Founder and Co-Director
Smruti is the founder of Global Mentoring Initiative (GMI). She has management experience in the business sector and has been working in and on humanitarian action since 1995. She was one of the evaluators and authors of the Tsunami Evaluation Consortium's study on the impact of international relief response on local capacities.
She played an instrumental role in getting the idea of the network (NEAR) from paper to the launch of the network at the World Humanitarian Summit in May 2016. She is now actively involved in advocating for the change to more locally led response. She is a member of Charter4Change coordination group and a member of the International Convening Committee of Alliance for Empowering Partnership.
She has been working on accountability to affected populations and safeguarding for over 10 years. She has been facilitating reflections on accountability and safeguarding in humanitarian operations, organisations, within teams and at community levels in various countries. She has accompanied organisations to carry out self-assessments and audits against the HAP standard (now Core Humanitarian Standard) and mentored investigators carrying out PSEA investigations. She is certified to use Human Potential tools and coaches organisational leaders, individuals and teams to achieve their full potential.
Koenraad Van Brabant
Co-Director and Principle Consultant for Navigation 360
Koenraad brings extensive programmatic and organisational management experience, drawing on 25+ years of work in and on volatile environments, where humanitarian action, violence reduction, peace work & governance improvements take place.
He has dealt with situations of rapid growth and rapid scaling down, and periods of organisational restructuring, decentralisation or re-centralisation. This includes situations of financial and trust crises and recovery therefrom. He has been part of or facilitated many strategic analysis and planning exercises.
For years he was co-director of a ‘Leadership’ training course. He has also led the development of an innovative course on ‘Effective Advising’, covering the complementary skills that thematic experts need: interpersonal and cross-cultural skills, understanding the functioning of organisations in a wider socio-political and economic context, organisational capacity-strengthening, and change management.
He has often been focal point for or informal driver of collaborative work within organisations across units and silos, and between organisations in coordination platforms, networks, coalitions and partnerships, or less formalised multi-stakeholder processes.
He has a strong ability to ‘zoom in & zoom out’: seeing the relevant detail, while maintaining a holistic perspective on the organisation and seeing it within a wider, evolving, landscape.
He uses a diversity of techniques and approaches from facilitation, coaching, partnership brokering, adult learning, organisational development & change management, to enable inclusion, participation, trust building and convergence towards agreement, underpinned by critical thinking and results-orientation.
Bhavesh S Patel
Advisor and Mentor
I design and facilitate learning and development for people, organisations, and networks. My methods are drawn from an eclectic mix of complexity science, participation, dialogue, coaching, cognitive science, etc. I believe that in an increasingly uncertain world, there are no off-the-shelf pre-defined ideal solutions. Instead organisations can find their evolutionary capacity through engaging the hearts and minds of their own people. I also work as a trainer delivering workshops that explore skills in self-management, communication, coaching, designing and delivering training and facilitation. My clients are a mix of social and corporate, from Deutsche Bank to WWF.
Jonathan Potter has worked in the humanitarian and development sector since 1991, most recently as the Executive Director of Qatar Charity UK and, before that, of People In Aid, a global network of NGOs. Under his leadership People In Aid grew into the largest transnational network in the sector, focussing agencies’ and individuals’ attention on quality and accountability on a range of issues such as good management, staff security, local staff development, coaching and competencies – and much more. People In Aid pioneered organisational certification for the humanitarian sector.
In his last years at People In Aid Jonathan co-led the development of the Core Humanitarian Standard for the sector and also the establishment of the CHS Alliance. He has been part of many interagency collaborations, chairing, for example, ELRHA, the START Network’s Surge Capacity Project and the Emergency Personnel Network. He has undertaken consultancies for major actors in the sector, for example researching the capacity of local NGOs for ECHO in 2012. He has been directly involved, and has managed colleagues in all aspects of running a non-profit: governance, HR, communications, fundraising, finance and projects. He is currently a strategic advisor with Muslim Aid, supporting the CEO on governance, organisational development and internal systems.