BizTimes to launch Leadership Academy

Names Joseph Weitzer executive director

BizTimes Leadership Academy executive director Joseph Weitzer with BizTimes publisher Dan Meyer.

Last updated on May 14th, 2019 at 03:03 am

In support of the increasing demand for high-quality leadership development that manifests performance, BizTimes Media announces the launch of its Leadership Academy, which will be led by Joseph Weitzer, who has joined BizTimes as the executive director of the academy.

Influenced in structure by highly successful model programs, the BizTimes Leadership Academy is designed to take leaders to the next level of performance.

Perhaps the greatest challenge to long-term business success is the increasing demand for talent. With Wisconsin’s unemployment rate at 3 percent, the increasing number of baby boomer retirees, and the associated loss of technical skills and institutional knowledge, employers will face strong headwinds as they seek to meet business growth expectations.

BizTimes Leadership Academy executive director Joseph Weitzer with BizTimes publisher Dan Meyer.

While there will be a constant need to attract talent into the pipeline, many organizations are recognizing the value of investing in their current workforce, and in particular, are seeking ways to accelerate the learning curve and enhance the performance of leaders. These organizations recognize the importance of leaders in sustaining business growth, attracting and retaining talent, and leading and supporting initiatives that transform status quo to high performance.

“Leadership development is one of the greatest challenges companies face,” said BizTimes Milwaukee publisher Dan Meyer. “Our goal is to provide a premier, high-quality and transformative experience to current and high-performing future leaders.”

The leadership academy is the brainchild of Meyer, who assessed the impact of similar programs in Chicago and Baton Rouge over the past two years. To ensure continuity in delivering a high-quality, responsive and thought-provoking experience, Weitzer was brought aboard to lead the Leadership Academy. Weitzer is the managing partner and senior strategist of Germantown-based Soulful Leadership Consulting Network. Previously, he spent nine years as dean of the Center for Business Performance Solutions at Waukesha County Technical College. Over the past 10 years, he has personally worked with more than 40 businesses and organizations. Weitzer provides assistance in technical support and leadership, focusing on strategic discussions and organizational planning; succession planning; executive/leadership development and coaching; process improvement; and employee engagement and performance.

“Weitzer brings a wealth of relevant knowledge, leadership experience, and a track record of facilitating highly effective leadership development,” Meyer said. “His disciplined approach is informed by his work on motivation and human performance, and his career path has afforded him opportunities to develop and apply knowledge in progressive leadership roles held in manufacturing, health care, government, food service, education and business service sectors. His leadership programs have resulted in successful outcomes for hundreds of regional leaders over the past 20 years.”

“Being named as the executive director to lead such an important initiative for the Milwaukee business community is humbling,” Weitzer said. “And the opportunity to be a part of a team with a focused vision and passion for supporting the business community of the region is very exciting.”

The Leadership Academy was developed specifically for business owners, senior level leaders, next level rising stars and entrepreneurs to enhance leadership skills and provide methods and tools that can be used to improve performance and accountability within the organization.

The Leadership Academy will meet five times over two months – including two full days, three half days and individualized coaching totaling more than 30 hours of leadership support – and offers several unique features that, together, achieve results. An initial self-discovery assessment is used to provide context for an initial executive coaching session that debriefs results and seeks to ensure alignment between personal goals and program objectives.

Sessions will cover relevant topics in meaningful ways, and may include: differentiating and engaging a multigenerational workforce; emotional intelligence and the leader’s differentiator; improving employee engagement and building high-performing teams; the role of leadership in company culture; and the leader’s role in recruitment and employee retention.

“While there will be guest speakers and brief periods of lecture, a hands-on, interactive approach to learning will typically dominate the learning structure. Throughout the program, participants will have opportunities to demonstrate learning, present, work in teams, and will have homework between sessions,” Weitzer said.

“Part of BizTimes’ mission is to help the region’s business community become more knowledgeable, successful, and support their growth,” Meyer said. “The Leadership Academy is one way to achieve that goal by providing a learning experience like no other, designed specifically to address the growing needs of our leaders to lead and bring out the very best in their teams. This helps our community, our region and our state.”

The Leadership Academy is specifically designed to support C-level executive leaders and owners, who may apply directly or nominate a member of their leadership team. The cost of $4,900 ($4,200 if nomination/application is received by March 1) includes all assessments, including the Leadership Perspective Assessment, StrengthsFinder assessment and book, all materials, meals, receptions, personalized coaching and parking. Cohort sizes will not exceed 32 participants.

More information about the inaugural BizTimes Leadership Academy (which will begin in May) and application forms can be found at

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Andrew is the editor of BizTimes Milwaukee. He joined BizTimes in 2003, serving as managing editor and real estate reporter for 11 years. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, he is a lifelong resident of the state. He lives in Muskego with his wife, Seng, their son, Zach, and their dog, Hokey. He is an avid sports fan and is a member of the Muskego Athletic Association board of directors.

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