Developing Cultural Intelligence for Leadership (MOOC, Week 4) #FLdevelopCQ

Here we reach the final week of the MOOC provided by Futurelearn/Commonpurpose, and looking ahead at this week, it appears that we’ll be focusing on ‘the other’, including ‘exoticism’, reminding me of Edward Said’s notions of ‘Orientalism‘.

Stand up

We need to recognise ‘cultural intolerance’: we all carry biases that reflect both positively and negatively to other communities – we may not be able to automatically remove it, but we can be aware of it, and seek to counterbalance it. Can we identify behaviours that our grandparents would have considered culturally tolerant/intolerant that we do not? Wondering whether less ‘cultural mixing’ so less need for tolerance?

Our experiences of cultural intolerance

“Don’t be in a hurry to condemn because he doesn’t do what you do or think as you think or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today.” – Malcolm X

How often are we prepared to speak out against cultural intolerance when we see it? Do we only speak out when it affects ourselves, or when it affects others? When are we intolerant of others intolerance?

[I think I see this quite often in areas where there ‘needs’ to be attitudinal change to fit with current cultural thinking, and others cannot let go of ingrained attitudes, and those who have moved forward decry those who also haven’t moved forward.]

The receiving end

How do you respond when on the receiving end of cultural intolerance?

  • angry i.e. furious
  • cynical i.e. it’s just the norm
  • tired i.e. I’m too tired to deal with that
  • crushed i.e. demeaning
  • old i.e. out of touch
  • frustrated i.e. not being listened too
  • weak i.e. I should have said something
  • intimidated i.e. surrendered to a confident view

Cultural ignorance

There’s a difference between ‘cultural intolerance’ and ‘cultural ignorance’, requiring different responses.


Developing Cultural Intelligence for Leadership (MOOC, Week 3) #FLdevelopCQ

Onto week 3 out of 4 from the FutureLearn/CommonPurpose looking at ‘cultural intelligence’. As someone who likes to meet new people all the time, likes to try new things, has travelled a lot, and focuses on digital culture … finding it really interesting, even if I don’t have time to engage with it on the deepest level!

The need to experiment

12246750_996182257115945_8819273741555999700_nFinding our Core, and the values, behaviours, beliefs and habits within it must be done in a way that is credible to us, and to others. Here are ten examples of ways we can find our Core:

  • Find something you love doing and ask yourself why you love it
  • Go somewhere you don’t know and where you won’t feel comfortable
  • Find a story in your heritage and figure out why it has stuck with you
  • Find moments of stress and unpick them
  • Keep digging
  • Do something you ‘don’t do’
  • Work out clashes in Core
  • Go to the place that best connects us with your Core
  • Establish our own stories
  • Keep looking outwards

You’ll need to join the course for further clarification of each, but this reminds me of the image to the right – we tend to say we’re ‘not creative’ or ‘not artistic’, because we’ve been told that we don’t fit our society’s perception of such … but we can do it because we enjoy it, rather than it being about the outcomes! Also connects with some work that I do with Beyond Chocolate – challenging society’s norms about where we have got our feelings/identity about our bodies from!

My Cultural Intelligence grew most when…

Do we understand aspects of our behaviour, traditions, beliefs that are part of our ‘culture’, and when are these challenged? For many it is school, travel, university, etc. where meet others who believe differently, and start to question what is ‘normal’? I think PhD was where I really started to question who I was, what I stood for, and what I wanted to achieve/offer to the world, etc…

I travelled to Uganda with Tearfund a couple of years ago, and one outstanding person we met was Richard, who believed it was his wife’s duty to do all the work, and he would hang around drinking/beat her up if a problem. Other Ugandans, supported by funding, came into work with the community and worked with these men to encourage a different way of thinking/being – very inspiring (and I don’t think in a western dominant way!)

Planting the seed

My Core grew most when………….. (these questions might help)

  • What do you love doing and why? Is it inherited or individual to you?
  • Where can you go to step outside of your comfort zone?
  • What story from your heritage has stuck with you and why?
  • What moment in your life has caused you most stress?
  • What are some of the weaknesses in your Core that you need to deal with?
  • When have you done something very different to what you would have done normally? What was the result?
  • Where have you come across potential clashes in your Core and what was the outcome?
  • Do you have a place that connects you to your Core?
  • Has there been an instance when you have broken away from your cultural heritage?
  • When have you recently challenged your Core?

Again, a lot of these questions are brought up within coaching, and increasingly, as I have travelled, I have continued to push myself to something new. Currently new city, new job, and lots of new material to teach! Making sure take time to experience some of the new things outside of work (that I want to, rather than being forced to – I’m not quite going for Yes Man – in fact learning how to say no more!)… on a v mundane level the other week I decided to try a Bloody Mary cocktail … I didn’t like it, so another new experience, I left an expensive drink on the table!

My Core is…….

As leaders we have to make frequent judgement calls about how much reveal – if we don’t reveal enough, people won’t trust us, that we’re above them, and we will be lacking a generosity of spirit/2-way conversation which is key.

I feel a little uncomfortable that I’m not undertaking the 30 second video talking about my core. #Timeisshort

Stick to it

This section’s material focuses upon Ove Arup’s Key Speech, something that every new company employee needs to understand, encompassing values/vision of Arup Partners. I love this extract:

There are two ways of looking at the work you do to earn a living:

One is the way propounded by the late Henry Ford: Work is a necessary evil, but modern technology will reduce it to a minimum. Your life is your leisure lived in your ‘free’ time.

The other is: To make your work interesting and rewarding. You enjoy both your work and your leisure.

We opt uncompromisingly for the second way.

There are also two ways of looking at the pursuit of happiness:

One is to go straight for the things you fancy without restraints, that is, without considering anybody else besides yourself.

The other is: to recognise that no man is an island, that our lives are inextricably mixed up with those of our fellow human beings, and that there can be no real happiness in isolation. Which leads to an attitude which would accord to others the rights claimed for oneself, which would accept certain moral or humanitarian restraints.

We, again, opt for the second way.

I would like to read the rest of that document before too long! Ove Arup’s speech also includes the line ‘the man who bangs his head against the wall could learn from the reed that bends in the wind’. Know what you stand for, but be prepared to flex! The rest of the Futurelearn material from this section focuses upon a conversation with someone coping with living in Britain, but working within Turkish culture, and how this is a challenge as dual-cores challenge for ‘supremacy’.

Sometimes we need to sit down with someone who is very different from us and just listen.

People like me

We will typically lean towards those who are similar to us. This week we are challenged to exploring the core ideas of those from other generations (at least 15 years above/below). Making me twitch as to whether this fits with conversations about e.g. ‘digital natives‘ and ‘millenials‘ … whereas essentially human nature hasn’t significantly changed over the centuries (or has it – that’s a question I’m interested in!). Well, I have found it “interesting” to adapt to teaching 18 year olds again, after 5 years of working with mature students, staff, and those undertaking CPD – having to adjust a number of working practices as working with differing core views – especially in teaching ethical, responsible and sustainable marketing!

Working out the knots

Ah, I recognise that picture – I just used that in teaching the other week (see perceptions in marketing) – we are challenged, if we didn’t know that there were two separate – would we just have accepted our first impression as fact?

We need to seek out our ‘knots’ or ‘unconscious biases‘, which we have accepted as ‘fact’ – we need to put the spotlight on them, and ‘work them out’:

Knots are deeply held beliefs and assumptions which influence our decisions and how we work with other people. Sometimes they form due to poor experiences we have had and we end up basing all future decisions on that one bad moment, without looking for different perspectives.

Finding common ground

Talking to a Hungarian working as an investment banker, and struggling with how he was going to work with Romanians – based upon a number of stereotypes he had in his head!

The way to do that is and was to find common values, and there are lots of common values. And not to look at what the difference is but to look at the similarities and also to try to realise where I have my blocks and where I have certain things which I have to change…. The common value was the football, which most of us loved, and that was the basis on which we could build and we could then discuss further and find a solution.

This is one of my favourite parts in life – looking for the common connection points for conversation, and seeing where that can move forward to! Makes life superbly interesting!

Addressing our knots

In order to overcome personal biases we need to challenge them – we are encouraged to think of the word association that we have with e.g. ‘politician’, to consider whether those connotations are positive or negative, and then consider one that falls into ‘negative’, challenge ourselves to seek out someone who falls into that category, and consider where your ‘knots’ come from, does that meeting challenge them, and identify where are the commonalities?

Calibrating our Flex

Four areas where people particularly struggle with flexing:

  • using language
  • whether humour helps or hinders
  • adapting to local ways
  • dressing and greeting

What did you say?

Language is key … meaning can be lost across the generations (think of phrases that come in and out of use), and the jargon used in so many sectors that can be seen as ‘in-language’.

English is the official language in many places, which in many ways has made some conversations easier, but there can be problems… as it can be used differently, and even those who learn it may have different nuances leading to misunderstandings. Many English speakers have never had to learn a second language which can lead to other problems:

  • Don’t experience frustration of trying to communicate in a second language
  • Don’t understand the complexity and nuance of translation – how vulnerable to mis-interpretation
  • Think that those speaking language have cultural understandings beyond that it possible to acquire with just language

Language continues to evolve, and tone/accents are also important. Leaders understand the importance of flexing the words that they use (e.g. beware using the word ‘kids’ – may encourage people to behave like kids).

That’s not funny

Care with humour – can be great for connection, but only if you know the audience well – need to know that the sense of humour are likely to match (we all know that e.g.sarcasm doesn’t travel well from UK to USA). Alan Rosling, British businessman working in India says:

  1. Be careful: jokes don’t travel
  2. We have to laugh with people, and not at them
  3. Find something that people can laugh about together
  4. Teasing is good – but not until you know people well
  5. Best of all: laugh at yourself.

Did you hear the one about….

Ha – this joke with the Dalai Lama did NOT work! See also cross-cultural jokes here (another video to watch later):

Local knowledge

The importance of genuine local knowledge, and being prepared to look at the world through the eyes of others… listen carefully to answers/what they are saying and their ways of communicating – we then build up local knowledge and cultural intelligence… We are given a story of growing understanding of ways to communicate between western thinking (facts/targets), and African thinking (communicated through stories).

Physical issues

Lots of complexity here – how we eat, when to bow; what we can show (legs? head? feet?) and what we can’t; how to greet, and how to part…. lots of fine calls to be made. Think about how you respond to respond physically e.g. to someone you respect, someone you distrust … and how that has changed over the years

How is this relevant?

How are you putting cultural intelligence into practice? It’s a lifelong journey of understanding/learning and flexing. Julia Middleton talks about being a student and deliberately seeking out others who were not like her – although she believes she took this to the extreme! It’s important knowledge to take into forming – understanding that you don’t want everyone to be like you (again, something just taught in lectures this week!) – and also to recognise where your core is problematic – e.g. for Julia – she is driven by passion:

But it’s also slightly my weakness because if you become very passionate, you become strangely and incredibly intolerant of anybody who doesn’t share the same passion as you do.

I get that – need to find people with different passions (or who are not driven in the same way!).

Sharing our resource

What resources can you suggest from across cultures that will increase our collaborative learning (written, audio, video, online, music, etc.). My first thought was travel writing – as it’s people open to seeing new perspectives on everyday life! I suspect there are many (much deeper!)


Developing Cultural Intelligence for Leadership (MOOC, Week 2) #FLdevelopCQ

So, just catching up with Week 2 of ‘Developing Cultural Intelligence for Leadership’ from Common Purpose/Futurelearn.

Talking Core and Flex

Do you know what your central values and purpose are – do you know what to hold onto, and what you can adapt to fit different (cultural) circumstances?

Our Core comprises the things that define us: our own personal ‘over my dead body’ list. These are things that won’t change (or won’t change easily). Their solidity is our strength. In our Flex are things that we can choose to change – things that we can adapt to circumstances, or to other people or other cultures. Their fluidity is equally our strength. (Common Purpose)

This video is suggested as worthwhile to watch:

More than Identity

In many ways it appears that as a child we have very strong ideas of our core identity, and then as we meet others our identity is challenged as we engage with different beliefs and backgrounds.

I would never

List what you believe to be in your own Core and Flex. Think about values, behaviours, skills, beliefs and identity. List them fast. Don’t stop to put them in any order.

  • “I would never………!” (CORE)
    • Kill someone
    • Cheat anyone
    • Want to disrespect anyone
    • Want to give up without really trying
  • “I don’t really mind…….” (FLEX)
    • If someone thinks differently from me – but I want to understand where you’re coming from – I enjoy difference/identifying connections

Is it Core or is it Flex?

This is really interesting, and summed up in the final paragraph:

Over time, we will also find that our Core is likely to get smaller and contains fewer things that really must be there. It is important to have the duality of having core values and, at the same time, the openness to challenge our beliefs and assumptions from experiences of different cultures. As it gets smaller, our Core will also become sounder and more robust. Though this may sound counter-intuitive, the more inflexible our Core becomes over time, the greater our abilities to Flex become, because we’ll know where we genuinely can and where we genuinely can’t move. All this improves our trustworthiness, and with it, our Cultural Intelligence.

Nothing but Core

Those who are too certain about their core tend to be inflexible (and therefore poor) leaders. Can you identify something that has moved from Core to Flex or from Flex to Core in each decade of your life?

  • 70s-80s: Probably all about me – don’t remember too much about these few years!
  • 80s-90s: Pretty ‘certain’ time in life – things were black & white, until moved into teenage years..
  • 90s-00s: Start to question things a great deal more – especially once entered PhD “the more you learn, the more you realise the less you know”
  • 00s-10s: PhD completed, difficult first few jobs which led to questioning of what ‘really want’, started engaging with coaching/questioning options for choices
  • 10s-date: Super convinced knew where was heading for = not worked out as expected. New role, seeking to ensure ‘what I want’ figures in there whilst giving as expected.

Learn to Flex

Another interesting paragraph here, before it goes onto questioning beliefs:

We have to get the basics right. Flex generally starts with behaviours which are very important signifiers as we operate in other cultures, not least because they demonstrate that we have Flex and we’re not too arrogant (or frightened) to actually change. Take every opportunity to understand how other people express their values through behaviour. It is not about changing who we are but helping us to change how we express it. There’s no quick way to learn it either.

The exercise goes on to consider Julia Middleton heading into an Arabic country where she would have to cover up head-to-toe. Originally thinking this went against everything she stood for, she then decided to go with it, and learnt a huge amount about what life was truly like as a woman in that position. Having taken a flex position, she was then able to speak with an Arabic man more deeply about how he struggled with the behaviour of western women. Flexibility opens your eyes.

Not too much

An interesting analysis of those who have ‘not enough’ core, and become over-flex, including ‘going native’, proving that one is ‘in’, as an immigrant want to ‘fit in’ (losing roots), avoiding polarisation, or hiding that don’t have enough core.

This reminds me of many a conversation that I’ve had about ‘Christian distinctiveness’ – how do we engage with the earth whilst holding onto the core of heaven?!

Our personal perceptions

Does our self-perception match those of others? ‘People assume that I am………..’

I’ve done this several times during coaching – so I’m just going to link to my outcomes from that exercise.

The anchor

A useful analogy:

The analogy that someone once said to me was somebody who’s into boating. Not my strength, but it was quite an interesting analogy. And he was saying if you moor a boat and anchor it, if you make the anchor very strong but the anchor rope very, very short, the boat, as soon as you get any waves or winds, begins to fight the waves and begins to crack and crash on the waves. If, however, when you moor your boat, you make the rope long enough, then the boat has this ability to float and go with the waves. And it doesn’t end up crashing.And I think that it was quite a useful analogy is that if your Core is strong enough and clear enough, then it allows you to be enormously flexible.

If you are going to become a strong leader, then you need to allow people to see your core (vulnerability).

The Sliding Scale

A consideration of whether any of your core are problematic, and could they become flex? Is any of your core putting up barriers to others, or even offending them? Could you relax some of them?

A moment of realisation

A video with Myrna Atalla, the Executive Director, of Alfanar and Faraz Khan, the CEO and Co-founder, of SEED Ventures, highlighting when they noticed these subtle shifts in their Core and Flex; and how that impacted their ways of working.

Interesting re growing up in the United States with a ‘work all hours’ ethic, then working for an American Law firm in Paris, where the demands were endless (and a desire to finish kept her going), and often found herself the only one in the office, as the French workers had a clear approach to work and had gone home. Set up own company so could work with what she thought was core to ‘make things happen’, then had a child – realised her core to be with husband/child was more important than spending all hours at work!

The intersection

Once we understand our own core/flex, we need to think about how we are engaging with others, and whether they are working in core or flex? Are they in an area of comfort/discomfort, and is there space for manoeuvre? Operating effectively at the intersections requires:

  • believing that all people have good intentions and bring added value to the interaction, until we see real evidence to the contrary
  • being open to the fact that people are different: sharing our own Core while not imposing our Core on them
  • avoiding the trap of labeling people and limiting respect to those with the same Core as us
  • seeing the value in having uncomfortable conversations, and not avoiding them.

Sometimes the best evangelism is simply telling people you're a Christian and then not being a complete jerkDeep beliefs

What happens when we are working in an area where our core beliefs are never going to flex? This is particularly key in the area of faith – where there are solid cores … are clashes inevitable? Think the following quote is from Bishop Tim Stevens, who has had extensive conversations with Skaykh Ibrahim Mogra from the Muslim faith:

And I think as a person who’s a religious leader, what that does is make me realise that any claims I make about God are always somewhat partial. That God is, in the end, God and cannot be reduced to any formulas, however profound and however deep seated I might live by.

Reminded me of this pic to the right that I agree with heartily!

Mistakes happen

Misunderstandings can occur and destroy trust – particularly likely to happen in cultures that are not that far apart, so may feel comfortable – but have misread the core.

…. official company policy:  Making any mistake once was OK, so long as it was an honest mistake made while attempting to do what they felt was the right thing. Making any mistake once was OK, but repeating that same mistake a second time was NOT OK. The hard, fast rule was that if you made any mistake for the first time the entire team would have your back in fixing that mistake if anything went wrong. However, if you ever repeated the mistake a second time, then you were 100 percent on your own to face the consequences.  This rule applied for every first-time occurrence of each new mistake you made. (Forbes Article)

There is so much that can be learnt from mistakes and can be taken into the next situation.

Papering the cracks

Someone once said that leaders are like teabags: ‘You only know if they are any good when you put them in hot water’. For those constantly working in flex, there’s nothing to fall back on. For true trust/relationship development then you need to converse at the level of core [I’m sure I’ve seen this happen on Facebook plenty of times!] – so worth seeking out those of differing faith beliefs, political convictions, or other culture/society and seek to understand where people are ‘coming from’.

Stop, start, continue

Think about what you are going to stop, start and continue doing based on your learnings from this week!

This week’s material fitted well with Chapter 42 that have just read from We Make the Road by Walking, and with conversations I had yesterday with City of Sanctuary in Manchester, who are seeking to change the perception of refugees, and ensuring that the city is a place of welcome to fellow human beings.

The Cultural Intelligence muscle

Needs to be engaged with to progress – can’t just go out and talk to others, need to understand and question your own culture:

Where does my own culture add enormous value? Where does my culture give me blind spots? What are my views that are based on facts? What are my views the are based on I’m not sure what? What is based on judgement ? What’s on prejudgment? Where does it give me biases? Where does it give me strengths? Where does my own culture give me stumbling blocks or prevent me from understanding or even hearing what you’re saying?

In conversations with others, be prepared to understand a little more about them – and yourself – and be ready to expose a little of yourself…

This week’s material finishes with:

Go and find somebody who is 25 years younger than you, or 25 years older than you, or from the other side of the world, or from the other side of your city, or works in a sector that’s an absolute mystery to you. Get out there. Have those conversations, and tell us how they go.

Thanks commonpurpose for another interesting set of material.



Developing Cultural Intelligence for Leadership (MOOC, Week 1) #FLdevelopCQ

The first week of this four-week course focuses on ‘Modern Leadership’, offering an introduction to Cultural Intelligence, explore its evolution and relevance, and why it is integral to modern leadership, drawing upon a wide range of material developed by

“Founded in 1989 as a not-for-profit social enterprise, Common Purpose now runs local programmes for leaders in cities across the world, and our global programmes bring together leaders from over 100 countries across six continents.”

Opening Video: Julia Middleton, Founder & CEO, Common Purpose

  • Moving beyond IQ and EQ
  • Comfortable with change – leading it, and having it around you.
  • Understanding your own culture, and how other’s see the world – not a burden/hurdle, but an opportunity.
  • Provides leaders that are able to solve complex/messy problems that need to be seen from all angles.
  • At the end of the course, likely to have more questions than you started with.

Video: What is cultural intelligence?

  • Cross divides and thrive in multiple cultures, how can you lead others who are ‘not like you’?
  • We need to be able to cross the boundaries (geographic, cultural) as the problems do.
  • There needs to be a desire and willingness to do things differently.

Who are strong, culturally intelligent leaders?

Leaders with Cultural Intelligence (e.g.s include Nelson Mandela, Steve Jobs, Bill Clinton):

  • don’t shy away from difference; they move towards it
  • don’t just cross the divides that exist between people, they also build bridges for others to use
  • counterbalance the default human preference for talking, working and sticking with ‘people like me’
  • look outwards. They are interested and excited by different cultures. They don’t just tolerate difference; they make it a strength.

It asks which other leaders are offering these skills … Pope Frances definitely popping straight into mind there!

Video: A Need for Cultural Intelligence (Jonathan Donner)

  • Leaders who don’t understand the context within which they operate (including the digital) are doomed to fail.
  • Exposing business leaders to systemic thinking – how do you assemble the larger picture?
  • About inclusion, innovation, assembling together diverse ideas

8 key reasons for the need for CI

  1. The need for collaboration (across continents) – 4
  2. The reality of networks (flatter social networks, capitalise on the opportunities) – 3
  3. The importance of trust (takes time to build – especially when frames of reference are different, quick to disappear) – 4
  4. The demands of demographics (generational divides) – 1
  5. The urban magnet (cities are growing) – 1
  6. The pressure to focus (leadership encourages niche focus, then to the top – needs to be broader again) – 2
  7. Growing world, shrinking leaders (global connectivity) – 2
  8. The spark of innovation (connecting diverse perspectives to create something new) – 3

If you have 20 currency points to share above, how and why would you do so?

People’s Stories

I have always found people’s stories fascinating … as I’ve got older I’ve sought to pre-judge less and less (clearly I fail at times), but am always interested in how people’s originating cultures, and their life/cultures since have shaped their lives. 

This section says (before sharing a number of stories): Cultural Intelligence comes through experience, and the willingness to learn from people who are very different from us. People who choose to reveal their knowledge, their history, their beliefs, their limits and their stories.

We are then asked to consider a couple of experiences in our own lives – positive/difficult experiences and how we worked with/adapted.

Choosing Icons

Choose an image or series of images which answer the following questions (gut instinct):

  1. What is most admired in leaders in the world you were born in and/or in the world you now work or study in?
    I’m looking at the ‘star’ as I think that indicates that ‘fame’ is often admired in many leaders in our world.
  2. What do you think should be most admired in a leader?
    The candle – the light that shows us the way – or time – given to those around (listening!)
  3. What gets in the way of developing Cultural Intelligence?
    The $ – too focused on getting the money in to look at other aspects?

Lots of other interesting answers in the comments!

Prerequisites Required

  • A deep interest in other people: both people who are like us and people who are not like us.
  • A determination to get to the bottom of what makes us feel either superior or inferior to other people.
  • The stamina to proceed on a long and uncomfortable journey with no end destination.

“We only develop Cultural Intelligence because people choose to share their ideas, thoughts, stories and aspirations. They will only do it if they think we have enough Cultural Intelligence not to judge, dismiss, ignore or discredit them.”

Video: Shuvo Saha

Culture means many different things, not just geographic/racial. Different teams, functions, industries and levels of seniorities in an organisation all have different cultures. Working within the Google Digital Academy – need to keep people on board in a fast-moving industry. Understanding individual, sub-team missions and how they fit with the bigger mission.


If you had 3 circles, for the past, the present and the future – what size would each have? The importance of each influences our decision making. Again, gut feeling:

  1. The Past: Culturally, this has shaped our understanding of the world, and what seems ‘normal’.
  2. The Present: It is important to live in the now, to take action now – to start change now.
  3. The Future: The whole world lies before us, and it can look radically different.

A fascinating range of insights from other people around the world, and which aspects affect.


  • Garvey Chui: Highlights the importance of needing to learn from past decisions more
  • Frank Diaginammiro: Past is large and draw on it all the time, glad to live in the present but doesn’t want to be consumed by it, the future is large (use past/present to shape/solve the future)
  • Myrna Atella: Many people are running in a life informed by immediate demands. Take a step back – influence on big decisions in life – are the future – hope for a better world – don’t see the boundaries and the differences but rather the commonalities that bind us together.

Video: Julia Middleton

Worth revisiting the 3 circles exercise to consider what it tells us about ourselves and those we work with. Difference between understanding short-term and long-term past… Sees a weakness of leadership as little interested in the presence, but spends much time thinking about the possibilities of the future – can we celebrate the now more?

The importance of the question – WHY? Conversation around = richness of understanding.

Final Tasks

  1. Try food/a game or music from another culture! Done this many times … much from travelling, but also taking advantage of local opportunities. 
  2. What book would you recommend that would help improve our Cultural Intelligence? Again, most biographies, travel writing, historical stuff (especially history from below), insights into digital culture, dog in the nighttime re autism, etc. all offer fascinating insights and make me question what is ‘normal’ and why!
  3. Share a photo on Twitter or Instagram #showmeyourcity – well, I’m literally about to go in on the train so…

Reflective Leadership

Developing reflective learning practice (in a more systematic way)

  • Fill in the attached learning log
  • Draw a visual map of what you learned this week
  • Start free-flow writing for 10 minutes and see what you have written
  • Create your own Cultural Intelligence quiz from the week – what questions would you ask?