General information

  • Qualification: Leading with Self-Awareness program by Johan Cruyff Institute and Wellbeing Science Institute
  • Duration: 6 months
  • Start: TBC
  • Place:

    Johan Cruyff Institute Barcelona and Johan Cruyff Institute Amsterdam

  • Modality: Online + 1,5 days in Barcelona + 1,5 days in Amsterdam
  • Language: English
  • Price: € 500 Reservation Fee + € 6,000 Tuition Fee
  • Payment methods: Payment by instalments available
  • Special conditions: Discount for alumni and members of partner entities
  • Enrollment: Registration open until the start of the program. Limited seats available

The program may be subject to change.
The institution reserves the right to cancel the edition of the program if it does not meet the minimum number of students.


The world we have come to know is undergoing rapid cultural and economic transformations that are reshaping the landscape of sports.

To thrive in this evolving landscape, (sports) leaders must possess a new set of capabilities and attributes. They must be culturally competent, capable of fostering an inclusive environment where individuals from all backgrounds feel valued and empowered. They must actively seek diverse perspectives, ensuring that decision-making processes reflect the richness of experiences and ideas. Moreover, they must champion initiatives that promote equality, fairness, and social impact, going beyond mere lip service to effect meaningful change.

Leadership requires individuals who are not only skilled in strategic thinking, but also empathetic and compassionate. They must be willing to listen, learn, and unlearn, recognizing the need for continuous growth and adaptation. These leaders will serve as role models for the next generation, inspiring athletes to use their platforms to advocate for social causes and champion inclusivity within their respective sports.

Resulting from a unique collaboration between Johan Cruyff Institute and Wellbeing Science Institute, we have designed a truly innovative program around the Mindset, Attributes, and Capabilities required for leaders to be successful in the future world of sport and business.


Learn how to develop a Personal Blueprint for Leading with Self-Awareness. Through this program, we aim to enhance self-awareness, relationship capabilities, and personal wellbeing, ultimately enabling leaders to lead with authenticity, engage their teams effectively, and achieve unprecedented success.

These are the keys to a program that will have a real impact on your career, during which you will learn:

  • To develop an understanding of the structural changes underway that are reshaping the world of work and how they will impact the sport industry.
  • To improve levels of self-awareness, self-care, authenticity and social connections.
  • To improve relationship capability for application in the workplace.
  • To develop a personal blueprint for leading with self-awareness.
  • To develop a customised toolkit and implementation plan for personal wellbeing.
  • To develop the capacity to lead with self-awareness and thereby more effectively engage, leverage the potential and align judgement of team members.
  • To raise the leadership bar in sporting organisations by role-modelling self-awareness.


Get ready to embark on a transformative journey that will prepare you to excel in the future of sports leadership. By participating in this program, you can expect the following enhanced learning outcomes:

  • Understanding of the changing world of work and the capabilities required to be a successful leader in the future.
  • Increased awareness of one’s preferred relating style and changes in behaviour under physical and psychosocial stress.
  • Creation of a personal blueprint for leading with self-awareness based on learning, feedback and career trajectory.
  • Benchmarking of personal wellbeing and design of a personalised holistic, values aligned, wellbeing plan.
  • Awareness of the leadership opportunities and challenges in different sporting organisations.
  • Application of the leadership self-awareness practices in the workplace.
  • Ability to mentor others in leadership self-awareness practices

Aimed at

  • High impact coaches, managers, or leaders who understand that the future in sport will require a different mindset, motivation and leadership capabilities from those of the past.
  • Professionals working in the sport industry who want to take their capability to the next level to enable greater levels of collaboration, innovation and performance.
  • People who have completed this course are currently working in the areas of elite coaching, high performance, athlete wellbeing, management and leadership.


To be eligible for admission, you must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Some evidence of tertiary study (at least at Diploma level).
  • At least 3 years of experience in leading others in an elite sport setting in coaching, management or team leadership role.
  • At least 3 years of experience in the sport industry.


1 Pre-registration: Complete a pre-registration form sharing your personal and professional achievements, so that we can get to know you better.

2 Personal Interview: If you meet the requirements, we’ll arrange a personal interview to evaluate whether your aspirations and motivations are in line with the objectives of the program.

3 Admission: Within 72 hours, our advisors will contact you regarding the outcome. If you receive a positive evaluation, they will provide you with all the information you need to enroll in the program.


Leading with Self-Awareness consists of 6 modules, distributed over 6 months.

The program commences with 1 on-campus module (held in Amsterdam) and is followed by 4 online modules and finally 1 on-campus module (in Barcelona).


It kicks off with module 1, a transformative in-person experience held in Amsterdam.
Following module 1, the program transitions to four online modules and consists of a 1-2 hour pre-work e-learning component, followed by a 90 minute facilitated group coaching session.
Module 6, the final on-campus module held in Barcelona. It includes an invited guest speaker and group showcases that will be presented by students.

By combining online and on-campus sessions, our program provides a well-rounded learning experience that combines the advantages of face-to-face interaction with the flexibility of online learning. This blended approach ensures that participants receive comprehensive knowledge, engage in meaningful discussions, and build a global network of like-minded professionals.


Module 1. What is self-awareness & why it matters

  • Generating self-awareness
  • Understanding our brains, emotions and polyvagal safety
  • Differentiating internal subjective emotional experience from external emotional expression
  • The capacity for adaptive coping with negative emotions and distressing circumstances
  • Your personal values & strengths
  • Your preferred relating style
  • Your Self-Insight report

Module 2. Understanding Holistic Wellbeing

  • Self-Care and Self-Compassion for Leaders
  • Mindset matters
  • 7 Days of Self-Care Activities
  • Your 2 Self-Care Habits
  • Your personal holistic wellbeing plan

Module 3. The Authentic Leader

  • Psychological capital and leadership
  • Understanding authenticity
  • Authenticity questionnaire
  • How to be more authentic – the 3 elements
  • Values alignment activity
  • Time series analysis & insight

Module 4. Showcase Presentations

  • Team-based action learning projects
  • Grounded in problem solving applying the program principles
  • Supported by subject-matter coaching experts
  • Presentation to wider cohort for discussion and feedback

Module 5. The Science of Relationships

  • The science of friendship and intimate relationships
  • The SWI framework for positive relationships
  • 5 Days of Share Yourself Activities
  • The Leadership Circle
  • Relationship support tools

Module 6. The Self-aware Leader

  • Guest Speaker
  • My personal blueprint for Leading with Self-Awareness
  • Integrity, ethics and role modeling
  • Coaching and developing self-awareness in others
  • Your leadership impact and commitments
  • Program close

Learning model

The 4S Model

The program takes a blended learning approach that combines synchronous (learning together in real time) and asynchronous (learning away from the group) that is woven through our proprietary 4S model that includes;

  • Seminars – the have multiple learning tools in embedded to maximise retention
  • Sprint solutions – working in teams to deepen immersion and understanding
  • Showcases – a deep dive in content areas with teamwork, coloration and innovation
  • Self-directed learning – time efficient, self-paced and convenient for work/study balance

Because your peers come from diverse countries and areas in the sport industry such as elite coaching, high performance, athlete wellbeing, management and leadership you can expect to benefit from their significant experience. Equally, your own experience knowledge and skills will be highly valued by others.

We actively encourage teamwork, collaboration and group problem solving to deepen relationships and ensure that insights and experience are shared.

Your peers will be the leaders of tomorrow, so you can expect to see them in senior positions of influence in the near future, if they are not holding such positions already.

We use networks as a central element of our learning design, but this has the added benefit of developing a personal learning network that will last well beyond the course.

As many of you have busy work and important family commitments, you will know well in advance which will enable you to plan the program around your work and life, not the other way around.

Your course facilitators will monitor your progress and ensure that everything is a fit with your game plan and provide specialist coaching and support as and when you need it. When you use the resources of the digital platform, you are in contact with a learning support team member who can answer your questions at any time.

Experience in high performance environments has taught us that in elite sport, and in life, that the best form of motivation comes from within.

Therefore, we expect you and your peers to be intrinsically motivated and the course will satisfy fundamental psychological needs of autonomy, mastery and purpose.

In this way, the high standards we expect will be fundamental to who you are as a person and as a professional.


Steve Johnson ­
CEO of the Wellbeing Science Institute

Steve is a psychologist by training and has 30 years of experience in executive leadership roles in Europe, the USA, the Middle East, and Australia. His areas of expertise include effective leadership, organisational development and wellbeing. He has been a university lecturer in sport psychology, sport coaching and leadership. He is a former faculty member of Harvard Medical School’s post graduate leadership program He is currently the Wellbeing Advisor to the Premier League, Loughborough University and the NRL in Australia. Steve is considered a global expert on Wellbeing in Elite and Professional Sport. He is a current member of the Australian Psychological Society and the American Psychological Association.

Alison Johnson ­
Head of Leadership and Learning at the Wellbeing Science Institute

Alison has over twenty years of executive experience in leadership and organisational development. She has held global, regional and country level roles in leadership and organisational development across a broad range of sectors including investment banking, financial services, law and health care. For the past 6 years, Alison has been the Wellbeing Science Institute’s specialist leadership and organisational development and wellbeing expert. In this role she has worked with leaders and organisations from sport, government, healthcare, defense, tertiary education, technology, and financial services sectors.

Student services

Johan Cruyff Institute offers different services to enhance your employability, complete your education and improve your experience before, during and after your studies.

Every week we send you a newsletter with job offers from football clubs, companies and sports entities so that you can follow in detail how the job market is evolving in the sports industry and be the first to know about available job opportunities.
In addition, we have built a wide network of professional partners who are looking for talent and turn to us to fill their vacancies. Johan Cruyff Institute selects the best qualified profiles among its network of students according to their suitability.

Our students are well-trained candidates, able to bring a lot of value to companies and, therefore, perfect for integrating into their teams through the formula of professional internships. These internships are, in turn, an enriching learning experience, and through them you have the opportunity to live the reality of a sports organization and put into practice the knowledge you have acquired. It’s worth noting that internships are voluntary, but they can provide valuable career-building opportunities.

The Alumni Cruyff Institute digital platform allows the more than 9,500 students who have studied with us to maintain the links created during their studies, as well as to participate in webinars and training sessions, among other resources.
Connect to this network and get in touch with peers who share your interests and with former students working in companies and institutions around the world, while keeping the spirit of Johan Cruyff Institute alive.

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