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Working with Others: person, role, technology, and task

A three-day non-residential GR conference

Friday 20th October 2017 - Sunday 22nd October 2017

NW London, UK

British Psychotherapy Foundation

Primary Task
Info & Fees
Payment Terms
Web Sites


In a rapidly changing world, organisations are also constantly evolving. They influence their members knowingly and unknowingly with their cultures, their technologies, as well as tacit assumptions and norms. Members in turn also contribute approaching organisations with their own experience, values and expectations.

Over recent months there has been much talk of us now living in a 'post-truth' age. However, in groups and organisations emotional authenticity and individual ‘truth’ have perhaps always been difficult to assimilate with other demands and discourses. To navigate our way in this increasingly complex environment requires a capacity to examine both what we know and what we feel. This at times can mean holding differing and discordant perspectives simultaneously.

We are at a time when it is more urgent than ever to understand the part we all play (individually and collectively) in groups, organisations and society. This conference provides an opportunity for participants to engage and work with the frequently disorienting and contradictory experiences of organisational life and to explore the complexities that technology and organisational change can bring.

The Conference provides opportunities for learning that may feel challenging to those who are in the midst of personal crisis or stress. Attendance may not be advisable in such circumstances.

If you need further information or would like to discuss the suitability of the Conference to your needs, please email or phone:

Simon Tucker, Conference Director
+44 (0)787 9775 766

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Conference Aims and Primary Task

The purpose of the Conference is:

To engage with, and learn about: person, role, technology and task in organisational life and in relation to working with others. To increase the capacity for thoughtful and effective action.

To enable this, the primary task of the Conference is:

To experience and examine conscious and unconscious group dynamics, and our collective and individual contribution to them as they occur in ‘the here and now’ in the temporary organisation that is the conference.

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The Learning Aims:
  • examine ways in which certainties and uncertainties may paralyse their thinking;
  • consider how technology helps or hinders our communications with others;
  • learn how groups jointly construct a reality that, though considered external and unchangeable, may be amenable to transformation;
  • explore how rational and irrational forces operate in organisations by considering their experiences at work and shared experiences of the Conference;
  • experiment with ways of engaging with difference (e.g., concerning age, gender, ethnicity, class, sexuality);
  • develop capacities for exercising authority and taking up leadership roles;
  • explore vulnerability as a necessary component of the capacity to exercise authority
  • consider the interplay between tradition, risk-taking, innovation, and creativity;
  • consider the relationship of organisations to their cultural, technological, political and economic contexts;
  • • improve strategic thinking and the capacity to navigate organisational life through understanding systemic and unconscious processes;
  • apply the experience from the Conference to professional life and to the development of the workplace, and to social, community and political life.

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The world is a constantly evolving environment in its physical, technological and human dimensions. The speed of technological development and the depletion of natural resources create a world that changes before it can be properly interrogated and understood. Economic austerity, political and financial turbulence and uncertainly have a significant impact on many aspects of our working and personal lives. It fundamentally impacts on how we take up our roles as citizens and members of organisations.

How can we, how do we, work effectively under such conditions? How can we encourage reflection and thinking when under pressure? How can we avoid being pushed into short term action even though we know this may not be the solution to longer term issues or dilemmas? How can we recognise and give value to our differences and commonalities? How can we network across organisations, professions, disciplines, sectors, or groups to explore unexamined possibilities for collaboration and partnership?

This conference will challenge our conscious and unconscious perceptions of the norms of organisational life and offer a space to examine these. It will give opportunities to discover the potential for trust and creative engagement with others both face to face and through technology in our separate and joint tasks.

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This experiential Conference is in the Tavistock tradition (there are no lectures of seminars). The programme provides a variety of situations through which participants can study group and organisational processes and behaviour – their own, other participants and staff’s – as they happen within and between groups. The experience of moving across boundaries from one group to another, negotiating between or on behalf of groups and reviewing the experiences that take place, offers the potential for rich learning which can be applied to other settings..

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You don’t need any prior experience and it doesn’t matter what your occupation is. If you are curious about groups and organisations and want to develop your capacity to be thoughtful and effective at work and beyond, we hope you will join us.

Places are limited to 25 participants.

A certificate of attendance is issued on completion.

BAP/BPF Group Relations 2010–2015 – Some of the participants’ home organisations
• Association of Jungian Analysts, UK
• Barnet CAMHS, London
• Beijing An Ding Hospital, Beijing
• Bromley & Kent CAMHS,
• British Association of Psychotherapists, UK
• Cardiff University, Wales
• Chambers of Industry & Commerce, Germany
• CHEAM Resource Centre, Surrey
• Christ’s Hospital
• City University, London
• Creative Marketing Agency
• Darebin Community Mental Health Centre, Australia
• Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
• Dow Jones
• East London Foundation NHS Trust
• Elli Lilly – Neuroscience, Surrey
• Ernst & Young Global Ltd, Australia
• Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO)
• Fostering Solutions, UK
• Hounslow Homes, London
• IG Consult, Amsterdam Utrecht
• Ignite Consulting, London
• Institute of Group Analysis, London
• Investec Bank plc, UK
• Kings College, London
• London School of Economics
• MIND, Barnet.
• PSI Child Family Consulting Centre, Istanbul
• Respond UK
• Royal School Hampstead, London
• San Giovanni Battista Hospital, Torino
• Scottish Funding Council
• Society of Analytical Psychology, London
• St Georges Community School, London
• St Mungo’s, London
• Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships
• Tuke Centre York
• University of the Arts, London
• Watts Gallery, Surrey

BAP/BPF Group Relations 2010–2015 – Comments by participants on the experience of their Conference

‘Life changing experience.’

‘This has been a powerful and challenging three days from which I have derived an awful lot of value. My gratitude to the entire team. I’m sure I’ll be back!’

‘I thoroughly enjoyed the (conference). I felt energised and motivated coming away from it. Very impressive.’

‘I am increasingly finding ways in which to consider and offer my leadership in organisational contexts- the (conference) was extremely helpful in enabling to work through where and how I might effect shift in conflicted and uncertain environments.’

‘Very high quality of staff.’

‘I left wanting more.’

‘I found the consultants intriguing, challenging, insightful, supportive.’

‘The Event was hugely enjoyable, I met many interesting people and feel that my learning from it will be on-going for some time.’

‘I felt the different experiences and perspectives brought to the event by the individual members of the organising team offered a rich and very rewarding experience overall.’

‘I have discovered this new way of working and understanding group relations and I found that I felt at home and it was natural and enjoyable.’

‘I learnt to think more clearly about organisations as a system; how people or groups of people may be drawn to take (or pushed into taking) particular roles within an organisation.’

‘It’s a bit like the mist has lifted on a landscape
I knew was there but I couldn’t make out the contours properly before.’

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Participants will work in groups of differing sizes and configurations over a number of sessions and activities:

Opening and closing plenaries
The Conference opens in a full plenary of staff and participants, providing a structured beginning as we enter the Conference as a temporary organisation. The final plenary gives an opportunity for reflection on the learning from the work done over the three days, while studying the process of ending relationships and leaving the Conference.

Network event
This has two stages. In the first phase participants self-select into small groups of 5–8 members to learn about interpersonal relationships. Each
group will have a consultant. In the second phase, membership of the groups is modified and the
task is to explore the continuation of existing ties within a new configuration. The event ends in a plenary review.

Large study groups
This is a chance for all participants to work together and study interpersonal relations and dynamics in a large group. Consultants assist the task by offering observations about what they perceive may be happening in the ‘here-and-now’ of the group.

Organisational Event
The task of the event is to investigate the overall Conference as a developing organisation. Participants divide into groups and staff divide into a management and a consultants group. The dynamics between groups in their interaction with one another, and between the membership and management, are among the issues that may be explored in order to understand what sort of organisational culture we have consciously or unconsciously constructed. Consultation is available on request and management works in public throughout. The event concludes with a plenary review.

Review groups
The purpose of these groups is to review and reflect on participants’ learning, the roles they have taken so far in the Conference, and to identify areas they want to explore further. Participants are allocated to a small group with a consultant.

Application Groups
These groups meet on the final day and have the same membership and consultant as the Review groups. The task is to apply the experience and learning from the Conference to participants’ current work issues.


Simon Tucker  
Simon Tucker is an experienced manager, coach, clinical supervisor, trainer and Organizational Consultant. He is a teacher, Doctoral supervisor and Organizing Tutor on the Masters program in Strategic Leadership and Management at the Tavistock Clinic in London. He is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at Essex University and a Visiting Professor at Moscow University.

Associate Director
Jo-anne Carlyle  
Dr Jo-anne Carlyle, PhD is a Consultant Clinical and Forensic Psychologist, Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist and Organisational Consultant. She sits on the Board of the British Psychotherapy Foundation (bpf) as Lead for National Development and is Programme Lead for the National Trainings in Psychodynamic and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy; Practice and Research accredited by the bpf and University of Exeter. She has worked on Group Relations Conferences in the UK and India.

Neelam Dosangh  
Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Organisational Coach. She has led and managed Psychological services for over 20 years in the NHS. She has taught on the D10 postgraduate course on Organisational Consultancy for four years. She has experience of consulting to both private and public sector organisations. Currently she is a Clinical Director for a health based Social Enterprise in London, and has a private practice.

Gwen Hanrahan  
Organisational consultant and coach, specialising in group dynamics and effectiveness, organisational culture and change. She has worked with clients from across different sectors, internationally and in the UK.

Carlos Sapochnik  
Organisational consultant and researcher; Visiting Tutor, Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust; Member, International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organisations (ISPSO); Associate member, Organisation for Promoting Understanding of Society (OPUS).

Jo-anne Carlyle and Simon Tucker  

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Info and Fees

Please note that participants are expected to attend the whole programme:

Friday 20 October 10am – 8pm
Saturday 21 October 9am – 8pm
Sunday 22 October 9am – 5pm

Full vegetarian lunch is provided on all three days.

VENUE: British Psychotherapy Foundation, 37 Mapesbury Road, London NW2 4HJ

Conference fee
before 31st July
• £485 (£445 for three or more participants from the same organisation)
• £445 for BPF members
• £375 for BPF students and trainees

after 31st July
• £515 (£475 for three or more participants from the same organisation)
• £475 for BPF members
• £395 for BPF students and trainees

Closing date for all applications: 30 September 2017. Early booking is recommended.

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Payment Terms

Payment link will be provided and fee to be paid on offer of a place.

Your place on the conference is only confirmed on receipt of payment.

Cancellation Policy: All cancellations must be made in writing. Cancellations made no later than four weeks prior to the commencement of the Conference receive a full refund minus an administration fee of £25.

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To book a place please complete the booking form available from the GRC page in the Events section of the BPF website

and email it to
Ms Sandra Pereira, Administrator
British Psychotherapy Foundation
37 Mapesbury Road, London NW2 4HJ
Tel +44 (0)20 8452 9823

The BPF welcomes applications from all sections of society.

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Web Sites

Application form: http://

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