Level 7 Senior Leadership Apprenticeship Programme

Would you like to transform the culture of your organisation?

Our Level 7 Senior Leadership Apprenticeship Programme is practical and hands-on designed for senior leaders who want to make a real cultural change in their workplace.

This is a Level 7 qualification and the equivalent of a postgraduate degree or MBA. But you do not need a degree to join the programme, and as an apprenticeship qualification, the focus is on implementing ideas and on-the-job learning rather than sitting in long, dull lectures.

Jo and Brendan discuss Happy's Level 7 Senior Leadership Apprenticeship Programme


Level 7 facilitators Jo Holliday and Brendan O'Keefe discuss the Level 7 programme in this video: who it's for, what the benefits are and why you should join the programme.

Discover what could be possible when you create a happy workplace

The last two years have caused a huge shift in organisational priorities. The pandemic has triggered a re-examination of the meaning of work and the purpose of organisations. Whilst a focus on the bottom line remains critical, the emphasis on people and culture has been shown to be vital in creating more agile, innovative and resilient organisations. Research has shown that those organisations who have a people focused strategy are more productive, creative and profitable.

The course draws upon the principles of The Happy Manifesto. Written by our Chief Happiness Officer, Henry Stewart, this international bestseller formulates what we regard as a fundamental truth — staff perform best when they feel good about themselves.

This is not for the faint-hearted. You need to be brave, positive, open minded and committed to some hard work. This will be rewarded with real tangible results. By creating self-managed teams, you will unlock the strengths, ideas and potential of everyone and help drive the sustainable success of your organisation.

This has been a professional life-changing experience delivered by first-rate tutors, with a group of engaged and envisioned co-learners.Adele Paterson, International Health Partners

Is this apprenticeship programme for you?

The Level 7 programme is not about learning a few leadership tips. It is designed for those who want a cultural transformation of their workplace.

  • You need to be at a senior level a CEO, Director or Head of Department. This can be in the commercial world, the public sector, a social enterprise or a charity.
  • You must be prepared to spend 20% of your work time on the programme, over two years, including putting it into practice.
  • There are no qualifications required to attend this programme. While a Level 7 is the equivalent of a post-graduate qualification, we do not require a degree to attend it. However, England and Maths Level 2 (GCSE A*-C) are required elements for completion of the programme.
  • You must be open minded and ready to apply the concepts you learn in your organisation.

Learn more about the programme on our free Level 7 taster, a one-hour online session that will give you a flavour of Happy's training style and whether the programme is right for you. Our next sessions are 12th June and 22nd July.

RSVP here

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Melanie Cohen, Director of Bluebird Care (Bournemouth & Poole), started the Level 7 Senior Leaders programme in April 2021.

Read her story in this blog.



Contents of the Programme

Spread over two years, the Level 7 apprenticeship programme will include:

  • Monthly face-to-face sessions (either online or in the classroom)
  • Group coaching between each session
  • Creation of groups of five to six to collaborate with, and buddies to keep in regular touch with
  • Use of an online portal with a wide range of resources
  • Keynote speakers that are at the cutting edge of new ways of working
  • Visiting a progressive organisation

Download the full outline as a PDF

You will be expected to complete at least 6 working hours per week in ‘off-the-job’ training through the duration of the training programme. These 6 hours per week will include training, coaching, assignments, work activities, projects, research, and reflections.

This Level 7 programme is certified by the Institute of Leadership.

This course is inspiring and has revolutionised how I lead. I no longer give myself a hard time for every decision I have made, even when things don’t go how I wanted … for someone who gives herself such a hard time, that’s massive. As a result of being braver and a newfound confidence, I have found my anxiety has decreased. The course is life-changing and has allowed me to lead, and has given me the knowledge needed in a rapidly expanding charityHannah Briars, Little Gate

Our Next Available Dates

Our next public programme will start in September 2024, with workshops being held remotely through Zoom. The first session is your induction, where you will meet your facilitator and other learners, with workshops beginning one month later. Please contact our friendly team for more details about enrolment and for the full list of dates for these sessions.

If you would like a private group programme for your organisation, please get in touch with our team to discuss the available options, pricing and availability. These can be held anywhere in the UK, at Happy or at your workplace.

Allen Castro on the Level 7 programme

Allen Castro at ATS is currently on the Level 7 programme, and in this clip he explains what he's learnt on the programme and what the benefits have been.

Join our free 1 hour taster session

Learn more about our Level 7 programme, ask questions and experience the style and interactive approach of the programme with our free 1 hour taster session.

Join us next on 12th June or 22nd July.

RSVP now

How much does it cost?

The Senior Leaders Programme is tied to the Level 7 Apprenticeship standard.

This programme costs £14,000. For people based in England, it is fully funded by the Apprenticeship Levy.

For those paying the Levy (organisations with payrolls over £3 million) those are the only costs, beyond the Levy.

For those not paying the Levy, it is 95% funded by the government, so the extra cost will be £700.

Note: You do not qualify for the funding if you have a prior Level 7 qualification in business or leadership (MA or MBA).

Membership for the Institute of Leadership also has a registration fee of £60 per person.

Much of the 20% of my time on the course, particularly after a few of the workshops, was in trying experiments and implementing new things, as much as it was reading and continuing to learn about each area of the course. This on-the-job implementation is critical to the course to ensure you take forward any learnings as you go.

From an organisational perspective, my primary achievement so far is that we now have a defined Purpose as an organisation, which we reached by having lots of people involved who come from all areas of the business. We’ve refined our Values, and we have documented our culture, which is now part of our employee handbooks. There will be more to follow as this filters through all areas of the business, but it feels like we are now all heading in the same direction. It feels very much like a fresh start as we’ve also rebranded as a result.

Ann Hartland, Deputy CEO & Growth Director, Cedar Communications

Get in touch

Contact us to find out more and sign up for our Level 7 Senior Leadership programme. Our next cohort will start in September 2024 and places are limited.