"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”*
George Bernard Shaw
*(And woman. Obviously.)
~ Quick Facts ~
Who Are We?
We're a team of "unreasonable", sharp and experienced young adults, passionate about helping pupils become leaders
What Do We Do?
We create cultures of leadership across the UK's most ambitious schools through the delivery of inspirational programmes
Where Are We?
Our offices are based in Shoreditch and we work with teachers, pupils and parents at over 30 of the UK's most ambitious schools
~ Welcome from our Founder ~
Welcome to The Unreasonables!
We pride ourselves on being unlike any other leadership organisation in the world. We aren’t a mechanical group of people who develop educational programmes in a bubble and then churn them out by the hundred. Instead, we are partnered with a small group of some of the country’s most ambitious schools, and deliver programmes that are developed by our group of inspirational, entrepreneurial and impressive young men and women.
We want your pupils to lead themselves to a future of their own making and, whilst not jostling them towards entrepreneurship, we believe that entrepreneurship and leadership are intricately linked. Pupils may have no interest in “business”, but the leading doctors, lawyers, politicians and artists of this world are all incredibly entrepreneurial – they all use what we call the “Entrepreneurial Frame” to move to the forefront of their professions, whereby they see opportunities and take risks to realise rewards. We help pupils develop this ability.
We’d love to speak with you to see how we can support your pupils and your school. We’re here to help ensure that your boys and girls are ready for the complex, competitive and exciting world that lies beyond the school gates.
Do pick up the phone if you have any questions.
With best wishes,
~ Testimonials ~
This is what they're saying...
“Dynamic and truly inspirational…I’d recommend The Unreasonables unreservedly.”
Genevieve Ford, Deputy Head
Downe House School
“The quality of delivery as well as the content was simply outstanding.”
Keren Pollock, Head of Sixth Form
The Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School
“The boys were universally positive about the afternoon and recommended The Unreasonables for future year groups.”
Joe Spence, Master
“A truly impressive day! The students were as excited and engaged at 4.00pm as they were at 10.00am.”
Kate Bainbridge, Head of Sixth Form
~ Our Philosophy of Leadership ~
Here at The Unreasonables, we believe that leadership is a process, not a state...
~ Our Programmes ~
See below for our most popular programmes. If your school has other needs that you think we can support with, please don't hesitate to get in touch!
Debunking the Leadership Myth
Do your Sixth Formers consider themselves to be leaders?
This 3-part programme provides Sixth Formers with no-nonsense, practical ways to embrace a leadership mindset, in school and in life. From ‘All leaders are outgoing and charismatic’, to ‘Leaders never fail’, The Unreasonables demystifies common misconceptions, and exposes the truth that leadership is in fact accessible to us all.
Expect real-life stories, proven leadership theories and lively discussion – as well as young entrepreneur guest speakers, who share their exceptional stories of embracing leadership.
Turning student managers into student leaders...
This 3-part programme for student leaders begins the transition from top-down change to bottom-up, ensuring that your Prefect Team have a lasting legacy and are key contributors to your school’s culture of leadership: a culture enabling innovation, responsibility, and collaboration between students and staff.
Your Prefects will become a group of young people who fully grasp the nature and value of leadership, and measure their success in the number of leaders they create, not the number of followers they have.
Is your School Council a talking shop, or is it an energising catalyst for positive change?
School Council members (from Year 7 to Year 13) have a unique opportunity to inform the culture, character and brand of their school, in ways large and small. To make this a reality, they’ll need to embrace their roles, hone new skills, and learn leadership strategies to make change happen.
In other words, they’ll need a touch of the Unreasonable about them! This one-off, 2 hour programme will support them in becoming a School Council that is truly the voice of the school.
The Unreasonable Teacher Academy
Creating beacons of leadership in your school...
Do you have a couple of teachers in your common room who are ripe for significant professional development? The Unreasonable Teacher Academy welcomes such staff into a community of like-minded and aspirational educationalists, and takes them on a journey of leadership learning and rapid growth. Learning alongside teachers from other leading schools across the UK, the yearlong Academy gives them the skills, knowledge and experience to play an essential role in empowering students to take on the challenge of leadership.
The Academy combines innovative external training days with school-based projects, and culminates in your Unreasonable Teachers delivering a leadership training session to your full common room. For more information, or to apply, please click here.
~ Inspiration ~
So, how did this all come about?
In 2008, half way through my undergraduate degree, I received an email from my former Deputy Headmistress. Could I pop over, she asked, to explain to her new Head Girl and prefects what on earth being a student leader was all about, how to make the most of the opportunity and how to avoid the deepest pot-holes? I had been Head of School in my final year at Highgate and was deemed a suitable candidate. Happily, I got on a train to do just that.
That day spawned an idea – perhaps it wasn’t just her girls that would benefit from some support in their leadership development? And so The Unreasonables was born. It aimed to ensure that Prefect systems offered an invaluable experience for the young people involved and that they could become one of the greatest assets of any school.
On finishing my degree, The Unreasonables was put on hold as I took a leap into the corporate world to join the world’s largest consumer goods company, Procter & Gamble, on their Graduate Leadership Programme. But after two years, I decided that a return to education was inevitable – I wanted to ensure that young people were better prepared for what awaits them beyond their formal education.
This want led me back to The Unreasonables – an organisation that has rapidly broadened its remit to aid all young people to take advantage of each opportunity that comes their way, and to empower them to lead themselves to a future of their own making.
Duncan Piper, founder of The Unreasonables
~ Previous Work ~
Schools we have previously worked with include...
Abingdon School, Ashford School, Bedford Girls' School, Benenden School, Downside School, Edinburgh Academy, Francis Holland School NW1, Highgate School, King Edward VI School (Southampton), King's Bruton, Loretto School, Queen Margaret's School (York), St Benedict's School, St Edmund's School, Tonbridge School, Worth School