Using Systems Leadership to Shape Change: Introductory Masterclass (Greater Manchester)

Tue, 24 January 2017

Wellbeing Our Way, in partnership with the south Manchester system leadership programme, hosted an introduction to Systems Leadership for National Voices members, members of Wellbeing Our Way's communities of practice and those involved in the south Manchester initiative. The masterclass introduced research and best practice from around the country – practical lessons in what works and what doesn’t. 

What is systems leadership?

Systems Leadership is about how you lead across boundaries – departmental, organisational or across sectors/sectoral.  It describes the way people need to behave when they face large, complex, and seemingly intractable problems.  The kind of problems where no one person or organisation can organise the solution on their own; where everyone is grappling with how to make resources meet demand; and where the way forward therefore lies in involving many people’s energies, ideas and expertise.

Systems Leadership aims to transcend individual organisational interests to work together towards better outcomes.  It’s a practical, grounded approach to integrated working and long-term behaviour/culture change.


Debbie Sorkin (National Director of Systems Leadership at The Leadership Centre) led this event. The Leadership Centre works to strengthen leadership across public services, using Systems Leadership approaches to tackle large-scale issues in service delivery, where people need to lead across sectors.  The Centre oversees a national Systems Leadership programme, backed by the NHS, local government, public health and social care, that supports places around the country to transform services and improve population health. The programme has achieved some impressive results with transferable learning.