Christopher Zinn: Shifting the emphasis from protection to empowerment for consumers

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Christopher Zinn

Christopher Zinn completed Sydney Leadership in 2009 and has been an enthusiastic advocate for the program ever since. Christopher is a  journalist, former spokesman for CHOICE and currently runs his own initiative called Determined Consumer.

“As a result of my time on the Sydney Leadership program I’ve become much less judgemental, far more patient and more honest to myself and others about my motivations around driving change. I’ve developed the curiosity to diagnose systems and selves more practically and to work with others more effectively”.

Christopher believes that it has always been his role to stand up and voice contrarian opinion in the consumer sphere. However, after attending Sydney Leadership he now asks more questions, especially when no one else does. He is practising the skills he developed to shift the emphasis from protection to empowerment for consumers.

“I’m far more conscious of how we all avoid real and sustainable change often by doing more, less effective but more distracting labours. The ability to frame most endeavours as an experiment with all the excitement and uncertainty that term suggests is also a key learning gained from the program”.

“Another impact has been to make me far more interested in values—my own, others and organisations. What those are (if any), how articulated and activated and where they might if possible be nudged into positive change”.

In terms of his career, Christopher says Sydney Leadership has both widened and deepened his appreciation of what’s possible and also where he’s wasting the time and effort of himself and others. As a result Christopher says he doesn’t know what his future career will be, but is enjoying where it’s heading!

When asked what makes Sydney Leadership different to other programs Christopher says: “The world is awash for MBA and other qualifications and while you might think they look good on a CV you need to consider what’s best for you. Sydney Leadership might ‘feed’ you in more ways than an MBA and opportunity might flow from there”.

Christopher says he has little memory of the financial costs of the program but gets daily reminders of the wider benefits. “I shudder to think if I had let the fear of the cost hold me back then”.

Christopher encourages anyone who is considering Sydney Leadership to: “Ask questions, be curious, don’t expect easy answers and have a go. You only live once.”

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