Lifelong leadership learning in Cumbria

Leader 2 Leader


Leader 2 Leader harnesses learning best practice to create a transformational leadership programme that maximises the benefits of social learning from a diverse group of peers. The bespoke learning elements reflect your own learning goals and challenges while maintaining a sharp focus on learning through action.   

The dynamic and responsive 8 month programme combines an initial 2 day residential to build a learning network, followed by bite size ‘leadership nuggets’ to inspire action, a shared consultancy challenge to embed some of the learning, 1:1 coaching to accelerate personal growth and a resource repository for deep-dives into areas of personal interest.

Leaders from a range of sectors form a diverse learning cohort to share experiences including time spent shadowing one another to learn more about other industries and gain an insight into other leadership styles and approaches.

  • View the brochure to learn more here
  • View Cohort 15’s consultancy challenge here

What are the benefits of Leader 2 Leader?

The benefit of the programme is a highly individual learning journey with time for reflection, observation and application of learning back in the workplace. The 8 months allow a gradual, evolving approach with many opportunities to problem solve and integrate learning in a practical and business focused way.

The programme will:

  • develop the awareness of self and others in a leadership and personal context
  • apply new thinking from different perspectives to your key organisational and business issues
  • introduce specific methods and frameworks for enhancing learning, practise observing and critiquing individual leadership styles
  • promote collaborative working through mutual support, feedback and awareness of group dynamics
  • give your organisation access to a strong and collaborative network of L2L alumni.


Watch the videos below to find out about our previous delegates experience from Leader 2 Leader.


L2L offers a unique combination of elements which create a powerful, intensive and highly beneficial learning environment. These elements include:

• an experiential approach, enabling participants to learn from the experience of the programme and to harness their own and other’s experience along the way (it is most definitely not a ‘talk & chalk’ programme).

• delegates working closely with each other in a supportive environment, offering feedback on style and sharing reflections and thinking. Strong peer support and relationships result and are a key part of the programme.

• a programme which is designed to respond to the participants’ learning needs. Whilst there are some fixed elements of the programme, it evolves and changes as learning and issues emerge. The participants and the facilitators co-create the learning environment therefore maximising opportunities for the programme to be relevant to the participants’ context and ensuring ownership of the outcomes. This modular approach allows participants to apply the learning as they go along, and bring any issues or challenges to the learning back to the programme as they progress.

  • The group work and role of sponsors ensures theory and practice is continually integrated with participants’ own roles and organisations.
  • a highly practical programme which drives business benefits and individual leadership development through the engagement of participants from different organisations to work on strategic business issues.
  • promotes development of critical communication skills including feedback, questioning and listening skills.
  • provides a confidential and collaborative learning environment and employs diverse learning methods which can be directly applied to participants’ businesses.
  • a unique opportunity to network with participants from diverse sectors and learn from their experiences and perspectives.

The L2L programme was created for existing managers with more than 5 years management experience. However, the bespoke nature of the format and the importance of ensuring that any particular cohort has a broad range of delegates means that this can be flexible – so please discuss your requirements with us.

No – delegates on previous cohorts have come from a variety of backgrounds ranging from having no previous formal training to highly trained and qualified individuals. The experiential and bespoke nature of the programme ensures that it is suitable for a broad range of participants, even within the same cohort.


The programme begins with a 1 x 2 day workshop (including an overnight stay) and 5 further workshops. During these workshops relevant leadership insights, models and thinking are shared with the group and the experience is facilitated by talented and credible leadership and business experts. These workshops are delivered in a combination of face to face and online formats.

Consultancy Challenge

Delegates work together on a specific strategic issue that they choose. Workshop sessions will share tools, models and new knowledge to help participants work on the issues as well as providing time for discussion and action. Delegates will then complete the Consultancy Challenge in their own time and will report back the impact of this challenge at the end of the programme.


Each delegate will be partnered with another from a different organisation. They will ‘shadow’ each other, observing their partner in their role in the workplace and provide feedback. Delegates will be introduced to the concept of shadowing and will be paired up during workshop one.

Action Learning

Action Learning is a powerful question and answer based forum which offers participants: continued personal development; listening and feedback skills development; the opportunity to work on individual issues; help in embedding learning within their organisation.

1:1 Coaching

Delegates will have access to 1:1 coaching with the Programme Leader who will support each delegate to achieve their learning goals and encourage them to apply the learning from the programme.

Programme Support, Further Resources, Reflection and Evaluation

These elements are delivered and supported throughout the programme by the Programme Leader and through regular communication with participants’ sponsors. The Programme team are available at any time to listen and provide support to participants. Time to reflect on personal learning is allocated at each workshop and participants encouraged to detail specific examples of applying their learning into practice. Being part of a highly supportive peer network outside of one’s usual work context is an enjoyable and vital part of the learning.

The sponsor is usually either the person within the delegate’s organisation who has commissioned the place on the programme for the delegate, or the delegate’s line manager. The sponsor is someone who takes an interest in the delegate’s development and has the opportunity/authority to help them to make the changes they want to develop themselves in their company.

The role of the sponsor varies to some extent depending on the amount they want to be involved in the programme and the delegate’s development, but a minimum requirement is:

• to attend a pre-programme set-up meeting to discuss the programme, understand each other’s expectations and discuss shadowing preferences
• to attend a meeting to discuss and agree on the Consultancy Challenge issue
• to attend an event at the end of the programme where delegates will report back to sponsors and other representatives from their organisation on the Consultancy Challenge and other learning outcomes from the programme
• to take an on-going interest in their delegate’s participation in the programme.

To enable the selection of the most suitable combination of delegates for a cohort it is preferable that CfLP is aware of your interest at least 2 months before a cohort starts. We will induct delegates (via an email info pack followed by a 1 hour one-to-one meeting) 1 – 3 weeks before the start of the programme. The sponsor pre-programme set-up meeting is usually also 1 – 3 weeks before the start of the programme.

Shadowing pairings are made with consideration of the following factors:

• the delegates’ individual learning aims
• the preferences of the sponsor
• any geographical, security or commercial conflicts of interest issues
• CfLPs knowledge and experience of which pairings work best

Delegates are invited to pair with more than one ‘shadow’, time permitting.

The success of the L2L programme hinges, to a great extent, on the enthusiasm and commitment of the delegates. It is therefore important that delegates agree to be fully committed to all elements of the programme. All delegates are expected to attend all workshops and to keep their commitments with their shadowing partners. The group, once formed, depends on each member’s attendance for its success – especially for the Action Learning Sets and the Consultancy Challenge.

Compulsory workshop programme elements
The programme runs over an eight month period. There are six workshops and a final event which totals eight full days including one overnight stay. All elements are delivered in Cumbria.

Compulsory extra-curricular elements

Whilst most of the programme work takes place within the above workshops, delegates are expected to dedicate some of their own time to extra-curricular activities to fully benefit from the programme. The amount they commit varies but, inevitably, the more they are able to put in the more they will get out.

One-to-ones – all delegates will undertake a one hour one-to-one with the Programme Leader before the programme starts and again half-way through the programme. This can be done by phone or Skype if necessary.

Shadowing – all delegates are expected to undertake shadowing with at least one other delegate (two half days or two full days). Preparation for, and reflection of, this element will be carried out within the workshop programme.

Consultancy Challenge – all delegates are expected to participate in the Consultancy Challenge. Some of the development work is carried out within the programme but the bulk of the work will be carried out in the delegates’ own time during the second half of the programme. Exactly what role each delegate plays, and consequently how much time is required, will vary from project to project and from delegate to delegate but a minimum would be around 3 working days (2-3 hours a week during the second half of the programme). Like much of the Leader to Leader programme, the Consultancy Challenge is open-ended and participants should expect to take responsibility for the amount they put in. In this way it mirrors much of a leader’s choices, priorities and personal time management skills.

Optional extra-curricular elements

Additional reflection & evaluation – whilst there is plenty of opportunity for reflection and evaluation within the programme of workshops, delegates may wish to put more time to this outside of the programme.

Additional Consultancy Challenge work – there will always be opportunity for delegates to spend more time on the Consultancy Challenge should they be willing and able to do so.

Additional Shadowing – many delegates are keen to learn as much as they can from their peers and may choose to do additional shadowing days with other delegates.

Continuation of Action Learning – some delegates find the Action Learning that is a carried out within the workshops so beneficial that they choose to continue running their own sessions after the programme ends.

Over the eight month programme the minimum time commitment is 12.5 days (including one overnight stay). The average time commitment is around 15 days. This is pretty much evenly spread over the programme, with a slightly more intensive period as the Consultancy Challenge draws to a close.

Leader 2 Leader costs £4,235 per delegate (+VAT)


Funded places

NSAN run regular bursaries for training for careers in nuclear. More information can be found here.

OneAIM, Sellafield and CfLP have also funded places for small business, education and third sector leaders in West Cumbria. To find out more about their funded places, please click here



Read below to find out what the delegates learnt from taking part in Leader 2 Leader.

I am now able to take time out, to reflect and focus. I use action learning in the workplace and it has become a valuable tool knowing that any work issues or problems can be shared and discussed with my colleagues as a result of Leader 2 Leader….read more
Catherine Bird, Sealy
As a result of Leader 2 Leader I’m more considerate to how my staff are feeling. I’m setting more targets and working more productively
Lee Butterworth, Xtreme Fitness
I really enjoyed the course. I definitely enjoyed spending time with other managers and it would have been less beneficial if it was all cops.
Matt Pearman, Cumbria Constabulary
I know have greater confidence with my decision making. Rated the facilitator 10/10 and would recommend this programme to a colleague
Rachel Ritson- Grisdales
I signed up for the Leader 2 Leader to identify my weaknesses, and also build on my strengths, when it comes to leadership for the benefit of myself, my staff and my family. The workshops are allowing me the opportunity to share my experiences of being a Managing Director to…read more
Adrian Kirkbride, Managing Director at AJ Security

Past Delegates

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Lifelong Leadership Learning in Cumbria