Exploring Human-Centred Leadership With Three6

Dr Ashlee J. Linck | 30 September 2021


Human-Centred Design, or HCD, is a tool that allows us to rethink the way we engage with our people – leaders, followers, teams and stakeholders.

Collaboration and co-design are at the heart of a Human Centred approach.

HCD enables us to understand what our employees and stakeholders need and how to best create or enhance their employee experiences. Under an HCD mindset, we aspire to unpack the journey, discover pain points and understand what our greatest assets – our people – see, hear and feel.  

However, what we often see isn’t a lived reality. Collaboration and co-design can often fall flat when we start implementation or scale for different ideas, particularly in larger organisations. For this to become a reality, we need to understand the dynamics of leaders, followers and how their relationships are integral to the successful implementation of HCD.  

Leadership effectiveness, team culture and the leader-follower relationships work best when they are developed through the eyes of the humans involved in these organisational relationships. Members of a team (or squad), organisation or leadership group experience their lived work experience through different lenses of motivation, challenge and growth. Their pain points exist in different places – they hear the corporate message uniquely – they feel safe and inspired from different offshoots of their professional lives. To maximise the lived leadership and organisational experience, we must challenge ourselves to adopt a human-centred approach to drive our leadership efforts. This, in turn, will maximise the effectiveness of our service implementation. 

Within every team/department/division/organisation, leader-follower relationships will exist. The quality of these leader-follower relationships/exchanges will directly influence organisational outcomes. To get this relationship right, we need leaders and followers to co-design their relationships. In doing so, both leaders and followers will discover their default communication styles, existing strengths, personality traits, attributes and gaps. They will explore their selves as individuals, followers and leaders and proactively co-design and develop an optimal leader-follower exchange. In an HCD project, we will be both a leader and a follower at many different times, whether working with senior sponsors, leading workshops or facilitating implementation. Therefore, we must embrace and reflect on who we are and who we aspire to be – as both identities. Developing the relationship between the two will enable a successful and productive relationship.  

By amalgamating best practices in human-centred design and leadership methodologies, Three6 has created an innovative style of leadership development that is anchored in co-design principles, positive psychology, followership theories and HCD mindsets: Human-Centred Leadership (HCL). HCL embraces HCD mindsets such as empathy, creativity, adaptability and the embracing of ambiguity and uses them to design leadership and followership strategies that result in self and leader awareness. This awareness influences organisational outcomes in a productive and human-centred way for the individual, team, leader, culture and overall organisation. Adopting and developing a human-centred leadership approach champions a mindset shift within the organisation and equips your squad/team/org for success in your design projects. 

Our HCL experts work with teams, leaders and executives to uplift their leader-follower relationships, co-design optimal and functional teams, inspire mindset growth across all stakeholders and supports successful and impactful design project outcomes. 

Want to learn more? Book in here to explore HCL with Dr Ashlee J Linck or send us a message! We would love to hear from you!