Simon Black –
A ‘helicopter view’ is an important capability for a conservation leader. The leader needs to be able to examine details of the programme, then position that knowledge in the context of the wider programme purpose and vision. This includes how budgets are organised, resources planned, goals set and how external partnership are arranged.
With a helicopter view the leader is well placed to delegate and coach the team, to intervene and support where needed, to revisit, change or improve approaches where required. Most importantly the leader can see where ‘the way things are done’ helps (or doesn’t help) the achievement of the team’s purpose.
- Consider both project details and the big picture
- See and understand internal & external organizational dynamics.
- Know projects’ sphere of influence—identify solvable problems.
- Establish budgets and a clear fund-raising strategy.
- Design financial/non-financial metrics to relate to conservation
- Provide information, technology & resource to assist the work.
- Encourage cooperation & sharing with partners to improve work.
- Anticipate unexpected outcomes.
- Be prepared to seek specialist advice from external sources.
- Integrate flexible management with professional/scientific rigor.
- Use data on staff, communities, or society if it helps the program.
Black, S. A., Groombridge, J. J., & Jones, C. G. (2011a). Leadership and Conservation Effectiveness: Finding a Better Way to Lead.Conservation Letters, 4, 329-339.http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1755-263X.2011.00184.x