What inspires you?
I have developed a strong interest in Intercultural projects and programmes encouraging understanding and appreciation of different cultures and the world. Working with passionate people with a desire to make a difference, make the biggest impact possible with the resources available, making a difference to the lives of people young and old through the arts, using the power of creativity to make the world a more pleasureable, interesting and worthwhile place. Using the arts to tackle social problems and conflicts that exist in the modern world.
Which leadership development programme did you attend?
PILP placement, Associate Producer, Beijing Modern Dance Company, China November 2008 – April 2009
Why did you choose the programme?
I have had a strong interest in international arts and a desire to learn and develop my craft by observing and working within a completely different cultural and social context. I knew this would be a challenge and I wanted to exchange working models and practices with another country, as well as recognise my own strengths and weaknesses as a leader. China is a fascinating country and the arts sector there is developing rapidly, and I wanted to observe and be a part of this. This placement came at a crucial stage in my development and has acted as a springboard to a more international career that I aspire to gain over the next few years.
How do you relax?
Walking for miles with my ipod, driving, cooking, bubble baths, visiting art galleries, taking photos, socialising with friends, dreaming about different parts of the world I want to visit.
What single thing would improve the quality of your work-life?
Not sure as I love it!
What is your greatest fear?
At the moment I don´t believe in fears, we all have various strengths and weaknesses and no one is perfect. If you put your mind to it and have a good heart you really can accomplish anything you want. Feel the fear and do it anyway!
What pearl of leadership wisdom would you offer an emerging leader?
Work and play hard with honesty and integrity, and listen to the voice within. Have an open heart and mind and believe.
What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Delicious foods and wines on a daily basis!
What words or phases do you most overuse?
Know what I mean? Oh my god!
What has been your most challenging situation as a leader?
Not having the language skills to communicate with an entire creative team.
What did you learn from that experience?
The right attitude and non verbal communication go further than you think, keep smiling and find inventive ways to get around a problem.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Plotting and carrying out travel adventures around the world, meeting new and diverse cultures and experiencing new ways of living and eating!
Which book(s) are you reading at the moment?
Viva South America! A Journey Through a Restless Continent by Oliver Balch
Which 'leader' from the past or present day do you most admire and why?
Gandhi, for remaining calm, focussed and completely passionate about his beliefs and thinking until the end. For his selflessness and consideration of humanity.
Where would you like to live?
Melbourne, Berlin, New York, and many more...
Did you experience any eureka! moments during your leadership development programme? If yes, what?
For sure, there were many that took me back to my childhood, helped me understand my heritage and identity, clarified challenges that had taken place in previous jobs I had had and projects I had worked on, as well as many more on a personal level through focusing on emotional intelligence and my communication skills.
What is your favourite smell?
Plain chocolate, red wine, freshly brewed coffee, paint!
If you were a super hero, what would your power be?
To read people´s minds
Have you found your leadership development beneficial?
It has helped me clarify what I want from my career and how to get it, and given me the confidence and tools to fly and live my dreams.
For what cause would you die?
For the sake of humanity.
What do you consider to be your greatest (professional or personal) achievement?
Grabbing my back pack to travel around the world independently.
What has been your most embarrassing moment?
Hhhhmmmm....not sure on this one!
What would your 'leadership' motto be?
Feel the fear and do it anyway!
If you were stranded on a desert island what 5 things would you want with you?
diary, lighter, chocolate, sun block, a man!
What is your favourite song?
Too many to mention, Girl from Ipanema
What keeps you awake at night?
Thinking about how much I have to accomplish the following day
What is the most important lesson life has taught you so far?
Not to allow my dreams and aspirations to be affected by other people´s negativity and criticism.
Do you plan to do more leadership development? If yes, what area do you plan to focus on?
Leadership development is an ongoing process, one that we can work on independantly on a daily basis. I have the tools to continue this on my own but also plan to take up any opportunities that come my way, we learn a lot from working with each other and sharing experiences and stories.
Name: Harpreet Kaur
Title: Arts Projects Manager/Producer
Organisation: Harpreet Kaur Creative www.harpreetkaurcreative.wordpress.com
Location: West Midlands, England/International
Working with arts and cultural organisations to manage and produce creative projects working with artists, the community, education and performance venues, as well as marketing and audience development.