 9001 Accreditation - completed a rigorous upgrade of processes and documentation to international standards and accredited ISO 9001 in February

Leadership Programme at Nugget Point in March - 47th LP over the last 15 years

2-day Strategy, Change and Transformation Masterclass in Brisbane – a small class of six high calibre participants including CE of Queensland State Revenue

Women's Leadership Summit - presented to 1,000 aspiring women health leaders in Brisbane

SLP at Millbrook - mustered a great class for the forthcoming 48th SLP at Millbrook over the last 15 years

Enterprise Performance System – completed the new digital Enterprise Performance Cockpit, integrating Team Dashboards throughout organisations

Profilers – completed Staff Engagement and Customer / Stakeholder Engagement tools and goal pulse system, We now have an integrated suite of profilers including Health, MOJO, 360 and Team 360 that show how leadership is driving delivery outputs and financial performance

External validation – received a positive endorsement of ISL profilers from two leading academics from two different universities


Recently I met with one of our alumni, the former Chief of Air Force (CAF) who was subsequently the Defence Attache in Washington. During our meeting I commented on the top brass from the US Military, reflecting on my experience facilitating the first International Conference for the highest ranking Warrant Officers. The observation I shared - "despite being dressed in 'civvies', it was obvious who was the most powerful energy force in the conference room. The Warrant Officer from the US emitted extremely strong personal 'WiFi' signals and you could feel his presence from a distance."

The former CAF related to my observations noting that the US Generals are the same: "Those guys are BUILT", he said. "They are developed mentally, intellectually and physically over many years and notwithstanding their friendly and humble demeanour, you can feel and sense their energy and power from the far end of the corridor", he quipped.

Reflecting on this discussion drew my attention to the reality that:

"the greatest achievement you can make is the building of authentic leaders as your legacy to future generation(s)."

This simple fact is consistent with the ISL quote:

"The most insightful measure of a strategic leaders is the calibre of the next generation of leaders that follow in his /her footsteps and develop under his/her watchful eye. A truly strategic leader may be measures by the calibre of his/her proteges."

We at ISL have had the privilege and honour to support over 2,500 strategic leaders from commerce, government and NGOs 'take the step | up' . We hope that you will follow in our footsteps, building leaders* and leaving a legacy for the next generation(s).

It's normal to focus attention on our own leadership development, but what's extraordinary is to leverage our gifts and build a Mexican Wave of leadership development. What contribution are you making in this regard?

* Arguably, the biggest impact is on 13/14 year-olds who are at the beginning of their leadership development curve.

Dr. Geoff Lorigan
Director, Institute for Strategic Leadership


Air New Zealand and The Warehouse were rated the 1st and 3rd most respected brands in terms of New Zealand's 2016 Corporate Reputation Index, published on the 1st April. These results have been achieved in what are arguably two of the toughest and most competitive industries (airlines and retail).

Hats off to Ralph Norris, Rob Fyfe and Christopher Luxon, past and present CEOs at Air New Zealand, and all the 10,800 staff who make our air travel a great experience.

"We recognise that a highly engaged workforce will increase Air New Zealand's innovation, productivity and delivery of our GO BEYOND vision."

Let's also doff our caps to show respect to Mark Powell (and his 12,000 strong team), who for the last four years invested in developing leadership and driving up staff engagement even when the pressure from the stock market was relentless to cut costs and deliver year-on-year increases in earnings.

"We regard our employees at the Warehouse as our greatest asset."
~ Mark Powell

Over the last decade, ISL had the privilege of being trusted by these two outstanding companies to support the leadership development of some of their most senior executives (Rob Fyfe sponsored 40 Air New Zealand leaders on ISL programmes, and Mark Powell, an ISL alumnus, sponsored 55 senior Warehouse leaders).

In addition to the contribution of ISL, both companies have invested significantly with in-house leadership development and attendance at world class business schools overseas. Its clear that the best companies recognise that leadership drives staff engagement, customer engagement and enterprise performance.

Dr. Geoff Lorigan
Director, Institute for Strategic Leadership

Farewell wishes to Jeff Shearer - 03/03/2016

It is with sadness that ISL farewells long time Alumnus and friend Jeff Shearer, SLP 22. Jeff was well-respected at Heritage Hotels and then took a Step Up to a position in Dubai.

Jeff passed away unexpectedly. It is always very sad when someone in their prime leaves behind family and friends prematurely.

The ISL team send their best wishes to his family.

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