Developing Staff and Shaping Team Culture: A Summit for Advancement Talent Development Leaders

Denver, CO | November 7, 2024 8:30 am MT - November 8, 2024 3:00 pm MT

Registrant Access Only

This training will not be available asynchronously.

Developing Staff and Shaping Team Culture: A Summit for Advancement Talent Development Leaders

Denver, CO | November 7, 2024 8:30 am MT - November 8, 2024 3:00 pm MT

Inspire a culture of leadership and team development throughout your advancement shop.


As the demands of Advancement work evolve, there is a greater need than ever before to intentionally upskill and grow your staff. You may know that doing this work increases the shop’s performance because it provides skill development and nurtures the growth of future leaders—both of which can help to retain employees and make for a more fulfilling place to work. But it’s not always clear how to create a leadership development program or how to ensure that you’re creating the right career pathways for your people. And that’s where Academic Impressions can help. 

Join your peers across the nation for Academic Impressions’ Advancement Talent Development Leader Summit to discuss the ins and outs of facilitating individual career growth conversations and building a leadership program to support your shop’s current and/or future leaders. Using Academic Impressions’ expertise in leadership and our Five Paths to Leadership℠ Assessment, you’ll walk away with an expanded network of other talent development leaders working in Advancement, as well as a toolbox of proven practices which will help you build a culture that fosters team performance and growth across your shop.  

Our Approach   

We have intentionally designed our program to explore multiple ways to develop future Advancement leaders. Whether this is accomplished via one-off programs, cohort programs, or something in between, we’ll show you how our frameworks, models, and content can be adapted to fit your needs. In addition to sharing proven leadership resources, special attention will also be paid to ensuring that your programs center inclusivity and develop innovative and forward-thinking leaders.  

Program Format   

All participants will receive a comprehensive workbook, known as a roadmap, that has evolved out of our deep experiences in consulting with and supporting leaders in higher education. Because leadership is learned through practice, we won’t just walk you through how to develop a leader’s self-awareness, interpersonal skillset, or development of high-performing teams; we’ll also allow you to experience tools and activities in each of these areas firsthand, to help you determine what will be a good fit for your needs. 

To help preserve a practical and interactive environment, attendance for this program is capped at 30 participants.  

Who should attend?

This summit is designed for talent development leaders or other equivalent titles in Advancement who are responsible for developing, managing, or facilitating career pathing and/or leadership programs for their staff. If you have general oversight over your shop’s training, staff development efforts, and other team development initiatives, this program is for you.


Thursday, November 7, 2024
All Times are in Mountain Time (Local Time in Denver, CO)

Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:30 – 9:00 a.m.



Welcome and Introduction
9:00 – 9:30 a.m.



Opening Activity: Why Leadership Matters in Advancement
9:30 – 10:15 a.m.
How well do you understand the root causes of performance or retention issues in your shop? How often do you assess the costs of not investing in leadership development for your team? These are complex questions to answer, so we’ll begin the summit by tapping into the collective knowledge of the room to discuss these questions and you’ll begin thinking about how your shop approaches leadership development.



Morning Break
10:15 – 10:30 a.m.



Exploring Multiple Models and Approaches to Leadership Development
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Leaders and managers play a critical role in establishing trustworthy and transparent learning environments so that your talent can thrive, even in times of change. There are multiple ways to build the capacity of leaders in your shop, and your approach will vary depending on whether you’re just starting out or building on an established, cohort-based program. In this session, we’ll walk you through various decision points, including:

  • Who the program is meant to serve (aspiring supervisors, gift officers, other leaders).
  • The level of the program (for new and aspiring leaders, mid-level, or advanced).
  • The outcomes you hope to achieve.
  • Where the program should live on campus.
  • Whose support and sponsorship you will need (and how to get it).



Reflection and Work on Roadmaps 
11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
After introducing you to your roadmaps, we’ll use this part of the day to synthesize the most important takeaways, so that you can capture and document your next steps.



12:00 – 1:00 p.m.



Activity: Exploring Future Skillsets of Advancement Leaders
1:00 – 1:45 p.m.
Higher education is changing dramatically, and the skills required to lead advancement shops in the future may differ from the skills prized by current leaders. In this session, we’ll engage in a horizon thinking exercise and lead you through a separate exercise to prioritize a set of additional leadership concepts and skills for potential program inclusion. Both exercises are easily replicated on your campus so that large groups of stakeholders can help you to shape your leadership program.



Case Study
1:45 – 2:30 p.m.
In our first case study, we’ll examine examples of successful leadership development programs and explore how they originated, how they established their goals, and how you can adopt elements of the program that fit within your unit.



Afternoon Break
2:30 – 2:45 p.m.



Debrief the Five Paths to Leadership℠ Self-Assessment
2:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
It can be difficult to develop or grow leadership programs for others in your unit if you don’t first understand your own leadership tendencies and styles. In this session, you’ll better understand your leadership strengths and natural preferences related to solving problems, communicating, and collaborating when we debrief your Five Paths to Leadership℠ Assessment results. This self-assessment will help you to better leverage your strengths, mitigate potential weaknesses, and learn how to build strong interpersonal and team relationships, critical for leading effectively both formally and informally in teams.



Rotating Panels: Best Practice Sharing
4:00 – 5:00 p.m.
One of the most powerful takeaways from this program is the community of practice that we build with practitioners who are doing this work every day. We’ll create dedicated and structured time for sharing best practices of what you’ve learned—what resources have been the most valuable, strategies for creating engagement and interaction, tools and assessments that have been well received, and more.



HireEd Careers (HEC) Networking Reception
5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Here, you will have the opportunity to ask any questions related to the topics covered on Day One before we transition into an informal reception sponsored by Academic Impressions’ sister company, HireEd Careers. This casual reception will give you the chance to decompress, have a drink and an appetizer, and spend time connecting with colleagues in similar roles.



Friday, November 8, 2024
All Times are in Mountain Time (Local Time in Denver, CO)
Continental Breakfast
8:30 – 9:00 a.m.



Career Conversations: A Proven 4-Step Model
9:00 – 9:30 a.m.
Supervisors and leaders often avoid having career conversations for many reasons, including a lack of upward mobility, fear of raising expectations that can’t be met, or, worse, they just don’t know how to have these discussions. Academic Impressions has developed a “4-Step Career Conversations Model” that you can easily share with leaders back on campus. We’ll cover both what the discussion should entail and how to have an effective career conversation with an employee.



Activity: Career Conversations Carousel
9:30 – 10:15 a.m.
Through a structured activity, you will have the opportunity to share and explore ideas to meet individuals and aspiring/seasoned leaders where they are on their professional journeys. Whether your employees are aspiring to senior- or mid-level leadership roles or desiring to move to a different area of the shop, you’ll have an opportunity to share and explore experiences to help them to grow and develop.



Morning Break
10:15 – 10:30 a.m.



Case Study
10:30 – 11:00 a.m.
In our second deep-dive case study, we’ll examine programs that are currently up and running and how they model best practices for career pathing growth conversations. We’ll explore how these initiatives originated, who manages them, and what kinds of results they yield in terms of improving staff recruitment and retention efforts.



Reflection and Work on Roadmaps 
11:00 – 11:30 a.m.
We’ll use this part of the day to synthesize the most important takeaways from the summit this far, so that you can capture and document your next steps.



11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.



Developing High-Performing Teams
12:30 – 2:30 p.m.
We’ll spend time learning about the characteristics of high-performing teams and then take a deep dive into learning and applying strategies to support the development of these teams at your shop. We will explore various concepts that influence team culture such as psychological safety, trust, collaboration, and team cohesion.



Finalizing Your Roadmap & Summit Wrap-Up
2:30 – 3:00 p.m.
Following our discussion, you’ll work in pairs or small groups to finalize your next steps for taking the wealth of ideas and information you’ve gained back to your campus to put into practice.

Save on In-Person Conference Registrations

Attend any three in-person conferences for $5,500 for Members ($6,000 for Non-Members) – or $1,833 dollars per registration for Members ($2,000 for Non-Members) – with a Conference 3-Pack. There’s no one way to use your 3-Pack!

  • Send 3 people to the same conference
  • Send 3 individuals to different conferences
  • Experience 3 different conferences yourself

Learn More


The training will be conducted in person at Academic Impressions’ Denver-based office at:

5299 DTC Blvd, Suite 1400, Greenwood Village, CO 80111


Nearby hotel suggestions:

Hyatt Place Denver Tech Center – 3-star hotel

8300 E Crescent Pkwy, Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Distance from office: 0.5 miles if driving, 0.3 miles if walking

A room rate of $114/night is available if you book your room using this link.

This reduced rate and room availability are subject to general hotel availability and not guaranteed. So, we recommend booking as soon as possible!  


Denver Marriott Tech Center – 4-star hotel

4900 S Syracuse St, Denver, CO 80237
Distance from office: 0.9-1.2 miles, depending on route

A 10% discount is available if you book your room using this link.  

This discount is subject to general hotel availability and not guaranteed. So, we recommend booking as soon as possible! 


Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center – 4-star hotel

7800 E Tufts Ave, Denver, CO 80237
Distance from office: 1.1 miles


“I appreciated the balance between hearing what other institutions are doing (Lehigh, MIT, and Florida) while also having a solid umbrella of best practice, stellar facilitation and sharing of extremely useful tools by Academic Impressions. This wasn’t just a “show & tell” from a bunch of peers, it was very well organized and cultivated content! I also appreciated the presenters’ ability to adapt and be flexible in the moment based on what the group needed and where conversation was going. Day 2 was slightly different from what they had originally planned but it was a necessary decision to make to adjust the content/program to meet our needs and questions. Very well done! That’s true facilitation!”

“The Academic Impressions Summit was the best talent management conference I have ever attended. The content was relevant, the programing was interactive, and the setting was beautiful! I will absolutely attend again next year.”

“Academic Impressions is led by a passion for the Advancement industry as a whole and after attending their summit, I was able to walk away with implementable ideas and tools for my own work at University of Florida Advancement.”