Arts Council England – Cultural Leadership Programme

As consultant and programme partner to the Cultural Leadership Programme we designed and delivered the Powerbrokers International Leadership Placements, in partnership with cultural organisations in Brazil, Barbados, China, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica, Singapore Brazil, India, Senegal and the United States.

“The Cultural Leadership Programme (CLP) has been fortunate to work with Maureen Salmon in the development of two of its signature programmes – the CLP ‘Peach’ Placements and the Powerbrokers International Leadership Placements. Maureen played a key role in designing and refining the shape of the programmes, drawing upon her excellent strategic skills, management experience and informed perspectives on professional development and diversity to broaden and deepen the opportunities. Maureen has been trusted to broker high level partnerships both nationally and internationally, and to nurture and secure several key relationships on behalf of the CLP. Maureen and Freshwaters Consultancy remains a partner of choice for the Cultural Leadership Programme.” Hilary S Carty, Director, Cultural Leadership Programme

Photo: Reflections & Legacies 14 March, 2012, Royal Society of Arts Associates:
Beverley Sterling, Padma Rao, Carole Morrison, Lynda Rosenior, Valerie Chang, Archana Kalyana, Delia Barker and Asif Khan, Hilary Carty, Director and Diane Morgan, CLP Project Manager, CLP Oliver Nyumbu, Caret, Maureen Salmon, Freshwaters

Reflections and Legacies of Leadership Learning in an International Context

This report explores the outcomes and impacts of the leadership learning journeys of the eighteen UK leaders from black Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds that completed placements in Barbados, Brazil, China, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica, Singapore, Senegal and the United States of America. The paper gives prominence to the learning interventions and processes that helped these associates (recipients of the placements) to improve their overall performance and to take their leadership to a different level. The outcomes and impacts are evidenced by the words of the associates and their hosts.
Foreword by Oliver Nyumbu, Global Leadership Expert and former CEO, Caret

Powerbrokers Journeys and Discoveries – London

July, 2010Nurturing ‘diversity in leadership’ in the cultural sector and more widely is as important as it ever was: diversity is a 21st Century reality. This is illustrated by the words of Lord Boateng at the CLP’s Powerbrokers Journeys & Discoveries event on 8 July 2010: “In our world ‘people of colour’ are in the majority… we are the face of 21st Century Leadership”

Further information

  • Amplified10


Leadership and Diversity Encounter – Brazil

November, 2009
This debate on ‘leadership and diversity’ at the Centro Cultural São Paulo was shaped as a BBC “Hard Talk”, it brought together an impressive list of senior cultural leaders and a younger generation including the two associates, Carole Morrison and Dawinder Bansal.

Further information

  • Leadership and Diversity Encounter webcast


Cultural Leadership: Global Focus – The Caribbean

28 November-3 December, 2009
This symposium on leadership journeys was organised by in the National Art Gallery Committee Barbados in the context of the Caribbean Curatorship and National Identity Conference. An impressive panel of international cultural leaders including the two Associates, Delia Barker and Asif Khan.

Further information

  • Caribbean Curatorship and National Identity
Beijing Modern Dance Company
“We deem the whole cultural leadership programme a value-added experience for a developing arts organization like ours. Both my staff and myself really benefited from this programme regarding different subjects such as leadership skills in an arts organization… by sharing knowledge and information with the CLP associate we can reaffirm and identify our own roles in an arts organization and the arts industry as a whole.
This experience has allowed both the host organisation and the associate to gain new perspective on arts organizations’ development and on oneself.
We look forward to more programmes like this in the future. And we hope this programme could be introduced to and benefit more people.”
Beijing Modern Dance Company
“Maureen combines a high level of professionalism with a personal touch. Her support in my (PILP) placement in China enabled me overcome many challenges, allowing me to move forward and achieve my leadership objectives.
She has an excellent understanding of emotional intelligence and how to apply this to situations, and has a very effective approach in managing complex meetings and people.”
“Maureen’s participation in my placement was invaluable and our time in Beijing led to great success in helping me and my host (Beijing Modern Dance Company) understand each other, as well as the unforgettable 8-mile hike we completed of the Great Wall!”
501 Arts Centre
“In preparation for my placement in China, Maureen provided me with excellent support and professional advice. I experienced enormous challenges in China and with her help she gave me objective advice, guidance and a level of coaching to cope and manage my leadership experience.

Maureen was objective and analytical which helped to develop my leadership potential, self-awareness and impact that I had on others.

On her visit to China, I valued our discussions on emotional intelligence and communication styles, this had greatly raised my awareness and style of working and influenced the success of my placement, outlook and approach to life. What I gained in China from her was valuable insight about myself, followed by constructive advice and support, which has left a long term impact on my future direction. Finally, I am grateful to have had her input and appreciate her authentic qualities and contribution to leadership development and learning.”

“Maureen was a sensitive and inspirational source of knowledge and guidance throughout my (PILP) placement. The 1-1 sessions she guided me in were life changing, and enabled me to make some big and difficult decisions in my career. She took time to hear my story and steered me in appropriate directions to fulfil my development needs. The results were astounding – friends say that I am literally glowing with confidence and optimism. Maureen’s guidance has unlocked my self-belief. I feel empowered and full of positive energy. Which will no doubt be a good thing as I launch myself into new career pastures!”
National Library of Jamaica
“Maureen is the epitome of what one expects from a consultant: knowledgeable, confident, strategic, and deliberate without being obtrusive and patronising. I was privileged to experience and benefit from Maureen’s first rate competencies over a period of eight months as she coached and consulted with the National Library of Jamaica in the on-time delivery of its objectives as an international partner in the Cultural Leadership Programme. Would that all consultants were as quietly competent and effective as Maureen.”
National Library of Jamaica
“As the Powerbrokers International Leadership Placement consultant, Maureen Salmon provided inspirational one-to-one sessions and a quality that, in the context of my unconscious resistance to having any leadership skills, can only be described as alchemy … Due to her skills, I was able to answer the question ‘What does success look like?’ with ‘Success looks like me’.”
Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts
“Maureen worked with the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts to develop and guide two significant ‘Powerbrokers International Leadership Placements’ that entailed mediating diverse interests in complex and sometimes demanding circumstances. The placements performed key roles in implementing the Academy’s strategic initiatives; for one, our partners included the Government’s Home Affairs Bureau and the Clore Leadership Programme. From start to finish, Maureen handled matters evenly, knowledgeably, and efficiently. Maureen’s extensive strategic management expertise helped ensure clearly defined parameters and her professionalism and finesse enabled outstanding achievement and optimal outcomes.”

Women Leadership Association, International School of Management, Senegal

The Women Leadership Association  was established in March 2013 by 100 women at the International School of Management to advocate for the development and recognition of women as leaders and to support disadvantaged women  and girls.

In April  2013, we were invited to share our experiences and  advise on how to make the Association a success.

“ It was an honour to have you here in our school and on the behalf of all the women of our association I wanted to thank you very much for making time for us, for your support and your advice because it is really helping us managing and running our association. So THANK YOU VERY  MUCH for that. …”

Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College, London

The Collaborative Leadership Programme aimed to support the leadership and management development of   fifty new and established middle managers from four of London’s largest further education colleges (Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College, Kingston College and Carshalton College, LeSoCo) to unleash their leadership potential in the context of the new further education and skills landscape. The managers were from diverse backgrounds in terms of age, gender, race, ethnicity, curriculum areas and career journeys. We designed and delivered the self-assessment and career planning component of the programme, provided the keynote speaker for the launch event, briefed the coaches, facilitated panel discussions around the leadership journeys of the participating college principals.  We used a range of learning tools and techniques including StrengthsFinder, which resulted in:

  • Fifty personal professional development action plans
  • Cross college learning of leadership competencies
  • An understanding of  the potential influence of the fifty leaders
  • Knowledge of the operating environment
  • Learning from the principals’ leadership philosophies, brands, styles and career journeys; the planned and unplanned routes to success
  • Understanding the importance of experiential work based leadership learning as opposed to academic qualifications for a dynamic 21st Century leader

Client Stories

“Maureen was our first contact for the LISIS Leadership and Management Programme which seemed daunting but which she soon put into perspective. She was helpful and approachable and particularly helpful during one to one sessions when her clarity of thought enabled me you focus directly on what I wanted to achieve from participating in this Programme.
Whilst I did not achieve my intended outcomes, due to the current financial constraints. I did however discuss a plan B with Maureen, which she supported and confirmed might be a good way forward. On her advice, I am now trying to build up a portfolio of higher education programmes as a way of leading this section in the College.”
“The LSIS Collaborative Leadership Programme delivered on what it said on the tin. I was certainly inspired during my time on the Programme to move away from my comfort zone and explore ways to unlock my career potential. I cannot say enough about the excellent work done by Maureen Salmon and her Freshwaters Consultancy, the architect of the ‘Self Assessment and Action Planning’ component of the Programme. Maureen is a consummate professional and a facilitator of the highest quality. She is incredibly competent and very knowledgeable and she was able to draw on her wealth of experience to relate the subject matter to real life situations. Her palpable dedication and passion for leadership fired up the imagination of those who participated. Her approach was to use her excellent people skills to engage and inspire. Using her coaching skills, she ensured that various group activities also drew on the potential of the participants. By the end of the Programme, I had identified my own strengths and areas of development. My self-awareness and confidence certainly increased as did my emotional intelligence. I had explored key leadership strategies and ideas which would enable me to develop in my current role and take my career to the next level. Leadership as a state of mind’ resonates with me and I now believe that an employee can be supported and helped to realize their leadership potential in their area of responsibility and within the team that they work in. There is a direct correlation between the implementation of shared leadership practice and improved performance, higher morale and innovative problem solving. I am thrilled to have participated in this programme. Maureen and Freshwaters Consultancy, I cannot thank you enough.”

National Black Crown Prosecution Association, London

The Leadership and Strategic Development Programme aimed to help the Executive Committee of the National Black Crown Prosecution Association (NBCPA) to develop their leadership and strategic development competencies in order to become a more dynamic high performance team. The process assisted the group to achieve their strategic business objectives and priorities, including supporting the NBCPA members and wider BME communities as well as working towards financial independence and long term sustainability.

”Thank you for the excellent leadership session that you provided to the Executive Committee on Monday 17 June 2013. It was a pleasure to work with you again and we all took away some very useful lessons for growth and development both individually and collectively as an Association. With the tools you have provided, we hope to be able to influence our stakeholders much more effectively and improve our overall Communication Strategy. You went over and above what was required to deliver this strategic leadership session and took it to a very high level just like you did in 2012.

The EC has been galvanized into action and I hope that we will be able to report some meaningful progress that we have made in the very near future.”

“ “Many thanks for the leadership programme you provided for the NBCPA Executive Committee early this year. I can confirm that it was of immense benefit to the whole committee in recognising our individual strengths and pulling together a consolidated work force to deliver the business of the association”

London Borough of Merton

The programme aimed to inspire and nurture talented individuals from black and minority ethnic (BME) backgrounds in the Community and Housing Department who demonstrated the potential to become dynamic and successful senior leaders of the future. It provided a pathway and tools to promote leadership, learning and development as well as career progression. Central to the programme was a formalised mentoring relationship with a senior manager within LBM to support the participant’s personal and professional development.

We have a strong business case to increase the diversity of our senior leaders to build a leadership cadre that is more reflective of the population we serve than is currently the case. The London Borough of Merton has a population of 201,400 – the 23rd most diverse local authority nationally and the 18th most diverse London Borough with a BME population of 37%. Of our 2,457 staff, 542 are known BME. However, only 6% is represented in the top senior management tier. Merton Council is missing the opportunity to utilise the talent of BME staff in senior positions. Over the next five years, I would like to see a change in the picture of leadership in the Community and Housing Department and influence the wider Council” Simon Williams, Director of Community and Housing – Programme Sponsor
“The Diversity in Leadership Programme has enabled me to learn more about myself. I feel liberated and ready to take up any challenges. I believe shared knowledge and experience from key members in the workforce along with Maureen’s diverse experience and knowledge made this course very effective. I strongly feel that Maureen’s calm but assertive and non-judgmental personality was paramount to the success of this programme.”
“The Diversity in Leadership Programme has given me a clear insight into the path to senior management and what it means to be a leader. I have learnt a lot about myself, my working environment and the external environment on a strategic level through the master classes, one to one and mentoring sessions and discussions with my colleagues. Thanks to Maureen Salmon, who created a conducive learning environment where we all felt comfortable to express ourselves, talk about our life experiences in an open manner and exchange ideas about how we can learn from them without feeling judged. Maureen’s style of facilitation was exceptional and unique; she tailored the sessions to our level of understanding which made it so easy for us to learn while having fun.
I have had an opportunity to meet with senior managers and create good working relationships which would not have happened in my normal working environment. I have analysed and reflected about myself to discover the talents I possess that I can put into action as well as the areas where I need to improve.
Generally, I feel like I am a different person to the one who started the programme as my overall confidence has grown significantly to the benefit of my team that I currently manage. I feel my future career prospects are much brighter now. Plans are underway to start a work placement as a result of this programme. I would certainly recommend this programme to any middle manager striving to join senior management. To be precise, it is one of the best learning opportunities I have had in my working life so far and I am ready to make it count for the rest of my career.”