What happened at the second workshop of the New Leaders Programme?

On 10-11 April, the second workshop of the New Leaders Programme was held in Dublin, Ireland. The programme is the legacy project of Birgitta Kervinen, ENGSO Honorary President, 2017 IOC Women and Sport World Trophy Award Winner.

The focus of the workshop was on understanding decision-making processes and behaviors. Every now and then, every sport leader must go through these questions: How do I know what is the right thing to say or the best thing to do, if I want to convince someone? How do I know how to behave if I want to change something? How can I motivate everyone, when everyone gets motivated in different ways? As a leader, how can I assist people around me to reach their best?

The workshop in the Irish capital gave answers to these questions. The participants - the so-called "game-changers" - learned about human behavior, feedback and how to handle conflicts. Furthermore, they broke the code of “reading” other people’s minds. They also explored what are the four main categories of how humans behave, because once we know the groups and “human stereotypes”, we have even stronger power to influence, convince, understand or persuade others. In addition, the participants learned how others see them behave. Leadership is much about the power of being an example. What you say and do matters. You have the power to change patterns – if you want.

"There is no one or right type of leadership. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses; you just need to understand yours. In addition, you also need to understand where someone else is coming from to be able to influence them" -- said Sarah Keane, the Chair of the Gender Equality Commission of the European Olympic Committees (EOC) and President of the Irish Olympic Committee.

"It is the benefit for the sport movement to have different types and diverse leaders, including more female leaders" - she added.

At the same time of the New Leaders workshop, the EOC Gender Equality Commission held their meeting in Dublin as well, to tackle the questions related to gender equality in Europe. Nancy Lee from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) presented the IOC Gender Equality Review Project to the Commission and updated them about the current situation. In addition, together with Sarah Keane, they held a questions and answers session with the game-changers to go over action plans to put the IOC Gender Equality Recommendations into action.

Both the first New Leaders workshop and this second one have shown that these game-changers have passion towards sport and that this passion is their power. They care, work and connect in order to develop a more equal and responsible field of sport. However, their passion is not enough. One can lead, but with a team you can win – and set standards for a new normal.

Therefore, the game-changers need support from the sporting community. They need the more experienced, connected and powerful sport leaders to hear and share their goals. They need current leaders to connect them with the right people. They need the leaders of sport to be with them in Finland for the New Leaders Forum on 18-20 November this year to share their action plans with the rest of Europe. They need you to share their messages and start to act.

As among the 30 game-changers there are three ENGSO Youth Young delegates - Anett Fodor, Floriane Poncet and Laura-Maria Tiidla -, we asked them about their experience at the second workshop in Ireland.

"This workshop went far beyond my expectations as we dived into the topic of personality perception. It will probably remain a turning point in my personal development as we identified our own strengths and weaknesses through the scopes of conflict resolution and interactions with others" - said Floriane Poncet.

"The energy coming out of this group is so inspiring; it seems like our diversity keeps feeding us to move forward in changing the sport movement for the better" - she added.

"This workshop was most exciting for me due to the fact that I could reunite with my fellow change-makers to catch up and see how their journey is progressing. Often these kinds of projects are a one-time event, but we have a unique chance to meet four times during a year to grow together, support each other and grow into a family. It was also absolutely thrilling to see the excellent draft programme for the Forum taking place in Helsinki this November with more than 200 participants from all over Europe gathering to discuss about gender equality, diversity and the sport culture of tomorrow. I can't wait for the next workshop in Baku in July and the Forum that's going to be the definite highlight of the year for me" - said Laura-Maria Tiidla.

This article is based on the press release of the Finnish Olympic Committee.

For more information about the New Leaders Programme, visit its website or contact the New Leaders Team of the Finnish Olympic Committee: Niina Toroi, +358 40 672 2220

You can also follow the game-changers' journey on Instagram.

#NewLeaders #GameChangers #LeadtheChange