What We Do & Why We are Different
Confidence. Consciousness. Compassion
Leadership Development with a difference!
Leading Edge Professional Development offers a unique and innovative approach to professional leadership development based on the concept of experiential learning, where hands-on, real time cause and effect situations instil profound and lasting positive change to your leadership style.
How can we do this? What is our point of difference?
The foundation for successful leadership, no matter where you are on the leadership journey, is increased self-awareness. We human beings are only open to change when we’ve accepted the truth about ourselves. Not necessarily positive or negative – just the facts about who we are and our ‘default settings’.
There are 1000’s of leadership models, programs, mentors, etc out there but the success of these is always going to be contingent on the individuals level of self-awareness. Our unique program offers something no other leadership program can offer – a teacher who is totally honest and gives immediate and unbiased responses to individual and group energy, intention, actions, and body language. How can this be? Our coaches are not human – they are horses. Yes – you read it right – horses!
We work alongside horses and help you interpret their responses to your actions and intentions. Horses are acutely aware of their surroundings at all times and react immediately and honestly to external stimuli. Basically, they either feel safe and comfortable with you and your team, or they don’t. And until the team members modify, for example, their actions, intentions, communication or collaboartion, the team will not progress. Horses therfore provide a window into individual communication and leadership styles and group dynamics. By taking their feedback onboard, you develop a deeper self-awareness and understanding of the way you interact with others.
Our programs are based on the researched and proven success of Canadian based Equine Connection -The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning’s Building Block ™ curriculum.
As the market leader in Australia, Leading Edge Professional Development is owned and operated by the only Senior Facilitator and Certified Instructor here in the Southern Hemisphere for Equine Connection. We run several certification courses for future Equine Assisted Learning facilitators each year. And as part of the Equine Connection management team, we are at the forefront of current practice and research in this field.
All our coaches and facilitators are certified by Equine Connection – The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning and accredited by the governing body, The EAL Network.
How does it work?
Participants are assigned into small teams of two or three and one horse. Together, through positive interaction and teamwork, the team tackles various tasks to achieve a specific objective. We work with our clients to design a program that addresses their specific personal, team and company goals.
Our qualified leadership coaches, help you and your team interpret your horses’s responses to team interactions, thereby highlighting what is working and what needs to change for the team to move forward and achieve the objective. Our role is not to direct or teach, but simply to guide you to discover your own way through the task through self-awareness, clearer communication and teamwork.
How does working with horses benefit leaders?
In order to work through the tasks successfully with their horse, team members need to learn to adjust their intentions and behaviours. The cause and effect is obvious and immediate and parallels drawn to everyday situations have profound and lasting benefits for positive change for their interaction with others as a leader.
In addition, horses make the activity engaging, fun, challenging, and truly memorable. The sheer size of a horse (500kg+) adds a presence and dimension to the group that cannot be delivered in an office environment.
What can a horse teach you about leadership that a human can’t?
- Horses have natural herd behaviours that require trust, respect and teamwork from all members of the team.
- Horses consistently model assertiveness. They lead through assuredness – not force – and require the same from us.
- Horses instincts and senses are highly astute enabling them to pick up on things we may not be aware of.
- Horses can’t lie or overthink a participant’s motive.
- Horses give honest, instant and non-judgemental feedback. They are incapable of responding otherwise.
- Horses automatically and immediately respond to confusion and frustration, and equally to its resolution.
- Horses help to instil empathy and kindness in the participants.