ICMA University Skill-Building Workshops

Workshops that are affordable, accessible, and designed to meet the specific needs of local government professionals.

VIA ICMA

ICMA is committed to providing workshops that are affordable, accessible, and designed to meet the specific needs of local government professionals. Each workshop is based on the Practices for Effective Local Government LeadershipThese can also be used to meet annual professional development requirements as outlined in the guidelines for Tenet 8 of the ICMA Code of Ethics.

By partnering with localities, state associations, and universities in the delivery of these programs, we are able to reduce travel costs and provide high-quality workshops.

Half-day workshops: $3,960 for states with a signed affiliation agreement with ICMA for up to 50 participants. Non-affiliated states pay an additional fee. To reserve a workshop email: workshops@icma.org

Below is a listing of workshops you can bring to your local government, state association meeting, or other setting. 

Mini Workshops

ICMA University offers two-hour skill building workshops that can be brought to your local government, state association meeting, or other setting:

Additional Information:
Fee: $2,500 for 2.5 hours (client pays travel and lodging)
Select the workshop from the links above to find out more about the offering.
Ethics

Workshop: Building a Culture of Ethical Behavior in Your Organization

Building a culture of ethical behavior in the organization is one of a leader’s most challenging yet essential jobs. The local government environment is complicated: government employees come from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences, often without strong knowledge of good government practices, and citizens have long held a basic distrust of government and its employees. We are all faced with ethical dilemmas in our jobs, and knowing the right thing to do is not always easy or clear. This workshop will offer a framework, complete with practical strategies and tools, through which you, as a leader, can foster an ethical workplace and effectively deal with the difficult situations that arise. (Practice Group 1 - Personal and Professional Integrity) 

Workshop: Ethics at Work!

Practical Ethics Tools and Strategies Suitable for All Staff to Improve Conduct in the Workplace [with Real-Life Examples] 
 
One way of helping protect the integrity of your organization is to keep ethics in the forefront with your employees. Ethics At Work Workshop is about helping your staff identify and resolve ethical issues and establishing a foundation for a strong and successful workplace and life.
 
As we've all seen in the news, it seems that ethical choices are more complex when people are under pressure. In the public sector, we need to understand that while something might be legal, it doesn't mean it's ethical. In these challenging times, everyone could use a refresher to help build skills and learn practical strategies for making ethical choices. Ethics At Work Workshop is based on the values of public service, and will provide a framework for addressing everyday ethical issues and serve as a platform for participant discussion about many common ethical concerns, such as:
  • balancing what’s legal versus what’s ethical
  • addressing perceived and/or real conflicts of interest
  • accepting gifts / favors
  • ethics and the Internet: Facebook, Twitter, and texting in the workplace
  • how your actions affect the ethics climate in your organization

You will tackle real-world case studies to give you and your staff an eye-opening perspective on a topic that sometimes gets taken for granted. You’ll be surprised at how difficult a seemingly simple ethical choice can be—especially in local government, where your choices need to build trust and confidence with the public you serve.

You and your staff will:
  • Build awareness of the core values of public service
  • Enhance ethical decision-making skills
  • Learn practical strategies to strengthen work environments
  • Build ethical habits.
(Practice Group 1 - Personal and Professional Integrity)
High Performing Organizations

Workshop: Leading Change / HPO

Explore and identify practices that will better prepare employees and organizations to accept and process change.  Change is a constant in many of our lives; both on a personal and professional level.  All around us, technologies, processes, people, ideas, and methods often change, affecting the way we perform daily tasks and live our lives.  Successful change initiatives depend upon managers and supervisors taking an active role in introducing the change and then guiding people through the emotional journey that change often causes.  This workshop will explore how we process change and provide tools for implementing change and managing employee reactions to the change. (Practice Groups:4 -Staff Effectiveness and 6- Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Moving Your Organization Toward Higher Performance 

Regardless of the size or location of our organizations, we are all challenged by the same types of issues—increased demands for services, reduced revenues, negative perceptions of government and disengaged workers.  This workshop will challenge you to think differently about how your organization can work!  Key concepts of the High Performance Organization Model to be discussed include “Developing the New Government Employee,” “Doing the Work of Leadership at all Levels of the Organization,”  Deciding your Leadership Philosophy,” “Focusing on both the Vision and the Culture of your Organization,”  and “Building Capacity through Employee Teams.” The program will afford participants opportunities for small group discussion and encourage thinking about “next steps” to move their organizations toward “higher performance.”  (Practice Groups: 4 -Staff Effectiveness and 6- Strategic Leadership)
 
Performance Measurement / Management

Workshop: Informed Policy Making: Engaging Elected Officials in Performance Management

Scorecards and performance benchmarks help elevate the discussion among managers and department heads, but they often remain on the sidelines of key policy-making discussions with elected officials.  How can you put this data to most effective use with your board without leaving them bored?  How do you move beyond the budget crisis of the day to consideration of broader outcomes?  What happens if those elected officials are also in charge of departments?  Explore how you can engage these key stakeholders as part of your efforts at continuous organizational improvement. (Practice group: 7 – Strategic Planning)

Workshop: Gauging Public Opinion The Right Way

Local government leaders get a mass of resident opinions every day. From traditional public comments at council meetings to social media and digital town halls, vocal residents are always finding ways to express their opinions about their cities and towns. But is reacting only to those “squeaky wheels” enough to truly benefit the entire community? The truth is, opinions provided in these formats don’t often represent all residents. That makes it easy for thousands of constituent voices to go unheard.  Fortunately, there are more effective, inclusive and systematic ways to harness resident opinion. In this workshop, experts from National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) will share tried-and-true public engagement methods – including surveys (mail, phone and web), focus groups and panels.  You’ll even discover ways to use existing technology such as your website, Nextdoor and other social media platforms to engage residents in cost-effective ways that do not rely solely on the leanings of a vocal few. This workshop will not only cover the methods to capture resident opinion, but also how to use this crucial resource of resident opinion to move forward on strategic planning, performance measurement and policy analysis. Join us and other local change-makers in making communities better places to live for all residents and stakeholders. (Practice Groups:  7– Strategic Planning; 11- Technological Literacy) 

Workshop: 360 Degrees of Data 

Right now, you are sitting on a wealth of data about your community. Or maybe you’ve become so paralyzed by the numbers that you can’t see your way out. Luckily, overwhelming volumes of information don’t need to become an obstacle to making evidence-based decisions and moving your community forward in longer-lasting ways. This workshop will teach you data trends affecting local government and skills needed in your staff to thrive in the era of Big Data.  Experts from National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) will help you identify the optimal methods to gather, assess and analyze the data you already have at your fingertips. Learn to determine what’s working, what isn’t and how to move forward. Join us for this interactive workshop experience, and leave ready to transform that pile of data into a meaningful, 360-degree view of your community that provides the groundwork for strategic planning and other endeavors.  (Practice Group: 7– Strategic Planning) 
Public Safety Management

Workshop: Enhancing the Relationship Between the Manager and Chief

American policing faces a crisis of community confidence. Far too many people question whether local police departments are truly committed to their safety and justice in the wake of highly publicized incidents of police misconduct, abuse of force and poor judgment. And yet in most communities, police officers carry out their work with professionalism, effectiveness and respect for those they serve.
 
This two-day training is offered to teams of police chiefs and city managers to learn the lessons of some of the most notorious recent incidents and, more importantly, the best practices of 21st century policing. Through structured information sharing and discussion, chiefs and managers will be able to assess their police departments and develop short range action plans to improve local policing for enhanced community confidence and legitimacy.
 
This workshop is limited to 20 participants. We encourage you to sponsor both your Police Chiefs and City Managers for this workshop. The investment in this training will strengthen this crucial relationship and lead to better policing for local communities. (Practices 1- Personal and Professional Integrity; 2- Community Engagement;  3- Staff Effectiveness; 14- Communication and Information Sharing)
 

Workshop: Asking Your Police and Fire Chief the Right Questions to Get the Right Answers

How many police and firefighters do you really need? How well are your public safety departments performing? Are "officers per 1,000" and "number of calls" really meaningful measures? As a local government manager, you have to make policy decisions based on information you get from the different departments. The toughest departments from which to get accurate, measurable information are the police and fire departments. Police and fire chiefs have their own jargon—and few city managers have training in emergency services management. The key is asking the right questions so that you get the right answers.
In this workshop, you will learn how to: establish goals and priorities and know what you need to analyze; quantify what the workloads are in the police and fire departments—and identify whether personnel are allocated correctly to meet the workload demands; get your police department to be able to tell you what percentage of its officers’ time is tied up on actual calls; identify the number of firefighters and amount of equipment that is really necessary; deal with low use of firefighters; and set measurable goals, identify performance problems, and apply strategies to follow the path of continuous improvement. (Practice Group 7 - Strategic Planning)
 

Workshop: Understanding the Public Safety Concept: Forecasting the Outcome of Police-Fire Mergers

Many local government managers have considered the possibility of consolidating police and fire services. The public safety concept, where some or all personnel are dual trained and respond to both police and fire calls although attractive from an efficiency standpoint, is one of the most politically controversial ideas a manager can champion.
Many local governments are spending over 60% of their operating budgets on police and fire services. Facing the “new normal” with little likelihood  that revenues will increase in the foreseeable future, local government are revisiting the idea of merging police and fire services into one department and training public safety officers who can provide patrol and respond to fires.
 
This workshop will provide attendees with tools for gauging the benefits of a police/fire merger
 
Attendees will learn;
  • The history of the public safety concept 
  • What the issues are surrounding a merger
  • The key decisions to be made
  • How to assess and overcome environmental barriers to a consolidation.
  • What opposition to expect from a proposal to consolidate and the consequences to the manager.
  • The impact on costs and performance of a merger.
  • Case studies of successful and unsuccessful merger efforts.
  • How long it takes and what techniques to use to implement a merger.
After the session, the instructors will be available to meet with attendees to provide a review of the specific issues in their communities.
After completion of this workshop attendees will have a better understanding of risks and benefits of a merger. (Practice Groups:4- Staff Effectiveness, 6- Strategic Leadership; 7- Strategic Planning;  and 13- Human Resources Management and Worksforce Engagement)
Management

Workshop: We’ve Always Done It That Way Is Over: Transforming from the Status Quo to the Status Go

Government organizations are often encouraged to institutionalize best practices, freeze them into place, focus on execution, stick to their knitting, increase predictability, and get processes under control. However, today governments face a radically shifting context for the workforce, the workplace, and the world of community building. To move forward toward better government, leaders must be vigilant and disrupt the fossilized mental model of “we’ve always done it that way” and replace it with a forward-looking approach to continuous improvement and transform their workplace culture from the status quo to the Status Go!  Healthy cultures lift people up, expand the capacity of the workforce to execute new challenges, and, overall, enhance the organization’s performance. (6 and 13)

Workshop: The Tools of Good Governance: What Every Manager Needs to Know

Every municipal manager wants to be judged as successful by his/her Council and feel within themselves that their career has been one of effective service. This seminar will provide you with some of the tools to effective management and to better governance. The session will include some of George Cuff’s helpful suggestions and wisdom on the importance of effective Council meetings, use of policies, use of protocols, proper agenda building, better use of management meetings, Mayor-City Manager briefings, etc. The session will also draw a few examples from George’s immensely popular sessions on “Fatal Flaws” in terms of what does not go well. Our speaker George B Cuff, FCMC has a well-deserved North American reputation as a governance-senior management expert on the principles which undergird an effective, healthy relationship. He has served as a Mayor and as a municipal manager and has written extensively on topics of relevance to both. (Practice Groups: 1 Personal and Professional Integrity, 2 Community Engagement,  5 Personal Resiliency and Development, 7 Strategic Planning,  8  Policy Facilitation and Implementation, 9 Community and resident Service)

Workshop: The Value Of A Good Story

The presenter, a credentialed manager with over forty years of city management experience, learned some of his most valuable career lessons from stories told and retold over the years by his mentors and colleagues in the municipal management profession – sometimes in conference sessions and as often as not during evening gatherings in the hotel lounge. Using as a prompt two case studies he has co-authored for ICMA texts and relying upon interaction and feedback from workshop participants, ethical leadership principles and related management skills are explored in this three hour session. (Practice Groups: 1 Personal and Professional Integrity , 8  Policy Facilitation and Implementation, 14 Communication and Information Sharing)

Workshop: Organizational Culture: Is There a Secret Recipe?

Organization-wide collaboration, information sharing, and the development of shared goals requires trust among employees at all levels. But how do we encourage and cultivate this trust in an environment where it is lacking? Are you struggling with organizational silos and communication between departments? Do you have a sense of your organization’s culture? This workshop will hone the ambiguous concept of organizational culture. Program participants will learn about culture assessment tools and engage in small-group discussions focused on moving your organization to higher performance through culture change. We assess our systems and processes, why not our culture? In this workshop, we will explore how to ignite and lead culture change in our organizations, creating an environment of trust, cooperation and purpose. (Practice Groups: 4 -Staff Effectiveness and 6- Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Leading Through Conflict to Shared Success

You can’t lead an organization without leading its people. How are you leading your employees? How are you leading your executive team? How is your executive team leading the organization?
Gain strategies for attacking the root causes of organizational politics, operational confusion, siloed mentalities and dysfunctional office politics. Practice techniques for navigating conflict with others and nurturing an environment that welcomes healthy, respectful debate.
 
Reimagine the power of clarifying priorities, crystalizing values and cascading communication to lead your people so they begin rowing together in the same direction.
This workshop will introduce best practices in executive leadership, communication and team building; provide you with an opportunity to practice new skills; and send you back to your home jurisdiction with a new strategy for success. (Practice Group 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Six Ways to Engineer Employee Engagement

According to the latest Gallup report on government workers' engagement, a median of only 29 percent of them are engaged at work. Disengaged employees stay for what they get from the organization. Engaged workers stay for what they can give. While high employee engagement doesn’t guarantee high organizational performance, there is a strong linkage: an engaged workforce increases innovation, productivity and overall effectiveness. In this session, six actions are shared that organizational leaders can implement immediately to improve employee engagement. 
Learning Objectives:
  • How to (re)create a healthy workplace culture of personal responsibility.
  • How to modernize the approach to recruitment and selection and overall, improve the candidate experience.
  • How to provide learning and development opportunities to strengthen the internal bench.
(Practice Group 4 - Staff Effectiveness, 6 - Strategic Leadership)
Community Engagement

Workshop: Exploring the History of Institutional Racism: Creating a Path to Racial Understanding

In a 2016 survey, the Pew Research Center found that 45% of Whites thought that race relations are generally bad in the U.S., compared with 61% of Blacks/African Americans. 41% of Whites also thought that too much attention was being paid to racial issues, compared with only 22% of Blacks/African Americans. Similar gaps in perceptions between the races are reflected in numerous surveys.  For example, Pew found that half of whites think that blacks are treated less fairly than whites by police, a disturbingly high number; however, 84% of Blacks/African Americans think that they are treated unfairly by police. Similar gaps exist around fairness in the courts, applying for a loan, and in the workplace.
What is the origin of these differences? Evidence suggests that historical, legalized racial discrimination by government – including local governments -- has resulted in different life experiences.  For people not subject to discrimination, the issue is largely hidden, resulting in what is referred to as “white privilege” – a privilege conferred without request or effort. How do local government leaders understand and deal with these significantly different perceptions and different experiences among the residents of their communities?  
This workshop explores the history of racism in the U.S. and how it has been embedded in governmental institutions from slavery at the country’s founding to modern mass incarceration.  It will explore how consequences of institutional racism contribute to the disparate perceptions and experiences in today’s society.  It will also explore efforts by some cities to achieve “truth and reconciliation” and bridge the gaps in racial understanding and promote social equity. (Practice Groups: 3, 8, 9, 14)

Workshop: Design Thinking

How does design influence engagement, culture, and innovation? Design Thinking focuses on developing a deep understanding of the customer experience and of how customers interact with your service or product. Use Design Thinking principles to breathe life back into customer engagement. Learn how others have created innovative services using a Design Thinking process, and participate in a hands-on activity that demonstrates that process. (Practice groups: 6 - Strategic Leadership; and 9 - Community and Resident Service)

Workshop: Building Customer Service into Local Government

Practicing excellent customer service differs for a local government than it does a business.  A local government employee can’t write off a constituent’s property taxes for the quarter because the person was upset about the condition of city streets in the winter. And a constituent can’t easily take her business elsewhere if she’s unhappy with the decision of the local planning board to allow a new subdivision in the neighborhood. Still, local governments need to be concerned about providing excellent customer service as part of their overall citizen engagement strategy. Come learn about how local governments can create an excellent customer service experience for their constituents.  (Practice Groups: 4-Staff Effectiveness; 9 - Community and Resident Service; and 14 - Communication and Information Sharing)

Workshop: Moving Forward with Data

As a city or county manager, you’re up to your ears in data. But do you have any idea how to put that information to work for you? This workshop will address each of the Six E’s of Data-Driven Communities – Envision, Engage, Earmark, Educate, Enact, and Evaluate – as revealed through ten years of work with more than 300 communities. We’ll look at case studies for success and work through a group planning process with your own data to determine the best path forward. (Practice Groups: 6 - Strategic Leadership; and 7 - Strategic Planning)
Staff Development

Workshop: Six Ways to Engineer Employee Engagement

According to the latest Gallup report on government workers' engagement, a median of only 29 percent of them are engaged at work.   Disengaged employees stay for what they get from the organization. Engaged workers stay for what they can give.  While high employee engagement doesn’t guarantee high organizational performance, there is a strong linkage: an engaged workforce increases innovation, productivity and overall effectiveness.  In this session, six actions are shared that organizational leaders can implement immediately to improve employee engagement. 
 
Learning Objectives:
  • How to (re)create a healthy workplace culture of personal responsibility.
  • How to modernize the approach to recruitment and selection and overall, improve the candidate experience.
  • How to provide learning and development opportunities to strengthen the internal bench. (Practice Group 4 - Staff Effectiveness, 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Delivering Great Results From Your Vision And Strategic Plan

Organizational Excellence requires that managers focus both on delivering results from their vision and strategic plan and also on developing the culture of their organization. This session will focus on creating results from your vision by focusing on work to both understand and delight your customers, cascading your vision and strategic plan throughout the organization, maximizing individual and team performance, and utilizing transformational performance measures to lead your organization toward excellence. (Practice Group 4 - Staff Effectiveness, 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Put Me In, Coach! 

Are you using your coaching skills to improve performance and enhance organizational effectiveness? During this highly interactive workshop, you will learn to speak the language of possibility. While coaching is widely recognized as one of the key skills for developing leaders, it is also a critical tool when working with teams, and helping staff at every level achieve their personal and professional best. Highly motivated staff produce high performance results. Coaching skills may be used to help a senior manager or someone young to the profession find balance in work and life. Coaching may reinforce or correct behavior, increase a high performers ability to stretch beyond good into great, and transform organizational culture so that each individual is recognized as naturally creative, resourceful, and whole. This workshop provides practice in the skill of coaching, of trusting intuition, of learning to ask the right questions, and of mining strengths of individuals and organizations. (Practice Groups: 4 - Staff Effectiveness and 5 - Personal Resiliency and Development) 

Workshop: Talent Management: The Next Phase of Succession Planning  

While the subject of succession planning has been the trend the last several years, this has transitioned to the practice of Talent Management wherein organizational leaders are seeking a broader and more systemic approach to building workforce capacity for the 21st century.  This session will feature an emphasis on “next practices” related to the entire spectrum of Talent Management activities including recruitment, selection, performance management, career planning, training/learning and leadership development. (Practice Group: 4 - Staff Effectiveness)
 
Personal Development

Workshop: Public Speaking Skills - Making What You Have to Say Memorable 

Basic Skills of public speaking are practiced in this workshop which include understanding what your audience wants, answering their questions before they ask, using pitch, speed and pauses to add interest to your presentation, choosing words that work and gestures that make the point as well as presentation tips and techniques that allow you to focus on the audience and the message instead of your notes or nervousness. Come ready to make your next presentation a memorable one. The workshop will be tailored to the work that you do and situations specific to the class participants. It is highly interactive. Onsite coaching to identify what is working well and what could be done better will be an important part of this workshop. (Practice Group 14: Communication and Information Sharing)

Workshop: Repacking Your Bags: A Year of Living Purposefully

This workshop focuses on taking time away from our overwhelming responsibilities and nonstop changes to take a hard look at the “baggage” we are carrying to determine whether what we’re carrying is moving us forward or weighing us down. This session will help participants gain clarity on the motivations, passions, and purpose [that] is crucial to the pursuit of a happy, fulfilled life.” Along the way life changes as does the life map which means that “repacking our bags” is a lifelong process.   The workshop will be tailored to the work that you do and situations specific to the class participants. It is highly interactive. Onsite coaching to identify what is working well and what could be done better will be an important part of this workshop. (Practice Group Group 5 - Personal Resilency and Development)
 
Leadership and Innovation

Workshop: Leading Courageously in Challenging Times

In the practice of local government management we often turn to policy or regulatory guidelines in decision making. This workshop will explore how localities may benefit from stepping out of traditional decision making modes to consider innovative ways to solve problems and address issues. This highly participative workshop will provide examples of leadership in theory and in practice. Thought leaders will introduce challenging management/leadership situations, and participants will have the opportunity to raise issues that they are currently faced with that challenge the way managers are taught to think about management and leadership. Session Leaders: Felicia Logan and key thought leaders. (Practice groups 6 - Strategic Leadership; and 8 - Policy Development and Implementation)

Workshop: Leading Through Conflict to Shared Success

You can’t lead an organization without leading its people. How are you leading your employees? How are you leading your executive team? How is your executive team leading the organization?
Gain strategies for attacking the root causes of organizational politics, operational confusion, siloed mentalities, and dysfunctional office politics.
Practice techniques for navigating conflict with others and nurturing an environment that welcomes healthy, respectful debate.
Reimagine the power of clarifying priorities, crystalizing values, and cascading communication to lead your people so they begin rowing together in the same direction.
This workshop will introduce best practices in executive leadership, communication, and team building; provide you with an opportunity to practice new skills; and send you back to your home jurisdiction with a new strategy for success. (Practice Group 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: The Advantage for Professional Managers

Do you have a leadership team that adds value and organizational clarity, or are the members simply representing their individual areas of responsibility? What does leadership mean within the organization and how do you lead the process? Are you clear about your role as a leader? As important as talent, knowledge, culture, or innovation, Patrick Lencioni identifies Organizational Health as the single greatest factor determining an organization’s success. Join your colleagues for a work session that focuses on leadership and the 4 disciplines of the Organizational Health Model featured in Lencioni’s latest book The Advantage. This workshop will also focus on how to increase the effectiveness of staff meetings. Are your meetings dull and uninspiring? Do team members question the usefulness of meetings? “No action, activity or process is more central to creating a healthy organization than the meeting.” (Lencioni) Come to learn the 4 functions of meetings and 5 tips to create better meetings. (Practice Group 4: Staff Development)

Workshop: Engagement, Motivation, and Leadership 

As data from Gallup research shows us, the percentage of disengaged and actively disengaged employees in the U.S. is truly alarming. This research includes local government employees. What do we know about engagement and how can we increase the number of engaged employees in our organizations? Understanding what is key to employee engagement, understanding current research on what drives or motivates employees, and providing the leadership needed to inspire your organization are the core leadership skills to increasing engagement. This 2.5-hour workshop will challenge you to look at the Gallup research, examine what we now know about what motivates people, and develop a leadership plan to create the platform for engagement. It will include application of a most powerful tool that will increase engagement and motivation and inspire you to be a leader who not only sees the possibility but engages those who follow. (Practice Group 4: Staff Development)

Workshop: Facilitation-A Skill to Run a Meeting or the Platform for Leadership?

Discover how to become a facilitator of learning rather than merely a presenter of information and how to foster effective decision making in work teams. In today's workplace, leaders need to align people around common outcomes, achieve results in record time, engage employees, coach work teams, and help the organization to learn quickly. At the core of these roles is a series of skills that is best described as facilitative leadership. This workshop features multiple opportunities for each participant to practice new tools and receive feedback. Participants leave with invaluable core skills and implementation strategies for use in the workplace. (Practice,Groups: 4 - Staff Effectiveness; and 8 - Policy Facilitation and Implementation)

Workshop: Leadership Skills for Managing Wicked Problems

Local government leaders work increasingly in an environment of wicked problems: complex, interdependent problems unbounded by scope or resources, lacking clear definition, and involving conflicting perspectives of multiple stakeholders. In this interactive workshop, participants will learn proven relational leadership skills for building the collaborative and action-focused initiatives essential for managing wicked problems in organizations and local communities. Core leadership skills presented include one-to-one interviews, values house meetings, power mapping, and public evaluation. Workshop includes case studies and skills toolkit. (Practice Group 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Leadership and Management in a (Permanent) Crisis 

In 2009, during the depths of the “Great Recession,” Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Grashow, and Marty Linksy published an article in the Harvard Business Review by this title. The “Idea in Brief” for this article suggested that if you are waiting for things to return to normal, it was not going to happen; and leaders and managers needed to develop new skills and adapt to a new environment that would be with us after the economy began to recover. The purpose of this workshop is to address the application of the authors' conclusions to the local government environment, act collectively to better our communities, recognize the change that this recession has left us, and as professionals and “keepers of the long term view” provide for staff, our elected officials, and community leadership strategies and tactics for meeting the current demands of local government management and quality of life requirements. (Practice Groups: 6 - Strategic Leadership; and 7 - Strategic Planning)

Workshop: Leading Change Isn't a Spectator Sport

During these times of unprecedented change, leaders of organizations have the opportunity to refresh the focus and spirit of members of their workforce resulting in a higher-motivated workforce delivering superior service. This session focuses on identifying common scenarios related to managing change initiatives and how to translate the forces for change into a tailwind with practical, tactical, and impactful ideas you can begin using tomorrow. (Practice Group: 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Fatal Flaws of a Council-Management Relationship 

This workshop will examine this “hot” topic from a series of perspectives and will address: The Challenges/Pitfalls of Executive Leadership, Key Distinctions: Council/Mayor Roles, Importance of “Tone at the Top,” Sources of Landmines: Why/How Managers Create Their Own Problems, Council Expectations of their City Manager, Where Role Clarity Should Begin, Signals that the Relationship is Not Working, Survival Strategies, Assessing the Results of a Healthy Relationship: A Council-City Manager Covenant. (Practice Groups: 1- Personal and Professional Integrity; 2 - Community Engagement; 3 - Equity and Inclusion; 4 - Staff Effectiveness; 5 - Personal Resiliency and Development; 7 - Strategic Planning; 8 - Policy Facilitation and Implementation; 9 - Community and Resident Service)

Workshop: Your Leadership Playbook

As catalysts for continuous improvement, government leaders are facing significant challenges during these uncertain times and are searching for a simple, powerful, and productive approach to leadership in the 21st Century. In this workshop, you’ll get the unique perspective of Patrick Ibarra, a former city manager and founder of the consulting practice, The Mejorando Group, who will use football as a platform to outline a series of forward-thinking leadership practices guaranteed to help you achieve improved performance. Attend “Your Leadership Playbook” and discover how you can: Develop principles of a forward-thinking strategy (Game Plan); Identify and use the Five Practices of Great Leaders (Offense); Use proven approaches to leading change (Defense); Implement leading edge practices for effective execution of services (Xs and Os); Successfully use methods of managing employee performance (Play Calling); Utilize techniques to develop future leaders (Team Players); Foster a leadership culture (the Field); Pursue a leadership competency (Touchdown); Digitally engage the public (Fans); Celebrate success (Tailgating). (Practice Groups: 4 - Staff Effectiveness; 5 - Personal Resiliency and Development; and 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Getting the Most Out of Teams: Facilitation Skills for Managers 

If you are the leader of a team, a department, or an entire organization, ask your people to describe the meetings they attend – you often are likely to hear the words “unproductive,” “ineffective,” and “unnecessary.” Seasoned managers and emerging leaders alike will gain specific, applicable tools in this comprehensive program that focuses on proven facilitation skills and techniques. Meetings and the team approach to operating an organization are more prevalent than ever, which makes effective facilitation a must-have skill for today’s managers. Discover how to become a facilitator of learning rather than merely a presenter of information, and engage in an interactive session that addresses how to create and manage effective group dynamics that foster true collaboration and results. (Practice Group 8 - Policy Facilitation and Implementation)

Workshop: Leadership: An Art of Possibility 

Learn new leadership skills that will promote the development and performance of staff and senior management throughout the organization and will increase your effectiveness as a manager. This upbeat session will focus on the principles and practices of Ben and Rosamund Zander, authors of the book The Art of Possibility. The ideas and exercises in this workshop will increase your skill in personal coaching and mentoring, team leadership, and empowerment. Special emphasis will be given to facilitating teamwork and creating a work environment that encourages responsibility and decision making at all organizational levels and that requires skill in sharing authority and removing barriers to creativity. This workshop will help participants apply these ideas to local government management. The result will be better interpersonal interactions with your management team, staff, council, and everyone you deal with. It is recommended that participants read The Art of Possibility prior to the session. (Practice Group 4 - Staff Effectiveness)

Workshop: Rapid Innovation 

“Innovation” seems to be the buzzword in today’s economic crisis. Many local government leaders, while aware that we need innovative solutions, are also waiting for things to get better so that we can all go back to normal. But this is the “new normal.” And this fiscal crisis offers you the opportunity to hit the organization’s reset button. That is, you can use the instability of the present to build on and create an organization capable of continuous self-renewal in the absence of a crisis. Join us for this highly interactive workshop in which Patrick Ibarra, cofounder and partner of the Mejorando Group, and a former city manager, hands you practical strategies to instill innovation into the day-to-day operations of your organization and into the fabric of its culture. You’ll find out how to get past the “we’ve always done it that way” mentality, and discover new ways to inject passion and innovation into the organization’s mindset. Discover: 1) How to overcome “bureaucratic gravity,” that prevents your organization’s leaders from using a more innovative approach to problem solving; 2) How to use the five-step approach of Rapid Innovation; 3) The three areas in your organization that should be the target of innovative solutions; 4) Techniques that many local governments aren’t using – but should—to foster an innovative culture; 5) Ways to change the organization’s vocabulary that tends to put a straitjacket on introducing new ideas; 6) How to get leaders to start accepting new ideas and discard past solutions; 7) Steps you can take immediately to strengthen your own innovation muscles that will benefit you both personally and professionally--and much, much more! (Practice Groups 4 - Staff Effectiveness; 5 - Personal Resiliency and Development; and 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: The Art and Science of Signature Leadership 

Do you know what your signature leadership style is and how it impacts those around you? This workshop is designed to explore core leadership values and how they show up in the workplace and in the board room. We will study the leadership style of a famous symphony conductor as a case study of the art of leadership and the differences that a clear leadership style and philosophy can make to an organization. During the seminar we will explore 6 principles key to developing a signature leadership style and discuss how they may apply to your organization and to you as a leader. We will also explore differences in how we see the world based on the latest neuroscience research and how these preferences shape your leadership style. Come ready to engage in learning with others who share your values of service, your willingness to making a difference, and your commitment to building stronger communities. (Practice Group 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Workshop: Changed for Good: Leading Transformation in Your Organization and Your Community 

Leadership is about making change happen. Great leaders are not remembered for maintaining the status quo. So, how do you successfully lead change? Start by developing an understanding of what it takes for people to transition from opposing a change to supporting it. Learn proven strategies for promoting the need for change and communicating it to your staff and your community. Conduct an assessment of the level of readiness in your own organization or community to embrace your ideas for change. Create a plan to implement a major change that includes tactics for success at every stage in the process. Build a system to reinforce and sustain the change once it has taken hold, to ensure you’ve created a meaningful and lasting transformation. (Practice Groups: 4 - Staff Effectiveness; and 6 - Strategic Leadership)

Check the current ICMA Calendar of Events for upcoming offerings.

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