Adelaide Studio’s Leadership Development Initiative

Culture / Studio News

Over the past five years, DesignInc Adelaide has had consistent organic growth in our studio team. Since 2020, DesignInc Adelaide has been crafting a leadership development program to help manage this expansion. In the second half of 2021, 17 of our senior management team and future leaders came together to develop leadership capability in our inaugural bespoke four-month program.

Adelaide Director and People + Culture Lead Ben Zoontjens said, ‘We are building a workplace culture that promotes professional development in a supportive environment that has the flexibility to adapt as personal situations changes. We are excited to have completed our first bespoke Leadership Development Program and will continue to provide leadership development opportunities to broaden our capability.’

The program’s design reflects our culture of being a Deliberately Developmental Organisation. We aim for participants to feel engaged and valued, and establish a common language of leadership for working together on our business strategy.

As a new member of the studio’s leadership team, I value the support and the tools provided in this program. The Executive Leadership Team sought the team’s input prior to developing the program. This helped tailor the sessions to our real-life needs as a collective leadership group. The program has helped me progress my career and better lead our project teams.

Michael Willis
Associate, DesignInc Adelaide

The program is structured to the following themes:

  • Leading Self – a leadership assessment for self-awareness, dialogue skills and the neuroscience of leadership and relationships,
  • Leading Others – understanding leadership styles, setting direction and delegation and having difficult conversations,
  • Leading for Impact – acknowledging the influence and role of the trusted advisor, personal branding, understanding, and leading change.

Associate, Gavin Dixon commented, ‘The leadership program gave me the tools to heighten my self-awareness. This has been invaluable to me personally on a day-to-day basis. The program also provided me with different frameworks which I can apply in various situations. These frameworks allow me to better understand what motivates individuals and what may be hindering a colleague or team’s ability to perform their job successfully and improve their performance.’