UW News

February 9, 2016

UW’s Professional & Organizational Development team wins national leadership award

If you are a University of Washington supervisor, you have probably participated in the Strategic Leadership Program — a customized training program enhancing communication and managerial skill. Developed and taught by University of Washington Professional & Organizational Development, the program has graduated over 4000 supervisors since it launched almost 16 years ago.

On Feb. 4, the Strategic Leadership Program received the top leadership excellence award for Best Corporate University at the national LEAD2016 conference sponsored by HR.com and held at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Tenn. The category honors internal leadership development programs designed and offered to leaders with an organization, and UW Professional & Organizational Development ranked first among other top contenders in the category, including AT&T, Hilton Hotels Corporation, and Microsoft.

The nomination process included Strategic Leadership Program alumni completing a survey on HR.com about the effectiveness and impact of the program. The award was presented to POD Director Ujima Donalson and Training & Organizational Development Consultant Susan Templeton, who together facilitate and develop content for SLP.

“After years of leading new supervisors through the Strategic Leadership Program, I know that the program makes a tremendous difference for leaders on an individual level and also contributes to an enhanced workplace culture and organizational effectiveness here at the UW,” said Donalson. “To have the success of SLP recognized nationally is an incredible honor and reaffirms the commitment the University has made to support this essential program.”

As the first and only centrally funded program for leaders at the UW, the Strategic Leadership Program strives to position supervisors for success within the UW system and empower them to achieve exceptional performance from their staff.

Jennifer Buck, director of human resources with UW Educational Outreach, attests to the effectiveness of the program.

“I attended the Strategic Leadership Program in 2010, when I was new to the UW and had only a few years of supervisory experience,” said Buck. “The program gave me a solid foundation for supervising at the UW, and a number of models and tools resonated so strongly with me and have such practical application, I regularly use them to this day to aid in problem-solving, coaching, and other areas.”

For more than 33 years, Leadership Excellence, now a part of HR.com, has identified and recognized the top leadership organizations and their strategies and solutions in a yearly ranking by category. The prestigious leadership awards salute the world’s top leadership practitioners and programs and highlight their roles in developing their most important asset — their people. Winners for Best Corporate University were selected based on their remarkable internal programs.