Florida Gold Coast University Institute of Government
Joanne Hartke, Director
(239) 425-3273 • jhartke@fgcu.edu

Expand each category below to view cooresponding training topics and descriptions. Any of these topics can be tailored to meet your unique needs and can be offered as half-day, full-day or multi-day programs. For more information, contact your regional Florida Institute of Government affiliate office or visit their website for more detailed service listings.

The Institute uses the methods of Conversational Leadership for its executive-level leadership development program. Conversational Leadership is a methodology developed by Jorgensen Leadership Center to guide leaders in carrying out their core responsibilities: instilling aspiration for a shared vision, using learning conversations to grow relationships, and using systems thinking to understand complexity and maintain organizational alignment. The Institute provides Conversational Leadership experts to deliver keynote addresses, facilitate planning sessions, mediate workplace issues, or providing ongoing individual and team work sessions.
As a leader, do you want to be a more effective motivator for the increasingly diverse and complex workplace? Do you have employees with full schedules and work sitting on their desk at the office and yet more is expected? How do you keep them motivated to want to produce? This comprehensive morning will give leaders the information and tools they need to develop and strengthen their motivation strategies. The overall objective of this course will be to foster positive relationships within teams and among colleagues to increase productivity and create a high functioning workforce. Learn how to adapt your management style to employee strengths, give meaningful and personalized feedback, and boost morale even in times of stress or change.
A goal is not a goal unless it is written down. If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there! Have you ever heard these sayings? Do you want to be more productive and be more excited about going to work? Do you want to be more excited about life, and get out of the doldrums? Do you feel like you are just muddling through each day? In this workshop, you will learn many ways to set and achieve your career and life goals following simple steps to accomplishment.

The Institute offers certificate programs as well as traditional workshops to develop the skills necessary to being a great supervisor and team leader. Topics include communication skills, delegation, team leadership, ethics, change management, and conflict management. These topics can be offered together in a single workshop or individually as stand-alone workshops.

The Institute also offers From Supervisor to Leader: Road Map to Success, a 2 1/2-day certificate program. This program covers five topics: leadership theories and practices, communication, performance management and delegation, change and conflict management, employment laws and ethical decision making.

Would you like your team to work together more effectively? Whether you are working with an entirely new team or an existing one, there are proven tips and strategies that will help your team members and you, as a leader, build stronger relationships and perform more consistently. Through the use of practical workplace examples and group discussion you will be able to assess your leadership performance and link it to your team’s performance. You will collaborate with other participants and explore the skills needed to develop a highly functioning team including setting a team vision and goals, making use of individual strengths, building trust, resolving conflict, and rewarding team results.

When asked what can be done to improve our relationships, our teams, our organizations - “communication” is often at the top of the list of answers. Effective communicators consider the role generational influences and experiences play in when, what and how we prefer to give and receive information.

The Institute can offer workshops on any aspect of communication, including interpersonal communication, multi-generation communication, dealing with difficult people, presentation skills, and public speaking.

How you deal with conflict on the job can determine your level of success and job satisfaction. This is a workshop designed to help personnel develop an awareness of their style of handling conflicts and what they might do to become more effective in achieving compromises. This workshop will help participants strengthen relationships through open communication strategies, confront others successfully for a rapid solution, dissipate anger quickly and defuse tense situations, objectively look at both sides of a situation, and look for win-win solutions.
If your job involves frequent contact with the public, this seminar will help you perform your job with greater ease and will lead to improved customer satisfaction. Be able to effectively respond to complaints that result in a satisfied customer. In this workshop you will learn to listen with empathy and communicate using positive body language, develop telephone skills that win over customers, understand the words to use and not to use to maximize your effectiveness with customers, and discover how to consistently exceed customer expectations.

If fear of public speaking is among the top fears of adults, being interviewed by someone from the media has to be among the top fears of most public sector leaders. This workshop will prepare you to build relationships with your local media outlets and how to work with newspaper, magazine and radio reporters. You will also learn the best ways to share both positive and negative stories and how to manage negative publicity.

In addition, with the growth of new media, this workshop will teach you how to use new media effectively to promote yourself, your department, your projects or your organization and gain public support. You will also review best practices of using websites, social networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.), blogs and wikis.

Most surveys show that public speaking is one of the greatest fears of managers. A presentation is a great opportunity to inform, persuade, and lead, and is one of the keys to success in any field. Whether you are addressing a staff meeting, a council or commission meeting, a community group, or a training class, this seminar will help you alleviate this fear and/or further refine your skills. Outcomes of this training include how to determine the purpose for your presentation, ways to understand and connect with your audience, how to prepare, organize and present your material, how to use technology effectively, and how to project confidence and enthusiasm.
In reality, how do others perceive you as leaders and professionals in the changing world of Libraries? How is your behavior influenced by how others see you? How do you communicate in a positive, assertive way and allow others feedback to help you develop as professionals? In this interactive workshop, you will have the opportunity to explore how your skill of listening can improve your relationships with coworkers, superiors, and those you serve. You will also look at the connection between your self-concept and your listening style and how it impacts your effectiveness as a member of your team. By practicing the techniques shared in this workshop, you will find that people are more likely to listen to you and that you will quickly build trust and credibility.
Do you find yourself resolving disputes, defusing conflicts, or negotiation issues with management, staff or the public? If so, this seminar will help you learn and practice new skills of mediation that can be applied directly and immediately on the job. The focus will be on ways to produce more positive outcomes and stronger relationships in your personal and professional life. Learn about the role of mediation and a mediator, how to deal with an impasse, how to develop trust and foster cooperation, and ultimately, how to get what you want and need.
The Institute offers “train-the-trainer” programs for department leaders, human resources professionals, and trainers. Topics covered include andragogy theories and practices as well as presentation skills. Participants learn how to establish a learning environment, engage participants, and evaluate participant success.
In today’s organizations, work is organized by function and different departments may not always be aligned with the overall vision and goals of the organization. Business process management is the set of techniques that allows leaders to synchronize management, operation, evaluation and improvement. This workshop will teach participants how to analyze the core business processes of your department or organization, clarify objectives, spot opportunities for cost reductions and performance improvements, implement targeted innovation and change, and mitigate the effects of failure.
Change in the workplace has become not the exception but the norm. Change can be planned such as reorganizations or changes in leadership, or it can be unplanned. Either way, managers, supervisors, and employees must manage the change and manage others’ reactions to change. And they must deal constantly with the differing demands of budgets, coworkers, bosses, and elected leadership. This Institute training offers quick, usable tips for making everyone more comfortable with the natural stress that change creates!
Benchmarking is an important activity that can help any organization leverage strengths, improve weaknesses, and prepare for change. Benchmarking allows organizations to compare themselves to the “industry best”, set strategic and realistic goals, and implement short- and long-term plans. By using benchmarking techniques, organizations can mirror accepted best practices and avoid pitfalls. In this workshop, managers will learn how and when to use benchmarking, how to discover and implement best practices while maintaining organizational identity and uniqueness, and how to align people and processes to team, project, departmental and organizational goals.
The ability to make good decisions in a timely way is critical for effective managers, but your decision making style is influenced by the environment in which you work. This workshop will help you understand your own decision making style, identify and work with other styles, explore a range of decision making styles, receive guidelines for the most appropriate use of consensus decision making, and discover the attitudes and behaviors necessary for decision making.
When you create a project, develop an action plan and secure support for the outcome, no success is guaranteed unless there are measurements and benchmarks in place for each phase of the project. This interactive workshop will highlight the steps necessary to design a project, gather support and resources, and create the numerous measurements necessary to ensure any project’s success. This workshop can be offered to a general audience or tailored for specific types of projects (such as technology, human resources, process improvement, etc.).
Have you ever attended a meeting where there was no agenda or format? Did you feel like there was no order to the meeting? When you left a meeting, have you asked yourself, “What did we accomplish and what must I do before the next meeting?” This workshop will teach you the secrets of successful meetings, including understanding the flow of meetings, how to create an agenda, and how to promote engagement.
Customer Service and teamwork is the thrust of our business as public servants. But how do we walk that tightrope between ongoing quality customer service and the stress we experience in our work and our personal lives? This exciting workshop will enable us to take a look at how we view our work, how we perceive our strengths and what skills we can develop to eliminate stress in our multi-tasked work lives.
The modern workplace is a melting pot of cultures, races, religions, genders, and preferences. Knowing how to manage a diverse workforce and customer base is no longer optional. Diversity is not just politically correct and legally sound—it is good business! The organizations that value diversity and leverage its strengths have realized significant benefits, including increased productivity, reduced absenteeism and turnover, and stronger customer support. This workshop helps participants understand how words and actions affect people and productivity. Participants will become aware of their biases and learn how those biases affect others and the work environment. Participants will also focus on identifying stereotypes that create barriers and overcoming those stereotypes.
This workshop focuses on Florida’s Sunshine and Ethics Laws, including Chapter 112, F.S., and the Sunshine Amendment, Article II, Section 8 of the Florida Constitution. And a review of Chapters 119 and 257, F.S. Public Records, and section 286.011, F.S. and the Sunshine Law, Article I, Section 24 of the Florida Constitution. Participants will discuss common misconceptions, public meetings and reporting requirements, the public’s right to know, exemptions to access, and records access fees.
The Institute offers workshops on all aspects of Florida’s public records laws tailored to any audience. Topics covered include records creation, maintenance, retention and destruction; privacy versus the right of citizens to know; records storage media and systems and the legalities of each; off-site storage; and disaster recovery.

Everyone loses when harassment occurs. It lowers morale and productivity, and it can result in costly, time-consuming lawsuits. The key is to eliminate harassment before it starts. Eliminating harassment begins with employee education and training. Every employee in your organization—from an entry-level worker to the highest-ranking manager—must be able to identify what is considered inappropriate behavior and harassment and what your organization requires of each employee in regard to the anti-harassment policy.

This workshop provides participants with clear and understandable definitions for such terms as Title VII, zero tolerance, hostile work environment, work-related environment, and reasonable person standard, as well as a thorough explanation of the company’s policy. In addition, this course is designed with considerable emphasis on sensitizing individuals to the nuances of inappropriate behavior and harassment on the job. By using various scenarios, facilitated discussion, and case studies, participants are able to identify behaviors that the organization considers inappropriate in a work-related environment.

Public meetings in particular must be managed by a uniform process that allows for information to be shared, deliberated, and acted upon. To keep public meetings orderly, to allow time for appropriate discussion, and to ensure that meetings conform to Florida’s legal guidelines, parliamentary procedures are a must. This workshop will introduce you to the basics of parliamentary procedure, including agendas, meeting minutes, committee reports, voting procedures, and the role of the meeting chair.
One of the most dreaded aspects of most managers’ role is the evaluation or discipline of an employee. What do they say? How do they give feedback that is perceived as beneficial rather than critical? How do they appraise, motivate, coach, counsel and discipline? These questions will be answered in an exciting, interactive workshop. You will learn to develop your own approach to employee coaching and learn how to understand the “esteem” needs of your direct reports, discipline employees for positive results, and give effective feedback.
Litigation is skyrocketing, so today - more than ever before - it is critical for a business to be proactive in designing recruitment and selection strategies and processes. Learn everything you need to know about finding, interviewing and selecting the right person for the right job. This workshop will teach you how to conduct a job analysis to determine present and future needs, how to develop and conduct an interview, how to be creative in recruiting, and the legal parameters of the recruiting, interviewing and selection process.
The Institute works with a number of associations through the state of Florida, and can provide a range of support including staff and executive director services, website design and maintenance, board development, membership development, and marketing and fundraising guidance.
The Institute can conduct charter reviews for any jurisdiction. The Institute has subject-matter experts who can manage the entire charter review process, including working with and providing ongoing support to the charter review committees, facilitating public meetings, and providing research and writing services.
The Florida Institute of Government has decades of experience planning conferences of all sizes and in all venues for public and non-profit organizations. The Institute can plan all aspects of your next event or work with your group to provide needed preparation and on-site support.
This program uses a modified version of Columbia University's American Assembly process to bring together a cross-section of the key players in a community to discuss major issues of concern to public officials. This format has been remarkably successful in exposing participants to a variety of viewpoints while fostering face-to-face communication and compromise. Institute of Government staff coordinate all aspects of the assembly: working with a steering committee to select topics for discussion, researching and preparing the background paper, handling all logistical arrangements, and being on site to draft the policy statement. Since 1982, the Institute has coordinated or assisted with the coordination of over 40 assemblies. Topics have ranged from establishing visions for south Florida's cities and counties to juvenile justice issues to health and human services.

The Institute has subject-matter experts that can facilitate your next meeting or workshop. Our facilitators can help you manage your next staff or team meeting, board retreat and workshop, strategic planning session, community meeting, budget workshop, or staff/leader development retreat or workshop.

The Institute also offers meeting planning services to help coordinate all of the logistics of your next gathering.

The Institute can help your community evaluate the benefits of incorporation, understand the steps in the incorporation process, understand the responsibilities of incorporation, monitor the incorporation process, and assist with visioning, strategic planning, and policy and procedure development after incorporation.

The Institute also has experts who can conduct studies to evaluate the impacts of annexation and facilitate consensus building workshops to help the annexation process flow smoothly.

The Florida Institute of Government can conduct needs assessments for any department, organization or community. Subject-matter and evaluation experts work together to define available resources, current and emerging trends, projected needs, and recommendations. Information is gathered through a variety of means, including surveys, interviews, focus groups, and workshops depending upon the scope of the assessment. Needs assessments help highlight gaps in services, needed performance improvements, and areas critical to future planning.

Performance measurement is the ongoing review of team, project, department and organizational accomplishments; it is a process through which success is defined and performance standards tracked to ensure that goals are being met and that the organizational vision is being fulfilled. Program evaluation is an analysis of the effectiveness and efficiency of a particular program and its alignment with the organization’s overall goals and vision.

The Institute has experts who can assist you with measuring success, for an individual program or your whole organization, or anything in between. The Institute can conduct an evaluation based on your existing performance plan or it can help you develop a performance plan, guiding you through the entire process.

The Florida Institute of Government has experts who can conduct, or assist with, process mapping for any governmental entity or department, such as human resources, information technology, building and permitting, finance, or administration. The Institute can provide a core process map with recommendations for cost savings and performance improvement.

The Institute can also help with any supplemental tasks that may arise out of process mapping and analysis, including implementing performance improvement initiatives, facilitating change management sessions, or writing new job descriptions or policy and procedure manuals.

Let out experts in Florida’s public records laws provides innovative and comprehensive records and information management services necessary to meet the challenges of the information age. This customized information management approach gives you the most effective and efficient solutions for your records and information management needs. It includes: (1) comprehensive records and information management planning, (2) records retention services, (3) disposition services, (4) e-mail management, (5) training, (6) policy/procedures manual, (7) facilities management, and (8) compliance monitoring.
From interdepartmental surveys to community-wide surveys, the Florida Institute of Government has experts who can help design surveys for all media, conduct surveys via telephone, mail, Internet or face-to-face and in multiple languages, analyze data gathered, and provide a complete and detailed report or presentation of findings and projections to help guide decision making.
The Institute of Government’s Information Technology Consulting Service is committed to guiding local governments and agencies throughout Florida from the clutter of technology challenges to the clarity of business solutions aligned with organizational vision and goals. The Institute can guide you through a thorough review of your IT capabilities, including an assessment of hardware and software, a review of contracts and service agreements, and a comparison of policies and procedure with industry best practices. The Institute can also help you assess how you deploy your IT resources, either through your IT department or through an external service provider, and develop or assess your IT strategic plan.