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Everyone's voice is important

a cartoon of a woman shouting out.

Stephanie Fuller works at Arts Council England, South East.

She has worked there for ten years in four different jobs, and she is now Senior Manager, Regional Planning.

Stephanie spoke about Sync and how it had helped her lead.

She did this at an event called Sync Thinking.

This is taken from what she said.

We aren't like gingerbread men

a gingerbread man

Before I came here today, I did think about bringing a ginger bread man with me, to show we didn't all want to look like gingerbread men - all the same.

Being different makes us who we are. It's the most important thing about all of us and for me the most important thing about Sync.

As a leader you need to find out what works for you.

Just because something works for someone else, doesn't mean it will work for you.

You need to find your own voice, your own way of doing things.

You need to respect the fact that other people are not the same as you.

You need to understand how you work best.

Being different is a good thing

a cartoon of being different

I'm going to talk about what I think about Sync.

I have done lots of courses and programmes about leading.

Sync has really stood out for me. It's one place I feel I can really be myself and be respected for that.

Everyone on the programme is different, and that is seen as a good thing, not a bad thing.

They provide really good access - and they don't shout about doing it, it's just there.

I've been to other events run by other people and access has been a real problem for me.

Working just with disabled people isn't always easy. Different disabled people want and need different things. I think Sync has been really good because it hasn't said all disabled people should be the same and think the same.

Sync has made all of us look out for each other too.

We need to be understanding about what other people want and need, not just what we want and need.

Being who you are

lips which have the words - 'will it help if I shout' written on them.

Sync has said 'you are important' to all the disabled people involved.

It has helped us all work out what we think and how we act. It hasn't told us what to do, but it has given us space and time to try things and work things out for ourselves.

Not everything I have tried has worked. But that's been important too. I have had to find things out for myself which is much better than just doing something because someone tells you to.

I've found out how I want to do things.

Now I'm really comfortable with being me.

I am myself at work, at home. I'm myself all the time. I do my job in a way that's about how I am. That's my way of doing it and that's fine.

I don't think I would have known what that way was five years ago, but I worked it out for myself eventually. I think that's the magic of Sync for me, really, more than anything else. I remember saying to Sarah, actually you know what, I found the answers to all my own problems. It's true, but I was only able to do that because of Sync helping me.

What does a leader look like?

photo of a transformer

What does a leader look like?

I think it might look like a Transformer - the children's toy?

Transformers are robots that hide half the time disguised as cars or vans, then turn into heroes that beat the evil ones.

I like this idea of being a Transformer - you can be something quite basic and also a hero.

You are both these things at the same time. You know you're the hero, even though everybody else thinks you're an ice cream van!

I am going to leave you with a quote that I really like from a woman called Lily Tomlin.

She says, "I always wondered why somebody doesn't do something about that, then I realised, I was somebody".

Thanks.