Jenny Knight, Leadership Consultant, Management Trainer, Business Speaker, Jenny works with a variety of organisations in both the public and private sectors, nationally and internationally. For example, recent work includes designing a performance management programme for Nestle (Paris office) and providing ‘train the trainer’ programmes, delivering a change management programme for a cohort of colleges across the South East of England.

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Jenny Knight

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Background

Jenny is a consultant with 20 years experience gained through a variety of different organisations:

• as a policy advice and development officer for a large and complex organisation
• as a Corporate Training Officer for a large and complex organisation
• as a Corporate Personnel Officer responsible for management and councillor development
• as a Senior Human Resources development manager responsible for leadership development for an organisation with 7,000 employees
• as a freelance consultant, providing training and development in areas such as change management, leadership in organisations, equalities and diversity, recruitment and selection and performance management
• as a freelance consultant designing HR systems for organisations, such as appraisal and development and recruitment and selection schemes.

Areas of Expertise

She has a Masters Degree in Social and Public Policy, which has informed her work in both the private and public sectors, and her PhD study is in the field of leadership and organisational development. She is currently focusing on learned helplessness in organisations, and is already running short workshops on these themes.

She has a background in acting, directing and writing for theatre and she has successfully incorporated her knowledge and experience in this area into her work as an organisational development consultant. Her skills as a consultant are complemented by her experience as an award winning actress and director.

Jenny works with a variety of organisations in both the public and private sectors, nationally and internationally. For example, recent work includes designing a performance management programme for Nestle (Paris office) and providing ‘train the trainer’ programmes, delivering a change management programme for a cohort of colleges across the South East of England; working with a team of people responsible for a major community regeneration initiative (funded by Central Government), to introduce a training and development strategy and plan, and co-tutoring on a 5 day ‘Leadership and Empowerment’ programme (in Casablanca) for 32 managers from a multi-national water company.

She has recently been working with Lincoln University to formulate an accredited leadership development programme for further education colleges across the South East of England, and is now co-tutoring on this programme. Other work includes designing a competency framework for a voluntary organisation to support their performance management systems, coaching a top management team to plan and implement organisational change, facilitating action learning sets and providing one to one executive coaching.

She has recently been working with the University of Brighton designing and delivering a leadership and management development programme for some 100 managers. She has also provided support to resolve organisational conflict. She is an Associate of IPF, SEEDA, Arts & Business and the Work Foundation, and an assessor for the National Training Awards. She is also an experienced Investors in People advisor and practitioner.

Examples of training and development offered:

• Leadership and management
• Leading and managing change
• Performance management
• Giving and receiving feedback
• Communication skills
• Recruitment and Selection
• Dynamic problem solving
• Motivating teams
• Equalities and Diversity
• Getting the job you want
• Customer care
• Running effective meetings
• Dealing with Conflict
• Coaching and mentoring
• Introducing action learning

Key achievements

• Introduction of leadership competencies, in partnership with public sector organisations, to a local authority
• Achievement of IiP status in three of the six directorates of a unitary authority
• Negotiated substantial amounts of external funding to support leadership development projects and initiatives
• Put on and chaired a Leadership Conference for partner organisations - featuring theatre work, comedy workshops, masking, improvisation etc.
• Introduced management skills framework across a local authority for use in recruitment, appraisal and development
• Completed European tendering process and recruited consultants to assess managers across a large local authority (some 2,000 managers involved in this process)
• Involved 78 councillors in a training needs analysis and then provided a 12 month development programme in response to identified needs
• Introduced Action Learning Sets across large local authority
• Delivered huge range of courses in response to organisational need, with very positive feedback
• Worked with external consultants to provide specific training and development solutions for the organisation
• Designed a management development programme prior to re-organisation, which was so successful that neighbouring authorities used the same programme
• Supported managers and staff through re-organisation by designing and delivering training specifically around recruiting to/applying for posts in the new authority
• Introduction of two politically sensitive policies, against a backdrop of uncertainty and, in some cases, resistance
• Demonstrated Housing Services commitment to equality and diversity by monitoring service delivery against equality standards and goals
• Demonstrated strong managerial skills in an unpredictable and very stressful service delivery environment

Educational and Professional Qualifications

Masters Degree in Social and Public Policy, University of Brighton - 1995

PhD study is in the field of leadership and organisational development. I am currently focusing on learned helplessness in organisations, and am already running short workshops on these themes. University of Brighton – on-going – due for completion this year (2004)

Publications

She has contributed to articles published in several journals, including The Independent, People Management and IRS Magazine, exploring the following issues:

• using theatre in organisational development
• 360-degree feedback – pros and cons
• what leadership really means

Client Comments

'Jenny has some keen strategic insights which clearly reflect the fact that she not only works with people who are in strategic roles but that her own PhD studies on leadership and change have provided her with a rich theoretical framework.
‘Her presentation style is informal and engaging. She manages to demystify complex ideas and leaves the audience wanting more. She has a lively sense of humour, which I am sure people find infectious. She combines an inspiring, high energy personal style with a pragmatic approach to bringing about change….'
'Jenny has extensive experience of policy development, management, and organisational training and development….'
'She has total commitment and reliability…she has enthusiasm and commitment which is infectious…'
'She is highly proactive, a risk taker and one of the most effective change agents I know…'
'Her behaviour is tenacious in the face of organisational barriers…'
'She leads with energy and enthusiasm, which encourages commitment and involvement…'
'Jenny's enthusiasm is highly infectious, and her sense of humour very refreshing. She is, in my view, not only an expert in her field but a very powerful and influential person because of her unique personality. Her interest in, and commitment to her work is borne out by her working towards a PhD…'
'I would recommend Jenny to any organisation seeking to effect change via training and development. Her interpersonal skills are excellent, she is an expert in her field, and, above all, she is a pleasure to work with...'
'…I have always been impressed by the quality of Jenny's work and the enthusiasm that she engenders in those who participate in her courses. Her recent work…on addictive behaviours in organisations provides a useful framework to understanding some of the barriers to organisational change. She is energetic, reliable and delivers a high quality product. For these reasons I have no hesitation in recommending her as a training provider and consultant to advise on strategies for delivering change...'

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