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In the Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous (VUCA) environment we work in daily, it can be tough to respond to change with agility and manage time, tasks, and talent successfully. Whether you’re just starting out or have decades of experience managing large and complex projects, this course will provide you with a new set of tools and teach you to re-evaluate and apply old tools to your projects or business in strategic and unconventional ways.

By the end of this course, you will learn how to:

Manage VUCA

  • Evaluate VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) in construction environments
  • Respond effectively to VUCA in your project and business

Adapt to Challenges

  • Prepare for Black Swan Events by developing methods to minimize their occurrence
  • Apply Black Box Thinking and Cognitive Dissonance – you’ll learn how to recognize your failures and leverage them to your advantage
  • Understand how success can lead to future failure and how to avoid making this mistake
  • Leverage today’s failure into tomorrow’s success
  • Reframe difficult tasks and problems
  • Understand the difference between Proactive and Reactive responses, and how to maximize one while minimizing the other
  •  Keep up in a fast-moving world by learning to learn faster and having better retention

Build Interpersonal Skills

  • Apply the practice of Management by Wandering Around (MBWA) effectively at your jobsites
  • Negotiate a successful change by applying selling and negotiation strategies
  • Understand motivational triggers
  • Identify the difference between leadership and management and learn which traits to build on
  • Understand and improve your Emotional Intelligence (EQ)
  • Build great relationships - you will learn to think differently in your interactions with stakeholders

Improve Productivity & Time Management

  • Identify and apply tools and techniques for monitoring and controlling your projects
  • Plan for continuous improvement – you’ll learn why it’s more important than ever and how we need to change to improve
  • Evaluate your own personal time management (because you can’t manage projects unless you can manage yourself)
  • Apply time management tools and techniques that work for your personality
  • Apply Pareto’s Law and the 20/80 Rule
  • Develop and implement effective checklists using the Checklist Manifesto
  • Improve productivity by ‘sweating the small stuff’

Boost Planning Skills

  • Articulate your mission and vision and communicating them to your team
  • Develop and meet your project goals
  • Understand the Planning Fallacy and Confirmation Bias
  • Develop workable and realistic plans

Maximize Communication Skills

  • Identify and apply the ‘Art’ of a successful presentation, to your team, clients, to subcontractors, etc.
  • Understand how to ask better questions and get better answers
  • Lead effective meetings

Intended Audience

This course is for you is you are involved in managing/leading construction projects at any level

Related Info

This course is facilitated by the instructor on the Zoom platform. Access information will be provided to you in advance of the training.

Course Requirements (Technology & Participation)

Please make sure you have the following:

  • Computer or laptop with webcam: This course will involve on-screen interaction with your instructor and classmates, reading/viewing on-screen content like slides or videos, and interacting via typing with questions or responses. For this reason, we recommend that you have a full computer/laptop set-up and don’t recommend using a cell phone or tablet to attend the training.
  • A quiet space with minimal distractions: plan to be fully engaged in the class and clear your work schedule just as you would for attendance in an in-class program.


Tom Stephenson, MBA, CM-LEAN, PMP

Tom is a national award-winning professor and best-selling textbook author whose background in education spans nearly three decades. He has been a full-time Professor at George Brown College in Toronto, ON, since 1992, and prior to teaching, he owned, managed, and operated a mid-sized general contracting company. Tom holds three Trade Licenses: General Carpenter, Brick and Stone Mason, and Industrial Woodworker.

Tom authored, developed, and coordinates the Building Renovation and Restoration Technician, and Technology Programs at George Brown College. He also teaches Project Management for professional organizations including The Construction Institute of Canada and the Ontario General Contractors Association, as well as Building Science courses at the University of Toronto and Ryerson University. Tom is the author of the newly released textbook, Planning, Scheduling, and Control of Construction Projects with American Technical Publishers, as well as four best-selling editions of Understanding Construction Drawings for Housing and Small Buildings with Nelson Publishing Canada (now with Top Hat).

A champion of change management, Tom takes pride in helping students and businesses navigate uncharted territories, take calculated risks, and rise above the status quo.