Strong leadership plays an important role in driving positive change and creating sustainable impact on communities. Leadership development and upskilling talent in the social sector is crucial for the growth and success of organisations that aim to work towards enhancing social conditions.
Investing in the development of leaders can lead to improved organisational performance, increased capacity to serve communities, and a more sustainable future for the sector as a whole. A critical part of the Indian social sector is its commitment to knowledge sharing, and the building of knowledge fora for discussion and debate.
As a key part of the sector ecosystem, the India Leaders for Social Sector (ILSS) hosted a series of interactive sessions featuring impact leaders to outline the state of the sector, and its future, with the diverse ILSS alumni community.
A key theme through the two-day event was the need for nurturing strong talent in the sector, to be able to take on the most critical social, cultural, political and economic issues facing the country.
Atul Satija, Founder & CEO of The/Nudge Institute & Give India, a keynote speaker at the event, spoke about the need for senior leaders with cross-functional skills to work within the sector to drive innovation in programme and project conceptualisations.
Ingrid Srinath, social sector expert and ex-Director at the Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy, Ashoka University, who delivered a special address at the event, also highlighted the importance of building networks of knowledge, communication and sharing to build a strong sector.
As an organisation which is committed to leadership development, ILSS has spent five years working to build leadership, and amplify impact in the sector. In its offerings of capacity building programmes, aimed at both the corporate and social sector, ILSS has a detailed set of offerings, and has a holistic approach to building capacity in the sector.
ILSS now has an alumni community of over 600 leaders, consisting of non-profit organisation founders and senior leaders, board members, researchers, fundraisers, and more.
Anu Prasad, Founder and CEO of ILSS, said, "Leadership development is critical to the success of any organisation, especially with a focus on the social sector. Since its inception, ILSS has been committed to making a positive impact on the social sector and developing knowledge needed to drive positive change in the communities. We believe that investing in leadership development and upskilling talent is a crucial step in achieving the organisational goals."
Ashish Dhawan, Founder and CEO at The Convergence Foundation, and a member of the ILSS advisory board, spoke extensively about the importance of talent infusion and development in the sector.
Dhawan said during his special address, "The future of ILSS is in consolidation. It's about focusing its work on making the programmes stronger, more effective, and more standardised. Injecting talent into the sector is a game changer."
He focused on the critical work ILSS is doing in building communities of practice for the sector, creating pathways of communication and collaboration for professionals across the sector.
The event facilitated conversation on some of the most important topics in the sector.
On the theme of building leaders, and collaboration in the sector, Reshma Anand, Regional Director at the Ford Foundation, addressed the need for continuous engagement to build pathways for collaboration. As she stated, the need to invest in ideas, individuals, and institutions, is urgent.
The Indian social sector is complex and multi-faceted. Bringing together leaders from across verticals, domains, fields and sectors has been essential in shaping the powerful work conducted across organisations. To successfully tackle the social issues which face our country, it's essential to bring together leaders from across domains and sectors, and build an inclusive and diverse sector to create catalytic impact at scale.
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