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Webinar (Live) Event 
The psychological challenges and skills for becoming a more effective manager


Successful transition into becoming a more effective manager and leader is fundamental for organisational and management effectiveness. Some of the skills that organisations look for in effective managers include the art of leading, developing a “helicopter perspective,” thinking and executing strategically, delegating, communicating, building teams, “tough empathy”, being resolute in decision making, taking responsibility, inspiring people by recognizing their contribution and talent and creating a team culture.


One of the challenges in identifying managers who are skilled in these areas is that many of these skills are developed, as Linda Hill claims, on the job. These are skills that cannot be learnt by reading a textbook or relying on a manual. Just as a person learns the skills of riding a bicycle by riding a bicycle, so managers learn their skills on the job. It is, for example, by leading that a manager learns the skills of leadership. It is by delegating, for example, that a manager develops the skill of delegating.


Organisations play a crucial role in enabling the development of these skills in the context of on-the-job learning: mentoring, coaching and a general culture of learning are required to nurture the development of the skills of managers.


However, there is still a culture of fear around learning in the context of experience. The “imposter syndrome” is an example of this: managers often pretend that they know more than they do.  They get in their own way and lose opportunities for learning. The idea of “climbing the organizational ladder” is not a useful metaphor for developing managers. This is because management learning is a step by step process but one in which managers are challenged to leap into the uncertainty of the unfamiliar and unknown.


 Unsuccessful transition contributes to lack of promotion opportunities for management staff, as well as managerial incompetence, missed business objectives, disengagement, team toxicity, stress and anxiety of employees (Hogan, Hogan & Kaiser, 2009). These consequences represent so called managerial derailment (Hogan et al., 2009). Its scale is estimated between 30 and 67% of all managers in transition and its costs per executive head are calculated in millions of dollars (Hogan et al., 2009). Therefore, managing transition successfully is crucial for organisations.


Current research on managerial transition points to the absence of an appreciation of the psychological challenges of transition. This is articulated by, amongst others, Linda Hill (2003:229) who argues that there is a “profound psychological” difference between the mindsets of experts and that of management. Unsuccessfully managing this shift leads to anxiety, and toxic management practices that get in the way of managerial competence, confidence, and organisational performance.


Successful management of the transition builds confidence and competence to delegate, build cultures that bring out the best in people, create an atmosphere of trust and a high-performance functioning unit.  Successful management transition also involves making decisions effectively, understanding when to and when not to take risks, embracing accountability and taking responsibility.


This workshop will provide a psychological model for successful transitions into the psychological dimensions of management and leadership positions. The psychological model is called “from Novice to Mastery.” It was developed by Hubert Dreyfus in the context of the professional development of officers in the United States Navy. It identified 5 stages in the development of offices.  Each stage has its own psychological challenges. Embracing the challenges of these stages allows for effective coping mechanisms and skills for novices on the way to becoming officers. It has subsequently been used in a range of professional development programs including the training of nurses, teachers, lawyers, and leaders across different industries.


The workshop will provide participants with:

  1.  a mental map of the psychological journey for transitioning from being a novice to becoming a masterful manager and how to articulate this to senior managers and recruiting managers.

  2. the ability to understand what they can expected of themselves at each particular stage of professional development.

  3. the ability to set realistic targets for their own development.

  4. the ability to transform the experience of the imposter syndrome into learning opportunities.

  5. the ability to understand the challenges of progressing from one stage to the next.

  6. The ability to develop the coping mechanisms, competencies, confidence, and skills for developing from one stage to the next.

  7. Enabling clients to internalise the skills, competencies and mindset to become a masterful practitioner.

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$120.00 ex GST

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You have a gift of making complex philosophical thinking easier to understand and apply to daily life.

I absolutely loved the course and to say it has given me new perspectives is a gross understatement. It is has started me on a long, fascinating journey that I will continue throughout my career. Thank you.

I recommend Steven’s practice to any professional working in conditions of uncertainty and complexity and are seeking the practical wisdom necessary to make sense of their environment and provide the kind of leadership necessary to succeed.


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Presenter: Dr Steven Segal

About the presenter

Dr Steven Segal is a registered and practising Psychologist. He was appointed Associate Professor of Management at Macquarie University, Sydney where he taught psychology and philosophy in the context of management and leadership.


Dr Segal has conducted professional development workshops in a range of areas including leadership, education, psychology and psychotherapy. He brings a unique combination of psychology, philosophy, management education and leadership to enable professionals at all levels to develop their practice.

Themes which have driven his interest in psychology and philosophy include anxiety and depression. He has always been focused on the practical application of philosophy which gives him an additional and helpful lens in his practice as a psychologist. Utilising philosophy, he enables clients to gain insight into themselves and the social context in which they live. He has an action orientated view of philosophical reflection and believes that action and reflection form an ongoing cycle on the psychotherapeutic journey. ​


Dr Segal’s Masters and PhD focus on educational frameworks for working with anxiety and despair. His most recent research project focused on the challenging psychological experiences involved in management and leadership development. ​


He has published two books which both deal with anxiety and emotion in the context of management:

  • Business Feel and Management Practice, and

  • Creative Destruction: Existential Skills for Inquiring Managers, Researchers and Educators. ​

He has edited books including Face to Face with Management Practice and been the section editor of the Handbook on Managerial Philosophy. Dr Segal has published over 30 peer-reviewed scholarly articles in a range of disciplines including philosophy, psychology, and management.

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