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In 2016, Leading From Within launched Leading for Community Impact with the mission to invest in the leaders of Santa Maria, Lompoc, Santa Ynez Valley and the surrounding communities.

Leading for Community Impact program is designed to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Develop capable, confident, connected leaders with the clarity of purpose, values and intentions to exercise their leadership to advance the well being of Santa Maria, Lompoc, Santa Ynez Valley and nearby communities.
  • Foster a peer network of leaders who support each other in sustaining their social sector commitment and inspiring each other well beyond the program.
  • Build trusted, collaborative relationships among the leaders, who know and confide in each other and are eager to collaborate to find innovative solutions for our community’s entrenched issues.
  • Cultivate a leadership pipeline of diverse, capable professionals, who are ready to lead organizations effectively in addressing the needs of the community – today and in the future.

Over the 10 months of the program, leaders will engage in a supportive learning community with professionally relevant curriculum tailored to the unique experiences of northern Santa Barbara County leaders.  Topics include:

Leadership Frameworks

Participants will discover & share key leadership frameworks such as values-centered leadership, creating shared visions, engaging differences, understanding self (i.e. CliftonStrengths assessment), and developing their emotional intelligence to use feelings as a data point to learn.

The program strongly incorporates leadership frameworks created by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner in the early 1980s, first identified in their internationally best-selling book, The Leadership Challenge. The Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership approaches leadership as a measurable, learnable, and teachable set of behaviors. After conducting hundreds of interviews, reviewing thousands of case studies, and analyzing more than two million survey questionnaires to understand those times when leaders performed at their personal best, there emerged five practices common to making extraordinary things happen. 

Personal and Professional Development

Participants will explore who they are as leaders, assess their leadership skills, and continue to define their leadership and management styles, and how to sustain their passion for working in the social sector. Through intentional reflection, participants will develop more self-awareness and self-confidence as a leader. This also includes a 360° review using the Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) that is supported with private coaching sessions per participant.

The Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) instrument is an essential tool to help you gain perspective into how you see yourself as a leader, how others view you, and what actions you can take to improve your use of The Five Practices, which research has demonstrated, year after year, make for more effective leaders.

Strategic Thinking & Capacity Building

Participants will foster the competencies of strategic thinking, program evaluation, effective communication, networking and collaboration.   Participants will take what they learned and apply it to their very own capstone projects to expand their organization’s capacity.

A Trusting Circle of Support

Participants will build a community of ongoing  support by creating trusting connections with their peers in their cohort,  as well as the LFW alumni community of dynamic leaders.

Community Connections

Participants will exchange ideas and perspectives through opportunities to engage with nonprofit, philanthropic and corporate leaders from throughout Santa Barbara County.

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