County and Municipal Officials Learn About Leadership, Conflict Resolution

Dr. Regina Romero and Graduate Fellows discussing constructive responses to conflict.

Graduate Fellows of the Academy for Excellence in Local Governance met on Friday, September 19, for the second part of a two-part advanced course on leadership. Participants had to have completed the Academy for Excellence in Local Governance certificate program through the University of Maryland to be eligible to attend the course.

The Academy, a program founded by the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), the Maryland Municipal League (MML), and sponsored by the Local Government Insurance Trust (LGIT), is a voluntary program for county and municipal officials and staff. Its program of core and elective courses, offered at MACo, MML, and LGIT events, offers a foundation for local government officials to succeed in public service.

Both parts of the Graduate leadership course were taught by the University of Maryland’s National Leadership Institute Faculty Member, Dr. Regina Romero.

The first part of the class, entitled “Building Your Leadership Capacity: Start with Self,” was held on April 25, 2014, and focused on the students’ individual leadership styles. Prior to the course, students took the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (Step II). During the course, Dr. Romero helped the officials analyze their personality types and what affect that has on their leadership styles. Students explored their strengths and weaknesses, shared common leadership challenges, learned about possible solutions and leadership skills to practice, and role-played leadership scenarios. During the interim between the two parts of the course – about 5 months – participants were instructed to test their new leadership skills and methods and report back with their successes, missed opportunities, and lessons-learned.

The second part of the course was entitled “Building Your Leadership Capacity: Invite Change” and was held on September 19. Prior to the second part of the course, students participated in a Conflict Dynamics Profile assessment through the Center for Conflict Dynamics. After reporting back on their leadership skills lessons and trials over the interim between classes, Dr. Romero led the group of over 20 participants in an examination of their conflict resolution styles. Together, the group learned about different responses to conflict and methods to remediate conflict, then participated in small group exercises to practice their new skills.

Participants in the Graduate Fellows programs of the Academy receive a certificate upon completion of each Graduate Program.

Participants of the “Building Your Leadership Capacity” Academy Graduate Course pose outside of the LGIT building at the conclusion of the course.

The next Graduate Fellows program will be Advanced Public Finance and will focus on budgeting, investments, and infrastructure finance for local governments. More details will be available soon. If you are a Graduate of the Academy for Excellence in Local Governance and are interested in participating in the Advanced Public Finance course, please email the Academy Registrar, Aisha Washington, to be added to the list of interested participants.