What we do

Our leadership programs and services support people in all stages of their leadership journey. From community volunteers to primary producers, artists and managers, we focus on providing a learning experience in line with the diversity found in rural, regional and remote Australia.

National leadership programs

Our experiential learning programs grow participants' leadership capacity with each adaptive challenge until they're ready to create positive change in rural, regional and remote Australia.

Place-based leadership programs

The aim of place-based leadership programs is to generate and support networks of people at a local level who can lead, inspire and navigate change within their regional communities.

Tailored leadership programs

From week-long residential programs to multi-session short courses and mentoring programs, our tailored programs activate leadership networks at a geographical, industry or organisation level.

Leadership services

Need a facilitator for a mediation session or leadership action initiative? Our network of experienced in-house and external facilitators or associates is equipped to

National leadership programs

Our core national leadership programs focus on different stages of leadership, sectors and First Nations communities. They are delivered in context of change in rural, regional and remote Australia, often driven by unforeseen crises, technological transformation or geopolitical shifts. Each program develops the behavioural and social intelligence of its participants and those they serve. Participants in these programs can be self-funded, but are usually supported by a wide range of government, philanthropic and industry partners.

Our experiential learning programs mature participants' leadership with each adaptive challenge until they're ready to create positive change in rural, regional and remote Australia.

The Australian Rural Leadership Program is our flagship program. It has run annually since 1993 and is open to a diverse group of around 30 people from across rural and regional Australia each year. It runs 15 months in four intensive sessions plus online engagement and mentoring. The first session is in a remote location where participants are set solo and group challenges. They emerge with a better understanding of themselves and the impact their behaviour has on others, and a chance to connect with Country and First Nations custodians. Two other sessions are in other parts of Australia, where participants engage with leaders from government, business and community. One session is overseas, providing a unique insight into how another country is managing critical issues. Participant selection is competitive and funded through industry, government or philanthropic scholarships. Each scholarship is matched with an applicant aligning with the sponsor’s industry, sector or purpose.

Milparanga is our growing suite of First Nations leadership programs, with two programs forming the entry points. One for people in the early stages of leadership and one for established leaders. Each is an eight-day course that allows Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants to engage in robust conversations that honour existing skills and knowledge, as well as provoke thoughts, all within a supportive space. Milparanga Emerging participants hear stories from Indigenous leaders, visit culturally significant sites and undertake outdoor and other activities that test their self-awareness and ability to communicate. Milparanga Established participants network with other First Nations leaders from across Australia, hear a range of speakers with different perspectives on leadership, and put their skills and awareness of culture, gender, politics, social and environmental systems, and history into decision-making and action.

The Australian Agribusiness Leadership Program is a bespoke, 11-day leadership development program for agribusiness leaders. It focuses on fostering individual and collective behavioural change helpful to an adaptive leadership style. Participants are challenged to respond to complex real-world scenarios facing the sector. As a result, participants develop greater self-awareness and establish trust with others. Participants develop inter-organisational connections, and strengthen a network of leaders from across the sector. Places on the program are purchased by an agribusiness organisation, though participants can also be self-funded.

TRAIL Emerging Leaders Program is a cross-sector, seven-day leadership program for Australia’s emerging rural leaders. It develops their leadership skills and connects them with a network of peers and role models. It includes a four-day outdoor experience, along with numerous workshops and panel sessions. Participants become more self-aware through experiential and challenged-based learning and psychometric assessment. They deconstruct complex situations and assumptions through exposure to topical issues for rural, regional, and remote Australia. They build awareness of ethics, values, social responsibility, negotiation, communication, and critical thinking. Applicants come from diverse backgrounds and are self-funded or sponsored by employers or industry bodies.

Place-based leadership programs

We have a growing portfolio of regional place-based programs. The aim of this work is to generate and support networks of people at a local level who can lead, inspire and navigate change within their regional communities. In doing this, the we’re acutely aware
that its approach must value and involve local intelligence, strategic relationships, trust, flexibility, coordination and shared governance in the design and delivery of the program. Our place-based work is a collaboration with organisations that have shared values and a commitment to leadership in rural, regional and remote Australia.

These collaborations allow powerful knowledge sharing and the alignment of effort to achieve a common purpose.

The Drought Resilience Leaders program had three elements designed to support agricultural communities to prepare for the impacts of future droughts and a changing climate. The first was a leaders development program delivered in 12 drought impacted regions. This brought together cohorts of people who are passionate about building the drought resilience of their communities through strong networks and the development of the knowledge and skills to drive change. The second was access to community extension grants for individuals or groups to deliver a project that will contribute to their community’s drought resilience. The third element was a national mentoring program, connecting experienced mentors with mentees who want to build their knowledge of drought resilience. This program was funded by the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund and has been continued in the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative.

Regenerate Regional Leadership enables people from bushfire-impacted regions to revive and reinvigorate their
communities. It encourages them to identify their community’s capacity to cope with disasters and figure out where it might need help. Participants learn how leadership plays a critical role in the process of building long-term community resilience and shared responsibility. These programs have been funded by the Australian Government supported by a various delivery partners.

The Leading Australian Resilient Communities program is designed to enhance the inherent strengths in regional communities, with a focus on groups and individuals who are committed and invested in where they live and work.We have partnered with the Regional Australia Institute, the Australian Resilience Centre and state based leadership organisations to deliver in ten regions across Australia. As well as compelling, immediate benefits for regional leaders, the program builds a foundation for solid practices that will enable regions to best plan for their futures. This program has been funded by the Australian Government, Building Resilient Regional Leaders Initiative.

Our leadership philosophy

Leadership development is a journey

We see leadership development as a continuing journey without an ideal end state. Growth in leadership introduces new challenges and the reassessment of personal capability. Increased understanding of concepts and exposure to new challenges results in personal re-evaluation.

A view to holistic leadership

We evaluate participants' development of leadership principles considering the individual, their immediate family, professional capacity, career and the wider community. As well as benchmarking leadership expression against a set of leadership practices.

The nature of leadership is changing

Perspectives on leadership development have evolved over the last several decades. From a focus on the individual to a consideration of the context in which the individual operates to transactional to transformational leadership and personal to collective impact. These changes are influenced by the increased complexity in which leaders operate, especially for challenges that no single individual or institution can address.

Having a positive impact takes time

Feedback from alumni reflects that leadership development can play a transformational role, but impact is a result of more than any single program. Experiences, the contribution of other development programs, and lessons gained from life generally all contribute to outcomes. Leadership development can also have unintended consequences - short-term challenges can lead to long-term resilience and personal capacity-building.

Increase your social impact and foster leadership beyond the title.

Become a funding partner or commission a program for your organisation, industry or community. Build leadership capacity beyond self and trusted values-based networks – one participant and program at a time. Whether it’s for social impact, market reach or to respond to current challenges and opportunities within your region, industry or organisation, your partnership results in collective impact. 

Our team will reach out for a confidential conversation.

Our associate network

Our network of associates share our values and are uniquely skilled in developing and delivering leadership programs and initiatives to manage change in rural, regional and remote Australia. Helping with program design, delivery and facilitation, associates either work as part of our team or deliver a program end to end. The associate network allows us to consistently deliver high-quality programs all over the country, as well as offering industry-specific or tailored leadership development programs on demand. Becoming an associate is exclusively by invitation only following an expression of interest or nomination by a team member or fellow associate. While associates are often alumni from our programs this is not a requirement.

First Nations impact

Our work is not possible without the generosity of First Nations Australians who welcome us onto their land and into their communities and lives. We have grown and sustained relationships with individuals and communities over 30 years and will continue to do so for future generations.

Through our work we strive for truth-telling about Australia’s history and the dispossession of First Nations to create positive change and reconciliation between non-Indigenous Australians and First Nations peoples.​

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