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My experience of the Sport Wales Learning Series

Beverley Lewis, CEO Welsh Triathlon

If change is the new constant, how can we equip ourselves and those around us to perform well in this environment?

This is the question we set out to explore throughout the series. Each session and section of the series set out to share ideas, stories, tools, and techniques that could be applied within our individual contexts. It was an opportunity to take time out of our daily tasks and meetings, connecting as a sector to wonder how we can be at our most resourceful. 

The Learning Series was a new way of sharing and learning, the virtual environment created a chance to record live sessions, so they are available as a resource to share or to re-visit when we need. The offer was there to fully immerse in the programme, diarise a few sessions or protect time when the time was right for you.

Beverley Lewis, CEO of Welsh Triathlon

Beverley Lewis, shares her thoughts on the series:

What was your approach to the learning series and why did you decide to do this?

As an individual the Learning Series came a good time for me, when concentrating on self was important. It has been a tough year as CEO of Welsh Triathlon with professional challenges and general pressures of crisis management

I also want to encourage and support staff members to build their resilience, which I have found during Covid, and develop skills and understanding which I learnt later in life, and I am still learning! I’d like them to learn these skills now and be well versed in self-reflection, resilience, agile planning, inclusive behaviours and relationship building which will enhance both their personal life and employment skills.

So, I engaged with the programme and encourage staff to do the same.

What are your key takeaways?

  1. You never stop learning
  2. Many of these sessions improve your life not just your working environment
  3. Not everything is for everyone, or not for everyone now, in their current learning space 
  4. Provide time to stop and think. There are ways for everyone to embrace reflection even if you are an active solution focussed person like me
  5. Bring others with you to help support your journey and create the right culture around you
  6. Try new things – they may or may not work but they keep environments fresh and you can be very surprised by what works
  7. Some of our activities have refreshed the team in ways I had not imagined. 
Competitors running at the Wales Triathlon in Fishguard


What are you doing differently?

As a team we have explored the Thinking Environment.  We had a practical session to trial around a real topic of interest for the organisation and from that came both some great ideas for solving the issues we were facing but also a new format for our staff meetings.  I was aware we tried to give everyone space to talk in staff meetings but now we have an understanding of how and why we do this and everyone is buying in.   Those who feel unheard were delighted, those who feel some people dominate have a solution, we have a way to deal with extended discussions and I think we will be more productive with everyone feeling listened too.

From the Agile Planning session, I have learnt that we do this but now we have a name and understanding of what we are doing and how to frame it better in tools.

As a group we are passionate about becoming an inclusive sport and the session with Ladi Ajayi and Amanda Bennett have helped us raise conversations and challenge in safe spaces.  We will use the network connection made and continue with a greater collective understanding.

What are you going to explore further?

We have just started to create our own sessions around the learning series and will be working through the sessions which appealed most to the staff. Next one is feedback – already staff are looking forward to this one!

Personally, I am trying ‘bite sized’ reflection!

Staff sessions on topics extended from the Learning Series will continue and we will be using Round Table techniques a lot more. We have a BTF LGBTQ+ presentation which I attended to share with staff for Pride Month and I will be circulating for all staff to watch before a session.

Anything else?

Short learning session like these are really useful to stimulate conversation in the sector and share ideas in a safe space. 

Giving yourself permission when busy to allocate time to consider other views and new ideas, and to keep up to date, in a semi conversational/presentational format I find really important.  It keeps me innovating and aware.  

Once you have watched or listened to a session maybe consider:  

  • What are your key takeaways from session(s)?
  • What messages resonated with you the most?
  • Take three messages, how can you apply them to your role? To your life?

If you are happy to share we’d love to hear what you have taken away and how you plan to apply this learning. 

We also would like to hear your feedback on the full series, this is the first Learning Series we have hosted and we’d really value hearing your thoughts, when you have a moment we are interested to learn:

  • What you might like more of or less of?
  • If we were to run the series again what do you think we could do differently? 
  • What made your attendance at the session(s) time well spent? 
  • What is your biggest takeaway from the session (s)?
  • Anything else you’d like to share

If you’d prefer to chat through your feedback then please do get in touch with Claire Ewing ( or Eleanor Ower( and we can book in a time to talk. 

We have loved learning with you, thank you for your time and energy!