Latest news – Centre for Innovative Leadership

This page has news from the Centre for Innovative Leadership


30 March 2013

Having successfully held the Authentic Leadership Course at the end of 2012, the programme is now offered again on 20 – 13 October 2013.  AUT’s Executive Education are managing bookings, but the Course is just the same with Stephen Drain as Course Director and the same team of coaches.  You can find further information including contacts at Executive Education right here.  Alternatively feel free to email Stephen Drain here or phone on 021 1962500.

AUT Executive Education subbrand

10 September 2012

The next Authentic Leadership Course available is 7 – 10 October 2012.  Further information here.

2 July 2012

The next Authentic Leadership Course available is now 12 – 15 August.  Further information here.

8 June 2012

Centre for Innovative Leadership pages can now be found on this site – click the logo above or on the right.  Programmes are run as before through AUT’s Business Innovation Centre, led by me and the team.  Administrative support remains with Lyn Hatrick at AUT.  Stephen

3 April 2012

Great news. The Authentic Leadership Course will run 7 -11 July 2012. If you’d like to enrol in this special programme you can email Lyn Hatrick at AUT Centre for Innovative Leadership or feel free to email me to discuss.  Stephen

22 December 2011

We finish 2011 with a sense of satisfaction that two very special programmes were completed this year for the first time — the Wisdom Retreat for Senior Leaders  and the Innovative Leaders GM Programme. I take up my new post at PwC in the new year but will stay connected to the Centre to assist in running programmes including those to be run in conjunction with AUT’s Business Innovation Centre (Incubator). Authentic Leadership offerings will stay alive with me at PwC and I will of course continue to blog on leadership on this site.

14 November 2011

Our Wisdom Retreat for Senior Leaders is underway at the refreshed Waitakere Estate. For senior leaders, the programme has at its core wise leader topics of Mindfulness, Ethical Compass, Resilience, Appreciative Inquiry, Creativity and Legacy. This is an entirely new offering in both content and delivery, for those who want to make a wise choice for their leadership.  Our Retreat participants have brought opportunities and issues to explore with the group – this programme brings real context to the senior leaders leadership at both the personal leaders and organisational leadership. Tonight a visiting scientist joined us over dinner to discuss the universe – that put many things in context! – and tomorrow a very special  iconic artist will visit us for the afternoon. Deep creativity in action. And we’re not even half way through yet.

28 September 2011

Tailored and in-house workshops and programme delivery has been the focus of the Centre’s work recently. Demand continues to be strong for contextual development that the Centre can and will deliver by working closely with you the client. We’re currently delivering a series of leadership development sessions to partners in a top professional services firm.  Time is precious and we have designed the programme to give maximum leadership insights to take back in as short a time as possible. Feedback so far has been we have “hit the spot” and it “went down really well”.  This sort of work has its challenges: time for reflection and building trust requires us to use accelerated trust building processes which we have been developing through our story-telling work.

Right now we’re delivering authentic leadership to a remarkable location – in the Remarkables! Queenstown and Arrowtown is the venue for module 3 of our Innovative Leaders GM Programme with a focus on marketing and three local businesses will benefit from our highly capable group of senior managers exploring their strategic framework with an eye on marketing. A special marketing model which puts marketing at the centre of the business’ strategy is at the core of our work. The mountains form a fantastic backdrop for our work and as I type.

New brochures are at hand and please contact Mahvash Ali to receive your copies. I have uploaded electronic copies of them on to my files on my LinkedIn profile too.

10 August 2011

Transcript of an email to our community today:
If you’ve been on our Authentic Leadership Course you’ll know what I mean when I mention the forest in the context of leadership.  The forest is now embedded in our new branding that you can see on our new website, launched this week at (you may need to clear your cache and reset your bookmark – same URL but it used to divert to another address).

The middle of this year has been extremely busy with a number of in-house programmes and workshops delivered or underway. The range of topics we’ve facilitated workshops for continues to grow as we work with an increasing number of organisations seeking contextual development. Authentic Leadership is getting traction in record time with our new Story-telling for Leaders 2 to 4 hour workshop offering.  I’d be happy to discuss how this workshop which I facilitate, can work for your team.

In public programmes our Innovative Leaders GM Programme 2011 is underway with the latest module held with Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa in Whakatane.  Strategic Thinking for Leaders 2-day workshop will run on 7-8 September and our final Authentic Leadership Course for the year will be held 6-9 November. Click here to book for any of these programmes or feel free to contact either Mahvash Ali or me by return.

And the forest? Standing tall, building relationships and supporting others. That’s a good start for a leadership conversation I reckon.

I continue to blog at and do feel free to have a leadership conversation with me there or in reply to this email update – I undertake to personally respond.



8 August 2011

The Centre’s new website went live today. The forest, as a powerful metaphor for leadership is prominent in our new branding. Standing tall, nurturing others and growing connections are some of the meanings I like to reflect on with our new logo and website. I hope you enjoy it.

27 May 2011

It took a couple of years to get going but the Innovative Leaders GM Programme got off to a great start last week at the AUT Manukau Campus. A packed 48 hours of strategy, change, appreciative inquiry with an introduction to accounting and marketing led into an intensive live case study on a technology start-up. We’re off out of Auckland for the next module where we’ll be focusing on Accounting and Finance.

We’re on final countdown for our 5th Authentic Leadership Course at Waitakere Estate.  This is the first of our newly refreshed an invigorated course with even more emphasis on authenticity in leadership.

In between all of this we delivered a day of workshops on Storytelling for Leaders, a governance session for a Nonprofit and a number of team building workshops. Under the radar, but really important are our coaching clients who get that special one-on-one attention to grow their leadership.

Don’t forget you can find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

12 May 2011

There’s a lot going on right now with the Innovative Leaders GM Programme and the Authentic Leadership Course both in May.  As well I’m delivering workshops on governance, story-telling, business planning, Shared Vision, authenticity so very busy. Here’s an email that went out to our database, in case you missed it.

5 April 2011

I’ve just completed a breakfast session with IAP2 on using authentic stories to uncover our change experiences to deal with today’s change. My thinking for this session is covered in my blog today Same Change.

It’s been a very busy time developing concepts with a number of clients for significant in-house leadership development programmes that have started this month and will roll out in the coming months.

Public or open programmes are important to for CIL and our Authentic Leadership Course starts on 29 May. Watch this space as we have a new addition to our authentic programme offering that could be just what you’re after to meet the current market conditions and needs.

25 February 2011

The Centre has a close connection with Christchurch – I’m from there with family including my parents still there. One of our leadership coaches and local representative Alison Hood lives with her family on the outskirts of the city. To say that this is a difficult time is almost meaningless to those so closely impacted. Nothing can ever replace loved ones so tragically lost in the earthquake, so my thoughts are with all the people impacted including some of our special clients. We’re with you.

The year has started strongly in the tailored and in-house business which will continue to be a major focus of our offerings. This is the work you naturally don’t hear too much about so if your team is looking for inhouse leadership and team development we are happy to assist with ideas and delivery to suit your needs. Other leadership teams have gained value with the following workshops including this year an advanced MBTI workshop and a Storytelling session:

  • Two hour outdoor exercises team building programme
  • Half, full and two-day team learning sessions – topics include culture, vision, values, developing your team charter, trust, working preferences and dealing with our blindspots
  • Half-day team personality preferences using Myers Briggs Type Indicator
  • Beyond the four letters: MBTI in Action to take your Myers Briggs understanding to a new level
  • What’s your story? Storytelling and the leader – develop your storytelling for deeper engagement with your team

Bookings are underway for our next Strategic Thinking for Leaders Workshop on 30-31 March 2011.  To be held at AUT’s Manukau Campus this is an opportunity to take two days away from the pressures of the to do list to think strategically about yourself and the year ahead. Our Manukau Campus is set in park-like grounds close to both the Southern and South-Western motorways and also has all the facilities you will need for your team’s workshop. If you’re coming from further afield we can arrange accommodation nearby and we’re only a few kilometres from Auckland International Airport.
Right now, we’re also taking bookings for:

Contact me direct to discuss any aspect of these two programmes.

I indicated in my recent email,  that our new website is under development and we’re updating all our brochures – if you’d like to be added to our database for occasional emails and offers, let us know here. Our course, I continue to blog about leadership on this site.

We have engaged Mahvash Ali to look after aspects of client liaison. Mahvash has a background in learning and development and prior to the recent birth of her daughter, was part-way through her Masters in Women’s Leadership. Feel free to email Mahvash here about any of our programmes and offerings. Mahvash comes with lots of energy and new ideas and we welcome her to the team.

Other ideas bubbling away are a presentation session for leaders, the Strategic Tax for Leaders workshop announced already and some free public workshops similar to what we did last year.

I hope we see you at one of our upcoming courses or workshops.


17 December 2010

We’ve got some banner adverts running in the NZ Herald, Seek, NBR and elsewhere.  They include our new logo colouring which we’re rolling out over all our material. The Authentic Leadership Course last month was the first public course to see the new colours and flash and since then we’re had it on our Strategic Thinking for Leaders and several tailored workshops. Those with a keen eye might recognise the one of the photographs that make up the flash from my photos blog. Thanks are due to the AUT University marketing team, in particular Tania Kearns for putting this together. Next year it’s a new website which we’re very much looking forward to.

19 November 2010

Our 4th Authentic Leadership Course – now owned and named “Eggs on Target” by the participants – has just ended.  The participants have spoken:

“Very rarely do you attend a Course that changes you from the inside out and challenges you to discover who you really are as a leader. The Authentic Leadership Course was life changing and a must for leaders aspiring to make a difference in their workplaces, family and community.”

“The Authentic Leadership Course provides more than you could imagine. Throughout the week you are coaxed along a journey of self-discovery and empowerment covering all areas of life. The end result provides a base from which to launch not just an inspiring leader, but an individual who can fulfil their true potential in all life’s facets.  I should know – it happened to me!”

“This has been a life changing experience for me. Thank you for the opportunity”

15 November 2010

Yesterday was the start of our 4th Authentic Leadership Course and today is the first anniversary of the first course.  I’m in the conference room writing this while the latest team are reading, reflecting and having their first coaching sessions.

Without all the participants and organisations prepared to take a risk on something unproven, we wouldn’t have got off this off the ground. But we have and it’s great.  Thank you.

Our new colours and logo are being rolled out for the first time on this programme and soon a banner on the main AUT homepage will promote our Wisdom Retreat for Senior Leaders.

Finally, here’s a thought from me on this one year anniversary – about wet socks and inner being.

29 September 2010

One page information sheet on the Wisdom Retreat for Senior Leaders now available.

13 September 2010 – Strategic Thinking and a Wise move on offer

This week sees the second run of our public 2-day workshop Strategic Thinking for Leaders.  We’re very pleased to be running this again, and demand is such that there’s an opportunity to attend in December if you missed out this time.

We are running our senior leaders programme – Wisdom Retreat for Senior Leaders – later this year.  If you are a CEO or senior executive responsible for a significant business this programme could be suitable for you. The programme has new processes and content suitable for the most senior leaders and  facilitating with me will be a senior business leader and a wisdom coach.  Why Wisdom? Well much of what is called leadership development in New Zealand is in fact just strategy. This is not that. Our philosophy is that leaders need to discover and develop their own authenticity. Yes, you need strategic thinking and strategic functional expertise, but to deal with the rigors of senior leaders it’s a pretty good bet you need to be wise. So Wisdom. This retreat could be the next wise decision you make for yourself and your business. It will be 4 days – Sunday – Wednesday. It will be new, invigorating and when you look around the room on the Sunday, you can be sure you’re in good company. Contact me for more information.

Archive of Lastest News – AUTCIL   

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