An Above Difference Leading Inclusively with Cultural Intelligence Programme for Your Housing Group


My name is Jennifer Izekor and I am the CEO and Founder of Above Difference Limited, one of the most innovative and fastest rising Inclusive Leadership and Cultural Intelligence consultancies and Top 10 Inclusion & Diversity Providers in the UK today.

Our approach is unique, we believe Inclusion is about everyone or it is about no-one so we work across the whole inclusion agenda. We want to enable leaders to lead all their people well irrespective of where they come from or what specific barriers or challenges they may face. Our approach is built on five key principles:

  • When good Leaders lead well they lead all people well
  • All people, irrespective of their backgrounds, deserve to be well led
  • Leaders need to be Culturally Intelligent, Value Driven and Effective Change Leaders/Managers to lead all people well
  • Equipping and up-skilling Leaders to lead all people well, is an organisational challenge and an organisational necessity
  • Developing oneself as a Culturally Intelligent & Inclusive Leader is a personal growth challenge and a professional growth necessity

We think Inclusion is a leadership challenge and on this programme our aim will be to create psychologically safe spaces in which you can develop a range of evidence-based tools, techniques, skills and capabilities to help you lead all your people well and be at the forefront of providing services that make all people feel valued, seen and heard.

For us it’s never about a single interaction or training session, its about a journey of personal and professional transformation that helps you become a better leader for all, while also building your resilience and professional toolbox.  

We are really excited to be working with Your Housing Group and to supporting Jacque’s commitment and vision to deliver inclusive leadership within the organisation and through this, provide enhanced services for the customers and communities you serve. 

Below you will find some details about the programme and your journey as a participant. Please do not hesitate to contact us at if you have any questions and I really look forward to meeting you.


Dear Colleagues,

When I became the CEO of Your Housing Group, I set out in my key messages to the business that importance of being an inclusive organisation for both customers and colleagues and that a diverse heart is an absolute requirement. During my 30 year career I’ve seen first-hand how a lack of diverse cultural awareness and what can sometimes be inherent biases can create hurt, exclusion and unnecessary and unacceptable division. Its important to understand that  cultural bias is not exclusive to non-minority ethnic colleagues but also exists within different cultures and beliefs. We need to be constantly aware, curious and courageous so that we create a sense of belonging where everyone can thrive and be valued in an equal environment.

Our vision at YHG is: “Creating more places for people to thrive and be recognised as a sector leading landlord”. This isn’t just a tag line, we must always work to bring it to life.

We are incredibly lucky at YHG in that we have a wonderful diverse range of customers and colleagues. I want us to develop our skills and understanding about the importance of being culturally aware and think about how we can continually become more inclusive in all that we do and to find the best ways to communicate with all our customers and colleagues. Attracting a wide range of employees is a priority, if we don’t demonstrate that YHG does have  a true diverse heart, we will miss out on attracting and retaining the amazing talent pool that exists.

We have a strong leadership team at YHG but we want to create space for you all, our leaders to develop your skills and understanding around becoming more culturally intelligent and inclusive leaders who create culturally intelligent and inclusive spaces where all people feel valued, seen and heard.

I am delighted that we are working with Jennifer and the Above Difference team who are experts in this field and are going to take us on a journey together of personal development to help us enhance our cultural awareness and help us think about each of our own personal approaches to leadership and how we enhance our skills.

I am truly excited about this and am passionate about inclusion – I know you are too and we will hopefully really enjoy being on this programme together and building a strong leadership approach.

Jacque Allen

Jacque Allen, CEO Your Housing Group


Why have you been invited to be part of this programme – what is it about?

As we launch our first EDI Strategy this year, it is vital that we take senior leaders on this journey with us, so that not only the delivery plan is understood but also the cultural shift is supported fully. 

We have raised the profile of EDI in recent years and Balance for Better goes from strength to strength, and our sub groups do some great work already such as the Time to Talk sessions and the Mental Health First Aiders, but we still have more to do.

We will also be launching EDI champions across the Leadership Team and it is important that we all understand our roles properly both in terms of EDI and great leadership.

Paula Marshall

Paula Marshall, Director of Housing and Customer Services

The Above Difference ‘Leading Inclusively with Cultural Intelligence’ leadership programme has been described by Wessex Academic Health Science as;


“A valuable and commissionable intervention to support senior health system leaders enhance their cultural awareness. It effected a change in participants’ understanding, a change in their personal approach to leadership, and there were indications this would be sustained into the future.


This unique programme for Your Housing Group will offer participants an opportunity to:

  • Develop your Cultural Intelligence, Inclusive Leadership skills and capabilities thereby enhancing your ability to engage, lead and relate with diverse peers, colleagues, patients and communities
  • Gain a deeper understanding of how your own preferences and biases influence your leadership style and be introduced to a range of proven tools, techniques to help you lead and facilitate inclusive and compassionate workplaces and services
  • Explore principles of a value driven, strength-based approach to Inclusive Leadership while learning how to create positive dialogues around inclusion, manage difficult conversations and create teams and departments where all feel valued, seen and heard

Programme Approach

I’ve done Cultural Awareness Programmes before , what’s different about this one?

This programme is a bespoke one developed by the Award-Winning Above Difference. It draws together 4 Models:

  • Cultural Intelligence(CQ) which is the capability to work and relate effectively across diverse cultural contexts
  • Value Driven/Strengths based Leadership which focuses on values, behaviour and attitudes while building internal resilience
  • Inclusive Leadership
  • Change Leadership

These carefully curated elements are designed to help you achieve your full potential as a leader and an individual.  We will explore issues of leadership, influence , culture and personal effectiveness.  Together you will learn new principles but also have opportunities through the workshops to apply these to specific challenges for inclusion in your workplace.

Programme Approach:

Your programme will consist of:

2-day In-person Masterclass Programme
Individual CQ Assessments
Dream & Apply Virtual Workshop
Design & Innovate Virtual Workshop
1-2-1 Coaching Sessions (SLT)

The Journey

At Above Difference we have developed a learner pathway transformational journey that is designed to equip you with new skills and capabilities and then offer you the opportunity to practice ‘flexing your CQ and Inclusive Leadership Skills’ in a safe learning environment. These are our design, dream and apply’ workshops which will help you become real change makers.  The journey will differ slightly for each programme but at its heart is a tried and tested pathway that is designed to go beyond a ‘training programme’ and create a unique journey that will challenge, change and transform each participant.  

Your Participant Journey

Introduce & Define
You are invited to attend a briefing session with Jennifer Izekor CEO and Programme Design and Facilitator, on 10th March 2023. 
You will hear about the programme and be able to ask questions about your engagement and journey.

Following this, you will be sent a link so you can take a CQ assessment and do some prework prior to the programme. You will also receive a Participant Personal Log Folder. 

Equip & Upskill
You will be invited to attend our two-days, in-person Inclusive Leadership with Cultural Intelligence Masterclass on 7 & 8 June 2023 in Warrington. 

Dream & Apply and Design & Innovate
These elements will be delivered as two Change Implementation virtual interactive workshops.  You will be working together on applying your learning to a very specific challenge.

1-2-1 Senior Leadership Coaching Sessions
These sessions will offer a follow on opportunity to reflect on learning, strategies and plans developed and to put accountability, implementation and support structures in place for the future.   

Programme Schedule

Please find below a schedule of our sessions together

10th March 2023

Introduce & Define Virtual Webinar

Microsoft Teams  Webinar Link 

Meeting ID: 325 729 749 64 Passcode: a8uYST

7 & 8 June 2023

2-Day in-person Masterclass in Warrington

TBC 2023

Dream & Apply Virtual Workshop

TBC 2023

Design and Innovate Virtual Workshop

TBC 2023

1-2-1 Coaching Sessions (SLT)

Your workshops will be facilitated by Jennifer izekor. CEO and Founder of Above Difference Limited and or an Above Difference Advanced Facilitator.

Programme Resources

Resources to support your journey will be uploaded throughout the programme

Developing Yourself as a Culturally Intelligent and Inclusive Leader Part 1: Exploring Culture and Cultural Value Dimensions 

What’s Your CQ 

Where are your Cultual Connections?

“Incredibly insightful session. It has completely opened my eyes in new ways, I feel far more confident to advocate for others and respectfully challenge inequity both inside and outside of work. My passions have been ignited, I feel stronger and more competent in my role as a result of these sessions”.

The Above Difference Programme Team

Lead facilitator

Jennifer Izekor 
Founder and CEO, Above Difference


Andy Bennett QPM 
Senior Associate Facilitator and Partner

Programme Lead

Yemisi Ibitoye
Head of Programmes and Facilitator Development

Programme Projects & Contracts Lead

Flora Dele-Ojo
Head of Projects & Contracts