Managing Technical Professionals and Organizations

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This program explores a set of proven, practical, and innovative strategies for maximizing the contribution of an organization’s technical resources. It provides key insights on how to retain technical staff, integrate technical professionals into the organization, build more successful project teams, and keep teams high-performing over time.

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Managing Technical Professionals and Organizations
Certificate Track: Management and Leadership
Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Tuition: $3,300 (excluding accommodations)
Program Days (for certificate credit): 2

Technical professionals' goals and incentives are often different from those of other employees, and so are the management challenges that arise. Drawing on the wealth of research and industry experience of faculty and leading practitioners, Managing Technical Professionals and Organizations explores proven, practical, and innovative strategies for maximizing the contribution of technical professionals. This intensive program focuses on the management and motivation of technical professionals in the innovative organization, and in particular:  
  • How creative individual contributors work together on risky projects, processing information under conditions of uncertainty;
  • How to address critical problems and issues dealing with staff professionals and members of project teams, including cross-functional teams;
  • How to work effectively with prima donnas and independent spirits.

Learning Experience

Organizations that are designed and managed for doing the same things well repetitively, as in manufacturing and operations, are not particularly appropriate for doing something well once, as in R&D. Running a technical organization presents a unique set of management problems. How do you motivate and reward technical professionals to maximize their performance and creativity? How do you create an organizational structure that will contribute to success, not inhibit it? How do you deal with creative individual contributors, project teams, and innovative professionals? How do you build and sustain high motivation and vitality while preventing complacency? How do you utilize "marshaling" events for building more collaborative, innovative activities? And how do you move information and technology effectively across organizational structures? 

This unique two-day program focuses on issues critical to the effective management of technical professionals and cross-functional teams. Its principles and strategies can be applied in any organization where research, development, engineering, or computer-related technology developments need to take place in a timely, effective, and successful manner. 

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Featured Content

Q&A with the program faculty

In this interview, Thomas Allen and Ralph Katz discuss key take-aways from the program as well as how to address the particular challenges faced by technical professionals  


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Media Gallery

Visit the Media Gallery to view videos and read articles and blog posts written by MIT Sloan Executive Education faculty and staff.