FORTHEM Staff Week

The FORTHEM Staff week is a five-day workshop on the topic "European perspectives on leadership in higher education“.  The aim is to offer space and input for exchange about good leadership at universities in the FORTHEM alliance and beyond for executive staff and personnell development staff (HRD).

Is there an european perspective on leadership in higher education? What about organisational impacts on leadership, what do universities expect from their executive staff and from their personnel development programs? How can HRD support good leadership?

These questions will guide the FORTHEM staff week with input and discussion sessions, exchange formats, peer consultation, job shadowing and methodical workshops.

Date: Monday, 12.09.2022 to Friday, 16.09.2022
Location: Campus of Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

Registration  Deadline: 15.07.2022

For more information please have a look at our flyer.











9:00 AM Leadership Workshop 1  Peer consultation/ intervision Workshop 



Leadership Workshop 3 
10:00 AM
11:00 AM Closing, summary, feedback 
12:00 AM
01:00 PM Lunch  Lunch  Lunch  End of session 
02:00 PM Welcome Seminar  Campus Tour  Leadership Workshop 2  Job Shadowing or Networking HRD 
03:00 PM Presentation of Universities  Methods Workshop 
04:00 PM End of session 
05:00 PM End of session  End of session End of session 
06:30 PM Dinner  City Tour Wine tasting 


Program description: 


We will welcome you for the following seminar week. For this we will give you an organizational and thematic overview of what to expect in the next few days. 

For this element of the program, we need your support. We are looking forward to hear from your university and get to know the universities of the other participants.


Helping people GROW, Susanne Marx

In this session, we will focus on how to consult a person who comes for your advice, instead of telling them what to do. You will learn and practise a guideline for a short one-on-one-consulting. You will find out about the impact of asking the right questions. You will strengthen your ability in helping others to develop ideas and finding their own answers to their questions.

Understanding and reflecting on responsibility, Dr. Jana Leipold; HRD JGU 

In this session, you will learn more about the topic of responsibility and its complexity. You will learn different angles with which you can reflect and dialogue on responsibility. You will understand the interaction of people and organisation. We will discuss on how we all can create a culture of dialoguing on responsibility in our daily work lifes. 

My culture  - your culture, working together in our culture - intercultural communication, 'The way we do things around here’, Roisin Russ 

Rather than having one best way, collaborating across borders and cultures can create new synergies and ways of working. As we know, however, the path to effective intercultural communication is not always smooth.

This interactive workshop delves into the hidden intricacies of intercultural communication and explores how irritations and misunderstandings can have their base in our own cultural perceptions and expectations. We look at some of the traps we fall into in communicating across cultures and how these can be overcome.
"I am pleased to see that we have differences. May we together become greater than the sum of both of us."(Vulcan Greeting, Star Trek)

Roisin Russ is an organisational psychologist who has been living and working across cultures for over thirty years. She is a lecturer in Intercultural Competence at Technische Hochschule Mittelhessen, University of Applied Sciences.


In this workshop you can learn about the method of collegial consulting. This is a consulting session in a self-managed group of equal members with defined roles. The group advises one member at a time on a certain topic or problem. The aim of the consultation is to develop solutions to a problem from everyday professional life.

Call for papers

Participants have the opportunity to submit their own topics and concerns and to shape the workshop.
Therefore we ask you for your own impulses and preparation with a call for papers.


BarCamp is an open conference form, which is designed as far as possible by the self-organization of the participants. That being so, we focus is on the exchange of content between the participants, alternating between open group sessions and plenary sessions.

Call for papers: For this we ask you to prepare a topic of your choice in advance. You will receive more information about this with the confirmation of your registration.

Job shadowing is on-the-job training. An employee accompanies a colleague on their job for a certain period of time. He or she is more or less the shadow of the colleague. In this setting the colleague can observe the colleague's activities and gain an impression of the colleague's tasks.

If this is not something you are interested in, you are welcome to use this time for networking.


„Back to Center - How the Aikido Mindset Principles can support Leadership in an embodied way” by Dr. Till Neunhöffer
Energy follows attention," "Relaxation creates stability," "Problems get stronger when you fight them." This workshop is about experiencing these principles in a physical yet soft and protected way. We start off with a little bit of theoretical input with simple models on decision taking, reality construction and how our current state has the biggest influence on how we can meet today’s challenges.
Quickly we’ll switch to “hands-on” partner exercises derived from the Japanese martial art of Aikido. They can be experienced and felt, and Aha-moments are guaranteed. These “somatic metaphors” are slow exercises combined with visualization exercises that open a channel to sense what is happening in our own bodies.
Aikido is about taking the energy inherent in attack and transforming it into a win-win situation. A victory that results from the defeat of the opponent is not a victory. Rather, an attack is interpreted as the loss of the attacker's inner balance.  The task then is to make an offer of support to the attacker, taking into account his own safety, so that he can find his inner center again. This requires of the defender to be well organized in his/her body as a prerequisite.
The combination of body work (embodiment) with visualization work in the somatic metaphors generates intensive communication between the voluntary and the involuntary, which can be called up even under pressure. The approach shifts attention from head to body, from voluntary to involuntary, from external tension to internal relaxation, and therefore offers new/complementary possibilities for leadership in these challenging times.
In the last part of the workshop, we want to invite to a discussion, how the presented ideas, models, and elements could impact our daily work.
Participants are asked to come with flat shoes, sportswear is not necessary. Essentially, it is about feeling, experiencing and sharing about it.”

Later on, the learned material will be applied using partner exercises and interactive exchange.

Registration here