This programme aims to help leaders in local authorities build capability and capacity to lead change, particularly in times of austerity, by helping them to:

  • understand the critical success factors which enable change in the public sector
  • build coalitions and increase support for changeuse a range of tools for leading change on a specific project
  • work collaboratively with those impacted by the change to evaluate existing practice and design new solutions
  • understand and analyse the dynamics in children, schools and families services that enable and block change
  • ensure change is embedded and sustainable
  • increase their resilience whilst leading change.

The course will focus more on growing a culture, which leads and manages change in a collaborative and effective way to improve outcomes for children. It does not focus on project management, which is a necessary condition for effective change, but not a sufficient one. Participants may need access to some simple project management tools through the local authority to create project identification documents and monitor plans and milestones. 

Target Audience:

  • Leaders in children, schools, adults and families services: participants do not necessarily need to be managers of people but they need to have responsibility for leading change in people, policy, systems or practice and would need a real project to work through on the programme.
  • Each course will have up to 30 delegates.


  • Two days a month apart.


  • Courses can also be booked by individual local authorities, or groups of local authorities to be run in house.


  • £2960 for up to 30 staff. LAs provide venues and refreshements. Please contact Di Smith (details below) to book training.

Pre Workshop Preparation:

  • The programme will include 1.5 hours pre-work, which will include an analysis of participants’ own approach to change management. There will be a compulsory assignment to carry out a 2-hour activity between the two days, which practices one or more change tools, with the aim of feeding back on the learning from this experience on day 2.
  • This is very interactive workshop; our practice is to link activities to every key learning area

Governance & Reports

5 successful courses run for the Children, Schools & Families Directorate in Surrey, East Sussex and West Sussex positively evaluated by all who attended. This Report describes the programme and some examples of work produced by participants.



Course Description:

Day One programme objectives are for participants to:

  • review experience of organisational change we have experienced – what can we learn from this?
  • understand the strategic drivers of change
    identify critical success factors in effective change from participants' experience and from research
  • develop an authentic vision for change, using a tool to strengthen the vision
  • examine emotional responses to imposed change;
    understand how we maintain resilience and use a tool for improving resilience
  • use tools for gaining insight into what needs to change eg mini ethnographic research, service blueprinting, improving handoffs
  • use idea generation tools to foster innovative ideas for change eg the double diamond, jamming, remix, grow an idea

For homework participants are encouraged to take one of the tools and try it out in the workplace between the two sessions.

Day Two programme objectives are for participants to:

  • Feedback learning from use of change tools - participants presenting – 1.5 hour session to tease out the learning from their experiences and implications for their project – (participants must do their home work for this to work)
  • understand co-production and give examples of how it has been used in children's services;
    use a tool for co-designing services with service users - storyboarding;
  • understand the dynamics of resistance to change and identify strategies for managing resistance and supporting staff through change using a co-consultation tool;
  • influence politicians and top management to support your change
  • effectively manage negativity during change;
    further develop resilience and that of staff prior to and during change
  • devise an action plan for yourself and your project as a result of the programme.

Comments from Delegates:

What did participants think of the training?

  • Good pace, presenters very well prepared. Impressive range of materials presented
  • Enjoyed testing out the tools during the course. The delivery (listening, action, big/small groups) was extremely helpful and good for concentration
    Good mix of activities, time for reflection, very well presented
  • Broad overview of a large subject in a relatively short time including practical sessions
  • Encouraged reflective practice  and introduced tools which can be used day to day
  • Brave focus on mindfulness and the fuzzy aspects of change management . Very refreshing and motivational
  • Good balance of exercises and videos to go along with teaching , handouts /booklet – excellent
  • Found the pace of the sessions really good kept us thinking and moving along the learning. Like the practical activities
  • Exercises very useful to putting tools into practice – exploring how these will work in practice
  • Booklets with all the tools in , variety of delivery styles
  • Usefulness of tools given /appropriate to use with team /can be adapted
  • Good mixture of information and exercises – trainers both very knowledgeable and shared relevant experience 

What did they say they would take forward to lead change better?

  • Work on real co- production
  • Think around the theory and models when having to implement change in the work system
  • Plan consult and plan again before changing 
  • Analyse my own and the teams response more closely and ensure I have all the necessary information
  • Use the tools to support the change and support the workers delivering the change
  • Introducing temperature checks for team , motivational interviewing ,self compassion for staff and encouraging staff to suggest changes
  • Using the resilience and positivity tools to improve morale and lessen stress
  • All of the tools extremely helpful and can be used in team meetings and supervision and 1;1s with staff.
  • Given me a mechanism for approaching changes already wanted to make , framework and starting point.
    Be more creative in effecting change and to think about how to do things

The training would have been even better if:

  • Extended to 2 and a half days to provide more reflection time
  • Perhaps some more information before the course about the activities so that participants can think about the issues they might want to work through.
  • Follow up day – 6 months on with an agreed project
  • Course is so condensed to two days, really would have benefitted from three to really explore some important topics 
  • A lot of information for two days but on the positive side the way the handouts are set up you can take away and read it on its own right when you have time to reflect  






Next Meeting

Next Course:

We are taking bookings from April 2016. Please contact Di Smith if you are interested in a course in your authority.

SESLIP Contact Details

Leadership Development : Di Smith
07960 513474