Program overview

Change in the biotech and high-tech workplace is ever-present and constant. The pace of innovation today is so much faster than what we experienced in the past. This creates challenges in how we lead, one of the most important aspects of our ability to be successful.

Most of us deal with change one of the following ways:

  • We ignore it (which doesn’t work)

  • We try to control it (which can’t really be done)

  • We try to predict it (to a degree – but then reality changes)

  • We respond to it

Responding to change is like facing a wave as you stand in the ocean: you can stand your ground and get knocked off your feet, or you can dive into it and come out the other side calm and steady. In order to respond effectively to any challenge you face, you need to develop multiple capacities: clarity, vision, understanding, and agility.

This series of two one-day workshops is specifically designed for leaders in organizations experiencing volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA) on a daily basis. The program will help you to cultivate the foundational self-leadership skills for maintaining your effectiveness in high-pressure, high-stakes environments.

How will my effectiveness improve from attending this program?

You will develop and learn how to:

  • Create clarity to prioritize the sheer quantity of work that you face

  • Develop resilience to shifts in organizational expectations, objectives, and needs

  • Explore and resolve multiple perspectives

  • Stay focused and productive in the face of distraction and change

  • Grasp and problem-solve complex, cross-functional challenges

  • Manage your reactions effectively under pressure to achieve more

  • Optimize your brain’s response to VUCA by applying recent findings from research in neuroscience

Who should attend?

Director-level and senior director-level leaders at biotech and high-tech firms experiencing the challenges of constant change, complexity, and ambiguity. Under these conditions, we lead with impulsiveness, delay strategic activities, and live in a constant state of uncertainty. Ultimately, these conditions undermine our leadership effectiveness.

Are you…

  • Feeling overwhelmed with too much to do and just never enough time? Does everything seem to be a priority?

  • Seeing priorities shift daily or weekly and finding it impossible to keep up? Do you face a new fire drill every week?

  • Finding it hard to stay personally motivated and keep your team motivated amid the ambiguity?

  • Eroding important relationships in the effort to achieve important outcomes?

  • In meetings that seem endless and unproductive?

  • Feeling burned out, exhausted, or frustrated – despite loving your job?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, this program is for you.

What’s the program structure?

A series of two one-day workshops with a one-month practice period in-between.

During the one-month practice period, you will be applying course frameworks and tools to real workplace scenarios. We will support your learning and engagement through a mobile app containing content, learning activities, and encouragement from instructors.

How many people can attend?

A maximum of 24 participants.

What will be covered?

Seeing clearly in VUCA environments

  • Recognize the unique characteristics of VUCA conditions in fast-moving biotech and high-tech firms

  • Identify how we adapt to these conditions and how this erodes our ability to be effective

  • Learn the key capacities to develop for increasing your effectiveness in VUCA environments

Staying focused and productive in the face of shifting priorities

  • Learn how VUCA environments impact your leadership and how you can thrive

  • Explore how to combat multiple distractions through strengthening your focus and attention

  • Develop your awareness of distraction in order to stay in the moment

Developing resilience to pressure and chaos

  • Learn how you can use multiple sources of intelligence in interpersonal interactions

  • Explore how to use the body as an early warning system for emotional reactions in order to support your leadership

  • Discover powerful techniques for emotional resilience and self-regulation under pressure in the midst of VUCA triggers

Maintaining effective relationships when the stakes are high

  • Learn about the reactivity of others so you can take brain-based approaches to reaching them

  • Understand the nature of power stress, a form of stress unique to leadership challenges, and how to address it

  • Reveal your highest-risk leadership derailers that emerge in overwhelming conditions, and how to manage them

Problem-solving complex, cross-functional challenges

  • Discover how the different contexts in which we’ve operated have shaped our approach to problem-solving in complexity

  • Explore how our habits of thinking impair our ability to collaborate on thorny, cross-functional challenges and what to do about it

  • Practice techniques for creating winning solutions when facing ambiguity and a lack of information