Hello, we’re Connecting Scotland
A little bit about who we are and what we do
Who We Are
Connecting Scotland is a Community Interest Company registered in Scotland, formed in 2015 and our purpose is to:
Support a growing network of trained practitioners.
Organise and deliver training in the practices of participatory leadership, hosting and harvesting conversations.
Deliver work with organisations and communities when we’re invited to help.
Connecting Scotland is right for you if you want to benefit from our considerable skills and experience of working with a range of organisations such as businesses, community groups, and government departments. We’re right for you if:
You, your team or organisation want training and coaching in the practices of the Art of Participatory Leadership, hosting and recording the results of the important conversations.
You want to benefit from and contribute to a local network of practitioners with global connections, opportunities for further personal development, sharing learning, and access to deeper experiences.
You want help with hosting a conversation or process to address a particular or more general challenge in your team, organisation or community.
Our guiding principles and values
To those inside and out
Take time, host ourselves, prepare
In responding to others
Regularly and adapt/change to suit
A safe space to be with others
In terms of commitment
What others say about us
"I’ve had the pleasure of commissioning Connecting Scotland on various occasions in recent years and always been impressed by the organisation’s strong commitment to using creative facilitation & community engagement processes with skill and integrity. On each occasion, we’ve achieved positive outcomes and progress, sometimes when issues seemed intractable."
"The work we undertook with Connecting Scotland helped us to engage the whole community in developing the new plan for MICT."
"Our extended leadership team benefited hugely from the way in which Connecting Scotland worked so collaboratively with us, and helped introduce so many new and powerful ways of working together."
We are experienced hosts, whole-systems thinkers, and practitioners, each coming with diverse experiences and skills. We work with a global network of friends and colleagues to deliver bespoke training, help embed the practices in skills learned, undertake strategic reviews resulting in system transformation, and offering team and personal coaching in a wide variety of settings. We are all passionate about embedding the benefits of participatory leadership and practices in organisations and communities throughout Scotland. We are keen to build more capacity in Scotland and invite you to join us in our endeavours!
Sandy was born and brought up on the Isle of Mull and trained as a boat builder. He and his wife returned to Mull in 1986, where they reopened the village shop in Fionnphort and raised a family of three. After 25 busy years, they sold the shop in 2011. Sandy was and continues to be completely immersed in community life and is involved in numerous projects and groups on and off the island. He is convenor of Mull and Iona Community Trust and chair of Development Trust Association Scotland. Since selling the shop, he has committed his time to working with community groups, social enterprises and other organisations around the country.
Gordon Carmichael has worked with communities and individuals for 40 years and has a well proven record of commitment to developing the full potential of the individual and their environment. Excited by the concept of Participatory Leadership including engaged conversation, empowerment and the opportunity to seek collective intelligence for wiser action, he is committed to ensuring its many practices are widely and appropriately deployed. He believes that engaging the participation of every citizen, and at all levels of our society will increase the well-being of each community.
Since graduating from the RSAMD (Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama – now called the Royal Conservatoire Scotland ) in 1979, Pamela was interested in using the Arts in Community Work to address local concerns and therefore attended Moray House College in Edinburgh to do a Post Graduate Course in Community Work after a few years of doing some theatre work in the North East of Scotland. She then worked in community development projects using the arts for 23 years in the Highlands and is still doing so today.
Andy Lippok gained considerable experience and skills from a career in HR and Project management, Systems Thinking interventions, training and coaching, and several years of contracting in different roles in many organisations and sectors, helping people and organisations make life and work meaningful, through the practices of self-organising/management, wholeness, evolutionary purpose, and the art of participatory leadership and democracy; with the result that people and organisations become rich, vibrant, and meaningful – helping them all on the path to being brilliant!