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University of Bath

Managers and Leaders in Action (MLA) Programme

A programme designed to develop your knowledge, skills and behaviours as well as translating organisational strategy into effective performance.

When this programme runs

Please note that applications to start in June 2019 have now closed and places confirmed.

A programme of learning that starts in June with the networking conference and concludes in March 2020 with the chance to present your project to other participants undertaking the programme.

During this time there are a number of opportunities to implement your project with the support of a range of activities, short workshops and check-ins.

Key programme dates:

Key date Event, workshops and masterclass topics
Thursday 18th April 2019 Deadline for submitting applications to HR
Friday 10th May 2019 Feedback on applications
w/c 20th May 2019 Strengthscope assessment and feedback meeting
Wednesday 19th June 2019 Conference and project management
Thursday 27th June 2019 Personal planning and wellbeing
Tuesday 24th September 2019 Action learning workshop and practice
Wednesday 25th September 2019 Team behaviours and coaching
Thursday 21st November 2019 Action learning and organisational delivery
Tuesday 21st January 2020 Action learning and career conversations
Wednesday 25th March 2020 Project outcomes and celebration

We have developed a programme workflow outlining the key dates and milestones for the MLA programme from application stage to programme end.

About this programme

Experience tells us that successful managers and leaders achieve competence through job-related challenges, such as a motivating project, more so than classroom training. Therefore, the MLA programme is based on an action-learning approach, recognised as a reliable and effective methodology that emphasises application over the presentation of new learning content.

The MLA uses the 70:20:10 concept which centres around the idea that:

  • 70% of learning is experiential and happens through daily events and practice through your project.

  • 20% of learning is social and happens through other people such as colleagues and mentors

  • 10% of learning is formal through structured workshops and classroom learning

In this programme, you will collaborate with your manager/sponsor to identify a meaningful project that is linked to the strategic plan of your departmental/faculty. By implementing the project, you can develop your skills and behaviours to innovate, solve problems, develop new ideas, and implement solutions that have impact.

This programme is highly participative, using facilitated discussion, masterclasses, tools of self-assessment, cases studies, action learning and group work to promote reflective review. Through the MLA Programme you will apply all this learning through the implementation of your project.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of the MLA programme you will be able to:

Developing self

  • Nurture your potential

  • Increase your self-awareness and self-management

  • Foster behaviours consistent with organisational values

Leading and managing people and teams

  • Engage with organisational, departmental and individual goals and values

  • Accomplish work in a smarter, more effective way

  • Build capability to achieve and solve day-to-day problems

  • Enhance wellbeing of self and others


  • Influence change and outcomes for yourself, team and organisation

  • Leave a legacy

  • Present your project and learning journey


Before the programme conference on 19th June, you will undertake a Strengthscope® assessment. Once your place on the programme has been confirmed, the Workforce Development Team will match you with a Strengthscope® Practitioner who will provide a tailored feedback session to go through your profile and strengths identified.

Who should undertake this programme

The Managers and Leaders in Action (MLA) Programme has been designed to provide you with the opportunity to develop the skills, tools and competencies you require for effectively operating in today’s constantly changing and challenging organisational environment.

Here are some reasons you might want to apply:

  • You would like to develop your capability, credibility and confidence as a manager and leader.

  • You want to build and lead an effective team.

  • You have an opportunity to create a culture that will help your team reach their potential and deliver an effective service.

  • You would like to develop successful techniques to help people engage positively in change.

  • You feel it is important and relevant for your career progression.

Your project

Your project could be stand alone, or perhaps a phase of a larger project. You will have support to develop a realistic plan as projects must include implementation in order to achieve results and need to be balanced with other workplace responsibilities, therefore the application of many management and leadership skills and behaviours will be required.

You will identify and pursue a specific, personal development objectives that can be addressed via a task or role whilst undertaking the project and feedback and coaching will be an integral part of the programme to support you in being focused on behaviours and results associated with your objective.

At the end of the programme you will have the opportunity to present your project and how you managed/lead it to achieve the results.

Online learning and resources

Access online tools and support about effective communication on-demand via the Development Toolkit, such as:

The modules and articles above reflect some of the important key skill and behaviours you will develop during the MLA Programme, but this is not an exhuastive list. Check out the other e-learning modules available in the Development Toolkit which could prove useful.