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"I now have a renewed confidence in my ability to approach my current role and enhance my leadership style and influence."

By Cranfield Executive Development
Graeme Morrison - blog image
"High Performance Leadership is the most impactful programme I’ve been on; it’s given me tools, techniques and perspective that I will be able to put to positive use every day."


As European Supply Chain Director for a global food business, Graeme Morrison is recognised as a supply chain subject matter expert within his business. But after 10 years with the organisation he had begun thinking about what he wanted from the next phase of his career.

Baxters Food Group is a 150 year old, family-owned business with a very strong heritage and history, and some of the most recognisable brands in the UK food market. As an organisation that prides itself on putting its people at the heart of their brand, Baxters offers its senior leaders the opportunity to join the High Performance Leadership (HPL) programme at Cranfield.


“I was delighted to be offered the opportunity to sign up for the HPL programme by Baxters as one of five leaders in the business who were selected as part of the ongoing investment in leadership development. Baxters offer the programme as a personal growth opportunity, and when I looked at what it delivered, I was impressed.

“My objectives were to really understand more about myself and my general leadership capabilities in order to get a more rounded and considered view about how to plan for the next phase of my career.

“I wanted to discover whether I was well enough equipped to do that, which areas of my own skill sets were the strongest, and which needed further refinement and development.

“I was also keen to take the opportunity to extend my professional network, to get different perspectives on leadership and the challenges it brings, as well as observing different ways of what good leadership may look like.

“The content in the programme blew me away – initially with fear!! It really pulled me right out of my comfort zone into areas I would never have ever considered working in; however it became evident quite quickly just how valuable and transferrable some of these skills we use are and not just in a business context; in life in general.

“What really made the HPL experience stand out for me was that the programme was engaging and fun which made the learning so much easier. The programme leaders are, in my opinion, first class at what they do. They hold their audience superbly well and really seem to understand how to read the room and keep the energy levels up through a pretty intense and busy programme. Not an easy task!

“I also had the pleasure of doing the programme with a truly amazing and diverse group of other participants. The support, openness, honesty and friendship provided was brilliant – and we managed to incorporate lots of fun and humour along the way too, which I valued immensely.

“The whole Cranfield experience was thoroughly enjoyable, not only due to the excellent content and learning experience but also through making connections with the course leaders and peers over dinner and a beer in the bar. The work undertaken outside of the on-site modules, including the personal coaching, is also really valuable.

“Thanks to the superb organisational skills of the admin team, you can focus entirely on learning and enjoying the experience, rather than worrying too much about any of the other things that can often be distractions when you sign up to programmes like these.

“My key takeaways have been that firstly I need to smile more. Sounds like a strange one, but it’s incredible how some of this simple feedback can make a huge difference! More generally, I now feel I have all the tools in the locker to be a high performing leader.

“I have my own plan about how I’d like to show up as a leader and person in the future, and so far I think I’ve managed to deliver this more consistently than before I did HPL; however I will need to continually review my own progress. Most importantly, I now have a renewed confidence in my ability to approach my current role and enhance my leadership style and influence. I’ll ask my team in a couple of months’ time of they see a positive change!

“My confidence as a leader has definitely increased considerably since completing HPL. I think my ambitions will be less constrained as a result of the programme, as I now understand how transferable my skills are to things that I may not have considered prior to the programme.

“What advice would I give anyone thinking of attending the programme? Don’t think about it just do it! You’ll love it.

“I would absolutely recommend HPL - it’s the most impactful programme I’ve been on. It’s given me tools, techniques and perspective that I will be able to put to positive use every day in the workplace and also in everyday life outside of work too.”


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Tags: leadership, article

High Performance Leadership