Ghost Lights from Thompson Harrison

SOLID GOLD PODCASTS #BEHEARD  |  Podcast , ±28 min episodes every 7 weeks, 3 days  | 
Welcome to Ghost Lights from Thompson Harrison
Hosted by Tracey Camilleri and Sam Rockey

Exploring how leaders can build ‘human-shaped organisations’ by learning from the humanities – that repository of all that is most human.

Join Tracey, Sam and their guests as they reimagine ways of creating enabling corporate and institutional environments within which everyone - from the most senior to the youngest recruit - can learn and thrive. They consider leadership at an angle rather than head-on – looking through the lens of philosophy, literature, art, history, psychology for new insights, language and approaches.

In each episode they will host a leading thinker or practitioner from the humanities, and reflect together on how their experience and wisdom can have relevance to those leading organisations through the pandemic.

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The New Frontier for Great Organisations | Reima Shakeir

In this short podcast, Reima Shakeir reflects on the current state of belonging and inclusion in business and academia. Reima sees a shared sense of belonging as the hallmark of advanced societies and communities - and the key to employee retention and happiness. As she says, "People want to be heard and to be seen - and that’s it." She reflects on systems that are still nonetheless designed for exclusion and on those that exclude due to institutional carelessness or lack of awareness on the part of the leadership.

In this conversation, we explore what’s working, why and where there is pushback. What are some of the simple things that organisations are doing that make a difference? Reima reflects on the fear of getting things wrong, especially when it comes to language and the need to gather hard data to support changes in the system.

Finally, she sees real-world person-to-person connection as the new frontier for great organisations – and brands - where the creation of a sense of belonging makes perfect commercial sense as well.

Reima Shakeir is a lecturer at Wharton School of Business and Stern School of Business. Dr. Shakeir teaches Organizational Communication and Business and Society courses at NYU’s Stern School of Business. She also teaches research methodologies as part of the CLO (Chief Learning Officer) executive doctorate program at the University of Pennsylvania. Reima is also a Lecturer at Wharton and a partner at DEI Ready.
Research Interests include:
Impact Entrepreneurship and Inclusive Economy, Authentic Leadership, Diversity in the Business World, Equity in Higher Education, Impact Investing, Women and Identity Performance in the Public Space, Minority Women’s Lived Experiences in the Corporate World, Gender Studies, and Organizational Sociology.
Connect with Reima on LinkedIn Visit Thompson Harrison's website Pre-order our book The Social Brain. Publication date: February 2023

Toxic Charisma | Jon Stokes

The problem with charismatic leaders.

What is charisma, how does it benefit leaders, and how can it be toxic?

Why do people follow charismatic leaders, even when it might not be good for them?

Why should leaders develop an inspirational leadership style rather than relying on charisma?

Jon Stokes is interested in how charismatic leadership can be toxic and the effect that it has on followers. He explores how leaders can inspire growth rather than dependence. He is an a an Associate Fellow at Oxford University's Said Business School and a founder of Stokes Jolly, a leadership consulting and advisory firm. He teaches and writes extensively about leadership, and coaches CEOs and their leadership teams.

Email Jon for a copy of his recent paper on charismatic leadership
Learn more about Jon and his work on the Stokes Jolly website To learn more about toxic leadership Connect with Gavin Thompson Harrison - Helping Leaders Do What Matters Most

The Dynamics of Power | Robert Rowland Smith

In my conversation with philosopher Robert Rowland Smith, we explore the dimensions of power. If power is the ability to make things happen in accordance with our will, why do some people crave more power than others? What are the real drivers of power? What do the philosophers say about power? Is power part of the human condition? Is power always bad? When can power be a force for good? This conversation takes us from current power struggles through to an unexpected conclusion all the while acknowledging that power is a movable and dynamic force.
Connect with Robert Connect with Sam Connect with Tracey Thompson Harrison - Helping Leaders Do What Matters Most For more on Robert and his work For more on the work of Prof Paul Gilbert mentioned in the podcast. For an understanding of the power dynamics playing out in your organisation

AI, Ethics, Oceans, The Metaverse, and Talking with Whales | Bryce Goodman

How Humans can Surprise Themselves

Guest: Bryce Goodman, Chief Strategist for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning at the Department of Defense’s Innovation Unit.

Bryce works at the intersection of developing technologies and emerging societal needs. In this wide-ranging conversation he considers the governance challenges for business leaders as they strive to limit unintended consequences and operate responsible AI systems. He celebrates the work of interdisciplinary teams who bring a range of perspectives and skills to framing the problems to be solved: too often these questions are kicked down the line to programmers and engineers. Bryce is interested not only in the ethics of emerging tech but also in its ethical use – here he tells us how machine learning is being used to prevent illegal fishing, to monitor the health of coral reefs – and most delightful of all – to track the ‘voice’ patterns of whales to understand their grammar and dialect and finally, perhaps, to be able to talk back to them.
The Ceti Project: Tracking the communication patterns of whales The US Defense innovation Unit: tracking illegal ocean fishing Defense Innovation Unit: Responsible AI Guidelines Connect with Bryce

Weaving Supply Chain Magic | Ramatu Abdulkadir

Dealing with Healthcare Challenges in Nigeria.

Ramatu Abdulkadir (Public Health Supply Chain Expert) is someone who well understands the challenges of getting in-date medicines to the right people at the right time in a pandemic.

She has spent a lifetime grappling at the hard edge of an under-invested in healthcare system in Nigeria.

She compares healthcare to the seamlessness, rigour and innovation of the manufacturing industry - this comparison came home to her as she visited a totally automated forklift factory and returned to ‘still the same old thing’ in a healthcare system that has hardly altered its methods during her whole career. It’s a magical conversation – quite literally so, as she describes how she was able to ‘turn waste into money’.

She is an optimist and a staunch believer in investing in the education of a new generation of supply chain experts to lead change into the future: 17 of her mentees graduated as supply chain experts at the end of 2021.

‘We’re just getting started!’, she says.

Ramatu is a seasoned Public Servant and a recognized expert in Public Health Supply Chain Management systems. As the Executive Secretary/CEO of the Health Supplies Management Agency (KADHSMA), Ramatu led the transformation of Kaduna State Health Supply Chain systems serving over 10 Million People of the State. In addition, Ramatu coordinated and supervised the upgrading of the first government-owned and operated Pharma-grade warehouse valued at around NGN 250 Million.
Connect with Ramatu Abdulkadir Ramatu's Website

A Call to Radical Pragmatism | Enaam Ahmed-Ali

This conversation between Tracey Camilleri and Enaam Ahmed Ali looks at the world through a gendered lens. Who better to do that than Enaam, 2022’s UN Women’s Representative for Climate Change and Technology? Enaam has spent 2021 talking to women around the world about the way in which climate change is impacting their lives, especially in poorer, developing countries. She talks powerfully about freedom for women – whether it’s the freedom to wear the headscarf, to stay at home and bring up children or to take on a leadership role outside the family - in her view it’s the act of choosing that is the crux of feminism, not what is chosen. In the conversation they range over questions like – what prevents more women now from thriving in tech businesses? What sort of leadership does the world need now? And why have all the corporate dollars sunk into D & I only got us so far? As a pragmatist and an entrepreneur – Enaam looks for action not words. In this podcast, she celebrates the small steps being taken by women around the world to build better foundations for the future.

Enaam Ahmed Ali is a development economist, intrapreneur, innovation manager, activist, and UN Women Representative 2022 for The Netherlands. Everything she does revolves around making people, organizations, and the planet better.
Visit Enaam's website The Dutch UN Women Website The Dutch Council of Women Connect with Enaam Thompson Harrison, one of London's leading bespoke leadership development consulting firms.

The Optimism Addict - a Conversation with Thami Schweichler

Connecting Talent with Opportunity

Guest: Thami Schweichler (Makers Unite)

In this episode Tracey Camilleri talks to Thami Schweichler, the inspirational founder of Makers Unite, a sustainable clothing manufacturer based in the Netherlands that uses design as the mechanism to connect refugees with local people, businesses and ultimately with opportunity. The starting point for Makers Unite was to provide an environmental and social solution to the problem of exclusion - a 'win, win, win' model as he describes it. An inveterate optimist, Thami believes that everyone has a talent but that they deserve opportunity in order for that talent to flourish. He is in the business of creating those opportunities. He tells powerful stories of what has been achieved since the inception of Makers Unite by the newcomers he has had the privilege to meet and work with along the way.
Changing the World is a Phone Call Away - Ted Amsterdam 2020, T Schweichler Here is the link to Makers Unite Connect with Thami Thompson Harrison, one of London's leading bespoke leadership development consulting firms.

Re-imagining Leadership | Shruthi Vijayakumar

Building an interconnected and thriving world for all.

With our Guest, Shruthi Vijayakumar.

In this episode Shruthi shares her own story of courage and change. As a young change-maker, Shruthi's work focuses on re-imagining how society can be designed to ensure a positive social impact for all.

Drawing on ancient wisdom and challenging commonly held assumptions and belief systems - Shruthi shares helpful insights and experience that leaders can use to refocus their own personal purpose.

Shruthi leaves us with a challenge on how to focus on the interconnectedness between all people, all nature and all living beings. If we look at the world from a point of interconnectedness rather than separation - then there is a chance of thriving for all.

Lifelong Learning and Doing | Dr. Alistair Mokoena

Why people don't care how much you know, unless they know how much you care

Dr. Alistair Mokoena (Google South Africa Country Director)

In this episode, Sam Rockey picks up on a conversation she started with Dr. Alistair Mokoena fifteen years ago that inspired her own work.

Drawing on his experience working for some of the leading companies in the world (Cadbury, Mondelez, Unilever, SABMiller, FCB and Ogilvy among them) as well as his academic focus, Ally shares his process for ongoing learning and reminds us that 'leaders who don't read, shouldn't lead.'

Ally shares what makes great organisations survive and thrive and talks about the importance of organisations going back to first principles - they exist to solve a need, and serve communities. For big organisations to deliver they need to work in partnership with small enterprises - taking an ecosystem approach ensures ongoing relevance. He warns against the tyranny of complacency and extends that to his own daily practice of putting together research 'cheat sheets'.

Ally provides a lens to the future and where true innovation will be coming from in the next decade and encourages us all to look for ways to unleash potential.

The books Ally mentions in the podcast are written by Tshilidzi Marwala "Closing the Gap" and "Leading in the 21st Century".
Connect with Alistair on LinkedIn

The Joys of the 'Not to Do List' | Kathryn Bishop

And Other Strategies for Women Leaders

In this episode Kathryn Bishop (Director of Oxford Said Business School's Women Transforming Leadership Programme and The Oxford Women's Leadership Development Programme) talks about her new book 'Make Your Own Map'. The book is designed as a practical strategy guide for aspiring women. Kathryn explains some of the tools that she uses to help women to navigate their way to more satisfying futures. In the conversation with Tracey Camilleri, they reflect amongst other things on imposter syndrome, the particular quality of all-female environments, the masculine/feminine continuum when it comes to leadership styles and questions like - why it is that female voices often go unheard? Kathryn balances research with stories of the real women she has worked with - as well as giving us some gems of practical wisdom - such as the joys of the 'Not to Do List'.
Oxford Women's Leadership Development Programme Women Transforming Leadership Programme (Oxford Said Business School) Make Your Own Map by Kathryn Bishop

The Transforming Power of Creativity | Samenua Sesher

Stop playing it safe

In this podcast Tracey Camilleri and Samenua Sesher explore the power of art to renew, re-engage and reinvigorate, especially during times of trauma. As the Founder of the digital Museum of Colour, Samenua reflects on some of the creative journeys of her contributors – and on her own visceral reaction to the Pitt Rivers Museum of anthropology in Oxford. Informed by her 'Respect Due' Gallery , she invites us all to take time out to honour those who have influenced our lives, especially our elders. Samenua exhorts even those who don’t think of themselves as being ‘creative’ or those who don’t work in the creative industries to try the untried, to change up their ‘unofficial board of advisors’, to dare to follow their imaginations. At times like these, we need to stop playing it safe. Samenua brings a much needed playful, joyful optimism to bear on our sombre times, believing that the development of the vaccine has shown us that ‘we can do things faster than we think’. ‘Joy is a wonderful place to work from’, she declares and leaves us with her 2020 playlist which, she says, gladdens the heart.

Samenua Sesher is a culture management consultant, a coach, an unconscious bias trainer and the founder and director of the Museum of Colour, exploring the creative journeys of British people of colour. She has experience of delivering multi-million-pound programmes and has fed into national cultural policy; set up and run a local authority culture service and lectured.

She was a 2008/09 Clore Fellow and was awarded an OBE for Services to the Arts in spring 2018 from the New Year’s Honours List.

Samenua is a People's Palace Project (PPP) Associate, member of the Advisory Board for The Art of Cultural Exchange and the is on the faculty for Oxford Cultural Leaders.

All her work is underpinned by a passionate belief in the power of creativity to transform us, challenge us and help to improve our understanding of the world, its people and ourselves.
Digital Museum of Colour The Pitt Rivers Museum of Anthropology at Oxford Samenua's Spotify playlist

Reading Between the Lines | Ben Morgan

Language and Power - how does it work?

Dr. Ben Morgan

In this episode Tracey Camilleri talks to poet, academic, essayist and writer Ben Morgan looks under the bonnet at how language really works and why, when used well, it is effective. How has the recent outburst of joy around the vaccine and the US election been expressed? What is powerful about the way Joe Biden use language? What can we learn from the first lines of Hamlet? Why do certain metaphors work? What's the secret of getting the tone right? Why is Greta Thunberg such a skilful user of rhetoric? Join us for this enjoyable pick through the bones and muscles of the way we speak now.

Dr Ben Morgan is a writer, critic and tutor based in Oxford. He has published poetry widely, including a long sequence, 'Medea in Corinth' (Poetry Salzburg, 2018), which retells the Greek myth in modern forms. He is completing a book on Shakespeare and the idea of political justice for Princeton University Press. He also writes essays and reviews for a range of publications, as as teaching Shakespeare studies and English to undergraduates at Oxford and beyond, with a particular focus on visiting students.

18 episodes

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