Learning and Development

Campus Address
121-51 USB
Mailing Address

121 University Services Building, Suite 51
Iowa City, IA 52242-1911
United States

PASS - Engaging Your Team will be offered in upcoming semesters

Overview and Benefits

Practical Applications of Supervisory Skills (PASS) – Engaging Your Team is designed for relatively new supervisors and provide an opportunity to build on and practice skills supervisors regularly use. This certificate program provides supervisors with professional development that focuses on building a high-performance team and retaining those employees. Topics such as performance management, conflict, and change are addressed to dig deeper into engagement, retention, and common goals. Participants will have clear takeaways from each class and can apply what is taught providing the opportunity to improve results, service excellence and building collaborative relationships within your team and outward to other teams.

As the series title indicates, the PASS – Engaging Your Team learning experience emphasizes practical application and includes group activities, case studies, presentations, group discussions, and online learning opportunities. Our presenter team is comprised of a diverse array of professionals to best meet the needs of all UI campus supervisors. Join us as we build off the information shared in the Supervisor Training@Iowa training and the success of the Supervising@Iowa series to build the PASS community! For additional developmental opportunities, check out the sister PASS series, PASS – Engaging Yourself.

Note: Each PASS-Engaging Your Team course will be offered via Zoom.

Series Requirements

To fulfill the Practical Applications of Supervisory Skills (PASS) – Engaging Your Team certificate, participants must complete 8 of the 9 courses.

Core Curriculum

How do you hire and retain the best employees? How can we reduce the chances of missing out on the best candidates? It starts with departmental processes before you even post the position. In this class, we give you the opportunity to talk through and plan each step and phase of the pre-hiring and onboarding process with your colleagues. We’ll have discussions about job descriptions, interview questions, the importance of timeliness and follow-up, and much more.

After this course you’ll have a plan for pre-hire, interview questions to ask, and an onboarding plan that you can adjust to each individual you hire. Resources will be provided for assistance in creating a personalized checklist for onboarding and training new hires in your department.

Bring your energy and wear your planning and strategizing hats for an awesome way to kick off the Practical Applications of Supervisory Skills – Engaging Your Team series.

This session explores some of the building blocks to building a great team: diversity, equity, and inclusion in practice; examining emotional intelligence and how to apply it to teams; and examine how we can use CliftonStrengths to build and maintain team excellence. These pillars of building a great team will then be woven into the sessions that follow.

Study after study says that the key to retaining team members is to get them and keep them engaged. How do you do that exactly? This course will share out strategies that will help increase engagement, identify and share out resources, practice stay interviews, and delve into how and when to recognize and when to reward.

“I’m so excited for performance reviews” - said no supervisor…ever.

Okay, that’s probably not true, but you don’t have to dread them. In this session you will get guidance on how to set your team up for success by learning the mechanics of the UI performance review system, how to help your team members set and keep goals, and how to understand the rating system. Most importantly, though, we will explore how to have meaningful and helpful performance conversations that can reinforce relationships and drive higher performance.

The objective of this course is to tackle the conversations we avoid with our employees and colleagues. Through demonstration and practice of conversation techniques, this course helps with listening and hearing the messages shared within these relationships. Participants will look at current conversation problems occurring across campus and in their work units and seek to identify why, when, and what to avoid in these challenging conversations. The instructor will draw on various writings around this topic to offer approaches to address complicated exchanges. 


When you or members of your team have medical needs that fall under FMLA or ADA do you know how to handle it? Supervising to the whole person sometimes requires a level of compassion and base understanding of these federal laws and other compliance obligations. This course offers resources and instruction to help you facilitate conversations with your team member and staff appropriate to assist with the legal requirements of these federal laws.

We all deal with conflict on a regular basis. How do we best deal with it? As a supervisor, when should I step in to address conflict and maybe when should I escalate concerns? This course lays the groundwork for action. We define conflict and conflict management, describe what effective conflict management entails, and then you can put it into practice. Finally, we explore different conflict management styles and how you can select a style that may serve to get the best result. Bring your past or current conflicts to dive into potential solutions.

What does Employee Relations do, and when should I reach out to them? Here’s an opportunity to get to know the role of employee relations to the university, but also what they do and how they do it that can assist you at different moments of supervisory need. Join us as we explore public employment at the UI, steps leading up to and including progressive discipline, when investigations are necessary, and documentation requirements in interactions with your team.

Not all change allows for management, but when it does what can or should you do to put your proverbial best foot forward? This course explains the basics of change management: important definitions, managing change for an individual versus a team or organizational change, who to involve in change management, and differentiates between change and project management.