Women in Leadership

Regardless of serious concerns by trade organisations, governments, and employers, and equal opportunities legislation, there are continuing concerns regarding the inequality of women in the workplace. This is particularly so regarding opportunities for promotion and pay. Although things have changed, there is clear evidence that substantial change is required if there is to be true equality.

Clearly, it is not the case that there are no women capable of providing leadership; put briefly, it is purely cultural discrimination that sees men as the natural leaders and women as supporters. Both men and women are locked into this cultural belief system. There are stirrings whereby women are beginning to take their authority and seek equality. However, they are largely left to their own endeavours which are not sufficient; and this often leaves women even more demoralised.

What is required is meaningful formal support, and it is suggested that this IGO course can be an important contribution to that process. IGO see the course as providing a competitive advantage for women that will equip them with exceptional knowledge, skills, and ability, greater than others they may be competing with in the workplace.

The aim is the provision of a truly academic course that is to be seen as a rich mixture of the provision of teaching of cutting-edge management theory allied to experiential learning about what happens beneath the surface while you’re using the skills and knowledge you’ve been taught: a course that is exciting, different, and challenging, that goes beyond what is already available, what’s not on offer anywhere else - the best in the world. A course that is of real practical application to members.

Course Content

Many women executives will already have achieved academic success through MBA or other Business courses. Consequently, this course should not aim to repeat such learning. But of course, there will be a need to provide the latest cutting-edge theoretical teaching regarding leadership. Clearly, there is a need for teaching new and previously unknown concepts. However, it is in the delivery that we need to differentiate from past practice.  Here the aim should be to achieve the transfer of skills, knowledge and ability to the course students, so that they can do these things in the future. All IGO work, be it with individuals, groups, or whole organisations is based on this notion. The aim being to ensure that all change, be that personal, group or organisational, is sustainable because we have succeeded in transferring IGO's skills, knowledge and ability in a way those clients are now capable of using.

In addition to the academic input, other types of learning that are to be incorporated in the programme are as follows:

  1. Individual psychodynamic coaching: We all have our blind spots, behaviours that bother us. These are usually behaviours developed in childhood that we carry forward into adulthood. Psychodynamic coaching can help clients understand these unconscious processes and develop new behaviours.
  2. Group Relations learning: a field of study that explores dynamics occurring above and beyond those of individuals in groups and organisations. What we refer to as group-as-a-whole dynamics.
  3. Organisational Observation: The task here can be put simply as ‘to observe an organisation as it goes about its work’.  It is a learning exercise with aims which include negotiating an entry, then crossing the boundary into and back out of an organisation, developing an understanding of the impact of the organisation on the observer and also of the observer on the organisation (how you find yourself responding to the organisation and how ‘it’ responds to you).  The exercise provides an opportunity to observe, experience and think about these and other related processes in an organisation, with the objective of developing capacities in the management and leadership of these services.

The structure is to work from individuals; through groups, to whole organisation study and application, to include organisations culture, organisational stress, health maintenance; managing major change, managing mergers and acquisitions; and social systems as a defence against anxiety.

This one year modular course is available at two levels:

  1. An executive level for 10 – 12 members who are all currently in executive positions.
  2. A senior management level of about 20 members who are looking to achieve executive levels.


Organisations and individuals who wish to take advantage of this unique learning experience should see the IGO details of ‘Upcoming Events’. If this course is not listed; to obtain advice and to discuss without commitment, please contact the Director of IGO, to make an appointment.

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