Harnessing Collaborative Leadership Across Communities

Published: 10th June 2014 Category: Collaborative Leadership Download Article as PDF

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On 23 June, working with SSA, I am hosting a two-hour, free ‘taster session’ on the SSA Harnessing Collaborative Leadership Across Communities toolkit at Basingstoke & Deane Council. The sessions are open to all public sector Heads of OD or Services with responsibility for community development in the M3/M4 area.  I lecture in leadership and, as an ex-Deputy CEO of a council, believe that this Collaborative Leadership toolkit, is very timely for leaders and senior managers working in councils, health, police, fire, housing and HE/FE because:

  • it examines how effective collaborative leadership can stretch budgets further by engaging citizens in a genuinely participatory process to strengthen and improve their communities
  • it explores how community participation in ‘collaborative incubators’ can unleash their ideas, skills and enterprising energies to support local services
  • crucially it will help leaders and senior managers to be a catalyst for both civic leadership and collaborative empowerment across their communities

These themes are unpacked in a one-day workshop, which provides more than 50 tools, templates and techniques.

The tools will help foster more effective resident engagement in the co-design and co-delivery of public services. This is especially important to organisations considering becoming commissioning organisations, co-operative organisations, or engaging in community-focused pooled-budget working.

What is also important about this toolkit is that it has brought together explanations of all the key models and processes that are used in community engagement. So, for leaders and senior managers new to this community working, it is an excellent way of building their knowledge.

On the following page I have unpacked the contents of the book to help you gain a flavour of what it covers.

How to initiate engagement with your partners and the community…

1. Scoping and agreeing the benefit of cost-saving community engagement with your local public sector partners

2. Aligning the stakeholders’ willingness to cede power to the community

3. Applying a community engagement matrix to your planning

4. Asking your partners the right questions before engaging with the community

5. Identifying the ChangeMakers in your community

Choosing the appropriate models of community engagement…

6. Co-design – engaging the community in the design of lower-cost services

7. Asset based community development – locating the assets, skills and capacities of residents, citizen associations and local institutions

8. Co-delivery – working with the community, and private or third sector partners, to deliver lower-cost services

9. Citizens’ juries – providing the community with an opportunity to express their informed view and influence change

10. Participatory budgets – involving local people in making decisions on spending priorities and cuts for their area

11. Local integrated services – how to devolve budgets and commissioning powers to communities and neighbourhoods

12. Volunteering and mass collaboration – providing an environment where members of the community offer their time and skills for their friends, neighbours and the wider community

Choosing the appropriate processes of community engagement…

13. Appreciative enquiry – creating a community held shared vision and plan of action to achieve it

14. Asset mapping – making a map of the community resources that can support your project

15. Deliberative participation – informing the public and then asking for their engagement

16. Open space – enabling unlimited numbers of participants to form their own discussions around community themes

17. Planning for real – enabling the community to create a 3D model of their locality to assess where support is most required

18. Creative problem solving – equipping the community with the tools, templates and techniques to solve the cost-cutting problems they are working on

Methods for collaborative empowerment

19. Spotting and filtering the best ideas from the community and fostering them

20. Applying the ‘make, sell, buy, divest’ matrix to community ideas

21. Letting go – helping the community step into the delivery space

22. Capacity building within the community – recruiting participatory leaders and ChangeMakers

23. Capacity building your civic leaders – supporting your elected leaders to engage the community in projects

24. Collaboration incubators – a methodology for safeguarding the community engagement process

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