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KNOXVILLE — This June the University of Tennessee will launch “Leadership Success for Manufacturing Site Leaders,” a leadership program for new and seasoned site leaders that provides a comprehensive education in business practices.

Based on extensive research with successful plant managers, this new certificate program offered by the College of Business Administration’s Center for Executive Education (CEE) is designed to significantly accelerate site leader success.

According to Program Director Kim Mallory, new manufacturing site leaders will learn techniques designed to significantly broaden their leadership capabilities. Seasoned site leaders will sharpen critical leadership skills necessary to effectively take their organizations to the next level of success.

“This powerful, non-degree program allows participants to learn concepts in the classroom and then immediately apply them to their organizations for maximum impact,” Mallory said.
The program is delivered in three nonconsecutive, one-week residencies over a nine-month period.

There are three primary components: 1) the classroom component; 2) the individual leadership development component; and 3) the organizational leadership project.
The classroom component uses a customized case study that is woven throughout the three residency periods. It focuses on challenges and opportunities specific to leading a successful manufacturing facility. The program places strong emphasis on interactive learning and combines individual and team coursework, lectures and experiential, multi-mode learning.

In the individual leadership development component, participants work with a dedicated coach to build a personalized leadership plan that establishes short- and long-term goals for themselves, their companies and their careers.

The third component is a program-long organizational leadership project in which participants apply coursework directly to their own manufacturing facilities, resulting in immediate impact and substantial return on investment.

This site leader educational program was developed through the collaboration of Associate Dean of Executive Education Alex Miller; Donde Plowman, Flaskerud Professor of Strategic Management; and Associate Professor of Management Anne Smith. Through an in-depth study, they learned that site managers — despite their expertise in specific areas — could have been more effective and more successful, more quickly, if they had gotten more broad-based business training before taking the helm of their facilities.

The CEE enlisted the help of manufacturing executive Chuck Parke, who was named lead faculty member for this course. Parke joined the CEE in 2007, bringing with him more than 25 years of real-world manufacturing experience. His successful manufacturing career included a position as vice president for Whirlpool’s Cooking Division. Parke also is a UT alumnus with an undergraduate degree in engineering and an MBA from the College of Business Administration.

“I understand the value that this course will bring to new and seasoned site leaders in accelerating leadership skills and developing organizational talent,” Parke said. “The course, based on research that keeps our faculty in touch with the real world, will make a powerful difference in a manufacturing site leader’s success.”

Cost for the program is $18,500, which includes tuition, books and materials, lodging and meals.


Cindy Raines, (865) 974-4359,