Better Boards Conference 2023

Better Boards Conference 2023 Forging Strategic Pathways BRISBANE, 2–3 JUNE 2023


Bringing the lens of the 'Anablep' to your Strategic Planning

Elise Sernik

CEO, Leadership Space

Elise Sernik is an executive and team coach, strategy consultant, leadership and culture change facilitator and trainer with a long history of specialising in the social purpose sector. She founded Leadership Space to help the sector fulfil its critical role in the Australian and global economy. Over the past 10 years, Elise and her team have worked with hundreds of leaders across the sector helping them to unlock their ability to set strategic direction, lead, team, partner and accelerate the achievement of meaningful social impact.

Elise holds qualifications in executive and team coaching, neuro-leadership, gestalt psychotherapy and mindfulness. Her approach spans the personal, the organisational and the systemic, which provides her with a style that clients often describe as dynamic, engaging, and transformational. In 2015 Elise was honoured to be recognised by ICF NSW for her contribution to the Nonprofit Sector.

An Anablep is a unique South American fish, and it serves as a metaphor. The ‘Anablep’ has two eyes above the water, and two eyes below the water. For boards engaged in strategic planning, the relevance of the metaphor is about leveraging both the ‘what’ of strategic planning (above the water) and the ‘how’ (below the water). The ‘what’ gets our natural attention: what is our strategic vision; what goals will we set out to achieve; what measures will track our success and so on. This is extremely important and deserves our intention and expertise. The two eyes below the water are about our ‘how’ and this is particularly important when an organisation is navigating through change or growth. In our decade plus experience partnering with boards and executive teams, the ‘how’ is often taken for granted or undercooked and yet this aspect is just as important in driving success.

This session lifts the lid on the ‘how’ aspects of strategic planning. It shares case studies to help directors pinpoint the opportunities and priorities that matter to them on this side of the ledger. The ‘how’ includes domains such as: how do we have robust yet safe conversations; how do we continue to increase the level of trust between the Chair and CEO, and Board and Executive; how does our approach to strategic planning strengthen our understanding of each other’s roles in the organisation and our ability to partner for excellence.

We’ll introduce a framework that allows participants to consider where strategic planning sits within in a wider organisational development journey, and practical tools that can be taken into your organisation to lift your ‘how’ towards the level of your ‘what’.

Join Elise to:

  • i. Understand why strategic planning is a not to be missed opportunity to drive significant gains in your ‘How’: leadership, teaming and culture.

  • ii. Be able to assess the priorities and opportunities that you want to make progress on through your strategic planning.

  • iii. Gain practical tools and tips that you can bring into your strategic planning whether you do it yourself, or have the process externally facilitated.

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