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Key Executive Leadership Programs

Archive: Key Executive Leadership Speaker Series

Created to extend thought and discussion on matters relevant to leadership in the public sector; the Key Executive Leadership Speaker Series provides an opportunity for Key Executive Leadership students and alumni to hear from senior government leaders in an interactive and dynamic environment.

2014 Speaker Series

2013 Speaker Series

2012 Speaker Series

2015 Speaker Series: "Transform, Integrate, Motivate"

Wednesday, February 4, 2015 from 6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.
Speaker: Rebecca Archer, U.S. Small Business Administration
Topic: Leadership

Becoming a Leader: Showing Up and Daring Greatly

The field of leadership development has exploded over the past several decades. Organizations invest significant resources to develop their leaders, and yet the results are sometimes questionable. Successfully addressing the complexity of issues facing leaders today requires multiple perspectives. Leaders need to be able to invite people into meaningful conversations, and convene and engage diverse stakeholders to generate creative solutions. Leaders can do this when they know what matters to them; when they’re willing to take risks to show up and be seen. 

If you’re curious about leadership, and more specifically about your leadership, and about living a meaningful life that you help craft, and you’re willing to engage in conversation, please come join us for an interactive, thought-provoking and fun evening.

Stream the recorded session.

2014 Speaker Series: "Leadership Challenges in a Changing World"

Saturday, February 1, 2014 from 9:00am-12:00pm
Speaker: Jim Thompson, U.S. Department of State
Topic: Collaborative Partnerships

Going Beyond Procurement - Public-Private Partnerships for U.S. Government Programs

With declining resources, government officials need to think smarter and more strategically about how they approach their work. Government agencies at the municipal, state and federal levels are quickly realizing that you can get more done by being a catalyst and a convener rather than just through basic contracting. Through the use of networks and partnerships, government agencies have unleashed private sector creativity, innovation and resources that are creating more sustainable and durable programs.

During the session, Jim Thompson will discuss:

  • The different types of public-private partnerships - which one is right for me?
  • Who is a partner, and how do you get started on partnerships?
  • Partnership agreements and due diligence.
  • Managing through networks and collaborative governance.

This session is ideal for innovative government officials who are looking for tools and best practices on partnerships to advance their agency's missions.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014 from 6:00pm-8:00pm
Speaker: Patrick Malone, Ph.D., American University
Topic: Leadership Challenges

Narcissism and Someone You Worked For - Challenges for Federal Leaders

We know they’re out there – those leaders that we’ve all worked for who make life almost unbearable. Whether it was early in your career, or present day, we’ve all had the pleasure of toiling under the watchful eye of men and women we would call narcissistic, among other things. The emotional drain and fatigue feels almost overwhelming. 

This practical and interactive session will focus on what fuels self-absorption in leaders, its impact on the workplace, and most importantly – how we deal with it. Participants will observe and discuss examples of narcissism and examine their own leadership thinking and behavior with an eye toward a better understanding of this most powerful force.

Stream the recorded session.

Saturday, June 21, 2014 from 9:00am-12:00pm
Speaker: Sean Clayton, U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
Topic: The Generation Gap

Building Your Generational Competence: A Workshop for Leadership Effectiveness

While differences between younger and older generations are not new, this is the first time in our country's history that we have four different generations in the workplace. We have members of our Veteran generation working with Baby Boomers both of whom now work alongside Generation X and Generation Y. This workshop offers straightforward conversations that will explore what happens when generations with different viewpoints interact with one another in the workplace, the potential areas where conflict can take place, and how managers and supervisors can work with their staffs to minimize and resolve issues among these groups as they work together on projects.

The importance of this workshop is to build one's generational competence and become clear about what behaviors may drive our corporate culture. The awareness of these drivers helps managers and employees cultivate better practices while changing, or leaving behind, unproductive practices in the pursuit of successfully positioning an organization to meet its mission.

With the onset federal retirements, the changing labor market demographics, and the government's need to appeal to a new generation of employees;this workshop will explore how generational attitudes affect a number of areas key to successfully managing and communicating across an organization.

The goals of the workshop are as follows:   

  • Show how an organization's values and operational procedures may be informed by generational preferences.
  • Equip managers and employees with techniques to successfully influence how one develops rapport with each generational group.
  • Afford individuals with the tools they need to facilitate the exchange of ideas among one another to accomplish the organization's mission.
  • Show employees ways that they may better be able to connect with and successfully influence their managers and supervisors.
  • Identify strategies on how to use generational competency as a potential lens by which many human capital challenges can be identified and overcome. 
  • Establish a personal leadership philosophy that can span the generations while speaking to the idea of continuous improvement.
Stream the recorded session.

Saturday, August 9, 2014 from 9:00am-12:00pm
Speaker: Erran Carmel, American University, Kogod School of Business
Topic: Technology

Technology Technologies for Communication and Collaboration

With declining resources, government officials need to think smarter and more strategically about how they approach their work. 

The answer for many organizations and agencies is the use of unified communications--real-time communication services integrated to optimize business processes (e.g., instant messaging, video conferencing, and desktop sharing). 

The session, Technologies for Communication and Collaboration, will focus on various technologies employees and managers can deploy to create a collaborative environment.  

Session discussions will include:  

  • How collaboration technologies are improving process, workforce and business performance.

  • How executives can use collaboration tools to truly transform workplace performance.

  • Identification of contexts where greater collaboration is warranted.

A session you don't want to miss that is sure to provide ideas and approaches you can take back to the office on Monday.

Stream the session.

Saturday, October 4, 2014 from 9:00am-12:00pm
Speaker:Patrick Barker, Defense Acquisition University
Topic: Project Management

Perspectives in Project Management

Project Management is not all about processes and artifacts, deliveries and metrics. It is also about people. It is also about maintaining situational awareness and making decisions in an environment of uncertainty.

We shall examine roles of leadership, decision-making, complexity and uncertainty in the management of projects within organizations, including, but not limited to, Government program offices. The workshop will be a combination of case studies, program office execution scenarios, lecture and discussion. 

Participant discussion will be highly encouraged to share experiences and thoughts in a casual atmosphere.

Stream the session.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Speaker: Jennifer Wicks, U.S. Department of State
Topic: Global Leadership

The Changing Playing Field

Being an effective leader is challenging in any context and the demands and expectations of today's global leaders are greater than ever before. The entire U.S. government, whether its operations are overseas or domestic, needs to consider the potential worldwide impact of its policies and decisions and ensure its leadership is well positioned to perform on this dynamic and fast paced international stage. We will explore the strategy and tactics of global leadership –discussing the following questions.   

  • What does the global environment look like?   
  • What does this mean for us as leaders?   
  • How can we ensure we are prepared to be effective global leaders?

Stream the recorded session.

2013 Speaker Series

Saturday, January 26, 2013
Speaker: Solly Thomas
Topic: Becoming an Effective Senior Executive

This interactive workshop will focus on what it takes to become an effective Senior Executive. The workshop will address:

  • What is Senior Executive Service (SES)?
  • What skills are necessary to be an effective SES?
  • How do you develop the necessary skills?
  • What challenges lie ahead?
  • The advantages and disadvantages of becoming a SES.
  • The SES application process.

Individuals who are considering the Senior Executive Service are highly encouraged to attend.

Saturday, March 23, 2013
Speakers: Ryan Martin and Jennifer Nelson
Topic: Career Transitions: Linking Passions to Paychecks

Am I doing what I really want to do? Should I change jobs? If so, how do I make a successful transition? Come receive insight on the topic of career transitions. During the session Ryan Martin and Jennifer Nelson will discuss:

  • How to know when to make a change in your career;
  • How to make your career transition successful; and
  • How you can uncover your true passion.

Individuals considering a career transition are encouraged to attend.

Saturday, May 18, 2013
Speaker: Clyde Horton
Diversity and Leadership

This presentation is designed to provide a framework for understanding diversity in organizations and the process of working effectively with and leading others in a multicultural environment. Participants will:

  • Develop an understanding of the concept of "diversity,"
  • The role of the multicultural leader, and
  • How their own diversity affects the way they lead.

Finally, this presentation will address some of the challenges and benefits of diversity and offer practical tools for working together in a multicultural society.

Saturday, July 20, 2013
Speaker: Don Zauderer
Workplace Incivility: When Bosses are Bullied

We generally think of bullying as emanating from abusive bosses or rival peers. This remains a significant problem. But we are now finding many instances where bullying comes from subordinates who may not like change, or are retaliating for decisions that are unfavorable to their interests. Staff, for example, may make repeated frivolous complaints against supervisors using a variety of legal channels and processes, forcing bosses to become involved in investigations and time draining procedural requirements. Bullying behaviors can be direct or indirect, mild or aggressive. Managers in the public sector often have little recourse. This workshop explores upward bullying at the workplace, in its various forms, causes, consequences, and solutions.

Time will be provided for participants to tell their stories and to explore what managers might do in these circumstances. We will also look at what initiatives are taking place in different countries and organizations.

Key Topics:

  • What is bullying?
  • What conditions give rise to upward bullying?
  • What form does bullying take?
  • How do certain managerial behaviors foster bullying?
  • What are the consequences of bullying?
  • What resource do managers have when bullied?
  • What should organizations be doing to address bullying at the workplace?

Saturday, September 28, 2013
Speaker: Carmen Medina
Topic: Innovation in the Federal Workplace

We've heard it all before: change is occurring at unprecedented rates, government and innovation don't mix, and government policies and practices are still stuck in the 20th century. At this point, these observations have become clichés, but the awkward thing about clichés is that they often capture at least some aspects of reality. Change and innovation do remain difficult for the Federal government even as the demands for them grow. Most government leaders have been taught or have learned on the job how to keep an organization stable to meet predetermined goals. What many don't know is how to disrupt it to achieve innovation. 

This interactive workshop will explore innovation in the Federal space from the theoretical and strategic level to the tactical. Leaders will learn specific techniques and best practices to overcome bureaucratic obstacles to change.  

Questions addressed will include:

  • How does innovation work in the private sector?
  • How do these lessons apply to government?
  • Are there different types of innovation and do I need to manage them differently?
  • What are the various innovation scenarios in the Federal workplace?
  • Can the principles of lean startup be applied in the Federal Government?
  • How do I support key innovators in the workplace?
  • How can I distinguish productive innovators from complainers and troublemakers?
  • How can I be a more effective change agent in my own leadership role?

Saturday, November 16, 2013
Naomi Leventhal, Ph.D.
Topic: Leading Effective Employee Performance

One of a leader's most important tasks is to enable high quality performance from employees. Too often, however, leaders practice a kind of performance evaluation triage. They decide that about one-third of their employees are high quality performers, the "go to" people who take responsibility and solve problems, about one-third do little more than "get the job done," and one third are not much use at all. The challenges faced by organizations today to perform in the face of budget pressures and mission change make this a formula for failure. No organization can progress if it ignores two-thirds of its work team. Leaders need to reconsider how they can get the highest quality performance from all of their employees.

In this interactive workshop, we will consider the meaning of excellent performance, look at the barriers that get in the way of achievement, and discuss strategies that leaders can use to remove these barriers, motivate employees, and build and sustain a high quality performance environment. Participants will have the opportunity to evaluate performance inhibitors and accelerators within their own work environments, and to identify strategies that will help them move employees from acceptable performance to optimal performance.

Key Topics:

  • Defining Excellence – What do we mean by excellent performance? What are we looking for?
  • Twenty-First Century Workplace – What is different about employee performance in today's workplace?
  • Culture – Why do people blame the culture for poor performance? And what do we do about this?
  • Barriers and Enablers – What are the factors in our workplaces that inhibit or support the ability of our employees to achieve?
  • Levers for Change – What are the processes, policies, and systems that impact performance? 
  • Strategies for Success – What techniques do leaders use to address the different needs of employees for support?
  • The Leader's Role: How do we create and sustain a work environment that encourages high quality performance?

2012 Speaker Series

April 21, 2012
The Inquiring Leader
Marilee Adams, Ph.D.

Peter Drucker described such leaders when he said, "The leader of the past was a person who told. The leader of the future will be a person who asks." This workshop introduces inquiry-based leadership tools and practices including the Learner/Judger Mindset distinctions, the Inquiring Mindset Meeting Map, and the Choice Map. It is dynamic, instructive, and very practical.

June 2, 2012
Manager as Coach
Ruth Zaplin, DPA

While managers may understand the value of coaching as a tool for teaching skills, imparting knowledge, engaging team members, closing performance gaps and inculcating desired work behaviors and competencies, they may not think they have the time or the skills to coach. This talk focuses on what a coaching manager really does and how coaching can fit naturally into a manager's daily work routine. Participants will learn basic concepts and have the opportunity to role play several coaching techniques.

August 25, 2012
Cultivating Your Emotional Intelligence with Mindfulness
Patton Hyman

Emotional Intelligence distinguishes truly excellent leaders, but is it simply the luck of the draw who manifests Emotional Intelligence? Rather than mere skills to be learned, this workshop's operating assumption is that the domains and competencies of EI are inherent capabilities of individuals. As such, by application of mindfulness meditation and related contemplative disciplines, they can be trained, clarified, and strengthened. These practices also help cultivate mental and emotional stability and create open mental space for creative solutions to arise and for rousing confidence in leadership situations.

This hands-on practical session will include mindfulness instruction and practice, interactive contemplations, and remarks on merging mindfulness with EI.

October 27, 2012
Leaders as Change Agents
Janet Ioli

As budgets continue to shrink, the new reality in organizations is becoming clear: do more with less. With increasing pressures and an environment of scarce resources, burnout and inertia set in and are pervasive.

It offers time for self-reflection and the creation of concrete actions to manage personal energy more effectively, avoid burnout, and create change in themselves and their organizations.