Future Leader Pairings - What are they?

Fatimah Malik
September 13, 2022

Our Future Leader Intern, Fatimah, gives more insight into what the Circl programme is like for the Future Leader participants. In this post, she tells all about the Future Leader Pairings and how they work:

Hey everyone! Fatimah here :)

You may have heard about our Future Leader Pairings that occur on every programme, but if you haven’t then no worries! I’ll be explaining a little bit more about them in this blog.

In our Future Leader Pairings, instead of being matched with a professional, you're matched with another Future Leader like yourself. You're still given the opportunity to develop the skills to be a leader as you're able to learn and practice the leadership and coaching skills with each other. Working with a Future Leader is great because you can gain and learn from each other’s experiences, just as you would with a professional.

Future Leaders are frequently put into breakout rooms during the two-hour sessions, so you're still able to network with other professionals from the company you’re working with. You'll also be a part of the Circl network where you're invited to attend events held by our partners, giving you more brilliant opportunities to network with other professionals. 

Saz, one of our brilliant Future Leaders (and our new Programmes Officer!), has shared her experience being in a Future Leader Pairing during her time on the Circl Programme: 

“Being in a Future Leader pairing is a unique experience but without a doubt an invaluable one. On a programme there's normally only one Future Leader pairing, so in the beginning you sometimes feel that you’re missing out on a certain level of coaching that professionals can offer. However, when you’re put in another pair for coaching practice during the Circl session, you realise that actually, even the professionals are just as new to coaching as you and your Future Leader pair.

It was very easy to talk to my partner about my life goals and challenges, especially because they were at a similar stage in life to me. We both felt really comfortable giving honest feedback about how our coaching session went, without feeling like we were crossing any lines or talking down to each other, so we were able to make progress quite quickly.

We both brought different strengths and weaknesses to coaching, so we were able to support and motivate each other to improve our skills. My partner would often send me links to career-related events as well so I didn’t miss out on networking opportunities either!”


Matthew and Esra, another two great Future Leaders, answered a few questions for us on their experience of theFuture Leader pairing:

1) Which programme were you on and what were your expectations when you started?

We were on the Benevolent Al programme. When we first started the course, we expected to be taught by a leader at Benevolent AI and expected that we would gain executive knowledge and understanding in becoming a leader as a coach. Our thoughts were that we would gain skills in coaching others.

2) What was it like being in a Future Leader Pairing?

The way the course is designed is that we are put together in pairs, this way of teaching is beneficial to the learning process as you support each other and we could practice all the skills we learned on the programme in our one-to-one sessions.

3) In what ways did the Circl Programme support you in achieving your goals?

The Circl programme helped us find our goals using the skills we learned such as active listening, which encourages one another to speak and find their goals within themselves. Practising with one another helped us to set new goals and work harder to achieve our bigger goals.

4) How have you applied coaching skills to your life after the programme?

We have applied the skills we have learned in both our personal lives as well as professional lives. We have both used the techniques at home with our partners and also at work with other colleagues where others needed help. The TGROW model seems to fit all coaching and leadership situations and, if used effectively, can be a really powerful tool to inspire change in someone with a problem.

5) Would you recommend the Circl Programme to other FLs and why?

Yes, we would recommend the programme to other future leaders as the skills gained are unlike any other course. The way the course includes 121 sessions and break-out rooms in the main session gives a personal experience with other members of the class who you may find are all other the world. This is such a great opportunity to not only gain skills in coaching and leadership, but to gain new contacts and, for us, friends for life.

I hope this blog has helped to explain what our FL pairings are and what they’re like! If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to send me an email at circl@circl.org!