Transformational Leadership

Cox School of Business

How long?

  • 10 weeks
  • in person, online

Cox School of Business


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Who should attend

  • Director level leaders and above
  • Experienced leaders with new responsibilities
  • Experienced Entrepreneurs and Business Operators

About the course

Today’s successful leaders think broadly with a global perspective. Great leaders recognize the value of a highly performing, integrated team, and exhibit behaviors beyond self-interest.

In 10 challenging sessions, this dynamic leadership development course for director level and experienced leaders will transform your leadership vision and approach from the inside out.

Formerly known as the Certificate in Leadership program, these sessions will help you master the nuances and challenges of building trust, authentic influence, leader as coach, strategic thinking, innovation, and leading teams and organizational change.

You’ll move out of your comfort zone and develop your own personal style of authentic leadership that enables you to lead others, nurture talent and lead change in and across the organization.

You’ll learn how to maximize your company’s most valuable, volatile asset—human capital in a rapidly changing environment—and strengthen your skills in strategic thinking that looks beyond the crisis of the hour.

Benefits to you

  • Improve business decision-making skills, enhance capacity to understand and implement change, gain a positive approach to leading people and enhancing value
  • Evaluate the multiple techniques for using conflict and creative tension to revitalize organizational capabilities
  • Learn how to make better decisions by avoiding some common cognitive biases and traps
  • Learn to implement current research on today's most valued leadership topics
  • Create and execute an actionable development plan that addresses your unique needs

Benefits to Your Organization

The knowledge and skills you gain in this executive leadership development program will help your organization increase effectiveness of organizational change initiatives, enhance total organizational effectiveness, improve retention of future business leadership talent, and reduce the cost and trauma of organizational transitions.


Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership

Learning Objectives:

  • Introduce the five practices of exemplary leadership
  • Receive feedback on your leadership behaviors
  • Understand the 10 key commitments for effective leadership

Participants will be able to take an honest look at themselves and their leadership behavior. This module will help them identify strengths in the area of strategic and visionary leadership, as well as suggest areas for improvement.

Emotional Intelligence and Its Role in Leadership

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to build greater emotional intelligence attributes
  • Learn how increased emotional intelligence fosters a culture of trust and accountability

This session helps managers become more effective with the growing demand to achieve outcomes at a strategic level through effective communication and heightened emotional intelligence.

Driving Results Through Authentic Influence

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn to powerfully shape your leadership message to maximize understanding and spark a fire in the hearts of others
  • Explore how communication has the power to de-motivate and how to strategically avoid leadership communication pitfalls

As work becomes more complex and collaborative, the ability to build trusting relationships distinguishes those who flourish from those who falter. We are often required to achieve results with groups and individuals well beyond where our formal authority lies. Learn to leverage influence to create more productive and even more enjoyable relationships with your boss, peers and employees.

Trust, Influence and Accountability

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn to use trust as a specific business strategy to increase speed of execution and decrease cost
  • Learn to expand your influence with your direct reports, peers and bosses and leverage influence across organizational boundaries
  • Learn to use a diagnostic process and apply specific behaviors and strategies to restore and enhance trust

The module challenges the age-old assumption that trust is merely a soft, social virtue and instead demonstrates that trust is a hard-edged driver that makes organizations more successful, people more promotable and relationships more energizing.

Leader as Coach

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn what it means to be a coach-like leader and mentor
  • Explore the benefits of being a better coach and mentor to you, those you influence and your organization
  • Learn and practice skills and a coaching model for more impactful conversations

Today’s competitive workplace demands that leaders evaluate performance and provide coaching and mentoring to employees. The new generations entering the workforce want coaching and expect mentoring from their leaders. Being a mentor/coach leader is one of the most effective ways to get more done for the company while building and engaged and enthusiastic workplace.

Creating High Performing Teams

Learning Objectives:

  • Framework – Five requirements for team effectiveness
  • Examine leadership roles that contribute to team effectiveness
  • Discover the importance of team identity and team norms
  • Explore issues related to team development

Successful teamwork underlies nearly all work situations. Understanding how teams develop and when to intervene underlies the successful team leadership. You will learn how to help team members exercise the leadership and guidance that isn’t granted by title or status.

Leading Organizational Change

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand how leading change is different than leading an ongoing project or process
  • Learn the habits & behaviors of successful change leaders and how common leadership practices can undermine you in times of change
  • Learn how to create a plan around your change and make visible progress
  • Understand the communication strategies and actions that will help build commitment

Organizational change is dynamic and cannot be fully predicted. Leaders must adapt, be more agile and learn to be successful in ambiguity and uncertainty. We will discuss how to still be effective and move the organization forward by becoming an effective change leader. In this interactive session, we will explore real-life scenarios and help participants identify strategies and actions to use in their organizational change whether they are leading it or playing an influencer role.

Human-Centered Design: An Approach for Innovation

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to use cross-disciplinary approach to solve problems
  • Learn how to take on systemic meaningful challenges with creativity and confidence

Complex and ingrained problems require a means through which to discover the way to a solution. We will review a process which provides a way to move forward even when the solutions might not appear obvious. Design decisions fit into a larger context which includes history, politics, sustainability, ethics, relationships and aesthetics. Courses work to ground students in a world bigger than their own through an understanding of design impact.

Strategic Thinking

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand Traditional Strategic Thinking Frameworks
  • Learn Emerging Strategic Frameworks
  • Identify Impact of New Strategies to Existing Business Models

This session will provide students a basic understanding of the tools used for strategic thinking in business, including SWOT, Porter's 5 Forces, Business Growth 2x2, and the Business Model Canvas. These tools will teach students to formally think about what to do, why you should do it, and when you should do it. The session will be very interactive and will conclude with the Business Model Canvas.

Leadership Resilience in a VUCA World

Learning Objectives:

Learn and practice how to prevent the environment or circumstance from disrupting progress and continuity

Leadership as usual is not enough in a Volatile, Uncertain, Chaotic and Ambiguous (VUCA) world. Leading in a VUCA world not only presents a challenging environment but also opens the door to an array of new skills that are required to succeed. Leaders and their organizations need to develop the mental capabilities and desire to avoid being left behind.


Jay Carson

Dr. Jay Carson is a Professor of Practice in Management and Organizations at Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business with primary areas of expertise in leadership, teamwork, cross-cultural psychology and organizational behavior. For more than a decade he has taught and consulted fo...

Simon Mak

Professor of Practice in Entrepreneurship Associate Director, Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship PhD, Applied Science (Systems Engineering focus), Southern Methodist University Lyle School of Engineering MBA, Finance, Southern Methodist University Cox School of Business SB, Mechanical Engine...

Tim Durkin

Tim works for organizations to develop exceptional leaders that produce exceptional results. With nearly 30 years of significant management consulting, speaking and training experience, he brings innovative ideas to his clients whether they are a single senior manager or an arena full of aspiring...

Kimberly Davis

Kimberly has more than 20 years experience in front of groups and audiences of all sizes. Since 2001, Kimberly has been leading development programs world-wide, around authentic leadership, purpose, presence, influence, presentation skills, communication skills, engagement, and customer experienc...

Patti Johnson

PeopleResults is designed to provide great talent so clients can make big changes really work. Our amazing team spends every day working on that goal. My first book, Make Waves: Be the One to Start Change at Work & in Life was a best seller and includes research we share with our clients toda...

Jerry Magar

As a founding partner of People Systems Consulting, Jerry brings over 25 years of experience to his work with clients such as Lockheed Martin, Dell Computer, JPMorgan Chase, Southwest Airlines, Shell Oil, Devon Energy, JC Penney, Sabre and many more large and small clients. In addition to his wor...

Jeff Strese

Jeff has more than 25 years of experience in progressive leadership positions, executive coaching, adult education, and organizational consulting. He is currently the Chief Talent and Learning Officer at Tolleson Wealth Management. Formally the Chief HR Officer at Southern Methodist University, h...

Charlotte Barner

Dr. Charlotte P. Barner is adjunct professor and faculty advisor for the Organizational Dynamics graduate concentration within SMU’s Annette Caldwell Simmons School Education and Human Development Master of Liberal Studies program. She teaches courses in The Transformative Power of Narratives, Ex...

Jessica Burnham

Jessica Burnham has a BFA in Communication Design from the Metropolitan State University of Denver and a MFA in Design Research and Innovation from the University of North Texas. She got her start in community engagement and community-based design through her desire to build community through com...

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Transformational Leadership at Cox School of Business

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

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