NHS Yorkshire & the Humber Leadership Academy

Supporting your leadership journey


Leadership Masterclass: Wilful Blindness with Margaret Heffernan

Date: 28 November 2019

Time: 09:00 AM to 04:30 PM

Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes

Venue: Doncaster


Leadership Skills Development

Leadership Dimensions:

Leadership Masterclass: Wilful Blindness with Margaret Heffernan

Why do we fail to see what happens in front of us? Most major organisational failures derive not from hidden or unknown information, but from knowledge that is easily available - but overlooked, under-valued, marginalised and trivialised.

In her landmark book, WILFUL BLINDNESS, Margaret Heffernan explored the many ways that, as individuals, we fail to notice much of what is most important to our lives. She also examined in detail major organisational failures in which hundreds or thousands of people ignored the risks and threats surrounding them. This behaviour isn’t a function of malice, ignorance or stupidity but of fundamental ways in which individuals and organisations behave and believe. Wilful blindness is endemic in our lives and the ways we live and work together.

However just because it is so pervasive doesn’t mean we can’t see more and better. The whole premise of organisational life is that, collectively, we can see more than any one person can see alone. So how do we capture the promise of collective intelligence? What kinds of culture and leadership are required to mitigate blindness and to ensure that we don’t miss major errors and faults? In this masterclass, Margaret Heffernan will describe how organisations have gone about becoming better informed and more aware of the opportunities and dangers that surround them.

For further information

Contact Amanda Reszczynski