Foundations of Leadership and Organization Development

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Cultivate key skills and strategies for professional and organization development

Program Overview

To thrive in today’s environment, leaders and their organizations must possess adaptability, resilience, and a growth mindset. The workshops and courses in our newly redesigned Foundations of Leadership and OD program (formerly Leadership Essentials) will help you develop vision, acknowledge and recognize the role of organizational culture, create a leadership development plan, create change, strategically align the organization, and communicate more effectively - all to help the organization and our communities thrive.

Whether you need a comprehensive leadership program or to just brush up on discrete skills, you'll find what you are looking for at UW Tacoma.

Who should attend?

This program is designed for current supervisors, managers, and team leads who want to bring their skills up to date and learn new techniques, but is also ideal for individuals looking to take on additional responsibilities. Course concepts and skills are applicable to professionals in any industry and would be a strong companion to our Craft Brewing, Project Management, Nonprofit Management, Human Resources Management, Fundraising Management, Lean Six Sigma, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programs.

Students in or considering the Certified Public Manager® program may take any of these courses or workshops (excluding Personal Leadership) towards the Supervisory Training requirement.

Professionals seeking a strong foundation in current business theory and practice (such as finance, marketing, and data analytics) in addition to leadership may want to consider the Essentials of Management Program through the Milgard School of Business.

Course Topics

Two-Day Courses
Personal Leadership


To grow yourself as a leader, you need to know yourself. This course provides the opportunity to learn about yourself and reflect on your behavioral and leadership profile. It helps you increase your self-awareness and resilience, design your leadership brand, and devise targeted strategies to maximize your influence. Includes emotional intelligence and personal development assessments.

After completing this course, participants will be able to

  • Create the foundations of their leadership brand
  • Understand what it takes to become an authentic leader
  • Explain the role of emotional intelligence in their leadership journey
  • Implement strategies for cultivating personal resilience
  • Complete a draft of your Strategic Leadership Development Plan
Team Leadership


Great leaders know how to transform a group of individuals into a cohesive, high-performing team focused on accomplishing a shared mission. High-performance teams outperform their competition and have higher levels of engagement and job satisfaction. Students in this course will learn how to build highly effective teams by examining, analyzing, and applying a variety of strategies to maximize positive group dynamics and team performance.

After completing this course, participants will be able to

  • Explain characteristics that differentiate high-performance teams
  • Begin implementing strategies to build and maintain high-performance teams
  • Use coaching skills to facilitate individual and team development
  • Make resilience and integral part of their team and leadership development
  • Integrate creativity into the daily activities and plans of their team
Organizational Leadership

Instructor: Tina Hagedorn


Leaders spend much of their time communicating to execute strategy and address conflicts. In order to resolve these roadblocks to success, leaders need skills to quickly and fairly resolve issues, create win-win results, and reduce the high cost of conflict. Inspire those around you by improving your communication skills to build trust and a unified team. The skills developed in this course are designed to help you achieve goals in your life and career and are effective for conversations at work, in the community, and at home.

After completing this course, participants will be able to

  • Understand their unique communication style
  • Use new techniques to fine tune their verbal and nonverbal communication at home and at work
  • Explore how emotions impact conflict resolution and how to avoid common pitfalls
  • Prepare the setting and themselves for conflict resolution
  • Build trust within their team
  • Assure the best outcome in a conflict using the inflexible rules of negotiation
  • Build your value by practicing the 7-step process for having difficult conversations
  • Get to Yes in conversations and life by creating win-win solutions
One-Day Workshops
Designing and Leading Change

Instructor: Richard Wilkinson

Designing change that matters and accelerating its integration into a new way of doing business is the centerpiece of this workshop. You’ll discover the three phases of transition, the 4Ps of new beginnings, the three questions to ask of any change initiative, effective change communication strategies, and a variety of smart ways to design change with intentionality and care. Participants should be leading, participating in, or considering change initiatives or projects in their organization. You’ll learn to apply the principles of change management to your specific case.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to

  • Apply design thinking and collaborative processes in designing change.
  • Act as a proactive change agent.
  • Initiate and support change within the organization.
  • Implement strategies to help others adapt to changes in the work environment.
  • Emphasize and foster creativity and innovation.
  • Recognize the impact change has on morale and productivity.
  • Communicate effectively about how and when change will occur.
  • Involve staff in the change process.
  • Help colleagues break from the past.
  • Create a change management plan for your project.
Resolving Workplace Conflict

Instructor: Tina Hagedorn

Coming soon!

The OD Toolkit: Aligning the Organization for Results

Instructor: Chris Crosby

Systemic workplace alignment provides a clear path to ensuring your workplace gets aligned to any goal, initiative, or project. Workplaces out of alignment suffer from priority conflicts, resource confusion, lack of decision making, project overruns, and silos. When problems occur, most forget to think at a higher level and therefore tend to blame individuals or departments for any tension in their organization. In this workshop, you will learn how to think systemically, apply such thinking to current workplace challenges, and create strategies for success.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to

  • Use a socio-technical component checklist for accomplishing tasks.
  • Use SATA (Sponsor/Agent/Target/Advocate) to analyze a workplace and develop engagement strategies for increasing alignment, raising morale and improving results.
  • Set measurable goals.
  • Analyze a current project, initiative or critical goal and develop strategies to increase implementation success.
Getting Unstuck: Repairing Trust in Your Organization

Instructor: Dr. Wendy Fraser
Location: Lacey, WA

Are you a part of a group that is stuck? Eye rolling, finger pointing, rude comments, and uneasy silence are noticeable signs that a group is suffering from latent, unresolved broken trust. If you have had enough and are ready to leave the drama behind, then this workshop is for you.

Or are you part of a well-functioning team and want it to stay that way? Strong relationships within groups engender resilient individuals who can empathically and creatively handle setbacks and swiftly course-correct. If you want to ensure your team continues operating at its best, then this workshop is also for you.

Trust permeates relationships. When there is trust within groups, information flows and issues can be resolved easier. These are core ingredients in fostering a healthy organizational culture. When groups experience low trust or a violation of trust, it can be very disruptive to team performance and it can last for years if left unresolved. So, how can teams work through it? This session will provide you with practical strategies and research-based tools for strengthening relationships and repairing trust at the team or organization level.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to

  • Use the Trust Repair Process Model to provide insights on what strategies to take when trust is compromised.
  • Strengthen relationships within your group and with other key stakeholders by using the Trust Behaviors Framework as a guide or a diagnostic model to target trust breakdowns.
  • Use at least one tool in each phase of the Trust Repair Model to support groups getting unstuck


Schedule pending final program approval, tentatively starting Winter 2021.