Thursday, June 30, 2016

Imagine!’s 2015 / 2016 Leadership Development Group Update

Tim West-Heiss, Shannon Bundy, Maria Klickna, Laura Ball, Sterling Wind

As our Leadership Development Group (LDG) experience is ending, the LDG team would like to express our gratitude to our team members at Imagine! and the executive team for this opportunity. During this LDG journey, we have learned a tremendous amount and can collectively say we have grown both personally and professionally from this experience.  The LDG team would like to share a few of the valuable lessons we have learned from participating:

I first off want to thank everyone for this incredible opportunity. The leadership development program has given me so much. I feel I have grown in my role here at Imagine! and have learned so many things that I can incorporate into my daily work. I have so many great takeaways from this experience, but there are two big ones that come to mind. First, I think the book “Drive” and the Great Leadership trainings that we all attended have really pushed me to better myself as a supervisor and leader for my employees. I have learned a great deal about how to bring new and innovative thinking into the workplace from the book “Drive” and have learned how to support my employees better from the trainings we attended. Second, this experience has made me realize the direction I want to pursue in my career. I am so thankful for the support of the executive and the HR teams for helping me find my next steps in my career through this experience. – Shannon Bundy

Thank you for the incredible opportunity to be a part of the Leadership Development Group.  This program provided a platform to gain knowledge and insight into the complexities of Imagine!. I built strong relationships with the other LDG team members, which provided me with additional perspectives of our organization.  The access given to me as an LDG member was remarkable and extraordinarily valuable as an employee.  This program aided me in identifying my strengths and weaknesses as a leader and provided the training and guidance to strengthen my skills and build on my toolbox.   It challenged me in unexpected ways and I grew as a leader throughout the process.  A special thanks to the executive team for your time and commitment to this program and to my HR team for supporting me as I juggled my job duties and the additional time commitment.
– Laura Ball

I am grateful beyond words for this opportunity to be a part of LDG. This opportunity has allowed me not only to grow as an Imagine! employee, but as an individual as well. I have learned such a great deal through being involved in this experience that I don't know if I would have otherwise ever have learned. Going through the MSEC leadership classes, I found myself taking a hard and unwavering look at things I do well, and things I don't do well, and what I can do to improve my leadership skills. Being able to integrate what I’ve learned from these classes and the LDG experience in to my daily work and personal life is invaluable. It was a challenging and often chaotic experience, but knowing I played a large part in something bigger than LDG, even Imagine!, and myself, and was able to use what resources I have to give to such a wonderful organization was humbling and motivating to say the least. Thank you! – Tim West-Heiss

I am so grateful for being part of the leadership development group this year.  The LDG experience has allowed me to grow many of my professional skills, and has challenged me to think more critically about my own professional goals. My greatest takeaway from this experience would be realizing one doesn’t need to be in a manager/supervisor role to a leader and an ambassador within Imagine!. The LDG experience has helped me feel revitalized and highly connected to Imagine!’s mission and in turn has helped my everyday performance at work to become more meaningful. – Maria Klickna

I have sincerely appreciated the leadership exposure that has challenged me as a leader as a member of this year’s LDG. The readings, trainings, and meetings have challenged my perspective on leadership. This program helped me in my understanding of how the focus of long-range goals direct leadership decisions to work through operational challenges. I feel particularly proud of our case study project. Our topic was inspired by Daniel Pink’s book, “Drive”. This book challenged our thinking and inspired us to focus our case study on working towards transforming performance management at Imagine!. The purpose of our case study was to shift the focus towards talent management through staff and team development. The opportunities of LDG have challenged me to expand my understanding of what good leadership is, and I am grateful for this opportunity. – Sterling Wind

LDG members still smiling after presenting their case study

We hope that this final update encourages others at Imagine! to consider speaking with their immediate supervisor about being recommended to join next year’s Leadership Development Group.

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