Training Specifically Made for Department Chairs

Training & Resources Designed Specifically for Department Chairs

The chair of an academic unit is one of the most important positions on campus and yet, chairs often receive little training for the role.

Our trainings and resources are built with these challenges in mind. We recognize that chairs have tremendous responsibility for decision-making on campus and have the greatest impact on faculty engagement and retention, both of which require effective leadership. Additionally, we understand that leading a department in a dual role as faculty and leader can be challenging.

Our offerings aim to help chairs identify an approach to leadership that is effective and dynamic while also being authentic to who you are. We have resources to help you:

Understand your responsibilities and strengths as department chair.

Develop trust to deepen relationships across your department.

Support faculty and staff to build a high-performing unit.

Lead your department into the future.

Experience and Expertise Institutions Trust


Department Chairs Have Been Trained by Academic Impressions


Institutions Chose Acadeimic Impressions Exclusively for Chair Development

Choose from cohort-based learning programs or self-paced options that target specific needs.

Short-Form Trainings

Included in Membership

Understanding Your Responsibilities and Strengths as Department Chair



Your First Year as Department Chair: Building Trust, Communication, and Community

Learn More ⟶

Manager diagram with use of blocks


Your First Semester as External Chair: A Roadmap for Success

Learn More ⟶

Leadership puzzle concept


4 Essential Leadership Competencies Department Chairs Need to Lead in the New Normal

Learn More ⟶

Developing Trust to Deepen Relationships Across Your Department

Person standing near a dividing line


Communicating Boundaries with Empathy: A Training for Department Chairs

Learn More ⟶

Professionals at a roundtable meeting


How to Maintain Trust in Teams During Transitions

Learn More ⟶



Influencing Without Authority

Learn More ⟶

Professionals with all their hands in together


Rebuilding Trust Between Faculty and Administration

Learn More ⟶

Supporting Faculty and Staff to Build a High-Performing Unit

People holding word bubbles


Communicating Effectively in High-Anxiety Times: A Workshop for Department Chairs

Learn More ⟶

wood blocks


Department Chairs: Maximize Your Productivity By Cultivating Your Academic Staff

Learn More ⟶

Stressed professional squeezing a ball


Managing Faculty Stress and Burnout: A Conversation for Faculty Affairs and Academic Leaders

Learn More ⟶

Business people looking at documents and graphs


Faculty Performance & Conduct: Reframing the Conversation

Learn More ⟶

Leading Your Department Into the Future

Building blocks


Managing Change as a Department Chair: 5 Traps to Avoid

Learn More ⟶

A woman's hand holding a pen seemingly reviewing charts and graphs.


Foundations in Budgeting for Department Chairs

Learn More ⟶

Success coach working with client


Fundraising for Department Chairs

Learn More ⟶

Students wearing masks


Change and Continuity Planning Post-COVID: A Process for Leading with Greater Intention

Learn More ⟶

We can partner with you to narrow the curriculum and provide facilitation questions for each area. Reach out to your Account Manager for details.

Get These Trainings and More with Membership

What is Membership with Academic Impressions?

Membership with Academic Impressions is the most comprehensive online professional development subscription specifically designed for staff and faculty in higher education. Our resources support leaders, staff, and faculty at all levels with trainings on leadership development, personal development, and job-specific skills.

Join hundreds of member institutions and use this year to make professional development a regular occurrence instead of a once-a-year annual meeting.

What Does Membership Include?

Access to a continuously expanding library of live online trainings, designed to be practical, discussion-based, and highly experiential

Unlimited anytime, anywhere access to on-demand trainings and resources that you can engage with on your own time from the convenience of your workspace

New trainings every week, designed to respond to the latest needs of the higher ed community

$250 discount on multi-week cohort-based bootcamps and in-person conferences

Fiscal Year Promotion:
Save Up to $1,500 on Membership

Custom Workshops: Tailored Topics for Your Division or Institution

Discounted with Membership

Academic Impressions works with dozens of institutions to customize training based on the unique needs of each campus. We have helped many institutions to create workshops aimed at offering department chairs more support. Common topics to support chairs included:

  • Delegation and time-management strategies
  • Strengths-based leadership development
  • Stress management and individual well-being
  • Influencing up, down, and sideways
  • Inclusive communication

We can supplement existing programs or provide a full end-to-end solution and create a stand-alone program. If you’re looking for a turnkey solution, all you need to do is provide the time for the workshop, and we’ll carefully plan logistics.

View a Sample Custom Workshop Agenda for Chairs

Signature Event Programs

Discounted with Membership

Re-connect to learning, and re-connect to peers around the country. Cornerstones of our programs include:

  • Intimate, workshop-style events with personalized attention
  • Needs-driven and thoughtfully planned programs with practical outcomes
  • Action plans and next steps to use upon returning to campus
  • Carefully vetted instructors that are also practitioners in the field
  • A learner-centric focus designed for interaction and collaboration
  • The small-scale opportunity to truly connect with colleagues in the same position at other institutions.
Conflict mediator


Managing Difficult Faculty and Staff: A Bootcamp for Leaders

April 5 - 26, 2023
Grow your skillset in managing the difficult people who can make leadership so hard.

Learn More ⟶

Mentor working with faculty member


Designing a New Faculty Mentor Program: A Bootcamp for Faculty Leaders

June 8 – July 6, 2023
Identify a clear and compelling value proposition for your new faculty mentoring program.

Learn More ⟶

Notebooks with leadership ideas


Essential Leadership Skills for Department Chairs

Coming June 2023
Explore how you can enable the engagement, collaboration, and success of your faculty and staff.


Discounted with Membership

Department chairs and individuals in related academic leadership positions serve vital and critically important roles at universities but are often caught in the “middle management” conundrum, caught in the snare of trying to manage the often-conflicting interests of the administration, faculty, and students.

Coaching for individuals and group coaching both help leaders navigate some of their most complex challenges including:

  • Frequent leadership transitions: over a four-year span, the chance that a Department Chair will be working with a team composed of the same president, provost, and dean is only 7%.
  • Recruiting, retaining, and motivating faculty and staff while learning how to manage remote and hybrid work environments.
  • Seemingly overwhelming day-to-day responsibilities amplified by the pandemic, racial issues, financial exigencies, and extreme fatigue and burnout.

While these challenges can result in loss of enthusiasm, lack of trust, and low morale, they also create opportunities for growth. Individual leadership coaching or group coaching meets leaders where they are, matching leaders with the right coach and setting teams or departments up for success as they prepare to navigate tomorrow’s challenges.

Case Study

For one university, we crafted a plan for Department Chairs to refocus their efforts around two common goals:

  1. Leverage the leadership of each Chair to support and enable the success of their faculty during a difficult & strained time.
  2. To use their unique positions of influence to re-center the institutional mission among their units.

Based on these goals, we designed a custom coaching and training engagement. In the course of the engagement, the Department Chairs learned strategies and skills to:

  • Overcome planning fatigue
  • Determine who to trust and about what
  • Maintain enthusiasm and morale
  • Create long-term clarity for themselves and their units, even amid shifting strategic priorities and goals at the institutional level
  • Move from ‘waiting out’ the current team of leaders and instead, maintain focus on student success and the long-term health of their department
  • Convert feelings of loss and anxiety to cautious optimism and excitement

Take the next step in your role as a Chair and book a call with our Director of Coaching today!


portrait of Meg Paladino

Meghan Paladino
Director of Institutional Partnerships,
Academic Impressions