Open Program

Leading on Purpose

Mindful leadership in a complex world.

This innovative program will help you to develop the perspectives, practices and capabilities essential to leading mindfully, on and with purpose, in the 21st century.

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Leading on Purpose

Program Overview

Leading on Purpose will help you to build the capacities necessary to lead intentionally and purposefully in the pursuit of making a positive difference to your own life, those of others in your organization and to society.

Drawing on ground-breaking research conducted at Ashridge, you will learn how mindfulness practice can help you to develop vital skills required for you and your organization to thrive in the face of the complex and ambiguous challenges of the 21st century. These include: the ability to facilitate collaboration and dialogue; enhanced personal and leadership resilience; the discovery of personal and organizational purpose – and a greater capacity to follow these.

Mindfulness is a way of paying attention to whatever arises from moment to moment, in yourself, others and the world around you. In the Board Room it might translate into a deeper sense of self awareness, an appreciation and understanding of others, improved emotional intelligence, more thoughtful inquiry and deeper, more considered, decision making. These are leadership skills which are essential to the navigation of our organizational context in the 21st Century.

Content and Structure


Before arriving at Ashridge you will have a 1:1 personal coaching session with a member of the faculty team designed to enable you to reflect on your experience as a leader and the capacities you feel are vital in enabling you, your organization and your society to flourish amidst the complex challenges and opportunities that the 21st century presents.

You will have the opportunity and the support, should you wish, to try out a number of guided personal mindfulness practices in the two weeks running up to the residential phase.

Residential Phase

Whilst you are at Ashridge you will explore your own leadership practice and using this knowledge you will develop vital leadership capacities including:

  • How to help yourself and others to lead in a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous) environment
  • How to enhance your resilience as a leader as well as the resilience of others
  • How to collaborate and facilitate dialogue in your organization
  • How to identify your personal and organizational purpose

These capacities will be supported by developing your own mindfulness practice which enables a greater ability to focus attention – on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgementally. We will share with you ground-breaking research on the impact of mindfulness and suggest ways that it might help you to develop critical skills such as:

  • Concentration
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Stress reduction
  • Decision making under pressure
  • Positive framing of events


You will be supported after the program by another 1:1 personal coaching session with a member of faculty. The focus of this session is on your experience with applying the learning from the residential element of the program, back into your own workplace and, if it is relevant for you, your private life.

We will also provide you with support to continue your mindfulness practice in the form of recorded guided meditations and a suggested structure for using these.

You will become a member of the Ashridge Alumni network which is an excellent opportunity to continue your personal development and networking.

You are also given continued access to your online program portal and Virtual Ashridge content for six months after your residential stay. Ongoing support and further learning opportunities are available with Ashridge Momentum.

Related content

View related programs  The Ashridge experience   Customize this program 

All Ashridge Open Programs are taught in English, find out how we can help you to improve your English.

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Participant feedback

"An insightful leadership program - the learning and experiences will stay with me. Powerful learning in a creative and mindful environment - a must for all leaders."

Wendy Nicholson, Lead nurse, Public Health England

"This program will help you see yourself and your world in a different way... and that will make you a more effective leader."

Jonathan McKenna, Director, Kaolin Consulting Limited

"Bring an open mind and it will be filled with useful tools to re-shape the way in which you think, feel and respond to anything and everything that comes your way."

Sonia Watson, Head of Finance Systems and Change, M&G Investments

"Very intense and eye-onening. A lot of introspective work. Wonderful experience."

Rachele Dino, CSR Communications and Engagement Specialist, Swarovski Ltd

"If you're open to it, I think this program could have a really meaningful and positive impact on your entire life."

Emma Pollard, Head of HR Operations - Europe, Mylan

Program fee

What is included in your open program fee?

Download our brochure /executive-organisation-development/open-programmes/leading-on-purpose/lop-brochure/

Who is it for?

You are a leader keen to have an impact for the better on society, your organization and your teams. You want to play your part in addressing the most challenging issues facing your organization and your society and want to develop your capacity to do this with skill, presence and resilience. 

Benefits to you and your organization

On this program you will:

  • Enhance your capacity to lead in a complex and unpredictable environment
  • Develop skills to lead mindfully, with focused attention in the moment
  • Improve your resilience in coping with the inevitable challenges leadership presents including pressure, expectations that others have for you and you have for yourself, workload and the sense of responsibility to yourself, your family, your organization and your society
  • Learn how to improve your skills in collaboration and dialogue, as well as those in your organization
  • Have an opportunity to deeply reflect on and clarify both your personal and your organizational purpose.

Faculty Team

Megan Reitz

Megan Reitz

MA (Cantab), MSc, MRes, PhD

Read more about Megan

Chris Nichols

Chris Nichols


Read more about Chris

Michael Chaskalson

Michael Chaskalson

Read more about Michael

Steve Marshall

Steve Marshall

BA (Hons), MBA, MSc, DProf

Read more about Steve

Related Case Studies

Sonia Watson's Ashridge Story

Leading on Purpose

“It is helping my team shine during a turbulent time.”

Read More

Wendy Nicholson's Ashridge Story

Leading on Purpose

“The techniques I learned have been life-changing both for me, and for the young people I work with.”

Read More