Leadership in lockdown: La Trobe extends free professional learning to ECEC
During this time of change and flux, opportunities are presented every day for leaders to “think outside the box” and gain skill sets, learning and information from other sectors and areas of study.
The viability of education and care services increasingly hinges on maintaining high levels of occupancy, and careful management of revenue streams, as well as a consistent focus on attracting and retaining high quality team members, and ensuring that other management functions are attended to in such a way as to support sustainable business growth, regardless of profit or not-for-profit status.
Opportunities for growth and learning in this domain may assist ECEC professionals to continue to develop their strength and capacity as well rounded leaders, building on the sectors passion for life long learning, continued growth and reflection.
One such opportunity, which is freely accessible to all Australians, including ECEC professionals, is the La Trobe Business School Leadership Professional Development Program, run by leading business academics and alumni from the University’s MBA program who are volunteering their time to help the wider community.
MBA Program Director Dr Geraldine Kennett said she hoped individuals and business owners would see the course as a valuable way to equip themselves with new skills and professional development during the COVID-19 economic slowdown.
“These are challenging times for any organisation, and as a community leader La Trobe wants to do what we can to help our communities and leaders adapt to meet the demands they are now facing,” Dr Kennett said.
Conducted online, and free of charge, participants engage in a 12-hour program, which is run in three modules, allowing them to connect with peers to share thoughts, experiences and develop ongoing mutually beneficial relationships, with the ultimate aim of gaining knowledge, skills and capabilities required to lead an organisation or team in these uncertain times.
“We want participants to understand their personal leadership style, strengths and gaps. We want them to understand their team’s dynamics and identify forthcoming challenges. But most of all we want them to be able to apply creative problem-solving and critical-thinking skills to the situations they’re facing right now,” Dr Kennett said.
La Trobe Business School Honorary Associate, Dr Susan Inglis, is among the academics and alumni who stepped forward to help run the program, saying she was motivated to support the program by a want to “give back to others who may be doing it tough.”
Australian Ballet Executive Director Libby Christie said the Ballet was extremely grateful to La Trobe University for creating the new program, saying it allows their team to make productive use of this time for professional development.
Her thoughts were shared by Chris James, NORTH Link director, who said “The Leadership Professional Development Program will be of great benefit to business in navigating the disruption caused by COVID-19.”