Course Descriptions (Fall: Oct. 5-Nov. 26, 2015)

Goodman School of Business

Course Descriptions (Fall: Oct. 5-Nov. 26, 2015)

How to Register for CIMEE seminars

The Centre for Innovation, Management and Enterprise Education of the Goodman School of Business at Brock University supports the lifelong learner in all of us. We offer affordable seminars that will help you grow personally and professionally so that you can contribute more fully to the success of your business or organization. Our presenters are not only experts in their fields, they’re skilled teachers able to cater to the needs of adult learners.

Most of our seminars are presented at the easily accessible Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce Education Centre at 1 St. Paul St. in St. Catharines at very reasonable costs. Sign up for one of our seminars and get ready to take your career to the next level!

To register for any of these seminars, please contact the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC) at 905 684 2361 or 

For further information, please contact:

Foster Zanutto, CIMEE, at or 905 688 5550 x 5202, or Emily Wilson, CIMEE Liaison, Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce, at or 905 684 2361 x 221.

Navigating Brain Politics to Reach Better Team Decisions

Team decisions, for better or worse, are highly influenced by swirling undercurrents barely perceptible to members. While good team decisions require evidence, analysis, healthy discussion and reason, they are too often highjacked by emotions.

We can blame brain politics, competing internal committees in our minds vying for attention. Why? First and foremost we are social beings. What others think and do matters to us. We naturally want to belong and to be respected for our views. Too often those aspirations fall short, derailing the team’s goals.

This seminar will provide you with models and practical tools for successfully navigating the emotion-reason battle in any team at any time. You will gain greater confidence in boosting team spirit, dialogue, decision making and performance.

Linda Pickard is an award-winning facilitator and designer of leadership and management development programs. Her practical tool kit to guide leaders in building their skills draws on research from a number of disciplines including learning and brain science, decision science, evolutionary biology, anthropology, sociology, behavioural economics and positive psychology. Linda is President of Pickard & Laws Consulting Group Inc. and instructor at both Brock and McMaster Universities. Her firm serves clients in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors such as banks, pharmaceuticals, telecommunications, health care, universities and cities. Linda was curriculum advisor and facilitator for Leadership Niagara. In addition she created and delivered multi-module leadership development programs for the Region of Niagara. Linda is an educational psychologist who started her career as a nutritionist-dietitian. She is a graduate of the University of Toronto with a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology, a Master of Education in adult education, postgraduate diplomas in dietetics and public health nutrition and a Bachelor of Science in nutrition and food sciences.

Monday, October 5, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST


The art of influencing – Techniques to gain support

Leadership is primarily the ability to influence others toward a common goal – gaining support towards a goal to which you have helped them find advantageous. This seminar will explore various types of influencing and will provide participants the opportunity to apply several practical influencing techniques to persuade others and develop more productive working relationships. Participants will hear what influence is and what it is not, will be exposed to the art of influencing and will recognize powerful techniques to gain support, culminating in the creation of a plan to gain support in work and personal environments.

Rhonda Chopin is a Learning and Development and Human Resources professional specializing in the design, delivery and evaluation of competency-based professional development programs. Her research is in the area of assessing performance gaps and developing strategies and solutions to ensure organizational effectiveness, people and business development and performance management. Rhonda holds a Masters Degree in Adult education, several professional certifications in training and facilitating and is a graduate of Brock’s Professional Management Certificate Program.

Thursday, October 8, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST


Introduction to Polarity Thinking

This workshop will provide you with an overview of Polarity Thinking – an approach that helps you move from relying on ‘either-or’ decision-making to adopting a ‘both/and’ strategy. We’ve been conditioned to view many situations and challenges as mutually exclusive choices: activity or rest; competition or collaboration; strategy or operations; change or stability. Yet the reality is that too much of anything eventually produces negative or undesirable results. And then our energy naturally shifts to pursuing the opposite of what we currently have – the old “The grass is always greener on the other side!” feeling.

Polarity thinking helps us understand the whole picture and provides tools and strategies that enable us to leverage the ‘best of both worlds’. Polarity methods and tools are equally effective with challenges that arise at the office, in the community or at home.

You will leave this workshop able to:

  • Distinguish between solvable problems and polarities to manage.
  • Describe how a polarity works and outline the five steps for mapping a polarity.
  • Map a personal leadership polarity and identify action steps and measurable early warnings to help you better manage that leadership polarity.

Thursday, October 15, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST

Polarity Thinking: Cultivating a “Both/And” culture for organizational success

This workshop builds on the foundational knowledge and skills you learned in the Introduction to Polarity Thinking workshop and demonstrates how effective leaders use polarity thinking to proactively tackle persistent organizational issues and challenges. You will learn how to hold conversations to create polarity maps and how to manage conversations to overcome resistance to change initiatives. Working collaboratively with other participants you will map out two different organizational polarities and identify the insights and lessons learned from that process. This will enable you to better manage the polarities that currently exist in your organization and achieve sustainable success faster.

Prerequisite: Introduction to Polarity Thinking

Dianne Coppola is a versatile trainer, facilitator and consultant with close to 30 years’ experience gained through a variety of progressive positions within health, non-profit and government organizations. She is passionate about helping individuals and teams turn their ideas into action and works with clients on three key stages of performance:

  • Getting Ready! (Planning & Preparation)
  • Getting it Done! (Action & Implementation)
  • Getting it Right! (Needs Assessment & Evaluation)

Dianne balances theory with practical activities to ensure workshop participants can start applying session concepts to their personal situations immediately. Her friendly and engaging facilitation style has helped numerous groups and organizations overcome inertia and move from ideas to action.

Thursday, October 22, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST


Overview of Business Analytics

The seminar introduces participants with no prior data management and business analytics knowledge to the various approaches, techniques, and tools of business analytics as methods of understanding, exploring, and analyzing various types of business problems. In addition to the theoretical concepts and techniques, the seminar provides hands-on experience in applying the concepts to solving real-life problems using current business analytics tools and systems.

The seminar will be delivered as a combination of a 3-hour lecture and a 3-hour hands-on session to allow participants to gain practical experience using relevant application software.

Anteneh Ayanso is an Associate Professor of Information Systems in the Goodman School of Business at Brock University. He received his MBA from Syracuse University and Ph.D. in Information Systems from the University of Connecticut. He is also certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) by APICS. Anteneh teaches data management, data mining techniques and applications, data analysis and business modelling, and management of information systems. His research interests include data management, business analytics, E-commerce, and E-government. He has published many articles in leading journals and presented at major international conferences in information systems and related fields.

Friday, October 23, 2015 at 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Brock University, 500 Glenridge Ave., St. Catharines; morning: Cairns 207, afternoon: MC J202
$360 plus HST (parking and lunch included)


Gender and Generational Communication Styles

When it comes to effective communication, does gender matter? How do boomers communicate with GenY’s in the workplace? Are there specific styles to use to ensure your voice is heard between genders and generations? This highly interactive workshop is designed for both men and women who want to increase their leadership effectiveness in an increasingly diverse workplace. Explore how differences in communication styles between genders and generations can affect corporate culture and critical decision making. We will explore tripwires and strategies to increase awareness of how gender and generation communication styles influence the workplace. You will leave with practical tools to:

  • Increase the effectiveness of your communication
  • Improve your ability to understand and identify traditional male and female communication styles.
  • Understand how values influence communication between Boomers, Gen X and Gen Y.
  • Ensure your words count and your voice is heard
  • Increase political savvy and understand the importance of corporate culture
  • Ask for what you want....and get it.
  • Identify and create strategic relationships

Janice Locke is a Senior Executive, Entrepreneur and Educator who has held the positions of CEO, COO and CFO for a variety of companies ranging from $40 million - $225 million in North America and Europe. She is the recipient of both the Women of Influence and Women of Distinction Awards for Business Leadership and Community Involvement. As a CEO of an international retail branding and image company, Janice became fascinated by the importance and often unconscious role branding plays in influencing both business and personal success. In addition to teaching at McMaster University, and the Rotman School of Business, Janice partners with private and not-for profit organizations in all aspects of business leadership and success.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015: 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST

Performance management

Oh no, it's not that time of the year again already! You've heard it before. Performance evaluation time seems to be dreaded by all, but it doesn't have to be. Studies indicate that strong management evaluations greatly increase employee performance. This seminar is designed to increase your competence and confidence to enable you to assertively give highly effective results-oriented performance evaluations.

This seminar will begin with an explanation of the interaction of functions associated with performance management from development of business strategy to setting performance goals. Attendees will learn how to develop appropriate performance measures, performance forms, how to conduct a performance appraisal, and how to deal with difficult situations.

Deborah McPhee is an Associate Professor and former Chair, and former Associate Dean, Undergraduate Programs, in the Goodman School of Business, Brock University, where she teaches courses in human resources. Dr. McPhee has over 20 years of experience as a human resources professional and holds an MBA and PhD. Deborah continues to research Human Resources Management policies related to the transition of retirees back to business and/or volunteerism, coping strategies of parents with children in high level hockey, and writes cases related to health and safety. She previously held her CHRP qualifications and has worked through CCHRA to assist students prepare for their NKE exam. She is a past recipient of the Academic of the Year Award, sponsored by Right Management, and an award from Minerva Canada for her long-standing contributions to advance both Human Resources Management and Health and Safety education in post-secondary teaching institutions.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST

Human resources management for the non-Human Resources Manager

NOTE: This seminar is offered online; it is not offered in a classroom. You will take this seminar through your computer's internet connection from your home or office at a specific time and date. Full instructions will be provided upon registration. 

Organizations today depend increasingly on their people to assist them in meeting business goals and maximizing efficiency and profits. While some organizations can afford the opportunity to have qualified HR professionals on staff, not all organizations are able to have dedicated HR professionals, and the burden of implementing appropriate human resources systems falls to managers and supervisors.

This seminar involves an explanation of some of the key requirements of effective HR as they fall under Employment Standards Act, Human Rights, Employment Equity, and Health and Safety, to name just a few relevant pieces of legislation that are important to effective development of HR programs. Some basic requirements pertaining to recruitment and selection, performance appraisals, discipline, and employee relations will be discussed. This seminar will be ideally suited to smaller organizations where there is no HR department, or where an individual is responsible for some aspects of HR.

Michael Michalski earned his MBA in the field of Human Resources and Industrial Relations and has subsequently taught Human Resource topics at Brock University and at McMaster University in Hamilton. Michael has been a practitioner in the field of Human Resources for over twenty five years. He was most recently the senior HR Executive for a large social service agency in southern Ontario, where he had responsibility for recruitment and selection, collective bargaining, training, benefits, as well as health and safety. Michael is currently involved in exploring a variety of distance education formats for Human Resource-related teaching.

Thursday, November 12, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
$169 plus HST

Turning activity into results-The essentials of planning, prioritizing and productivity

Working within the realities of the ever-shifting and increasingly demanding business environment has brought a whole new meaning to the concept of being busy. In fact, busy is the new normal, especially in these times of constant electronic communications resulting in “always being on the job”. Taking a critical eye and a pragmatic approach to the essentials of planning, prioritizing and productivity, this workshop will explore opportunities for managers and leaders to turn activity into results.

Rashmi Biswas is co-owner of Lake and Associates Canada Inc., an Ontario based Management Consulting firm where she specializes in leadership development, team effectiveness and process facilitation. Rashmi has worked in academic and corporate arenas in Canada, the US and the UK and holds an MSc in Human Resource Management, a BSc (HONS), a Postgraduate Certificate in Adult Education, Facilitation and Training, and is a certified Myers-Briggs© Practitioner. Rashmi is the author of the motivational book “Rash Decisions: Accept where you are, and then…Be Amazing” she is President of the Board of Directors for the Canadian Mental Health Association in Niagara and is a Registered Yoga Teacher.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST

Lean Process Improvement

The goal of “Lean” is to reduce waste and accelerate the flow of goods, customers, and information through a process. It provides employees with a set of tools and concepts they can use to continuously improve their work. This allows workers to spend more of their time adding value for their customers, and get that value to them sooner.

Also known as Lean Manufacturing or Lean Enterprise, this approach makes use of relatively simple tools and concepts. It is therefore a good entry point for firms that are just getting started in quality and process improvement. It has been used successfully at local organizations like MC Healthcare in Grimsby and the Regional Municipality of Niagara.

This interactive course will introduce you to the principles and practices of Lean, so that you can improve your own workplace. It will include examples from both services and manufacturing.

Michael J. Armstrong is an associate professor in the Goodman School of Business, where he teaches courses on quality and process improvement. He holds a BSc, MBA, and PhD, along with several professional certifications from the American Society for Quality. Before his academic career, he worked as an aircraft maintenance manager. In 2012 he received a Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching and a Chancellor’s Chair for Teaching Excellence.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST

Introduction to Intellectual Property (IP) Law

This seminar will provide an overview of the key aspects of intellectual property law that are relevant to business (from start-up to SME to multinational), including trade secrets and confidential information, trademarks, patents, copyright and industrial design. The trademark discussion will address the use of trademarks for branding and marketing, including selection, maintenance and enforcement of trademarks, as well as upcoming changes to the law. The seminar will also cover key aspects of the patent system, including how to acquire patent rights and create a patent portfolio, how to integrate your patent strategy with your market strategy, as well as defending against patents held by others, including defensive strategies and current “hot topics” such as software patents and so-called “patent trolls”. We will also discuss various copyright issues relevant to business, including computer-specific topics such as the use of open source software and the creation, use and distribution of online content (including social media and online gaming), as well as the protection of ornamental product features through industrial design. After attending the seminar, participants will have a strong working knowledge of intellectual property law as it affects business, and be able to start developing an integrated intellectual property strategy for their company.

Alex Ross is a partner in the Intellectual Property Group of the Hamilton office of Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP. His practice includes all areas of intellectual property law, including industrial design, patent drafting and prosecution, preparation of patent infringement and validity opinions and advising on patent strategy, with a focus on mechanical devices and computer and information technology. Alex received his LLB from Osgoode Hall Law School and also holds a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Industrial Engineering. He has taught at Ryerson and Wilfrid Laurier Universities and before joining Gowling Lafleur Henderson he worked as a Senior IP Law Attorney at IBM Canada.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015 at 6:30-9:30 p.m.
GNCC Education Centre
$169 plus HST