Friday, December 03, 2010

[227] Campus Consultants Offer Leadership Training To Businesses

EDITORIAL CONTACT: Gina Logue, 615-898-5081

MTSU Center Succeeds in County Government, Takes Program to Private Sector

(MURFREESBORO) - Sometimes a project works so well in the private sector that a governmental agency decides it’s worth copying and broadening. The MTSU Center for Organizational and Human Resource Effectiveness (COHRE) is doing the same thing in reverse. It is taking the Foundational Leadership Academy it created three years ago to help Rutherford County employees and offering it to private businesses and organizations.
The Foundational Leadership Academy conducts five half-day sessions once a month with county workers who have leadership potential. Up to 12 trainees and two primary trainers provide both individual attention and cover the issues business leaders constantly encounter.
Dr. Patrick McCarthy, director of COHRE, says the academy was designed to be practical, rigorous, hands-on and affordable, is quite adaptable to private sector circumstances and is applicable in both large and small businesses.
“It’s still about running a business,” notes McCarthy. “It’s still about managing people. It’s still about motivating. It’s still about dealing with conflict effectively and constructively.”
Rutherford County Mayor Ernest G. Burgess is a believer. He writes, “We recognize the value of developing our people, and COHRE has done a wonderful job adapting the training to the needs of each individual group. COHRE is a competent, energetic, resourceful and trustworthy organization.”
“While, on the one hand, we’re a stand-alone consulting firm of sorts, our affiliation with the university means a key part of our mission is to serve our community,” says McCarthy.
After three years of proven performance, the time seemed right to take the Foundational Leadership Academy to the Rutherford County business community. Dr. Michael Hein, associate director of COHRE, says a great many firms are discovering that they need to bolster their bench strength.
“What’s actually happening is the retirement of the Baby Boomers,” says Hein, ”and a lot of companies are realizing they’re going to have to move a lot of people up into positions to replace those people. And they don’t have the skills to do that.”
In the Foundation Leadership Academy, participants tackle specific scenarios within groups with each individual playing the roles of observer, feedback provider and feedback receiver at different times during the exercises. Ultimately, the entire group will discuss together their approaches to the scenarios.
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“We’ve had one person in the county with several years of business experience whose comment was this was the best training she’s ever received,” says Hein.
COHRE’s qualifications are found in its people—consultants with both peer-reviewed academic expertise and decades of real-world experience. Some of Hein’s former clients include Toshiba, Jack Daniel’s, Ingram Books and the Murfreesboro Police Department. Among McCarthy’s former clients are Proctor and Gamble, Union Carbide, State Farm, Pearl Drum Corporation and United Way.
To find out more about COHRE and the Foundational Leadership Academy, go to or call 615-217-2084.


Founded in 1911, Middle Tennessee State University is a Tennessee Board of Regents institution located in Murfreesboro and is the state’s largest public undergraduate institution. MTSU now boasts one of the nation’s first master’s degree programs in horse science, and the Council of Graduate Schools in Washington, D.C., acclaims MTSU’s Master of Science in Professional Science degree—the only one in Tennessee—as a model program. This fall, MTSU unveiled three new doctoral degrees in the sciences.

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