As the new coordinator of Leadership Seneca County, Chris Harben hopes to drive the participants' leadership skills to a whole new level as he prepares to kick off the 2012-2013 leadership program.
Leadership Seneca County has spent the last two years, Harben said, tweaking its program to significantly increase the leadership content. This year, he said, he expects to "see the biggest jump in leadership skills."
Leadership Seneca County is one of many similar programs across the state that seeks to "develop a farm team of up-and-coming leaders" within communities, Harben said, by increasing knowledge of all facets of the county in which they live and work. Such knowledge helps makes a person a more effective leader, he said, and Seneca County's program this year not only will impart that core knowledge, but grow specific leadership skills for each
Self- and group-assessments will be done this year as part of the program, Harben said. At the start of leadership, each person will do an assessment of him- or herself, and also will assess five other participants. The assessments, he said, not only will help remove people's individual bias, but will provide a personality and leadership baseline on which to approach leadership. The assessments, he said, will be repeated at the end of the program, and he hopes for "measurable improvement."
Harben said he has a "big vision" for Leadership Seneca County, and said the organization has taken big steps for the year. He hopes to see a significant return on investment for participants and sponsors, and said he believes Leadership Seneca County is becoming a premier program of its kind in Ohio.
Harben previously was a presenter for Leadership Seneca County, and was involved in financial services. He has a masters degree in organizational leadership and is pursuing a doctorate in strategic leadership. He also is a registered EMT, and teaches classes at Tiffin University and Defiance College.
Leadership Seneca County is to host a meet-and-greet Tuesday at NCOESC, 928 W. Market St. The official kick-off and team-building session for the program is Wednesday at Camp Glenn.