UCLA Extension

Be the Boss: Move from a Technical to a Managerial Position

Course No. A4, Period 1

If you are considering becoming, have recently been assigned, or are already performing as a supervisor, team leader, or manager, this course provides you with the skills and knowledge to become a highly successful organizational leader.

Members of the technical staff who are promoted into leadership roles often feel that learning how to manage others is daunting. Many technically competent people feel that getting things done on their own is easier than accomplishing objectives through other people. But technical people already possess many of the skills needed to become excellent organizational leaders.

This unique, highly participative course makes a smooth transition to management simple and straightforward. It provides the opportunity to assess your leadership capabilities and “build on your strengths” to hone and focus your talents into powerful management skills. Learn how to set and clearly communicate goals for your organization, build strong self-directing teams, nurture collaboration, guide the efforts of individuals and groups to perform at the highest levels, and focus and motivate your employees and others to successfully achieve the organization’s goals. Every session employs case studies, interactive exercises, and powerful instruments to enhance the learning experience and ensure you can immediately take what you learn back to your workplace.

Topics Include:

Leadership and Management

  • What skills are necessary for effective managers?
  • What skills do you already possess?
  • What skills must you develop or enhance?
  • Modern directions of leadership and management
  • Getting feedback on your leadership performance (a 360-degree instrument)

Organizational Management

  • Organize
  • Staff
  • Delegate (unique instrument)
  • Manage corporate politics and parochialism


  • Current team practices
  • Enhance collaboration
  • Virtual teams
  • Diversity


  • Modern motivation theories
  • Influence decisions (SDI)
  • Sources of power

Performance Management

  • Monitoring performance
  • Assess progress (metrics)
  • Give feedback (performance appraisals)
  • Correcting undesirable behavior
  • Personal plan (unique instrument)

christensen_chrisChris Christensen, MS, MBA

President, Christensen Associates, Inc., a management consulting firm, Playa del Rey, California

For three decades, Chris Christensen was a program and project manager in the aerospace, high technology components manufacturing, and systems integration industries. In addition, Mr. Christensen has worked both as an intelligence analyst and a consultant to government agencies collecting and analyzing data to predict future events.

In 1992, Mr. Christensen launched Christensen Associates, Inc., to train executives, managers, and senior staff in effective business management. He coaches executive teams, facilitates off-site retreats, and leads on-site workshops in forecasting future business and technological breakthroughs, strategic planning, new product development, and competitive intelligence.

Mr. Christensen is a certified Program Management Professional, Six Sigma Black Belt, and Certified Quality Manager. He teaches courses in strategic planning, competitive intelligence, and futures research at UCLA and Loyola Marymount University. He is the co-author of the ASQ Handbook for the Certified Quality Process Analyst and is the author of Solving Organizational Problems.

Chris Christensen cuts through the platitudes of management philosophy and pushed implementation and action of ideas.”
– Matthew Robinson, Manager of Health Care Analysis, Health Net Inc.