McKinsey & Company and the Australian Scholarships Foundation are offering seasoned executives from the not-for-profit sector the opportunity to apply for a scholarship to attend McKinsey’s Executive Leadership Program, beginning in May 2023.

Program overview

Participants develop enhanced reflective and strategic thinking skills, sharpen self-awareness, enhance team leadership and cultivate an exclusive support network with peers – while exploring challenges faced by organisations now and in the future. 

Our leaders are under enormous pressure to balance instinct with insight, fortitude with flexibility, and performance with recovery. The Executive Leadership Program (ELP) is a hands on leadership development program that develops self-aware leaders who have the capability and conviction to lead in the age of complexity and disruption.

Leadership cannot be taught like a language. It requires nurturing through inspiration, intervention, opportunity, and practice. This program accelerates the development of senior talent by increasing self-awareness, exploring topics with a diverse faculty of leaders and coaches, and personalising insights within groups of external peers.

To be eligible applicants must

  • Be currently employed by an Australian not-for-profit organisation, with an annual turnover greater than $1 million.
  • Be a seasoned leader, currently (or on track to) leading an organisation, significant business unit or function.

James Hattam is
Chief Executive Officer of Tasmanian Land Conservancy Inc

and a McKinsey Executive Leadership Program scholarship recipient in 2022.

James shares: “The Executive Leadership Program was the circuit breaker I needed to give me the perspective and space I needed to reassess, realign, and reconnect to my purpose. To have the opportunity to meet amazing and inspiring people from across our region was such a privilege and will result in lifelong connections I have no doubt.”

What to expect

In-Person events

Residential weeks are immersive experiences spent in multiple group settings from full cohort to peer learning groups, with exposure to new stimulus and opportunity to reflect and reset.

A group of more than 40 faculty members—equal in gender and diverse in background—collectively work to create individual and actionable insight for our participants.

Personal Board of Directors

Each participant becomes a member of a small and diverse group of external peers. ‘Development-Boards’ are essentially each leader’s own personal Board of Directors, established to challenge, support and collectively pursue leadership development together.

Leadership Assessment

A diagnostic is run prior to commencing ELP as part of the pre-work, and participants will have the opportunity to debrief their results with their peer learning group.

Program format

This program is delivered as a 3-part blended learning journey:

  • Week 1: Leaders develop new perspectives and interact with peers facing similar challenges in leading self and leading their teams.
  • Remote learning and coaching sessions with peer learning group, getting to depth with each leader’s aspiration and personal journey.
  • Week 2: Leaders integrate tools and learnings from the journey to explore broader systems leadership topics.

Team of young people working, main focus on male colleague wearing glasses

Janina Jancu is the Director of Operations with
ReachOut Australia

and a McKinsey Executive Leadership Program scholarship recipient in 2022.

“The Program exposes participants to the latest leadership thinking, presented by international and domestic thought leaders in an engaging way through interactive sessions and practical learning. It’s also an amazing opportunity to meet and connect with a cohort of extraordinary leaders from all around the country working across many different industries. A truly inspirational program that will stay with you long after the last session has ended,” Janina said.

Course dates for 2023

  • 8 – 12 May 2023: Executive Leadership Program Week 1
  • 7 – 11 August 2023: Executive Leadership Program Week 2

Who should apply

The Executive Leadership Program is designed to benefit high-potential seasoned leaders who are seeking personal and professional growth. A typical participant leads or is on track to lead an organisation, significant business unit or function. They may be a CEO, or in a role where they report to a top team member. Each year, the class comprises 200 seasoned executives from 50+ organisations drawn from private, public, and social sectors. 

Employer contribution 

This scholarship requires an Employer Contribution from each recipient’s supporting not-for-profit organisation according to their annual turnover, as follows: 

  • Less than $1m p.a. = not applicable, ineligible  
  • $1m – $5m p.a. = $2,500 contribution + GST
  • $5m – $25m p.a. = $3,500 contribution + GST
  • More than $25m p.a. = $4,500 contribution + GST

This amount is payable to Australian Scholarships Foundation following written acceptance from the scholarship recipient and upon receipt of an invoice. 

What is the Employer Contribution?  The Employer Contribution is paid directly to the Australian Scholarships Foundation and allows us to expand the number of high-quality programs we can provide, assists with service delivery costs and enables us to invest in research and development that strengthens the NFP sector. The Employer Contribution is a way for not-for-profits to facilitate learning and development for their organisation via a small contribution to any scholarships the Australian Scholarships Foundation awards to their employees. McKinsey does not receive any portion of this contribution.

Find out more about the Employer Contribution here.

Travel / Accommodation 

Travel and/or accommodation (if necessary) are to be covered by the successful candidates or their supporting NFP organisation to attend the 2 x five-day forums. We estimate this cost at $0-$2,500 for each forum depending on your location and travel needs. 

Key scholarship dates

31 October 2022Applications open
27 November 2022Applications close 11:59pm AEDT
22 December 2022Scholarship awarded 
2 January 2023Written acceptance from scholarship recipients due
May 2023ELP Week 1* 
August 2023ELP Week 2* 
*Scholars are required to attend both forums in May and August. Please reserve these important dates in your calendar. 
For more program dates, see the “Course Dates” section above. 

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must: 

  • Be an Australian Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Be currently employed by an Australian not-for-profit organisation, with an annual turnover greater than $1m
  • Be a seasoned leader, currently (or on track to) leading an organisation, significant business unit or function
  • Fulfil Australian Scholarships Foundation’s general eligibility requirements available on our FAQs page.

Application process

To apply for a scholarship, please complete the following steps:

  1. Click ‘APPLY NOW‘ at the top of the page
  2. Follow the prompts to sign in or create a profile (this will be a hub from which you can apply for any scholarships in future)
  3. Complete the online application form
  4. Follow the prompts to upload an endorsement letter*
  5. You will receive an automated confirmation email once you’ve submitted your application successfully

* Please see #12 of our FAQ’s page for some tips on what to include.

More information

For more information about the program please click here.  Or download a brochure here.

Have questions?Check our FAQs page for answers to the most common questions. If you need assistance with the scholarship application process, please contact Australian Scholarships Foundation via [email protected]

Applications for the 2023 McKinsey Executive Leadership Program NFP Scholarships will close on Sunday November 27, at 11:59pm AEDT.

Large field of brownish yellow grass against a bright cloudy sky

Congrats to all the 2022 scholarship winners of the McKinsey Executive Leadership Program. Read the full list of recipients here.