Team

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Andy Harding

Who is your favourite leader and why?

There are so many leaders who I deeply admire including Alex Ferguson, Cristiano Ronaldo, Billy Graham (a preacher who has spoken to an estimated 2 billion people throughout his life), and my old Youth Pastor Liam Eaglestone. However, the two leaders I'd like to focus on are the sporting legend Michael Jordan, and controversial rapper Eminem. Michael Jordan was phenomenally hard working, tenacious and dedicated to becoming, in many people's opinion, the best basketball player of all time. Whereas Eminem's story is powerfully portrayed and depicted throughout his records, and demonstrates an admirable vulnerability, transparency and courage.

I'm aware I have completely taken liberties and named six (not one as asked)!!

Where do you currently lead?

I am Youth Pastor at Central, Edinburgh and coordinate their youth ministry, oversee the 0-18s ministry and have wider church responsibilities. I also co-manage a football team where I live and help lead a youth project in the same community. I am founder of Lead and Director of the Scottish Christian youth event, Powerpoint. I also try and lead positively as a father and husband.

Why are you excited about working with Lead?

I truly believe that young people have enormous potential and can radically transform the world they find themselves in. If we raise up a generation of brilliant leaders across the UK, we'll unquestionably have a phenomenal impact on society at large!

What advice would you give a younger leader?

The solid foundations for success are formed amidst the fragile structures of failure... You learn through giving it a go and trial and error, so don't be held back by the fear of messing it up!

Pamela Lyall

Favourite leader?

I am struggling to find one name of a leader that is my favourite! However the kind of leader I admire are those who lead in a permissioning way and are not controlling. Those who want people to work for them who are actually smarter and more skilled than they and they don't feel threatened by them but can celebrate their achievements. Someone who genuinely wants to bring out the best in the folk around them.

Where are you leading?

In my church, Central Jesus at the Heart, where I am one of the elders. I also lead professionally in that I lecture and teach mediation on a university course in Edinburgh and I mentor young folk.

Why are you excited about working with Lead?

I think it is a tremendous opportunity for young adults to intentionally consider their leadership roles and styles just at the point that they launch themselves out on the world. I wish I had spent some time doing such a course when I was 16/17 years old, as I am sure that it would have made a significant difference to the way I lead now.

Advice to a younger leader?

Be yourself - after all that's the only person that you can convincingly be! Know yourself as well - the upside and the downside - and be realistic about who you are. Don't compare your inside with someone else's outside. In other words we all have a habit of seeing others as sorted, confident individuals who in comparison to what we know of ourselves have it all together. Often the outside is for show and does not reflect what is really going on for an individual.

Jon Dean

Favourite leader?

Am I allowed to say the current Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger? No? What I love about leaders is that they come in all shapes and sizes. I could talk about Mother Theresa or Richard Branson, who have both had an impact in massively different ways. I think what I appreciate about my favourite leaders is that they have a strong sense of how they can make the world a better place. Oh, and they are kind.

Where are you leading?

Interesting question! I lead the band at our church quite a bit and I lead on different projects at work. But I think I play a leadership role in lots of smaller ways too, through the relationships and conversations that I have with people every day.

Why are you excited about working with Lead?

I think it's a great place for people to start to think about leadership in general and more importantly what it all means for them. Having space to engage with the difference they could make in the world and start to try things out, who knows what it could lead to!

Advice to a younger leader?

Obviously any decent advice is going to totally depend on the person in front of me, but I guess a few things I'd encourage younger leaders to do is to enjoy themselves and have fun, follow their passions, work hard and keep on learning. There is a whole world out there waiting for them to make a difference.

Edwin Backler

Edwin Backler has a rich and diverse range of business and leadership experience. He spent his early career working as a qualified accountant in the energy sector for multinational corporations in the UK, South America and Africa. For the last 15 years he has been pursuing entrepreneurial interests, acquiring various SMEs in Scotland and Ireland, primarily in the residential property management sector. Navigating the fluctuating economic climate of the last decade has brought him many learning opportunities both in times of growth and contraction.

As Chairman of his company, he finds himself in the best of both the worlds he is passionate about – business and leadership development. Whilst remaining actively involved in business, his role enables him to spend time developing the leadership team within his company, as well as sharing his wisdom with leaders in a variety of other business organisations and charities. One of his highlights this year has been training and advising a group of entrepreneurs to enable them to turn their concepts into viable enterprises.

Edwin's passion is to encourage others to discover and embrace their full potential. Self-awareness and an understanding of how to remove personal limitations are key to this. The process inevitably leads individuals to an ambitious enthusiasm to become well-equipped, motivated, outstanding leaders in all spheres of life. Edwin is a certified Myers Briggs practitioner.

Edwin is married to Katie and they have 4 children - Tom, Alex, Annie, and Callum. Edwin loves being outdoors and enjoys running, cycling, triathlon and mountaineering … to varying degrees of competency!