MADISON, WIS. – The Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association announced it will kick off the new year by offering a fresh round of leadership training in January.

WCMA executive director John Umhoefer said the sessions are developed specifically for dairy processing professionals, to help turn key staff members into “great” team leaders.

“As dairy processors navigate the challenges of a tight labor market, investing in the growth of managers and supervisors who boost productivity and inspire collaboration is key to retaining a quality team,” Umhoefer said.

The organization’s first course for 2023 is its front-line leadership training, which the WCMA shared is designed to help supervisors build and improve their conflict resolution, communication, stress and time management skills, as well as cultivate a team mentality in the workplace.

Offered online, the interactive trainings are broken up into three parts: developing essential leadership skills, strategies to help boost staff performance and fostering a collaborative team mindset. The series opens with the essential leadership material, on Jan. 31 and Feb. 7.

WCMA also will offer its advanced leadership training in fall 2023, beginning in September. The courses are for mid-level dairy processing managers, as well as those moving into management positions. The classes feature industry guest speakers, group discussions and a final project. WCMA caps the enrollment to 20 participants, who go through the training as a cohort.

All three parts of the advanced leadership training – driving change and generating positive results; applying a creative and collaborative problem-solving process; and strategies for fostering collaboration and resolving workplace conflict – will be offered online.

More information on specific dates, prices and registration is available online via the WCMA website.