Meet Gustavo, the First Graduate of Harvard's Stepping up to Management

Julie Checknita, Employer Services | August-03-11


When Gustavo first started researching employment opportunities on, he did not realize that he would come across an opportunity to completely revamp his professional skill set and eventually become the first ever Harvard Stepping up to Management graduate.
Gustavo signed up for the Stepping up to Management program as an opportunity to add value to his resume and differentiate himself from the large pool of job seekers currently in the market. Like many in the environmental sector, he had extensive technical and scientific knowledge after completing his Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and Masters in Human Geography; however was lacking previous managerial experience.
Although management wasn't necessarily the direction he was looking to take, the prospect of gaining transferable people management, leadership, and soft skills training was appealing. "I thought it would be a great way to learn about business interactions with staff and contractors at different career levels," says Gustavo. "In any career, I will have to interact with people. I can see what I learned in this program being carried on to essentially any future job, even if I never get to actually manage staff."
While the Harvard Stepping up to Management program is designed to assist new environmental supervisors shift into staff management, the program is an ideal solution for employers looking to engage staff through training and development, by allowing them to broaden their credentials and knowledge base.
For employers, program highlights include the enhanced capacity to monitor the learner's progress, the flexibility to quickly scale up (or down) the program depending on the organization's or individual's needs, and the affordable pricing. For employees, the flexibility to complete the online training program at their own pace is key.
What was Gustavo's favorite part of the program? "I liked the exercises after each module, because they really put the theory into practice. It's helpful to apply what you just learned to specific scenarios," says Gustavo, "It's a fairly quick program that is well researched and neatly compiled into different modules."
This unique management program begins with a questionnaire to assess a user's familiarity with concepts covered in the modules, and then measures the relevance to current job responsibilities. The assessment results help to prioritize the modules based on the user's indicated significance and previous knowledge, allowing the user to spend more time on high priority modules.
After completing the program, graduates hold valuable management skills and tools they can apply to diverse employment settings. "I feel like I've gained so much knowledge after putting in a few hours to complete the program," says Gustavo. "I now understand what it takes to be a manager. I definitely think it was worth it."

Click here for more information on Harvard's Stepping up tp Management.