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Queen Mary University of London

Stepping Up: Preparing Yourself for Leadership

Queen Mary University of London via Coursera


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In this course, you will explore the importance of self awareness and feedback, as well as issues such as bias and imposter syndrome. As a leader, it is important to know when to step in and lead, as well as how to establish boundaries and resolve conflict. This course will equip you with these fundamental leadership skills and will also help you develop your ability to influence others (including your “boss”), measure your impact and enhance your resilience. This course is aimed at leaders and managers who have five to six years experience and who are beginning to manage teams, customers and clients more regularly or more directly. A majority of those taking this course will have a technical or professional early career, but are progressing professionally so are starting to grapple with the issues of team and organisational leadership. By the end of this course, you will be able to: – Identify how you are perceived by your colleagues as leaders. – Make better decisions about when to step in, and when to stand back, as a leader and how to work with conflict as a productive force. – Explain how to lead and support your boss to both achieve your goals in your respective leadership positions. – Manage your energy to be seen as a positive, influential leader.


  • Understanding Yourself as a Leader
    • This week we are going to be focusing on you and your understanding of your leadership identity. We shall be asking you to reflect on who you are and to consider some of your strengths before exploring two of the biggest challenges for many leaders: imposter syndrome as you build your identity as a leader, and also the need to leverage your time by learning to let go and using delegation to “achieve through others”. We are going to encourage you to step outside your comfort zone, stretch your leadership potential, and consider the types of activity you need to be focussing on to become the leader you want to be.
  • Stepping In, Setting Boundaries and Productive Conflict
    • This week we will be looking at how you can know when to “step in” as a leader and how to do this effectively. We shall explore some of the leadership tools and styles that are available to you and consider how you might adapt your approach in response to your context. We will also discuss boundaries and how you might go about setting these, as well as conflict, looking at how you can constructively respond to conflict and how to find the value in such interactions.
  • Leading and Influencing Your Boss
    • This week we shall be focussing on your boss’s or leader’s agenda and considering how you can best align yourself with it whilst also pursuing your own leadership goals. We look at how you can better understand your boss’s motives and aims, as well as how you can influence your boss. We will use the “Authority-Presence-Impact” frame of thinking to help you to further develop your ability to lead, and will take you through the process of having challenging, but invaluable, conversations with your leader or boss.
  • Managing Energy and Motivations
    • This week we are going to focus on how you can maintain your own energy levels whilst also energising and motivating those around you. We will look at how you can embed self-care and wellbeing into your leadership practices and ways in which you can radiate energy to others. We shall explore what motivates you as well as those you lead, and think about how you can use language to achieve your leadership goals and motivate your team.

Taught by

Dr Nigel Spencer, Mike Mister and Arun Singh


5 rating at Coursera based on 23 ratings

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