Management Development Series

Course Description

The Forward Focus Management Development Series is an impactful and comprehensive 12- course series focused on developing critical skills for effective management in today’s changing corporate climate.  Each session focuses on equipping managers with the necessary tools to create a working environment which empowers employees to be high-performers in today’s demanding marketplace. 

The 12-course series will provide managers with:  

  • knowledge of the changed, yet vital role of the manager in today’s organizations

  • ability to communicate with more impact to persons with different communication styles

  • improved interviewing skills to ensure new hires are a fit for the position, the team, and the corporation

  • ability to set effective performance goals, and manage those goals by providing appropriate corrective and positive feedback

  • enhanced emotional intelligence skills to enhance employee performance, manage conflict and engage in difficult conversations

  • skills needed to build stronger and more collaborative teams

  • techniques to increase individual and team accountability

  • knowledge and resources  to lead team meetings where participants are respected for their diversity, engaged and focused on results

  • improved skills in managing remotely and across cultures

  • improved coaching skills to empower and engage their employees, leading to a more efficient workforce

Course Objectives:

Course 1 -  A Managers Mindset.  

This course defines key roles a manager must play.  


  • Articulate the key factors that determine a person’s success in a management role

  • State the difference between the roles and responsibilities of a manager and a staff member in terms of organizational, team and individual dimensions

  • Set up appropriate boundaries between personal and organizational roles

  • State what their direct reports need from them as managers

  • Differentiate between strategic and tactical thinking and the role of each

Course 2 – Dynamic Communication with Others

This course introduces managers to the DISC behavior and communication assessment.


  • Describe their own DISC communication style and its major strengths and weaknesses

  • Recognize the DISC communication style of others and how to bridge to another style

  • Effectively present an idea to a different DISC group

Course 3 - Strategic Interviewing

This course equips managers to discern the best people to have on their team.


  • Describe the steps and roles in the hiring process

  • Identify the tangible and intangible requirements for the position

  • Use the six job tools to ensure a thoughtful and well-implemented hiring process

  • Distinguish between interview questions based on business need and those that could be interpreted as discriminatory

  • Ask open-ended, behavior-based questions

  • Practice interviewing and  “listening”

  • Present the features and benefits of becoming an employer of the organization  

Course 4 -  Dynamic Goal-Setting

This course takes managers through a step-by-step process for creating measurable goals for team members.


  • State the difference between managing their people to “do their job” and dynamically managing their people to achieve business objectives

  • Write clear and measurable objectives at the organizational, team and individual level

  • Experience the process of breaking down a team initiative into specific, measurable goals for individual team members

  • State the vital role performance objectives play for the employee in setting expectations

  • Identify steps to communicate performance objectives effectively to a new person on their team

Course  5 - Giving Feedback

This course equips managers to conduct a conversation with an employee to affirm progress on goals and to diagnose and correct lack of progress towards goal achievement.


  • State ways to create a healthy workplace climate that includes feedback

  • State steps in learning to give feedback

  • State usual personal conflict style, using provided assessments

  • Role play a corrective feedback session

Course  6 – Sustaining Engagement

This course introduces managers to the key principles for engaging their teams and demonstrating good emotional intelligence.


  • State what research shows about the relationship between “soft” skills, the changing workplace and the bottom line

  • Describe the importance of two-way communication and keys to establishing it in the workplace

  • Be able to ask open-ended questions to obtain information

  • List ineffective ways to respond to someone’s feelings

  • Define empathy and when to display it for ineffective managing

  • Commit to the task of managing people more effectively by utilizing emotional intelligence

Course 7 – Developing Teams

This course provides managers with models for managing the dynamics of team behavior and how to support succession planning.


  • Describe the connection between team development and employee engagement

  • Distinguish between a true team and other workplace groups

  • Define the four stages of development for a team and how a leader leads in each of the four stages

  • Describe the experience of the “forming” stage of a team

  • Lead a group to establish group norms in response to group conflict

  • Understand the role of a meeting in team engagement and the importance of having a purpose for every team meeting

Course  8 - Holding Difficult Conversations

This course provides specialized training on conducting especially difficult conversations when emotions are running high.


  • Define a difficult conversation

  • State two facts about emotions that influence difficult conversations

  • Map the steps to take when having a difficult conversation

  • Role play several different types of difficult conversations

Course  9 – Building Accountability

This course equips managers to create an environment of mutual trust in which all parties take accountability for fulfilling their assigned roles.


  • Define accountability

  • Decide what data to use to hold themselves and their team accountable

  • Create an action plan to “install” accountability into their area of influence

  • List 3 trust-building behaviors to emphasize when building trust in their area of influence

Course 10 – Managing Multiple Locations

This course builds managers’ skills in overcoming the challenges of managing team members in remote locations.


  • Identify 3 management activities that are essential to managing remotely

  • Identify barriers to effective remote management and strategies for overcoming them

  • Use worksheets to create a plan for managing teams in multiple locations

  • Implement at least one change to manage a remote team more effectively

Course 11 – Managing Across Cultures

This course improves managers’ ability to manage persons who come from a different cultural background.


  • Identify 3 ways the US business culture differs from other cultures

  • Effectively communicate a message to a person from a different culture

  • Change at least one thing he/she is currently doing in order to manage someone from a different culture more effectively

Course  12 – Coaching for Results

This course equips managers to become better delegators and coaches of their team members.


  • State the difference between directive, coaching (developmental) and delegating approaches to management

  • Understand the best use of directive and coaching approaches when managing

  • Hold a coaching session with an employee

  • Change at least one thing he/she is currently doing – in order to better develop his/her people

Business Outcomes for This Training

  • Improve relationships between managers and direct reports to encourage employee productivity and commitment

  • Improve manager’s ability to create a culture of quality and customer service that encourages sales

  • Improve manager’s ability to interview effectively, the first step in developing a high-performing workforce

  • Improve morale among managers and team members by improving quality of work life

  • Lessen stress by training managers to handle conflict

  • Provide career growth, learning and development to keep managers’ skills at the highest level to support the companies competitive advantage

  • Create an environment that supports team building activities and behaviors, improving overall employee engagement

Target Audience

Newly-promoted managers as well as experienced managers who want to update their management skills, particularly in today’s continuously changing workplace

Duration/Class Size

Each Course is a half-day in duration. We recommend scheduling sessions approximately a month apart; with follow-up activities and group coaching in between The recommended number of participants per class is 7-20 per session, although larger groups can be accommodated with an additional facilitator.

Forward Focus Deliverables

  • Program Implementation Kit

  • Facilitation of experiential learning sessions

  • Participant’s Guides for each module

  • Job Aids

  • Follow-up Assignments (completed between sessions and debriefed in class)

  • Group Coaching

The Forward Focus Approach

Forward Focus’s training programs include:

  • A Focus on Behavior Change
    Our programs aim not to simply provide information but to provide the “how-to’s” in helping participants change to meet the demands of their job. All learning activities are based on the latest research in the neurosciences and reflect the principles of “brain-friendly learning.”
  • A Focus on Interaction

Our programs provide hands-on activities, exercises and role play that keep participants engaged. Most people learn by doing; we give them a safe environment in which to try out new behaviors and ideas.

  • A Focus on Integration into Daily Routine

We facilitate the transfer of learning back into the work environment by supplying job aids to remind participants of the new behaviors they are expected to practice and “real-life” assignments to apply those new behaviors after they return to their work area. Additionally, organizations can opt to provide group coaching sessions in between sessions to reinforce the learning points and encourage behavioral change.

  • A Focus on Organizational Support

Behavior changes desired by companies are more easily made by managers when other organizational systems are in place. We work with executives and the HR department to design programs that support learning with additional reinforcement, reward, and organizational processes.

To learn more about this course and how it might be customized for your needs please contact us.