Exeter unveils survey tool to develop responsible leaders for a greener, fairer and healthier world

The University of Exeter Business School has launched a transformative new tool designed to cultivate responsible leaders in the workplace.

TEXL simplifies the creation of people assessments and is grounded in high-quality academic research.

The 360-degree survey platform boasts a vast library of peer-reviewed measures on personal development – including resilience, mindfulness, authentic and ethical leadership – allowing individuals and educators to craft customized surveys that enhance self-awareness and professional growth.

“Our goal is to make rigorous academic insights more accessible to educators, businesses, and organizations, providing aspiring leaders with robust tools so that self-development is built on foundations of stone not sand,” said Dr Michelle Mahdon, Co-founder and Director of TEXL and Research Fellow at the University of Exeter Business School.

Dr Mahdon highlights the pitfalls of many current survey-based assessments, which often rely on “meaningless and misleading data and information”.

In contrast, TEXL utilizes scientifically validated measures, bridging the gap between academic research and its practical application in leadership development.

“With its user-friendly ‘plug and play’ library, TEXL enables the creation of comprehensive surveys in minutes, with the platform handling all results and benchmarking, as well as ensuring transparency through providing access to the underlying research,” said Professor Niels Van Quaquebeke, fellow TEXL Co-founder and Academic Director, and Distinguished Research Professor at the University of Exeter Business School as well as Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behaviour at Kühne Logistics University (KLU).

Its globally benchmarked results are anonymised and individuals are offered lifetime access, allowing users to track their progress over time.

TEXL aligns with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals for 2030, promoting responsible leadership and high-quality education. It also supports the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) by making academic rigor accessible to a broader community.

Professor Alexandra Gerbasi, Pro-Vice Chancellor of the Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy and part of the TEXL project team, added: “This is an exciting project for the University of Exeter for many reasons, not least as a great example of contributing to our aims of knowledge exchange and making academic rigor and insights more accessible to the wider community.”

TEXL has been developed at the University of Exeter Business School with the support of Exeter Innovation, the University’s business engagement and innovation arm.  

The initiative is born out of the League of Leadership, a union of leadership development academics from KLU, Duke University, INSEAD, Rotterdam School of Management and the University of Michigan among others. 

Experts from the University of Exeter Business School, including members of the project team, presented and demonstrated TEXL at the PRME UK&I Chapter Conference 2024 held at the University of Exeter Business School from 19-21 June.