When it comes to Leaders in Sport, there’s not many people more impressive than Michael Johnson. Not only is he a four-times Olympic gold medallist, he’s gone on to develop a successful career as a pundit, whilst at the same time building a well-respected elite athlete training centre called Michael Johnson Performance. What stands out about Michael is his commitment to invest in communities and – as part of this – the Michael Johnson Young Leader Program was born. In Michael’s words, all talent needs is a future.
The Young Leader program was developed through a partnership between Think Beyond, CoCreate and Coaches Across Continents, and was aimed at identifying young leaders and athletes from deprived communities around the world who were all using sport to tackle issues they faced in their own communities. From gender inequality in Zanzibar and Tibet to disability inclusion in Britain and America through to youth education in Brazil and Cambodia, this is a truly global group of inspiring young leaders.
CoCreate’s role is to help them translate more of that leadership potential into reality, building their self-awareness, equipping them to recover from setbacks and crucially developing their ability to lead under pressure. We integrate intensive leadership sessions around the physical performance elements led by Michael and his team. The result is powerful – a week long leadership accelerator for the young leaders attending, with follow-up support in place for each young leader back in their own communities.
When we were putting the programme together, we knew we needed someone on board who understood leadership development and who would inspire the young people. I knew from the first time we met CoCreate that they were the right people for the job. The training style brings to life the leadership concepts most important to me – working within your sphere of influence, building resilience and developing the confidence to act and make a difference. It’s been a great start to the partnership and I’m looking forward to working together to help more young people to unlock their leadership potential.Michael Johnson – four times Olympic Gold Medalist