Cyrenians has been gifted a unique second chance to be a host to a team of three business high-flyers.

The Responsible Leadership Programme (RLP) is in its fourth year and has been developed by PricewaterhouseCoopers UK in collaboration with Common Purpose. The course works by placing groups of two or three PwC Partners with host organisations for a period of four weeks in September/October 2010, where they immerse themselves in the charity and work alongside the host organisation’s leaders. 

Cyrenians was selected as one of three UK hosts in 2009. PwC partners Andy Boucher and John Higgins came to live and work alongside us in Edinburgh. Andy writes about the experience here. Partners stripped down for charity | The Sunday Times

It was the sort of experience that money can’t buy. A journalist recently asked me that the partners did for us: probably expecting something about having devised a new strategy or winning new business. My answer was that the

Amanda, Ken and Mark

scrutiny of such intelligent outsiders enabled me and colleagues to better see the charity as others see us. From those insights comes better leadership and better strategic planning.

I was surprised and delighted to discover that the origin of the saying is Rabbie Burns and the full quote is even better: To A Louse: On seeing one on a lady’s bonnet at church;

O would some Power the gift to give us
To see ourselves as others see us!
It would from many a blunder free us,
And foolish notion:

Our unforeseen second go at this came about through being a last minute substitute for another third sector host and we didn’t have to be asked twice. Hence PwC partners Amanda Clack, Ken Walsh and Mark Hughes are with us as I write… getting up close to our activities and the issues we wrestle with as we try to create a charity that is robust and which makes as much of an impact as we can.

Des Ryan

October 2010


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