Shadowing Programme
for Leaders and Managers
at All Levels

Would your leaders and managers benefit from shadowing individuals in other organisations to enhance their performance and share best practice?

Fast paced organisations need to keep up with change, collaborate and innovate. Networking with and learning from other organisations is a key part of this which can be lost as organisations can easily become insular and inward looking. This is particularly true in Cumbria given the size of the county and the geographical spread of businesses.

Using our business networks, we will source shadow partners, manage the process and coach your leaders and managers on how to get maximum benefit from the experience.

The programme connects leaders from different organisations, equips them with the ability to give great feedback and learn from their own experience. A great way to grow leaders and build collaborative networks. We offer this as an open enrolment or company specific programme.

We propose to Leaders and Managers from an exciting mix of organisations and sectors across Cumbria working at similar levels to undertake a shadowing programme. The team here will do all the matching to ensure you are matched to a suitable and similar level.

An introductory workshop takes place at our Cockermouth offices. It is followed by shadowing activity and a reflection and evaluation workshop.


Introductory Workshop

Delegates will attend a one-day workshop with the following objectives:

  • To understand the purpose and benefits of shadowing
  • To meet their matched person
  • To agree ground rules, objectives and expectations of shadowing
  • To decide how, when and where the shadowing will happen
  • To think about what they want to observe when shadowing their partner
  • To think about what they want their partner to observe them doing, and get feedback on
  • To consider and overcome any logistical / confidentiality / access issues
  • To develop and hone feedback and listening skills
  • To develop observational skills
  • To consider how the shadowing programme will relate to your team/organisation as a whole

Shadowing Visits

Shadowing typically involves each pair spending a half or a full day at each other's organisation. Each pair should complete at least one shadowing visit with each other. Following the introductory workshop, the pair will arrange the dates and times for the shadowing between themselves to allow for the observation of the activities that best suit the agreed outcomes.

Reflection and Evaluation Workshop

After the shadowing is completed, participants will come back together as a group, to reflect on their insights and learning and to plan how this will help them develop their management and leadership practice.

Benefits of Shadowing

Shadowing allows managers and leaders working at the same level but in different industry sectors to: observe each other in action; give and receive feedback on their leadership styles; share best practice in leadership and management; and enable the spread of innovation and ideas across non-competing industries.

Shadowing will allow delegates to:

  • Gain a benchmark of individual leadership against peers
  • Get feedback from a peer outside of the political and cultural structures of their own organisations
  • Reflect on what they and their business do well and what they need to improve on
  • Learn new business practices and spread innovation between non-competing business sectors
  • Hone their listening skills and how to give and receive feedback
  • Develop essential observation and reflection skills
  • Share processes, approaches and ideas between organisations
  • Observe other people’s leadership styles
  • Learn about their own behaviour and how they are perceived by others
  • Receive feedback on their own leadership style and behaviour
  • Build their networks
  • Get access to different way of working in areas such as communication, delegation and planning
  • Build confidence and belief in self and their organisation

What Shadowing is (and is not)...

Is Is Not
Growth opportunity Quick fix or immediate transformation
Peer exchange Peer coaching or mentoring
Listening, observing and feedback Venting session
Asking why Telling how
Structured approach Random approach
Leadership and business networking Job opportunity networking
Energising and motivating A jolly or day off
Sharing best practices WoW Forcing your company way on others
Putting the business first Putting yourself first
Go and see Theoretical suggestions around a conference table

Current Programmes

We do not currently have any shadowing programmes planned but please let us know if you are interested and we will add you to the waiting list.


Any questions please contact Lucy at the Centre for Leadership Performance on 01900 824 822 or email

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