Organizational and Human Development offers a wide variety of courses and workshops anchored in employee development, building future leaders, supporting all employees to reach their career potential, and supporting the University of Waterloo's bold vision for the future. 

Sessions are available in the physical classroom, a virtual classroom, and through self-paced online courseware. Our in-person workshops and virtual workshops are interactive and will include time for group discussion and individual sharing opportunities. 

Find an offering that is right for you:

Core Development

Strengthening Community through Culture and Values

Our principles and values establish our expectations for how we engage and behave as a University community, both as individuals and as an institution. This session will explore the culture that our campus community aspires to embrace and uphold by exploring how we learn about and live out our values, how the structures and policies of the University strengthen their effectiveness and identify our role in creating a sense of belonging for all.

Engaging Community through Service and Communication

Communication plays a vital role in providing engaging, exceptional service on campus. This workshop explores the University’s Service Promise and how employees are integrating it into their daily service interactions with students, colleagues and stakeholders. We will explore our role as well as the University’s in how the exchange of information and communication flows and develop the mindset required to advance a culture of exceptional service.

Building Community through Innovation and Collaboration

Innovation is at the core of who we are at the University of Waterloo – it’s the cornerstone upon which we were built and we continue to pride ourselves in sustaining this powerful cultural element. But how do we do this? What creates an environment that transforms and empowers ideas into meaningful outcomes? In this workshop, we explore the partnership between innovation and collaboration as an integral part of our community experience. We will discuss how to tap into our collective curiosity to build a mindset focused on continuous improvement in the spirit of connecting imagination with impact. 

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Career Education

Discover Your Career Values and Purpose

What is purpose? And how do our purpose and values affect how we live, work, and interact with others? In this workshop, we will explore the concept of purpose by mapping out our accomplishments, interests and values. We will then gain practical tips for finding and discovering our purpose using our personal maps. At the end of this workshop, we will develop a personal purpose for-now statement that aligns with our values and goals.

Exploring Your VIA Character Strengths

Knowing your strengths and how to use them is essential to your career growth and development. This workshop will explore our strengths using the VIA Character Strengths assessment. We will explore how our strengths can be used in new ways at work and at home. We will learn how to spot and appreciate strengths in others, including our work colleagues, and create stronger connections with them. 

Building an Effective Résumé

When was the last time you had a chance to revisit your résumé? Reviewing your skills and accomplishments can be a great way to identify opportunities for further education and explore career growth. In this workshop, we will explore best practices for building and creating an effective résumé that highlights your career accomplishments. 

Interviews: How to WOW the Hiring Manager

Effectively answering interview questions can feel challenging under the pressure of the moment. In this workshop, we will discover tips on how to stay calm, address common interview questions, and effectively demonstrate your skills and accomplishments during an interview. 

Exploring Further Education

In this workshop, we will discover the many professional development opportunities the University of Waterloo offers. We will explore aligning relevant educational opportunities with our long-term career goals.

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Personal Leadership

Personality Dimensions®

Have you ever wondered why you immediately click with some people, yet feel guarded around others? Personality Dimensions® is a self-assessment tool that has you discover your individual preferences, styles and temperaments while learning to recognize and appreciate the preferences of others. Learn to improve your communication skills with others through a variety of highly effective tools and techniques that will allow you to explore your strengths and build on areas for development.  

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) Fundamentals

Emotional intelligence encompasses the personal, emotional, and social abilities and skills which allow us to succeed in coping with environmental demands and pressures. Those with high emotional intelligence readily recognize their feelings, manage their reactions, and build positive interactions with others. In this guided asynchronous course, we will unpack what emotional intelligence is. Then, we’ll learn to develop our emotional intelligence to improve our personal resilience and performance, and learn to skillfully apply the appropriate emotions at the appropriate time.

Emotional Intelligence at Work

In today’s rapidly changing work environment, building strong and impactful work relationships is crucial to innovation, efficiency, and organizational success. Emotional Intelligence is the ability to read, understand, respond to, and manage the emotions in ourselves and others. It encourages self-awareness, internal self-regulation, and the exploration of diverse perspectives. Through effective and authentic communication, emotional intelligence will create positive relationships within our personal and professional lives.

Understanding Conflict

When we experience perceived opposing goals, viewpoints, or interests with others around us, we stall in our ability to solve problems. Understanding what conflict is and how it shows up in our lives is an important first step in resolving it. In this workshop, you will complete the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Model Instrument to gain insight into five different conflict-handling behaviours, and whether you might be overusing or underusing one or more of them. Based on a mix of individual reflection, small and large group discussion, we will explore what conflict is, how it appears at work, and introduce strategies and tools to begin addressing it productively.

Managing Service Challenges

We have all experienced a service breakdown, either as a service provider or receiver. Depending on how that challenging situation was managed, it can leave both parties feeling frustrated and stressed. This workshop will expand upon a participant’s knowledge gained in the Building Community through Service and Communication workshop, and/or the previously offered Exceptional Service workshop. Learn to manage and de-escalate stressful service breakdowns for service recovery in a manner that is healthy, positive, and productive. In addition, participants will gain insights and learn techniques for managing their own emotions and reactions in challenging situations.  

Foundations of Giving and Receiving Feedback

Understanding the fundamentals of giving and receiving feedback is a crucial first step to being able to experience the process productively. Feedback does not need to be stressful, particularly when a culture of feedback is created within a team. Be part of fostering this culture within your department by gaining awareness of the feedback loop, recognizing when to offer feedback, and how to receive feedback with grace. Participants will also have the opportunity to navigate through practice scenarios, as well as create a document to articulate their own personal feedback preference, which they can share with colleagues, managers or others with whom they work closely.

  • Audience: All UWaterloo Employees
  • Format: Online, Self-paced Asynchronous
  • See offering availability and learn more about Foundations of Giving and Receiving Feedback

Integrity Matters 

What is integrity? How can we promote a culture of integrity through our everyday behaviours? Knowing that integrity is personal, and requires personal choice, this workbook explores how integrity influences our everyday interactions and decision-making. In Integrity Matters, we will discover what integrity means to ourselves by examining our own personal core values and the importance of living in alignment to these values. At the end of this workbook, you will have the opportunity to begin bringing your values to life by creating a personal mission statement. 

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Emerging Leadership

Conflict and Self

Do you ever feel like your understanding of conflict and your reaction to it don’t align? Our individual mindsets to conflict play a big role in how we respond in moments of tension and opposition. In this workshop, participants will lean in with curiosity about how they respond to conflict, how they approach conflict, and how our narratives play out. Through individual reflection, small and large group discussion, and workplace conflict case studies, participants will gain tools to approaching conflict productively and authentically.

Followership: A different side of leadership 

The leader-follower relationship is integral to successfully leading people in the workplace. Following direction while supporting others and learning from your leader is part of what makes followership a complex but essential part of any fulfilling leadership journey. Combatting the myth that followership is a deficient characteristic of leadership and shifting the focus towards followership as a foundation of leadership is at the heart of this interactive, practical, conversation-based workshop.

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People Leadership

Leading with Trust

Transparency, authenticity, and reliability are the cornerstones of leading with trust. Organizations with high trust are organizations where employees feel empowered to take risks, exercise creativity and feel psychologically safe. Building high trust organizations begins with authentic leaders that offer both credibility and compassion to their teams. Workshop participants will engage in conversations and activities with campus colleagues who are faced with the challenges of building trust-based teams as leaders of people while exploring tools and techniques that align to the evolution of leadership.     

Leading with Temperament

Personality Dimensions® has been a foundational tool used in the exploration of self and others. Since 2007, hundreds of employees and students at the University of Waterloo have utilized the knowledge gained through this tool for self-awareness and professional development. It’s time to take that learning one step further. Utilizing the Professional Report, participants will learn about the characteristics and workstyles of the four temperament types while customizing their leadership style to better understand that no two people are the same and what motivates one, may not motivate the other. This workshop can help participants tailor their leadership approach to suit individual needs and preferences and boost team engagement.     

Facilitating with Confidence

Are you looking to improve your facilitation skills either through the presentations you do or the meetings you run? This workshop is ideal for those already facilitating or those looking to hone their skills. Tangible tips will be explored through a hands-on, supportive workshop experience that encourages participants to identify their personal facilitation style and gain confidence with the discomfort associated with in-person public speaking. Participants will discuss tools to properly structure and implement visual aids while understanding how to capture their audience with an effective message delivery.     

Bookshop: Intentional Leadership: The big 8 capabilities setting leaders apart by Rose M. Patten 

Come together for a bookshop experience where we will focus thoughtful conversations around the human side of leadership in these times of workplace transition and continued unrest. Explore what Patten calls her “big 8” capabilities that help set leaders apart.    

"Drawing on learnings and a framework tested with over 900 senior leaders across industries and geographies, Intentional Leadership presents a guide for continuous renewal, focusing on the human side of leading. Patten debunks common myths, emphasizing that leadership capabilities do not just develop over time, but require self-awareness, feedback, intention, adjustment, and practice.” (Second cover copy. Intentional Leadership by Rose M. Patten, University of Toronto Press, 2023.)  

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Performance Conversations

Navigating your Performance Conversation (with your Manager)

This workshop will offer a practical guide for all University of Waterloo employees to prepare for performance appraisal conversations with their managers. We will learn how to identify and discuss our accomplishments in the past year and explore what skills we would like to develop and foster in the upcoming year.    

Leading Performance Conversations (with your Team)

We all know that a performance review and ongoing performance conversations are critical drivers in employee performance and motivation.  These important conversations take planning, skill and confidence. Engaging in these conversations effectively has many benefits for employees, managers and the entire organization.   

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Change Management

Strategies for Successfully Navigating Change

Change is constant and happens all the time. Every day we change in small ways – our morning routine, our route to work, our daily activities. We adapt quickly to these small changes, seamlessly adjusting our ways. It’s the big changes however that can cause an emotional reaction and discomfort. Understanding and addressing why we react to change, the impact the change has on us and whether we are motivated to embrace a change, is important and can directly influence outcomes.    

Successfully Leading & Managing Change

Change is constant and happens all the time. Every day we change in small ways – our morning routine, our daily activities. We adapt quickly to these small changes, seamlessly adjusting our ways. It’s the big changes however that can cause discomfort, and it’s here that additional support is needed.  In this interactive workshop, we’ll discover the value in considering the people side of change, covering how and why individuals react to change. Participants will also focus on the critical role the manager or project / change lead plays in supporting team members through change and, we’ll learn new strategies to apply to real change situations.

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Health and Well-being

10 Keys to Happier Living: Tips for Living Well

“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.” – The Dalai Lama

In this workshop, we will explore the key to creating more happiness using concepts based on Vanessa King’s 10 Keys to Happier Living approach. We will use evidence-based practices to improve wellness, happiness and, ultimately, resilience in challenging times. We will also identify the different types of happiness to develop concrete strategies for boosting our connection with what is positive and awesome in our life. 

Deep Health: Setting the Foundation   

This program is intended to set the foundation to help you find the level of deep health you are looking for. You will create a destination postcard that will help you define what future you may look like. With that, you will learn a system that will help you to set goals and subsequently build habits. This program will also teach you how to self-coach and reflect to adjust and pivot as you need to. 

Creating a Supportive Workplace 

Managing Compassion: Staying Well While Helping Others

As members of the University of Waterloo community, we constantly support our students, colleagues, and each other as we strive to uphold the university’s mission and values. We are constantly navigating the unknowns and the changing environment of work. Helping others can provide a great deal of satisfaction, but it can also, at times, be stressful and overwhelming. In this workshop, we will learn the qualities and behaviours of compassion while developing strategies to manage stress. We will create a plan to help us stay well while helping others – together, we will rise to meet this challenge.

Creating a Supportive Workplace for Neurodivergent Employees

Most work settings have been designed by neurotypical employers, for neurotypical employees, yet an estimated 15-20% of Canadians are neurodivergent. Many highly skilled neurodivergent individuals encounter workplace barriers that affect their ability to thrive in the workplace. In this participatory workshop, we will focus on two forms of neurodivergence: autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We will identify common workplace barriers and challenges and review recommended practices and processes that support neurodivergent employees. Through interactive activities, participants will review their workplace from a neurodivergent perspective, explore the hidden curriculum in their office, and discuss ways to incorporate recommendations that would benefit neurodivergent and neurotypical employees, alike. 

Leading and Working in Hybrid Teams 

Today many of us are leading and working in some form of Hybrid, Blended, or Hy-flex Teams where some employees may work remotely (some of the time) while others may work in one co-located workplace. Balancing individual expectations while effectively building team synergy in hybrid teams is challenging. The important thing is to recognize, acknowledge, and address these challenges from the beginning. In this self-directed micro-learning series, you will learn quick tips, techniques, and inclusive practices for leading and working in hybrid teams.  

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