Management Development Program Story

Managing Up

Senior Accountant Dylan Atkinson’s nomination for the Management Development Program (MDP) reassured him that he must be doing something right. “It was one of the biggest honors I’ve had in my almost 10 years at MPW,” he said. “I really enjoyed the program. I learned a lot and it was big for my own development, personally and professionally.” Atkinson was one of 15 graduates of the 10-month program in 2023.

“Participants in the Management Development Program (MDP), now in its third year, are nominated by managers throughout the organization and selected by the executive team,” explained Instructional Designer Autumn Cash Rose,  who has been involved with the First Line Leader Program (now called Universal First Line Leader) in the past and now supports MDP. “We needed to create two layers in order to impact leaders at all levels.”

Training and Development Manager Adam Pearl explained that not everyone who goes through the Universal First Line Leader program is nominated for the Management Development Program. “There’s potential, but there are only—give or take—15 people a year in management development training. There are 370 involved in UFLL” he said.

The Management Development program is a great opportunity for leaders with direct reports who might be new to their role or have the potential to take on a new role in the organization, Cash Rose said. “Participants focus on self-development and professional growth; they learn from leaders and subject matter experts from across the organization, and they have an opportunity to develop strong relationships with peers and mentors,” she said.

One of Cash Rose’s favorite elements of the program is the capstone project. “For the capstone, teams identify a creative or innovate way to improve the organization,” she said. “As someone who supports and coordinates the program, I am so impressed by the growth of the participants, and I’m honored to be involved.”

“The Management Development Program is one of the best things we do at MPW,” said President Jared Black. “It is a great opportunity for good leaders to develop further into great leaders.” He said the Manager Development Program allows the executive staff and other senior leaders to teach class and become more familiar with MPW’s future leaders.

“The results speak for themselves,” Black said. “Several graduates have been promoted to senior leaders and some really nice capstone projects for further improvement of the company have been developed.”

When Solutions Architect Ashley Bryant first heard he was selected for the class, he didn’t know there was a nomination process. “Later, when I found out that someone had not only nominated me for the program, but that there was further discussion and vetting involved to finalize the nominations, it really changed how I felt about it,” he said. “It made me feel proud about being part of the program and I knew that it was something that I was really going to want to work hard at, and do well, to show that that faith in me wasn’t misplaced.”

“The Management Development Program has not only equipped me with valuable skills and knowledge to excel in my role as a manager but has also boosted my confidence as a leader,” said Human Resources Manager Kylie Galinis. “Being nominated for the program was such an honor. It made me feel recognized and motivated to take my career to the next level.” She said the shared learning approach has had a positive impact on her professional growth in becoming an effective leader.

“The Management Development Program gave me the incredible opportunity to learn from and collaborate with a fantastic group of people,” Galinis said. “I am very grateful that I had the chance to work alongside such talented individuals.”

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