Former DG of the International Committee of the Red Cross (2010-2020), challenging and sharpening leader’s strategic thinking to prepare for tomorrow
Consulting with organisations to mentor their teams and individuals to optimise performance during virtual interactions. Facilitating and delivering project management frameworks and strategies that can be utilised throughout an organisation.
Sinéad Hewson works internationally with organizations and businesses in the middle of change, scaling up and seeking high performance. Increasingly her role is with clients on the delivery of virtual and face to face sessions that are designed to enhance team performance and decision making. She helps clients clarify their thinking, so that they focus and take action, using a mix of experiential, and consulting techniques.
She designs programs and frameworks with clients which can be delivered by the client in-house or by other providers globally and coaches leaders, speakers and moderators on how to structure, moderate and present in virtual sessions.
She works with company leaders and technical experts from the public and private sector developing strategies that are relevant at local and international level. Programs aim to utilize resources effectively, be SDG aligned and realize gender equity.
Originally from Ireland, Sinéad is based in the Netherlands, has been a lecturer at Rotterdam School of Applied Sciences, Webster University, TU Dublin and is a PhD candidate in communication. She is a Board Member of the European Institute of Women’s Health focusing on gender equity at policy level in Europe
Virtual meetings and presentations:
Five years ago Sinéad moved her business into a virtual environment. In fact she was forced to do so at short notice because of a sudden illness in the family which limited travel for a number of months. When the situation stabilised, she continued working virtually. Today, 85% of her projects are virtual.
Her view is that conducting business throughout the COVID-19 delay phase is not about being connected 24/7, sitting in a virtual office 9-5 or signing up to every app that claims it can support the business. It’s about understanding your own business first, identifying appropriate connection points and chunking time differently so that the organisations can run effectively.
We are in a cocoon (rather than in lockdown) at the moment, for business leaders this requires a rethink on the implementation of organisational processes, interactions, conferences and meetings. Setting clear expectations and milestones is hugely important as well as how a message is accurately communicated.
Furthermore selective, targeted communication gives clarity and mitigates the risk of frustration, misunderstanding and isolation while adapting to a virtual environment.
Easing into virtual working starts with the individual, although technology is an empowering tool, it is the responsibility of the individual to invest time to understand:
a. the basics of the technology in use, and
b. how to behave in virtual meetings.
For leaders, an adaptive approach underpinned with common sense can leverage the positive and negative aspects of this new paradigm and help identify what’s next.
Reports have shown that up to 40% of the working week is spent dealing with communication pain (waiting for information, unwanted communication, inefficient co-ordination and barriers to collaboration). Poorly considered virtual environments can magnify this. Therefore it is prudent connect appropriately, turn up prepared, set clear expectations and focus.
Speaker Ideas have secured her availability to act as a consultant / moderator / trainer to leaders, organisations and teams on optimising performance and interactions virtually. This also includes 1-2-1 sessions with leaders on how they turn up, present and share and gather insights from colleagues. She regularly coaches, mentors and project manages in virtual environments and says that the main difference between face to face an virtual interactions is that 95% of the work for the meeting takes place before the virtual meeting commences concentrated on structure, timings and what needs to be communicated.