TCU Neeley School of Business

TCU Advanced Leadership Certificate

The Advanced Leadership Certificate is a premium, comprehensive and immersive experience for leaders of all industries seeking a refresh of critical business fundamentals and innovative, applicable strategies.

The TCU Advanced Leadership Program is designed to provide skills, tools and strategies for leaders challenged with leading their teams and organizations in a world of continuous transformation. It provides a context and a strategic perspective that enables leaders chart a new course creating new ventures and business models. It reframes and reimagines the leadership capabilities and approaches needed to lead the organizations of the future.

September 13, 2021 - February 25, 2022

Cost: $6,799

Click here to see the list of safety measures we are adding to our in-person programs.

* A 20 percent discount will be given to companies that enroll two or more employees.
* A 30 percent discount will be given to TCU Alumni and TCU Faculty/Staff.
* A 10 percent discount will be given to U.S. veterans and employees of non-profit organizations.

Who Should Attend?

Experienced Mid-level and Executive Leaders responsible for leading organizations and teams and challenged with leading through complexity, disruption and transformation.

How Is the Program Structured?

The Advanced Leadership Program is delivered in a series of both in-person and virtual events over 16 weeks with four quarterly leadership labs that follow the formal program. 

The program starts with the first set of four in-person events. These in-person sessions are immersive, challenging and fast-paced. Participants also will get an opportunity to hear from industry subject matter experts during many of these sessions. Each will conclude with a networking event for the participants, program faculty and industry subject matter experts.

The program includes three "Intersessions" between each main session - each featuring three, one-hour virtual sessions on a variety of today’s business challenges, as well as a one-hour “Leadership Applications” workshop designed to delve even deeper into the key leadership challenges faced by today’s leaders. Led by TCU faculty, the one-hour virtual sessions will provide additional opportunities for the participants to work closely together – and with our TCU faculty – to learn more about business challenges and opportunities taken directly from today’s headlines.

Finally, the program also includes four quarterly “Leadership Labs” designed to continue the conversation and learning around the key challenges faced by the participants back on the job. Two of the leadership labs will be virtual, and two will be held in-person on the TCU campus providing additional learning and networking opportunities.

Program Topics

  • Organizations in the Age of Continuous Improvement
  • Case Studies in Business Transformation
  • Business Model Innovation
  • Strategy at the Speed of Change
  • Business Ecosystems & Innovation
  • Leading with a Customer Centric Organization
  • Innovating for Customer Value
  • Growing Customer Equity
  • Implementing Innovating Ideas
  • Funding & Nurturing New Ventures
  • Creating Shared Value
  • Leading in to the Future
  • Values & Ethics for an Uncertain Landscape
  • People Practices for Our Changing World
  • Leading the Organization of the Future

Program Schedule

Date Time Topic Instructor
Session 1: In-person, TCU Campus
Sep. 13, 2021 8:30 - 9:30 a.m.

Welcome, Program Introduction
Distruption 2.0 (Industries, Trends and Cases)

Michael Sherrod
  9:30 - 12:00 p.m. Organization in the Age of Continuous Transformation Michael Sherrod
  12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch  
  1:00 - 4:00 p.m. Leading the Organization of the Future
Initial Debrief & Program Roadmap
Michael Sherrod &
Mary Uhl-Bien
  4:00 - 5:00 p.m. SME Panel Discussion & Workshop


  5:00 - 6:00 p.m. Happy Hour:
Participants, Faculty, Sponsors & TCU Guests
Intersession 1 - Virtual Sessions
Sep. 17, 2021 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Case Studies in Digital Transformation Brian Alink
Sep. 24, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Strategy at the Speed of Change Suzanne Carter
Oct. 1, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Business Model Innovation Michael Sherrod
Oct. 15, 2021 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Leadership Challenges Workshop Mary Uhl-Bien
Session 2: In-person, TCU Campus
Oct. 29, 2021 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Leading with a Customer-centric Approach Mark Houston
  12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch  
Session 3: In-person, TCU Campus
Nov. 5, 2021 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Innovating for Customer Value Lance Bettencourt
  12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch  
  1:00 - 2:00 p.m. SME Panel Discussion & Workshop  
Intersession 2 - Virtual Sessions
Nov. 12, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Business Ecosystems & Innovation Suzanne Carter
Nov. 19, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Implementing Innovative Ideas Lance Bettencourt
Dec. 3, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Growing Customer Equity & Capitalizing on Brand Equity Mark Houston
Dec. 10, 2021 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Leadership Challenges Workshop

Michael Sherrod &
Mary Uhl-Bien

Session 4: In-person, TCU Campus
Dec. 17, 2021 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Funding & Nurturing New Ventures Rodney D'Souza
  12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch  
  1:00 - 4:00 p.m. Creating Shared Value Suzanne Carter
  4:00 - 5:00 p.m. SME Panel Discussion & Workshop  
  5:00 - 6:00 p.m. Networking Reception  
Intersession 3 - Virtual Sessions
Jan. 14, 2022 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Transforming a Company Through Platforms Brian Alink
Jan. 21, 2022 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Values & Ethics for an Uncertain Future Ann Bluntzer
Jan. 28, 2022 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Leading the Future of Work Michael Arena
Feb. 11, 2022 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Leadership Challenges Workshop

Michael Sherrod &
Mary Uhl-Bien

Session 5: In-person, TCU Campus
Feb. 25, 2022 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Adaptive Challenges Team/Individual Presentations & Discussion Mary Uhl-Bien
  12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch  
  12:30 - 2:30 p.m. Power, Politics & Influence Mary Uhl-Bien
  2:30 - 3:30 p.m. Leading the Organization of the Future
Program Debrief & Program Roadmap
Michael Sherrod &
Mary Uhl-Bien
  4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Reception and Program Close  
Leadership Lab 1: Mar. 2022   Michael Sherrod
Leadership Lab 2: Jun. 2022   Mary Uhl-Bien
Leadership Lab 3: Sep. 2022   Michael Sherrod
Leadership Lab 4: Dec. 2022   Mary Uhl-Bien

Program Topic Summaries

This session discusses the numerous and often unexpected sources of disruption and the overwhelming levels of change that require new paradigms for leadership, organizations and leading change. Discussing examples of how disruptive, accelerated change affects specific industries, Michael Sherrod will provide insights and strategies for leaders and companies as they strive to build the adaptive organizations of the future.

In order to survive disruption, your business must think strategically and evolve its business model to meet the challenges from your competitors and take advantage of new opportunities. This session discusses the concept, structure and applications for business models. It also reviews alternative business models, their strengths & weaknesses, and explores approaches to business model innovation.

Most organizational changes efforts fall short of their intended outcomes. Business transformation – and digital transformation in particular – can be very challenging. This session explores cases studies in business & digital transformation focusing on critical success factors, key challenges, typical barriers and the leadership approaches needed to successfully lead through them.

During chaos and uncertainty, leaders need a framework to think and act strategically. In this session, Dr. Suzanne Carter will introduce the strategic frameworks for navigating uncertainty, change and avoiding common pitfalls. Participants will also can apply the framework to their own challenges and learn from each other as think about their own strategic choices.

This session will focus on how can you use innovative platforms and ecosystems to build business models and benefit your organization. Dr. Suzanne Carter will describe platform businesses, discuss several innovative and successful models, and lead a provocative discussion on how to apply these concepts to your own business and challenges.

This session introduces the topic of shared value and its importance in today's businesses and society. Shared value gets at the notion that businesses are not just money makers, but can be real change makers in society. Businesses must learn to collaborate with their various stakeholders to create value and positively impact broader issues that include valuing value diversity, equity and inclusion, and ensuring the health and safety of our employees, customers and suppliers.

Dr. Carter will discuss examples of firms that have embraced shared value, and their methods of success. We will have breakout time for exploring shared value in their own businesses, and ideating on ways to change their business models to meet the needs of multiple stakeholders and create shared value for all.

This session introduces an “outside-in” view of strategy, in which the path to positive financial outcomes starts with identification of what it takes to win the customer in the face of competitive alternatives in the marketplace. This interactive session will provide a strategic framework for managing the customer-centric firm - creating customer value, innovating customer value, leveraging the brand as an asset, and leveraging customers as assets.

This session introduces a forward-looking perspective of customer value that enables a company to envision new opportunities for product, service, and business model innovation. Practical and versatile tools introduced in the session will enable participants to uncover customer needs to guide breakthrough innovation, recognize potential roadblocks to delivering on current value propositions, create a winning value proposition for new and improved products and services and much more.

This session offers insights into two things that customer-centric organizations do well, as well as insights into how an organization can implement these insights. The first topic is “Leveraging Brand Equity,” and we will explore how to define a desirable brand identity, measure and grow brand equity, leverage a brand into new areas and much more.

This session offers insights into the structure, process, and reward issues that undermine getting innovative ideas to market in established organizations, and then offers recommendations and planning considerations that will enable participants to get these ideas to market. Topics covered also include how to organize for taking innovative ideas to market and how to plan and manage an initiative with uncertainty.

This session examines the foundations of values and ethics to establish a compass and provide a guide to ethical challenges and decision-making from both a business and philosophical perspective. Participants will also get an opportunity to think about deep ethical concerns that haven’t happened yet, but may come to be in the uncertain landscape of the future.

This session examines the implications for the people practices that frame and enable organizations in a world of complexity and evolution that is continually accelerating. We’ll look at the people practices that can drive agility, adaptability and innovation – creating truly adaptable organizations and cultures built for the age of continuous transformation.

This session continues to explore how the complexity in business environment is placing significant new demands on leaders & organizations for innovation, adaptability, learning and growth. The specific focus will be on how these complexities – business, societal, organizational, and environmental - require very different ways of leading and structuring organizations relative to strategy, innovation, culture, systems, roles, and communication.

Faculty Leaders

Photo: Lance Bettencourt

Lance Bettencourt

Associate Professor of Professional Practice
Marketing Department

Prior to TCU, Dr. Bettencourt was a marketing professor at Indiana University and Arizona State University-West. He is also a former strategy adviser with Strategyn, Inc., the pioneer of Outcome-Driven Innovation™, and he was a partner at Service 360 Partners from 2012 to 2017. His research on service excellence and innovation has been published in Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, California Management Review, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Retailing, Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management, and Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, among others. He is author of Service Innovation: How to Go from Customer Needs to Breakthrough Services (McGraw-Hill 2010). In his consulting and executive education, Dr. Bettencourt has worked with many of the world’s leading companies to help them uncover innovation opportunities and set marketing strategy. Over the past decade, his clients have included Allstate, Morningstar, Microsoft, TD Bank, Colgate, Kimberly-Clark, Alcon, and many others.
Photo: Ann Bluntzer

Ann Bluntzer

Associate Professor of Professional Practice
Management and Leadership Department

Dr. Ann Bluntzer is currently an Associate Professor of Professional Practice for TCU’s Neeley School of Business. She teaches in the department of Management and Leadership, primarily focusing on curriculum in transformational leadership, business ethics and the non-profit management space. She also teaches and advises for Neeley’s Energy MBA Program.

She currently serves on the TCU Energy Institute Board and Neeley’s Energy MBA Advisory Board. Dr. Bluntzer has taught leadership and management courses to various higher education institutions for over 20 years to include: University of South Carolina, Texas A&M University, University of Jakarta, Austin Business College, and Warsaw University of Life Sciences. She is President and Founder of The Agrarian, a strategic consulting business that specializes in land/real estate conservation and development, with notable clients such as The Nature Conservancy, United States Department of Agriculture, United States Department of Education, United States Agency for International Development, United States Marine Corps, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She has also served in executive leadership positions with various nonprofit organizations globally. Dr. Bluntzer began her career serving in the Foreign Agriculture Service, for the United States Department of Agriculture and State. Some of her assignments included: Poland, Lithuania, Indonesia, and Australia.

Dr. Bluntzer holds a PhD in Organizational Leadership Management and Education Administration from the University of South Carolina, and a Master of Education in Leadership & International Studies and Bachelor’s in Agricultural Development from Texas A&M University.
Photo: Suzanne Carter

Suzanne Carter

Professor of Strategy Practice
Executive Director, TCU EMBA
MBA – Executive

Dr. Carter is a highly respected expert in strategy, strategic leadership and corporate reputation and is executive director of the TCU Executive MBA program, ranked 12th in the world by The Economist. She is a contributing columnist to the Dallas Business Journal and her research on organizational performance and leadership has been published in key academic journals. She received the Citation of Excellence Award for her research on the relationship of top management, organizational and environmental factors on corporate reputation management. She has consulted for leading companies such as GameStop, Lea+ Elliott and SaladMaster on strategic vision and strategy development. She has worked with nonprofit organizations including Catholic Charities, YWCA of Fort Worth and Safe Haven on strategic planning and social enterprise strategies. Dr. Carter received her BS in accounting from the University of Illinois-Champaign/Urbana, and MBA and PhD in Strategic Management from the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Carter teaches strategy courses at the EMBA, MBA and undergraduate levels at TCU, and has been honored with the EMBA Faculty Award for Outstanding Leadership Development twice. She was recently awarded TCU’s university-wide Dean’s Teaching Award.
Photo: Rodney D'Souza

Rodney D'Souza

Managing Director
Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Rodney D’Souza, an entrepreneurship education, researcher, business owner, and angel fund manager. He joined TCU Neeley as managing director of the institute and the Davis Family Entrepreneur-In-Residence in August 2018. D’Souza was formerly the Fifth Third Bank Endowed Professor of Entrepreneurship and director of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Northern Kentucky University. He was awarded the 2017 Freedoms Foundation Leavey Award for Excellence in Private Enterprise Education and the 2017 University Award for Excellence in Outreach and Engagement, among other honors. He developed and delivered undergraduate courses on entrepreneurial mindset, opportunity recognition, idea valuation, new venture creation, new venture management and business plan writing, as well as a MBA modules on innovation and competitive intelligence. He holds an MBA from Northern Kentucky and PhD from the University of Louisville.
Photo: Mark Houston

Mark Houston

Associate Dean for Faculty and Research
Marketing Department

Mark B. Houston (Ph.D. Arizona State, MBA University of Missouri, B.S. Southwest Baptist) is Professor and Eunice and James L. West Chair in Marketing at Texas Christian University (TCU). Mark is also affiliated with ASU’s Center for Services Leadership and the University of Münster (Germany). He is coauthor of Entertainment Science (2019, Springer Nature), and his research on channels, movies, and innovation strategy appears in Marketing Science, Journal of Marketing, JMR, JCR, and Journal of Financial & Quantitative Analysis. Recent awards include the 2019 Louis Stern Award (long-term impact for a 2013 JM paper) and the 2018 Sheth Foundation Award. He is Co-Editor of Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, and has served as an AE of JM and Journal of Service Research. Mark is a member of the AMA Board of Directors, was President of the AMA Academic Council (2012-2013), and co-chaired the AMA Summer Conference (2005 and 2017) and the AMA/Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium (2010). An award-winning teacher, Mark has conducted research, consulting, and/or exec ed with firms such as AT&T, Caterpillar, Dell, IBM,, and WellPoint. Prior to re-joining TCU in 2017, Mark served three years as department head at Texas A&M.
Photo: Michael Sherrod

Michael Sherrod

Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department

Sherrod joined TCU Neeley in 2011 after a successful career of entrepreneurial thinking, innovation and creativity. He founded seven successful companies, including, Black Dove Media and Sherrod Publishing. He has held leading positions at and AOL, and was president and publisher of the Dallas Business Courier. He holds an MA from the University of Missouri at Columbia and EMBA from the TCU Neeley School of Business.
Photo: Mary Uhl-Bien

Mary Uhl-Bien

Management and Leadership Department

Mary Uhl-Bien is the BNSF Railway Endowed Professor of Leadership in the Neeley School of Business at Texas Christian University (TCU). Prior to joining Neeley she was the Howard Hawks Chair in Business Ethics and Leadership at the University of Nebraska. She has also been a Visiting Scholar in Australia, Sweden, Denmark, Portugal and Spain.

Mary’s research focuses on complexity leadership, relational leadership, and followership. She has published multiple books and numerous articles in journals including Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Management, and The Leadership Quarterly. Her work has been funded with a grant from Booz Allen Hamilton, and her research contributions have been recognized with two Decennial Awards and multiple Best Paper Awards. She was noted as the #6 Most Influential Leadership Scholar from 1990-2017 in an analysis by Zhou & Li in The Leadership Quarterly in 2019, and was identified in Poets & Quants as a Top 50 Undergraduate Business Professor in 2018.

Mary is a co-founder of the Network of Leadership Scholars (NLS) in the Academy of Management and was elected as both Division Chair and Representative-at-Large for Organizational Behavior, the largest division in the Academy with over 6000 members. She is active in executive education nationally and internationally, delivering workshops and classes for the Brookings Institute, the Gallup Organization, and universities in the U.S., Canada, Australia and Europe. She has given keynote presentations around the world and was a regular commentator for CNBC Squawk Box. She participated in a Fulbright-Hays grant to Mexico during the summer of 2003 and trained Russian businesspeople for the American Russian Center and in Magadan, Russia as part of a USAID grant at the University of Alaska Anchorage from 1993-1996. She served as an executive consultant for State Farm Insurance Co. from 1998-2004.

Photo: Brian Alink

Brian Alink

Senior Vice President, Product Management, Capital One

Brian has been with Capital One for over 20 years as a leader in a variety of businesses including US Card, Partnerships and Auto Finance. His career has led him across a variety of roles including strategy and analytics, business development, operations, marketing and product management. Today, Brian leads  a product management function for US Card with responsibility for operating and transforming a number of technology platforms including acquisitions and underwriting, payments, authorizations, fraud, customer management, and the core system of record. Brian also leads various enterprise strategic planning projects related to the future of technology platforms working with the CEO and executives across the company. Prior to Capital One, Brian worked full time while attending college in sales and later in a software development role after he developed a data analytics solution for M.C.I / Worldcom. Brian graduated from the University of Phoenix with a degree in Business Management in 1998.
Photo: Michael Arena

Michael Arena

Vice President of Talent & Development at Amazon Web Service

Michael Arena is the Vice President of Talent & Development at Amazon Web Service, where he is responsible for the global talent practices, leadership development and learning, organizational effectiveness, new employee success strategies and the organizational research activities to enable the growth and innovation for AWS. He was nominated to the Thinkers50 Radar class of 2020 for his work leveraging network roles in creating adaptive organizations: brokers, connectors, energizers, and challengers.

Arena is a faculty member in Penn’s Masters in Organizational Dynamics program and acts as a design thinking coach within the Stanford dSchool. Dr. Arena earned his Ph.D. in Organizational Dynamics from the Union Institute and University.


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Kalyn McKittrick

Director of Marketing and Engagement

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