Message From the Executive Director

Alan Middleton photo

In recent years, world events have repeatedly proven that the winds of change can be mighty and often unpredictable. Disruption, you could say, has become the new normal, with transformation sweeping across the social, political and corporate landscapes.

Even our language has changed. Black swans are no longer just beautiful birds. Words such as volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous are used regularly to describe the many issues and situations we now face every day on the job. Acronyms abound with A.I. being the most scary: especially with McKinsey’s forecast that 30 per cent of tasks in 60 per cent of occupations will be fully computerized in some way within a decade.

During this period of profound change, we have been prompted to ask questions such as, do I or my organization have the skills and knowledge to achieve our goals in the present environment? And, just as important, where do we go next?

The Schulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC), a strategic business unit at the Schulich School of Business helps executives and managers answer those questions for themselves and for their organizations. Whether your workplace is facing a minor variance in its activities or a complete overhaul of its strategy and operations, you need the knowledge, critical-thinking and leadership skills that will enable you to navigate changes with strategy and purpose.

But departmental and organizational budgets are tight. All too often budgets planned for upgrading technical or managerial skills get cut or are extremely limited. Globally we continue to underspend on upgrading our own skills or that of our organizations. In two credible global surveys of the importance placed on, and extent of, staff training, Canada ranks #20 (IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2017) and #23 (World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report 2017/18). Not a happy picture for a developed and everchanging economy and society.

The answer lies in contemporary, action oriented, expert, and credentialed management education programs that are affordable and deliver provable returns in better talent and its achievements.

SEEC’s broad range of programs offered either as publicly open programs or customized to your organizations specific needs, put these goals within reach. Our mission is simple: to prepare program participants to reach new levels of success in their careers and to help their organizations achieve increased revenue, productivity, impact and employee satisfaction.

We help program attendees learn the importance of adaptability and what can be done to manage change and uncertainty. They will access new knowledge and analytic processes. They will learn ways to encourage innovation and manage its implementation. They will learn how to create successful strategic alliances with external partners and how best to achieve success with diverse groups in background and skill, internally and externally.

It can be difficult to make course corrections in your organization; the road is long and there are many factors to consider. When you choose to upgrade your skills at SEEC, though, you will learn how to embrace and fully benefit from the positive outcomes of change and how to manage and mitigate any negative consequences. By the end of your training, you will feel more confident about your ability to proactively and successfully handle new situations and meet evolving demands in your workplace.

The pace of change has quickened in our world and the results of large-scale transformation may sometimes surprise us.

These challenges, however, also present valuable opportunities – to cultivate resilience, to become a nimble problem-solver and to fulfil your potential as a leader. SEEC will help you get there.

Alan C. Middleton, PhD
Executive Director
Schulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC)