THE CEANNAS STORY

Ceannas - (pronounced keyannas) - the ancient scottish Gaelic word for leadership

OUR VISION

We are driven to help create organisations where work doesn’t feel like work.

We believe in the power of doing the ’right’ thing, at the ’right’ time, for the ’right’ reasons.

By releasing the leader’s assets we can have an exponential impact upon the organisation.

accumulating marginal gains

MARGINAL LEADERSHIP GAINS

The Ceannas Leadership Index is designed to identify, develop and accumulate those marginal gains that are the key differentiators between outstanding and exceptional leadership. Most of us will have experienced leadership diagnostics that provide us with interesting information about who we are. In that sense they hold a mirror up for us to see ourselves more clearly, but often leave us with the question –“so what?”. The Ceannas Index goes much deeper by focusing in on those aspects of leadership behaviour which might just prove to be the key elements in a marginal leadership gain strategy, and which add real value to a leader’s performance and their impact upon their organization.

TO THE POWER OF TEAM

The Ceannas Leadership Index can be successfully applied to the field of leadership team development. We’re not talking here of ’team bonding’ or ’team building’ events but a carefully designed process to maximise the effectiveness of a team to deliver results that align with the organisation’s objectives. Team synergy is the phenomenon where the combined effect of team members is greater than the sum of the members’ individual effects.  Through the Ceannas philosophy of “Effectiveness to the Power of Team®” we release the synergy of the team to the extent that that it enables each member to achieve far more as part of the team than they could ever achieve individually. 

PRACTICAL , OBSERVABLE, ACHIEVEABLE

Over a twenty year period the Index has been designed and refined to help senior leaders work out the smallest behavioural changes that will give the greatest return. It focuses in on practical, observable and achievable changes in leadership behaviour – that align with a leader’s day-to-day practice. The Index does not rely upon complicated algorithms or computer generated feedback. Instead it depends upon external interpretation of a individual’s preferences by a fellow highly experienced leader who can pinpoint those areas from a person’s Ceannas profile that might yield the greatest returns.

What can marginal gains achieve?

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Impact of enhancing executive leadership on productivity

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Impact of enhancing executive leadership on customer satisfaction

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Impact of enhancing executive leadership on voluntary staff turnover

What’s your Ceannas Leadership Profile?

THE CEANNAS LENSES

The Ceannas Leadership Index uses a series of seven carefully constructed and interconnected lenses that apply the power of metaphor to capture very complex concepts in a manner that is jargon free and immmediately understandable. There is no ’perfect’ profile and no lens is any more important than any other. 

Where are you on the line between being a Scientist or a Gardener?

How do your Parent characteristics combine with your Conductor’s

Are you a Builder or a Sculptor - or a bit of both?

Are you a Villager?

Or do you prefer to do your own thing?

The Ceannas Leadership Index in action

CEANNAS INDEX DIAGNOSTIC

The Ceannas Leadership Index diagnostic requires the leader to complete an on-line, password protected, diagnostic evaluation.  The 70 questions identify the leader’s default leadership perspectives. The Ceannas Index is not a psychometric test and reflects where the individual is at a singular point in time.  It can be used multiple times. 

CEANNAS GATHERINGS

A Ceannas Gathering provides a leadership team with an alternative and very special learning opportunity that has a singular focus upon identifying and enabling small, yet very significant changes to leadership behaviour that are aligned to their organisation’s strategic goals. Each Ceannas Gathering is specifically designed for the client organisation.

STRATEGY

We focus on enabling individual and collective leadership behaviours that align with the strategic ambition of our clients. We make a conscious decision not to engage in supporting the development of strategy for the organisations with whom we work. We believe that this responsbility properly resides with the organisation, releasing us to concentrate upon leadership behaviours.

INDIVIDUAL CEANNAS SUPPORT

Individual Ceannas Support provides an immersive one-to-one personal experience. Each programme takes place over a series of full day events tailored to the individual’s unique needs, using a range of experiences and individually focused leadership research, the individual leader is supported to identify those high leverage changes to leadership behaviour that will yield the greatest reward.

DECISION MAKING SCAFFOLDING

Ceannas Decision Making Scaffolding is an exclusive model of decision-making designed by Ceannas to enable leaders to escape from their default perspectives on leadership challenges and translate that into fresh leadership behaviours. By combining features of behavioural economics and the psychology of learning we have created an ingenious process to generate exceptional and sustainable solutions.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

Ceannas is a ’home’ based business, whether that home be in Langshaw, London or Lisbon, leaders are welcomed as guests and leave as friends. We are committed to creating welcoming and creative learning environments where leaders can escape from the present and generate new and and unanticipated solutions. 

One small change in leadership behaviour.........

LEADERSHIP BY DESIGN

LEADERSHIP CULTURE

We define ‘leadership culture’ as “The way we do things around here”. A leadership culture is therefore something that can only be defined by the actual behaviours demonstrated by people in the organisation. All too often that culture is ambiguous, inconsistent and unplanned, and, as such, does not align or contribute towards the strategic objectives of the organisation.

DESIGN AND BUILD

Many of our major clients have engaged us to help them design and build their leadership culture, especially where they are a new company, or a consequence of a merger or acquisition.  By using the Ceannas Leadership Index as a toolbox we assist the leadership team to identify the leadership behaviours that they wish to model, uphold and permeate the organisation.

LOOKING DIFFERENTLY

Our role is to listen, learn and understand the ambitions of the leaders within the company. By using the Ceannas Index scaffolding we help them build a set of explicit expectations that will consistently guide and inform the leadership behaviour of everyone in the organisation. The impact of this approach is amplified where leaders then contribute their own related marginal leadership gains.

  • The Ceannas approach is based upon trust and confidentiality. For that reason Ceannas does not publicise who we work with, nor share information about individual clients, even with people in their own organisation.

PEOPLE

GEOFF AITKENHEAD

CREDIBILITY - RELIABILITY - TRUST

Geoff Aitkenhead is a Director with Ceannas and has a long track record of successful leadership in industry. From 2002 to 2016 he was a member of the Group Board and Executive Leadership Team of Scottish Water, playing a significant leadership role in the remarkable transformation of the water industry in Scotland. During the 2002-16 period Geoff oversaw the successful delivery of c£8 billion of capital projects, accounting for a third of all civil engineering in Scotland. Geoff chaired the Boards of two plc companies established as special purpose vehicles for the delivery of capital investment programmes.

These companies involved a variety of utility, engineering and construction companies as shareholders and delivery partners. He is currently Chairman of Scottish Water International and former Chairman of WaterAid (Scotland), an organisation dedicated to the provision of clean water and sanitation in the developing world. Geoff is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers, a member of the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management, and a graduate of Newcastle University. He is the father of three daughters and likes nothing more than walking in his beloved Cumbrian hills.

MARY HORSBURGH

HONESTY - COMMITMENT - DELIVERY

Mary Horsburgh is Business Manager at Ceannas Ltd.  Mary has a long career in administration, having worked in both the public and private sector for many years, with a proven background in delivering a high standard of administrative and personal support to senior executives.  She has been fortunate to work with individuals with true leadership values and this has greatly influenced her thinking.       

Mary embarked upon an Executive MBA later in life, juggling a high pressure working life and personal responsibilities, and this has enabled her to further develop her passion for leadership, motivation and organisational development while at the same time honing her business and management skills to a deeper level. 

SONYA HOTSON

EMPOWERING – INTEGRITY - RESPECT

Sonya Hotson is the Managing Director of Ceannas. Before joining Ceannas she was Head of Strategy and Planning with Standard Life, the FTSE 100 company with an annual revenue of £1.43 billion. Over her twenty year multinational career with leading blue chip companies in financial services and technology sectors, she has exemplified a passion for leading through core values. Sonya is a Chartered Management Accountant and member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. Throughout her career she has held a variety of finance and strategy positions with Hewlett Packard, Agilent Technologies and then Standard Life.

Sonya’s senior posts were focused and accountable for the commercial performance of the organisation. She has worked across continents, including a significant period in California’s Silicon Valley with Hewlett-Packard where she was immersed in the ‘HP way, the management culture which has contributed to the success of Apple and Google. Her positivity quickly engages all in the opportunity to make significant personal and organisational impact through strong leadership values. She is Chief Executive of the Scottish Leadership Trust, and member of the Children In Scotland Fund raising panel.

DON LEDINGHAM

SERVICE - PASSION - CREATIVITY

Don Ledingham is chief executive of Ceannas, and honorary professor of leadership at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh. He was previously Director of Innovation Leadership at Drummond International, the renowned and highly respected international leadership consultancy established by Norman Drummond CBE FRSE. He was headteacher of Dunbar Grammar School, which was judged to be one of the ten most improved schools in Scotland during his headship. He is a non-executive director and depute chair of the Scottish Book Trust

Don Ledingham’s long-term research has focused upon the leadership behaviours and cultures associated with high performing organizations. Emerging from this work he developed the Seven Sides of Educational leadership, which evolved into ‘The Ceannas Leadership Index®”. He held a wide range of senior executive positions including responsibilty for over 4,500 staff, a budget of £250 million, and a range of ‘high-stakes’ services as Scotland’s first Executive Director to simultaneously work across two local authorities.  

REVERSING INTO THE FUTURE

LICENCING

The Ceannas Leadership Index will be made available to approved organisations under licence for use with employees from December 2016. Training and support will be available throughout the duration of the Licencing arrangement.

INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTORS

Ceannas will accredit fifty international distributors to have exclusive rights to use the Ceannas Leadership Index and associated content within a specified geographic area. International accreditation will be available from March 2017.

DIRECTORSHIPS

Up to ten directorships for outstanding individuals will be available from January 2017. Prospective directors will have significant senior executive leadership experience with large organisations and be able to clearly demonstrate how they can add value to Ceannas. 

A Small Step to Wise Leadership

A Small Step to Wise Leadership, 2017, by Don Ledingham, examines the essence of leadership wisdom through a practical exploration from a variety of perspectives. The book has been deliberately structured to mirror the Ceannas approach to change through small steps. Each section of the book is composed of a series of short essays that begin with a link to a feature of wise leadership and concludes with three personal leadership questions connected to the essay content.

(Exclusively reserved for Ceannas clients)

The essays are grouped into the seven lenses that make up the Index, i.e. Sculptor, Scientist, Builder, Gardener, Parent, Conductor and Villager.  In order to present a ‘practical’ guide to wisdom the book avoids leadership and management jargon, academic references and overly theoretical concepts. A Small Step to Wise Leadership provides a means for any leader, or aspiring leader, to reflect upon their behaviour, and identify small steps that will set them on the way to leaving a powerful and sustained legacy and as a ‘wise leader’.

CEANNAS GATHERINGS

Ceannas Gatherings are open by invitation to senior leaders who have participated in a Ceannas experience. A Ceannas Gathering involves no more than six leaders.

Ceannas Gatherings carefully balance and mix the assets, experience and professional background of each individual to create a unique community and learning environment. 

Each unique Gathering will convene four times a year  in the home and surroundings of the Ceannas leader, who will carefully construct each event to maximise personal and collective learning gain.

CONTACT

Contact

We much prefer to speak to people directly about our work rather than asking them to complete contact forms:
Call Don Ledingham on 07774368932 or email donledingham@ceannas.com Call Sonya Hotson on 07970243981 or email sonyahotson@ceannas.com

BUSINESS QUERIES

Business Manager: Mary Horsburgh MBA, maryhorsburgh@ceannas.com