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Leadership Development

Community Leadership of Today

For communities to be successful, they must support and nurture a leadership philosophy that welcomes widespread citizen involvement. The best leadership is shared and recognized as a process by which people are empowered to make their own decisions through collaborative efforts with diverse sectors of any given community.

Traditional leadership ideas were based on competitive styles that were exclusive of the many voices within a community. At the same time, this style of leadership paid little or no attention to local strengths and opportunities; instead, dwelling on porblems and dificiencies seemed to be the starting point for any given project.

Just like businesses, thriving communities that hope to achieve longevity must remain positioned to address the challenges that await them. A leadership philosophy that creates a diverse environment and promotes a shared vision among residents is essential to any community's sustainability.

Programs Available

Leadership Plenty®

Leadership Plenty logoThe Pew Partnership for Civic change developed this training program for people who want to work with others to solve problems in their communities. The program offers detailed plans for delivering highly interactive sessions, each approximately six hours in length. Certified trainers are available to deliver this program to communities throughout Mississippi.

The sessions include the following topics:

  • A group of citizens working on a LeadershipPlenty projectFinding leaders
  • Identifying community assets
  • Managing groups effectively
  • Making meetings more productive
  • Managing conflict
  • Building strategic partnerships
  • Moving from talk to action
  • Valuing evaluation
  • Communicating for change
  • Facing the challenges of racism and race relations

To learn how to start a program in your community, download the brochure.

Community Leadership Program Assistance

Community leadership programs provide a comprehensive, interactive experience for participants. Minimal lecture combined with maximum dialogue and discussion shoudl be the primary goal of any leadership program. Application of knowledge gained is often combined with individual and group projects that maximize the benefits of such a program.

While foundational leadership principles need to serve as a basis for the effort, community development, economic development, government, and communication components are incorporated for a complete and balanced leadership program that encourages dynamic, outside-the-box thinking and community action.

Contact Alan Barefield for more information:
662.325.7995
alanb@ext.msstate.edu