Enabling leadership for social impact

12 December 2013 By Camilla Macdonell

Folio brought 16 like-minded people together from across corporate, government and non-government contexts and over the last 6 months we have been on an amazing journey.

A journey of reflection as we explored our own stories and what has influenced and shaped us over time. 

A journey about understanding what makes an effective Community leader and the power of collaboration over authority in seeking to make a positive difference to the world we live in. 

A journey about better listening to and understanding our communities and the wicked social problems at play - like how to tackle climate change, embrace asylum seekers and refugees and celebrate Victoria's unique aboriginal culture and heritage. And about how to do good, and not just feel good about doing something.

Along the way we have met an amazing collective of passionate, diverse, courageous and determined individuals. Individuals who have a clear vision for the future and are living out their values by taking action as inspirational community leaders and who the Folio group have been able to test/poke/prod and challenge in an interactive way and individuals who have challenged us in return.

We have been privileged to hear people share honest and personal stories about their lives, their struggles, their hopes, insights and passion.

We have also been inspired by each other and created a strong, trusted Folio network built on sharing our personal stories and exposing our vulnerabilities all centred around an obvious desire to make a positive difference.

We have felt an array of emotions like ... admiration, frustration, inspiration  -  and - we have laughed, listened, learned and grown. We are works in progress - but as a result of Folio we are more open, aware, collegiate, connected and optimistic for the future.  

We acknowledge the importance and the support of those around us the professionalism and support of the whole Leadership Victoria team and the power of exposing our vulnerabilities as a means to further develop. And we recognise that by continuing to listen to and respect each and every person's journey – our compassion can  make a positive difference. 

And so our journey continues with a newly created network of peers to challenge, support and guide us along the way and, as we move forward, we will act on our passion and walk hand in hand with communities to imagine and create a better future.

And that is what community leadership is all about.

Camilla Macdonell's speech on behalf of the Folio group delivered at the 2013 Presentation Dinner.