A new wave of emerging Indigenous leaders explore relationship between leadership, cultural awareness and personal identity through unique program

Tuesday, 6 November 2018  @Business School

The second cohort of the Emerging Indigenous Executive Leaders Program (EIELP) graduated at a ceremony in Sydney on the 1st November, attended by students and their families, senior Indigenous leaders, academics and corporate partners.

Created in partnership with the Elevate Reconciliation Australia (RAP) Group, the EIELP focusses on developing executive-ready Indigenous leaders and preparing them for senior leadership roles. It is designed to break the 'glass ceiling' and bring more Indigenous Australians into the C-Suite.

The program content developed and delivered by AGSM focused on developing strategic thinking, leadership and identity, innovation, personal effectiveness and communicating with influence skills. The program philosophy is underpinned by the 'Walking in Two Worlds' framework and includes four face-to-face modules delivered in Melbourne, Sydney and Uluru. This year for the first time a digital module, sponsored by AGSM challenged participations with another way of learning.

Several participants in this year's program have already developed and implemented their strategic projects within their organisations. Graduating participants come from leading Australian organisations including Department of Human Services, Crown, NAB, Department of Health and Crown.

Natalee George, Assistant Director People and Culture, Australian Government Department of Health, and a graduate of this year's program said the EIELP provided her with tools and strategies to become a more effective leader.

"I started the course with the goal to undertake further study and to enhance my career by regaining my self-confidence. By trying different strategies and applying various management tools within the workplace, I have found new ways to inspire my team members, leading to better company outcomes and development goals," Natalee said.

"The program has introduced me to a new way of working, which inspired me to apply for a Director role within my organisation. For me this was a successful outcome because I have proved to myself that I can compete at this level and I have the confidence to express who I am, grounded in my inherited identity, and know how to use these attributes to my strength," she said. 

"The Emerging Indigenous Executive Leaders Program empowers and supports the growth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders leaders to enter corporate Australia's boardrooms and C-Suites", said Andrea Kelly Deputy CEO at Reconciliation Australia.  "Through this program, we want to inspire and enable all Australians to contribute to the reconciliation of the nation."

The EIELP launched last year and was originally developed by Elevate RAP member National Australia Bank, with strong support from Richmond Football Club, Crown Resorts, AFL, Broadspectrum, Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, the Australian Government Department of Human Services and Reconciliation Australia.

Michael Lacy, Head of Community at Richmond Football Club and Chair of the Elevate RAP Working Group, said: "Richmond, being the only sporting club in Australia to hold Elevate Status for the Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), continues to support the AGSM EIELP. This program significantly improves Indigenous business acumen within the workplace, by connecting the dots between leadership skills, cultural awareness and personal identity."

"AGSM is proud of the achievements of all EIELP participants and appreciates the opportunity to partner with Reconciliation Australia and the Elevate RAP Working Group," said Nick Wailes, Director AGSM and Deputy Dean UNSW Business School. "The EIELP is a unique program and its importance can't be understated as emerging Indigenous leaders step into leadership roles equipped to make a significant contribution in shaping not only the future of Indigenous Australia but Australia as a whole," says Nick.

To find out more about the Emerging Indigenous Executive Leadership Program, visit https://www.business.unsw.edu.au/agsm/short-courses/custom-courses/emerging-indigenous-executive-leaders-program

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