What is leadership? LO22039

Ian Saunders (tpians@cix.co.uk)
Tue, 29 Jun 1999 9:49 +0100 (BST)

Replying to LO22018 --


I would like to add my two penneth.

I believe that many of the things learned from using the outdoors can be
transferred, especially issues relating to trust and personal

I did a lot of management develop using the outdoors some years ago and
Harriets account reminded me of similar experiences. The experience is
very powerful and valuable to many people. (and we did not get into such
extreme situations as Harriet describes). It enabled people to appreciate
the need to thinking ahead, for communicating effectively etc etc.

AND there were often some difficulties in transferring it back to work,
although I do not believe that the difficulties are any greater than most
courses (beyond the fact that the outdoors experience was/is often more

If I relate the learning and try to get hold of Gray's question. I
experience many project teams failing to get to grips with team working
issues, forethought and communication that severely limit there
capability. There rarely have high levels of trust. There capabilities can
be developed using the outdoors (often more powerfully than most other
media for development). Whilst projects may require a greater intellectual
input - if the leadership, teamworking, communication aspects are not
being done well it does not matter how well the intellectual things are
done because they won't work. Courses that enable us to develop the
process side of working with others are invaluable. We seem to want
'experts' to much.

AND I strongly believe that people should not be forced into 'outdoor'
programmes. (probably should not be forced into any programme come to that
as a reluctant participant rarely makes a good learner)

Using the outdoors is not the panacea for leadership development. It has
its place. It tends to puts people into situations where they can learn.
For senior manages this is often too threatening. They want to remain
safe. T groups generated many of the same dynamics as using the outdoors.
It is the learning situation that is most important and it is beholden on
those of us that seek to help others learn that we create situations that
enable people to learn most effectively.

Ian Saunders
Transition Partnerships - Harnessing change for business advantage



tpians@cix.co.uk (Ian Saunders)

Learning-org -- Hosted by Rick Karash <rkarash@karash.com> Public Dialog on Learning Organizations -- <http://www.learning-org.com>