Leaders shone through 2021 chaos

The roller-coaster of 2021 has tested everyone, including those leading teams who are anxious, overworked and a giddy mix of exhausted and ready for post-lockdown mayhem. Future of London salutes everyone doing their best to sustain their colleagues – and themselves! – and wanted to take a moment to recognise the people who’ve come through our Leaders programmes this year.

We’ve hosted four cohorts of Future London Leaders and three cohorts of London and Greater Manchester Leaders Plus this year, a total of 110 people who’ve come through an intense course on top of their day-jobs and personal commitments, and done all or most of it online (big shout-out to the 2020 Zoom warriors too!).

Many have had career- or life-changing moments with Leaders and some have already been promoted, changed roles or moved across the country. We hope everyone benefited from new connections and from the mix of safe space and stretch offered by the dozens of facilitators, course leaders, guest speakers, mentors and hosts who shared their time and insight online and ‘IRL’.

For a snapshot of graduates’ thinking, you can check out each cohort’s final Proposals. They ranged from reframing the Thames Estuary to increasing diversity in healthcare, from youth engagement to intergenerational arts, from citywide digital trusts and to apps for just about everything and from an eco-industrial network to a whole new world on our rooftops. Everyone presenting stepped outside their comfort zone and called for meaningful change in a creative way; a great example for leaders anywhere!

You can see the winning Proposals – voted on by each cohort and the attending audience – here:

In closing, here’s a short, inspiring interview from December 2020 on ‘virtual leadership’ with core facilitator and great friend of FoL Miffa Salter. Listen here

One more thing! As we head for 2021, congratulations to incoming alumni reps Bhavna Brooker and Tom Selby – both of whom went through at least part of their course in tiny boxes – and heartfelt thanks to outgoing reps Laura Davy and Sarah Birt. Check out the Alumni Network here!