Common Purpose
Leeds and Yorkshire

Meridian is a programme for senior leaders who work with multiple, diverse stakeholders

As leaders become more senior, they find themselves delivering complex change with ever more diverse stakeholders. More than ever, they need to be able to collaborate with different people and understand the wider context in which they operate.

Meridian develops leaders with the skills, networks and understanding to make an impact in their organization and across their city. The programme uses a real-world experiential approach. We convene leaders from every corner of the city who share open accounts of their leadership challenges. We take participants to places and organizations where they can explore how leaders approach complex change in different contexts. On each programme, we guarantee a diverse mix of leaders from the private, public and NGO sectors.

Robin Williamson, Head of Logistics, Haribo UK

‘I head up all the logistics planning for Haribo in the UK. My role has always been quite technical and detail focused. As I develop in my career the challenges I face take me beyond my technical expertise and require me to lead across both internal and external boundaries. The Meridian programme really helped me to think about how I need to adapt my style as a leader to be able to resonate and to be effective across business lines and beyond. The programme content was challenging but provided me with an incredibly diverse network of peers who genuinely want to help one another.’

Who is Meridian for?

Leaders operating at a senior level, where they have to deliver complex change with ever more diverse stakeholders—both in their organization and across their city.

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External Stakeholders

Internal Stakeholders



Leading Beyond Authority

Our learning framework: Leading beyond Authority (LBA), underpins the participants’ leadership learning. People who lead beyond their authority can produce change beyond their direct circle of control.

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Learning outcomes

Common Purpose Meridian develops leaders who can deliver complex change beyond their circle of authority.


Become better able to build strong relationships that lead to successful collaborations



Become better able to develop strategies that produce change


Become better able to have an impact in unfamiliar contexts



Become better able to inspire others through your leadership style

Impact: on Individuals
Senior Leaders 

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92% of senior leaders say our programmes have helped them gain broader networks 

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90% of senior leaders say our programmes have helped them develop as leaders

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89% of senior leaders say our programmes have helped them make better decisions 

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90% of senior leaders say our programmes enable them to drive bold innovation

Fiona Sullivan, Head of Food Safety, Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc

“Having worked in large organisations for many years I had type cast myself as a leader in a niche market. Through its focus on experiential learning Common Purpose exposed me to a vast array of leaders who have inspired me to look at leadership with fresh eyes. By looking at leadership styles in the wider community I have realised that I can draw on ideas from many arenas, very different from my own, to support the work that I do and in turn I can use my own knowledge to support teammates from across my company. Common Purpose is fun, energising, thought provoking and through it you will meet friends who can help and support you long after the course has finished.”

The programme

Online learning and group exercises

(One hour)

Our online accelerator allows time-poor participants to maximize their face-to-face experience at their own time and pace. The accelerator introduces participants to the Leading Beyond Authority learning framework, which will underpin the learning throughout the programme.

Month 1 Month 2 Month 3
Leading Beyond Authority Collaboration Leading change
Immersion 1 Immersion 2 Immersion 3
Learning Group 1 Learning Group 2 Learning Group 3

(Equivalent of five days over three months)

Three full-day modules allow participants to explore leadership themes as part of a diverse, cross-sector group. We convene senior leaders from across the city to share open accounts of their own leadership challenges and the ways they overcame them.

Half-day immersion experiences allow participants to experience leadership and decision-making in different contexts. Common Purpose facilitates immersion experiences in a range of different places including prisons, hospitals, schools, businesses and community organizations. Participants attend two immersion experiences from a choice of three.

Learning groups enable participants to deepen their learning as part of a small but diverse group. Each month, a different participant hosts a three-hour learning group at their workplace. Here they work on their own leadership challenges.

Online: Adapting to a new environment

Practices are short tasks or challenges to complete in between the face-to-face elements of the programme. Practices allow participants to extend their learning and gain further leadership insights during the programme.

360 Connect events  360 Platform

Participants connect with other Common Purpose Alumni through our online 360 platform and at 360 Connect events. As Alumni, they can continue their learning in a community of over 75,000 leaders worldwide.

Programme details


£4590 + VAT. Multiple applications are welcomed. Part-fee and bursary places are also available for those genuinely unable to meet the full fee. If you feel that you cannot pay the fee, fill in the section on bursary support on the application form. 

Who participates?

Participants come from diverse backgrounds and sectors, such as:

  • RSM
  • University of Leeds
  • Lloyds Bank
  • John Lewis Partnership
  • North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service
  • West Yorkshire Playhouse



Leeds and Yorkshire Meridian June 2019

Core Day 1: 11 June 2019
Immersion 1: 19 June 2019

Core Day 2: 04 July 2019
Immersion 2: 17 July 2019

Immersion 3: 04 September 2019
Core Day 3: 18 September 2019

Leeds and Yorkshire Meridian November 2019

Core Day 1: 13 November 2019
Immersion 1: 21 November 2019

Immersion 2: 03 December 2019
Core Day 2: 21 January 2020

Immersion 3: 06 February 2020
Core Day 3: 25 February 2020

Applying for Meridian

Please fill in the online application form, choosing the date and location you want. 

If you have any questions on how to apply, or want to find out more about Meridian, please contact

Sarah Pudney, Senior Commissioning for Value Programme Manager, NHS England

“Common Purpose was suggested to me by a senior colleague as I was moving into a role which required me to lead complex change across internal departments and with external stakeholders. The programme gave me the opportunity to meet a diverse network of inspirational, talented and influential fellow leaders across the region – and that was just my fellow participants. Through the Meridian course I have developed connections and friendships with people I never would have otherwise come into contact with and I know we’ll continue to support each other with ideas and challenges in the future.”