2021 Virtual

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This year's Institute will be all online, offering an opportunity for more participants to join from wherever they are! Access to zoom will be required, as well as the ability to access the camera and microphone. This course is broken up into 10 sessions spread out over two and a half months. In between sessions, you will have some projects to work on as well as opportunities to connect with others in the Institute. An outline of each session is provided below. Please note, class topics/speakers are subject to change.
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Session 1 | March 25 – 9:00 a.m. – 11: 15 a.m. 

Welcome, Introduction, Program Overview and Get Acquainted 
Stand Out With Your Strengths – with Bobbi Nance, Recreation Results 
This interactive workshop will guide participants through an exploration of the strengths they have to offer and how to put those to work. Using results from a personal assessment as a jumping off point, each participant will learn more about their competitive edge, create plans to use and develop their strengths to achieve professional goals, and also see others that they work with in a new light. Not only does this help staff better understand themselves individually, but also through group activities, it helps teams form more understanding as well.

Session 2 | April 1 – 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Transitioning from Co-Worker to Manager/Leader/Supervisor – with Kevin Pickard, City of Sunrise
It is often difficult to transition into management within the same organization.  This session will focus on the key components of transitioning into management including the changing of roles and responsibilities along with interpersonal dynamics.

Session 3 | April 8 – 2:00 – 3:15 p.m. 
Questions Great Leaders Should Stop Asking – with Bobbi Nance
Busy leaders always seem to be searching for the answer to success, but few realize that the quickest path starts by asking better questions.  We’ll talk about the lost art of questioning and how being ‘out of practice’ can produce unintended results.  Then we’ll talk about how to ask better questions and practice fun techniques that bring new perspectives and insights to light.

Session 4 | April 15 – 2:00 – 3:15 p.m.
Organizational Culture - with Juan Armas, Miami Dade County
Organizational culture consists of shared beliefs and values established by leaders and then communicated and reinforced through various methods, ultimately shaping employee perceptions, behaviors and understanding. Do you know what your organization’s culture is?  As a leader you must understand the culture that you are expected to share with your employees and volunteers.  An ineffective culture can bring down the organization and its leadership. Disengaged employees, high turnover, and poor customer relations are examples of how the wrong culture can negatively impact the bottom line.  This session will explore understand the culture, interpreting the culture, conveying the culture, and anticipating events that can cause culture shifts that impact every aspect of your area of supervision.

Session 5 | April 22 – 11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Essential Skills for Effective Communication – Bibi Baksh, Palm Beach County
Effective Communication goes beyond just talking. Understanding the role of verbal, non-verbal and written communication – as well as listening – is key to successful leadership and developing good relationships.

Session 6 | April 29  – 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
The Art of Gaining Consensus – with Bobbi Nance – FRPA virtual session 
No matter whether it is a new project, policy, park, or program you’re working on, getting people on board and working together is a key challenge that every professional must overcome in order to get things done.  Learn how to proactively weave the fundamental steps for consensus-building into your projects in order to avoid many of these challenges in the first place.  Learn how to respond to resistance and conflict when it inevitably happens.

Session 7 | May 6 – 2:00 - 3:30 p.m.
Keeping Performance Based Employee Evaluations from Becoming Difficult Conversations, And Preparing for When They Do - with Becky Gunter, City of Seminole and Matthew Armstrong, The Villages
If you were growing a garden, you would prepare the soil, sow the seeds, nourish with plant food, maintain the soil and what for the crop to flourish. Consider your employees your garden, and realize they need the same nourishment, except theirs is delivered in the way of positive feedback.  Learn tips to make performance based employee evaluations a positive experience, and equip yourself with the tools to pull the weeds of difficult conversations.

Session 8 | May 13 – 2:00 – 4:15 p.m. 
Select, Don’t Hire – Kara Petty, Weston and Gayle Vasile, Parkland
By simply refocusing your efforts to “selecting” the RIGHT person for the job, team morale, retention, and overall performance will begin to improve.  This session will focus on best practices for recruiting and interviewing to find the best talent, training to create the right expectation, and reinforcing culture through selection. 

Session 9 | May 20 – 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Strategic Decision Making with T. Michael Stavres, City of Winter Haven
Leaders are asked to many decisions in their day to day work.  While some allow the luxury of time to prepare and analyze, others must be made quickly.  Is your brain trained to think quickly and think of everything necessary to make sound decisions and recommendations?  Your staff is depending on you to make the best decisions, are you ready?

Session 10 | May 27 – 9:00 – 10:30a.m. 
Wrapping It Up 
Panel Discussion 

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