Mid-Year Retreat, Swan Hill 16 & 17 July

Aspiring community leaders from across the Loddon Murray Region converged on Swan Hill on the 16th and 17th July to enhance their skills in personal leadership, understanding the neuroscience of leadership (how our brain make up influences our decision making), emotional intelligence and leadership frameworks such as adaptive leadership and leadership maturity.

The weekend marked the mid-way point for the 2016 participants of the Loddon Murray Community Leadership Program (LMCLP) who are spending the year travelling to towns across the region to explore issues and opportunities facing our region, and to build their networks and skills.  Participants heard from program manager Lucy Mayes about Adaptive Leadership, which is based on the idea that leadership is action, not position, and that resolving challenges within our communities are as much about diagnosing the problem as they are jumping to solutions.

Participants also explored what it means to live a meaningful life by exploring their purpose, values and visions and how to apply this in our communities, with Tim Adam from Seat of Your Pants Consulting. Through the power of technology, Zoe Routh from Inner Compass, joined in by video conference to explain the Leadership Maturity Framework. Focussing on the structures that exist within our workforces, a new member of a team enters as an ‘Achiever’, achieving outcomes as part of the team, as they become more experience and step into higher positions, they become ‘Experts’ in their fields. The workshop enlightened participants on how leaders in power interact with and influence others, and how all leaders can grow and evolve.

Saturday night showcased Swan Hill’s newest jewel in the crown, the Pioneer Settlement’s spectacular Heartbeat of the Murray sound, light and water show, where general manager Tony Jenkins spoke about his role, vision and the changes that have occurred over his time. “A fantastic show and tourism boost for Swan Hill, covering the history of the Murray River, Indigenous Culture and settlement of the land. Excellent to see a few local faces in there too” said Chris Jeffery, an LMCLP participant from Swan Hill.

When asked what lessons they took away from the weekend, one participant summed up the experience saying:  “Dream big, don’t fear failure, be happy with what I have, never stop learning and improving myself, meditate daily (it is good for slowing the mind), listen more, continue to be cautious of my mind’s quick reactions, question, and reflection is important. Doing all of these things will improve me as a person and as a leader.”