The School of Human Transformative Leadership© hosted in the Basic Leadership Skills course ”academic womb”



Darina Foltová (Czech Republic), Déborah Chicoine (France), Enzo Lorain (France), Ewa Malczewska (Poland), Florian Louimet (France) Ilona Delubac Serrano (France-Spain),
Kristýna Červenková (Czech Republic), Lok Yan Wong Agnes (Hong Kong), Lucas Putéanus (France), 
Marcella Zoccoli (Italy – JAMK University of Applied Sciences),
Margaux Affre (France), Sixtine Pommier (France), Victor Verstraeten (France), Yves-Louis Morvan (France)

Senior Lecturer: Marcella Zoccoli  
Student Editor-in-chief Fall 2021: Margaux Affre  

Figure 1. Our School of Human Transformative Leadership© – Class Fall 2021 

The School of Human Transformative Leadership© was conceived & designed by our teacher Marcella Zoccoli during the #LeadershipROUTE2020 and co-created-piloted with the international students of the Basic Leadership Skills course in Spring 2021.

We are the international students who participated in the very first edition of the school that was launched in the Fall of 2021 and here we share our transformative leadership learning experience. During our journey, we explored and practiced leadership through a multidisciplinary approach. We learned leadership eras, theories and styles applied to individuals, teams, and organizations. We understood the importance of cognitive agency and psychological safety.

We explored mindful leadership in which communication skills, emotional intelligence, and emotional voice coaching, spiritual intelligence, SESS Skills are intertwined with business. We now know the art of giving and receiving feedback and the importance of followership in leadership. We had the chance to generate autonomous individual work and group work, to create learning circles where we followed our own leadership words. Marcella combined casually our names with some relevant leadership skills & values, and they supported us to shape a common purpose for the co-creation of our unique leadership projects. Here following our individual experiences and the witness of our collective works.

Our 13 words-friends in leadership (they appeared as an insight to Marcella after a Meditation dedicated to our journey): Well-being, Beauty, Awareness, Abundance, Technique, Knowledge, Integrity, Truth, Care for People, Care for Myself, Wisdom, Transformation, Freedom. 

Our Collective Works 

Figure 2. Community 1, the Collective Work: Good Leader, Society, Republic 

Our key concepts and message:

  • A great leader possesses a clear vision, is courageous, has integrity, honesty, humility, and clear focus. Great leaders help people reach their goals, are not afraid to hire people that might be better than them, and take pride in the accomplishments of those they help along the way
  • A society is a community or group of people having common traditions, institutions, and interests
  • A republic is a form of government in which the people or their elected representatives possess supreme power

For us, it was a great experience. This work has allowed us to develop our knowledge and skills about leadership. Our strategy was shared using methods such as brainstorming, zoom meetings, and face-to-face meetings at the university. We really agree that we did this activity in a fun and good mood. From the beginning to the end, we were all in it together and we worked in harmony step by step. We also want to emphasize that this subject has given us a lot both professionally and personally. We thank Marcella for her constant effort and motivation.

Figure 3. Community 2,  the Collective Work: Leaders of Tomorrow

Our key concepts and message:

  • Leading Innovation: a journey to the unknown
  • Not every idea is perfect, but it is important to have a try

The leaders of tomorrow (Agnès, Victor, Ewa, Enzo, and Sixtine) were happy to experience a leadership way and a learning experience. We decided to name ourselves the ”leaders of tomorrow” because of a future vision that we wanted to create. To do that we focused our work on several key concepts. We wanted to give an individual vision of leadership through several examples. We decided to focus on innovative leadership because the leaders of tomorrow will have to use it in the future. We picked several examples: Jack Ma, Ted Sarandos, and Elon Musk. Then we wanted to give a personal dimension to the topic of leadership in video games with the examples of Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo. We discovered that leading innovation is a journey to the unknown. Leaders can pass through difficult paths, but they will always be able to be reborn. And we will always be inspired by those leaders and leadership concepts. Not every idea is perfect, but we learned that it was important to try. It is better to try because innovative leaders are willing to take risks to obtain what they want. It is important to jump out of our comfort zone and that’s what we tried to do during our journey. 

Figure 4. Community 3, the Collective Work: Elon Musk – Transformative Leader 

Our key concepts and message: 

Our work focused on the leadership of Elon Musk, who is currently a recognized leader and role model. For this we used different concepts:  

  • transformative leader 
  • how this leadership fits in with our leadership concepts: 
  • projection into the future around this leadership style 
  • leadership and management   

Through this work, we wanted to show different things. First, we wanted to show that certain emblematic figures can guide our leadership daily on different points. Secondly, that our leadership must be in tune with the times and be able to seize different opportunities. Finally, we wanted to prove that each type of leadership has great advantages, but also some disadvantages, there is no one type of leadership that is better than another, we must be inspired by each one depending on the context, personality, and each leadership can fit in one way or another with our key concepts of leadership. 

Our Personal Experiences  

‘’During the leadership journey I had a great opportunity to meet great future leaders, I experienced a leadership journey and I learned to focus more on people and enjoy the process. At the beginning of the journey, I got my friend “abundance”. My great friend knows that everybody can become a leader and it supports everybody in development by an abundance of energy, knowledge, learning…’’ – Ewa  

‘’It is an inspiring journey in leadership lessons. I have a chance to explore different leadership styles and analysis them in various dimensions. My leadership word-friend is ”Well-being”, and it is an essential element in leadership. When leaders are concerned about well-being, their employees can also receive a high quality of life that is a good balance between health and work. believe this is how a good leader be. During this journey, I keep reflecting on what are the important things for leaders and why being a leader is so complicated. And now, I have found the answers. With my classmates, we discovered the personalities and numerous skills and theories that we believe leaders should require. It is my honor to be in this lesson. Thank you so much for your teaching.’’ – Agnes  

‘’My word was ”Truth”. I think the truth is the foundation of the world we live in. It is difficult to build something without the truth. Truth helps to clarify the world. Today, when information is given, it is imperative to be wary of it because it can be false for many reasons: 
-The issuer is dishonest. 
-The issuer does not have good information synthesis and/or information analysis capabilities…It is important that truth be a priority in our society. I thank Marcella for this semester in the Basic Leadership Skills module. It was very interesting, and I really enjoyed the course.’’ – Yves-Louis 

‘’This course was a great opportunity for me to realize what I am interested in and what I want to work on in the future. My word was Knowledge, and at the beginning of the course, I didn’t even know why fate gave me that word. Now I know it was supposed to be like this. During the course, I gained not only self-knowledge but also the knowledge that will be useful to me in the future. This whole experience means a lot to me- Thank you for everything!’’ – Darina  

‘’I find it very interesting and enriching. There were notions that I never studied or heard before and the way of learning was also very different so, even If I was sometimes a bit lost, it was a great experience to get a new approach according to leadership. About my word, “Care of myself”, I don’t think I picked this work by chance, because I realized that I really needed to care for myself during this trip in a personal way but even in the group work I really enjoyed working according to this thematic. I feel proud and happy to have been following this class and I think I will keep taking a step back after this experience: reflect about the lessons, the course, to keep thinking about it in the coming months and years” – Lucas 

‘’Thanks to this course I got to know myself better and got out of my comfort zone when I had a speech about self-leadership. I realized that I wanted to pass on my thoughts and experiences to others in my life and motivate them to fulfill their dreams and goals. My friend was ”wisdom”, and I am happy about it. I feel that I have passed on important ideas to others and I have learned to see my mistakes as opportunities for growth. I also understood that I wanted to be the creator of my life and live it as best I could’’ – Kristýna 

‘’My personal word is ”Awareness”. This Basic Leadership Skill was a great experience. I was able to learn a lot of new things about leadership processes, different theories and to know how the leaders of today made their leadership styles. I also liked the group project, to be able to work with an international group and bring each one’s vision on a common subject. This new experience has made me know that I would like to develop my leadership skills, as I find them important for my future life.’’ – Victor 

‘’This basic leadership skills course was more than enriching for me. I would even say that, in all objectives, it was one of the courses I enjoyed the most during my semester. Indeed, the creative teaching around real cultural sharing allowed me to discover new working methods. As for the intervention of the specialized guests, it was a precious help to have a complete and personalized focus on our group subjects. Finally, teamwork was a real springboard in my adaptability to complicated situations. Indeed, I was not able to be present at the presentation, although I managed to appear in it via video recording. Concerning my word that I had at the beginning “Technique-Knowledge”, I was able to develop it especially on my group research and the notes taken during the interventions of the specialists’’  – Enzo 

’My personal word was ”Beauty” and I’ve experienced it during my journey. The beauty of being able to learn from others and from myself. The beauty of our dynamic group was that problems were never insurmountable and instead became our strength. The beauty was also in the presentation that we gave because we were all interested in our topic.’’ – Sixtine  

‘’This course was really rewarding for me, both professionally and personally! I was able to discover new leadership concepts and key figures in the field. I was also able to discover new people on a personal level, rediscover the leader in me, communicate with people who came from different backgrounds than mine, which was very interesting! My word as a leader was: ”FREEDOM”. For me, this word is so strong in me! Indeed, freedom is something fundamental, and being a leader does not mean controlling everything without considering others. That’s what I would take away from this experience’’ – Margaux 

‘’My word was “Integrity” and I experienced my journey with pleasure and gratitude because I learned a lot about myself and about others. It was a new experience for me that I would like to live again. The teacher motivated us and made this course atypical and dynamic and that’s what makes the course so exciting and rewarding. She shares her experiences, and it was a very interactive course. Thank you – Déborah  

‘’My word was “Care to People” and I benefited a lot from this subject. It helped me to know myself better and to be a better person. Marcella is a very motivated and passionate teacher and that is a real pleasure. Her classes are very interesting, and I am very grateful to her. If I had to do it again I would. Thank you!’ – Ilona 

”Transformation”: I loved the course. It is the most human course that I have experienced. I have learned to become a good leader. I think that my leadership is transformational leadership. I like to change the traditional way to improve efficiency. The course is very important for self-development. It allows you to discover and improve yourself. I am waiting to practice it for my job.’’  – Florian


Personal experiences of the students, the teacher’s material, and the dedicated literature for the collective works.
School of Human Transformative Leadership © Fall 2021

Zoccoli, M. 2020. The Apple & The Candle. Human students transformative leadership experience. [Spirituality – Business – Technology] – JAMK Publications eBook Series.–the-candle–jamkpublications285/

Zoccoli, M. 2018. Flying on the Eagle. Millennials’ educational journey into Mindful Leadership. JAMK Publications. 

Zoccoli, M. 2017. Mindful Leadership at Fratelli Branca Distillerie Srl. Master’s Degree Programme in International Business Administration. Jyväskylä: JAMK University of Applied Sciences.