The Gettysburg Experience
Maryland Smith teamed up with the Gettysburg Foundation to deliver an executive development program built around and using lessons from the Battle of Gettysburg, the Civil War and Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.
The new series — The Gettysburg Experience — focuses on organizational and personal leadership, teamwork, and strategic agility for a powerful, unique learning experience leveraging the historical and academic resources of both Maryland Smith and the foundation.
Customized, one-to-three-day-long programs at Gettysburg will explore Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and “Current Conversations about the Battle of Gettysburg.” The latter includes “Civil Rights and the Legacy of the Civil War,” “Women and the War,” “The Civil War in a Global Context,” and more. Personality assessments are integrated into the program and leveraged to frame history and current leadership practice.
“Gettysburg will always be remembered as an epic battlefield—and rightly so. But, its significance to the American democratic experiment runs much deeper,” says Matthew Moen, President of the Gettysburg Foundation. “For 155 years Gettysburg represents a place of remarkable healing, civility, inclusion and responsibility.”
The series incorporates the Gettysburg Foundation’s existing program of field-based training for Smith’s Executive Development clients. This arrangement builds on Smith professors independently directing executive development program participants and executive MBA students in onsite, Gettysburg-themed leadership classes. “Learning happens in varied contexts and needs to be increasingly impactful to keep adult learners engaged,” says Christine Thompson, Ed.D., executive director of Smith’s Executive Development programs. “It’s exciting for the Smith School of Business to rekindle a partnership with the Gettysburg Foundation to uniquely impact leadership development experiences for organizations and leaders.”
The new partnership is “a unique, flexible means for conveying the lessons of leadership and teamwork unavailable elsewhere,” Thompson adds. “Smith’s educational resources— facilities, faculty, and expertise—provide a solid delivery mechanism for translating the lessons of the Battle of Gettysburg into meaningful and relevant business training for organizations of all types.”
The Gettysburg Experience is designed specifically to meet client needs based upon consultation between the client, the foundation and Smith. The programs may involve an expertly guided and experiential battlefield tour; facilitated debriefs and deep dives into select topics, networking dinners and more.
Participants experience the program through Gettysburg locations McPherson Ridge, Eternal Light Peace Memorial, Little Round Top, The Peach Orchard, Pennsylvania Memorial and High Water Mark.
Leadership topics broadly include communication, team building, empowerment, adaptability, strategic and visionary thinking, decision-making under pressure, accountability, execution and strategic agility
In addition, the Gettysburg Foundation will work with Smith to build open enrollment programs and alumni events that bring groups of executives to Gettysburg through the partnership program. “We are excited to dive deeper into these broader leadership themes, as well as those taught on the battlefield, through our partnership with UMD,” says Moen.
Smith Dean Alex Triantis says: “The Smith School is proud to partner with the Gettysburg Foundation to create meaningful and high-impact programming for today’s and tomorrow’s leaders. Experiential and lifelong learning is an integral part of the Smith School’s core mission and we look forward to continuing this partnership for years to come.”
About the Gettysburg Foundation
The Gettysburg Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit philanthropic educational organization that operates in partnership with the National Park Service to preserve Gettysburg National Military Park and the Eisenhower National Historic Site, and to educate the public about their significance.
You will see a much greater return on investment in professional development if you support your people—supervisors, managers, and senior executives—with individual coaching. Coaching is invaluable in helping learners move from knowing to doing. Smith’s cadre of ICF-credentialed executive coaches design a customized and focused plan of engagement with participants. Individual Development Plans (IDPs) are also common tools leveraged within a holistic coaching program. Primary elements of the engagement are:
- Prompt new self-awareness through thought-provoking questions and astute observations
- Supply tips and support for dropping unhelpful habits and developing productive new behaviors
- Provide safe and confidential spaces for participants to share challenges, hopes and fears
- Enable fresh insights when issues feel overwhelming and people feel professionally “stuck”
- Encourage participants to stretch themselves, become open to new possibilities, and to experiment with new behaviors
Custom Team Building Workshop
This workshop is built and designed around a single team, whether intra-unit or inter-unit. We coordinate the assessment process and then lead a facilitated workshop with team members. The workshop will drive cohesion, communication and understanding among the team, creating valuable impact and improved effectiveness.
Behavior change is hard. It begins with self-awareness and requires a commitment to personal improvement. It takes discipline, practice and encouragement. Assessments provide the participant with new self-awareness and allow them to realize their own strengths as well as their development needs. The DiSC assessment provides the participant with an understanding of themselves and how they interact with others. This understanding leads to improved interaction with others as well as a reduction in conflict in professional relationships.
A facilitated group session is designed for participants to recognize how their role and their DiSC profile connect to the broader mission, vision and strategy of the company. In this session, they will understand one’s own personality characteristics and talents and how these affect the way we interact with others. They will connect assessment results to a framework for leadership effectiveness and understand how to navigate different personalities to create a harmonious, effective team environment.
- Step back: what makes teams effective?
- What difference do differences make to team effectiveness?
- A simple way to understand and appreciate style differences
- DiSC assessment interpretation
- What does each style bring to the table
- Creating norms to leverage style differences among those you work with
- The foundation to leveraging differences: building trust
- Where do you go from here?
Maryland Smith believes that pairing assessments with coaching yields even greater impact. For corporate and federal executives, we often use the Hogan and DiSC suite of self-assessments, a range of 360 assessments from trusted providers, and other tools that help build self-awareness. We license, administer and debrief a very wide range of instruments and our expert social scientists will also design something that dovetails with your own competency model and organizational needs.
We debrief participants in group and one-on-one settings and help each person develop a SMART individual development plan (IDP) to work on during and after the program.
U.S. Capitol Private Tours
Explore the architecture and history of one of the most famous buildings in the world—and learn about Members of Congress past and present. Take the opportunity to visit the House of Representatives, where presidents past and present deliver the State of the Union Address. You will enjoy the sort of access not available to the U.S. public that is only possible in the company of a Member or former Member of Congress.