Developing Leadership and Management Practice

Programme overview

This programme aims to develop and integrate participants’ knowledge and skills in management and leadership. It is designed to encompass the variety of middle-management roles within the university, and emphasizes self-development and the strategic elements of management.

Participants are likely to include departmental, faculty and divisional administrators and experienced specialist managers in central administration or services, on grades 8 and above. Usually, participants will be leading one or more functions and/or teams, and may be managing staff who are themselves managing staff. Participants may have advanced skills in one area (such as HR or finance) but would benefit from development in other aspects of management and leadership, or they may be experienced managers who would benefit from updating and advancing their skills.

DLMP is delivered primarily through six full-day workshops, with some individual and group work between workshops, including a project to bring about change, and some additional optional activities. Participants will complete a 'portfolio' of development reports and project reports which they will deliver to their line-managers. The course is designed to be relevant to the work-place; to facilitate as much interaction and joint working as possible across different functions, departments and services; and to incorporate a range of different ways of learning about the same topic to meet different needs and learning styles.

Indicative programme outline


DAY 1 Leadership and you: understanding your preferences, resources and environment

Your preferences: how do you prefer to make decisions, interact with others, and organise yourself?
What are the ‘communities’ to which you belong, and how can they help and support you?
Organisational values and your own values – how do these affect your leadership?
What is the University’s leadership culture, and how do you work in it?
What does it mean to ‘work at a strategic level’?

Development plan 1: goal-setting

DAY 2 Understanding and leading change

How can you investigate complex problems and situations, and analyse the possibilities?
What are the key obstacles, drivers and success criteria in your own situations?
Who are the stakeholders?
What psychological factors are at play in how change takes place?
How can you manage and influence peoples’ response to change?
What skills are involved in ‘reading’ relational situations at work?


DAY 3 Action Learning Sets: scoping your project

Using your home group, you will define the project or change you want to work on, ending up with a clearly-defined change issue to work on for the course, and a preliminary understanding of the critical factors and people

Project report 1: project scope

DAY 4 The resilient and resourceful leader

How resilient are you?
How can you increase and sustain your resilience?
What do you know about your own preferred management style?
Can you adapt your style and actions to the situation?
How confident do you feel in tackling difficult conversations?
What are the ‘magic tricks’ of confidence and effectiveness?
What is next for you and your development?

Development plan 2: progress report

DAY 5 Action learning Sets: problem solving in your project

Using your home group, you will devise approaches to any problems which have arisen in your own project.

Project report 2: progress and problems

DAY 6 Developing as a leader

What are the principles of effective change leadership?
What does your own change leadership practice look like?
Why are review processes so important and how can you use them for your own development?
What are the principles of effective leadership of people?
What does your own leadership practice look like?
How can you use the practice of giving and receiving feedback for your own development?

Devlopment plan 3: learning report and dvelopment plans

Project report 3: final progress report

Application criteria

Participants in the programme are likely to include departmental and divisional administrators, and experienced specialist managers in central administration or services, on grade 8 or above.

 The programme is aimed at staff who:

  1. have demonstrated an aptitude or potential for leadership;
  2. are currently leading one or more functions and/or teams, and/or be managing staff who are themselves managing other staff;
  3. are on grade 8 or above;
  4. are currently employed by the University or by a college of the University and are likely to be in that post or a similar management post for at least a year after the programme ends If you don’t think you are within this target audience, you may find it helpful to look at our course.

Applying for a place

In order to ensure that the University makes the best use of this resource, in a fair competitive process, nominations for places are to be put forward by individuals with supporting statements from their line-managers/supervisors. These will then be considered in a ‘gathered field’ by a panel comprising UAS/ASUC Senior Officers, colleagues from academic divisions and OLI staff.

For further information on applying for a place or registering your interest please visit the programme applications page.