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New program from FIU's Center for Leadership helps corporate executives soar to success

The High Potential Leader program delivers concrete ideas that program participants can start using right away. Multi-day program includes one-on-one executive coaching and help preparing an action plan for returning to the workplace.

There's no place quite like the director's level.

The CEO of a company may fly high at 15,000 feet; entry level managers keep steady at 1,000 feet. But the highly talented director must skillfully soar by keeping a keen eye in both directions.

Positioning directors, senior managers, vice presidents and area managers for immediate and long-range success is the goal of the inaugural class of The High Potential Leader program, the latest addition to the elite suite of executive leadership development programs from FIU's Center for Leadership, part of the College of Business Administration. The three-and-a-half day program will be held May 10-13 at the Hyatt Regency Bonaventure in Weston, Florida.

"We are particularly excited about this brand new program as it brings together an elite and diverse faculty that includes Modesto Maidique (President Emeritus of FIU and professor of management, College of Business Administration) and noted industrial and organizational psychologists Michael Woodward, Leslie DeChurch and Nathan Hiller," says Garth D. Headley, industrial psychologist and associate director of marketing and corporate relations for the Center.

Hiller, faculty director of the program, explains how the entire program, start to finish, is precisely designed for directors and their counterparts.

"The requirements for leadership for this level are unique, as these executives have to manage upward, outward and downward," he says. "Our program helps attendees understand their exact position as being responsible for executing the CEO's vision. Best of all, they are shown how to broaden their success now and develop organizational bench skills that are likely to ensure future promotion."

Because FIU is a research university, The High Potential Leader program draws on specific findings from executive and workplace studies to deliver concrete ideas that program participants can start using right away.

Hiller points out that today's director or vice president needs a portfolio of capabilities precisely for this executive level:

  • Thinking more strategically. "You must execute a strategic plan that has been prepared by the CEO, while at the same time prepare yourself to be the person someday making the plan," he says.
  • Leading teams effectively. "Contrary to popular belief, being a leader isn't a natural skill," Hiller remarks. "A non-intuitive, science-based approach can be learned and is essential."
  • Avoiding derailers. "About one-fourth of people who were once thought of as fast track' executives somehow become stagnant," he reports. "This can be caused by internal and external derailers that take a person off track. Example: being a hot/cold executive who is passionate only at the beginning of a project."

Using classroom presentations, panel discussions, highly interactive exercises, self-assessments and other learning methods, The High Potential Leader program helps the participants build this portfolio of skills.

"Certain to be a highlight of the program will be a panel of senior industry leaders that will share their own journeys to the top and speak to what they look for in promotable, high-potential executives," says Dr. Hiller.

Headley adds that the program also offers 50 minutes of one-on-one executive coaching and helps each participant prepare an action plan for returning to the workplace.

"Given the success and reputation of our other executive programs, we have had the demand for some time for a program at this level open to both men and women executives," he says. "The High Potential Leader program now joins the center's Women on the Move (exclusively for women leaders) and the Leading Decisions programs (for presidents and C-suite executives) as the Center's executive leadership development offerings."

For more information, visit LEAD.FIU.EDU or contact the Center at 305-348-5323.

- Jane Schreier Jones

Original article posted on: FIU Biz News