Course Four – Psychoanalytic Understanding of Work Groups, Organizational Dynamics and Leadership

Psychoanalytic Understanding of Work Groups, Organizational Dynamics, and Leadership

Course Coordinator: Kas Tuters

Course Leaders: Howard Book and Barbara Williams

Thursday, 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm (sharp): January 12, 19, 26, February 2, 9, 16, 2017

Fees: $270

Preregistration is required.

This course offers participants an opportunity to explore the ‘under-the-surface’ and unconscious processes that interfere with leadership, team and organizational functioning, and to provide the participants with new ways of addressing those aspects in their own group settings that effect or limit task completion and optimal interaction.

The primary task of this course is to introduce participants to a psychoanalytic perspective on our workplaces, be they organizations, departments, or teams on which they serve. These all have “known,” conscious, overt, and rational aspects to how they function, and simultaneously are also under the sway of powerful “unknown,” unconscious, quirky, and irrational forces and dynamics. These unconscious elements can provide creative possibilities for work life. But if left unrecognized and unacknowledged, they can erode the organization’s capacity for focusing on its objectives and goal achievement, preventing us from achieving our professional goals, promoting the emergence of a toxic culture, and encouraging ineffectual decision making. When explored and addressed these unconscious dynamics can provide organizations a space for creative and innovative encounters and outputs.

Each session will be divided into two parts: the first hour will be didactic and interactive, and will explore concepts from selected readings (e.g. Klein, Bion, Menzies, and others). The second part of the evening will be experiential and make use of the ‘small study group’ format in the Tavistock tradition. This will provide the participants a direct opportunity to experience the group process ‘from within’ rather than intellectually ‘from outside’.

Learning Objectives:

At the end of the course the participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the interplay between “work-groups” and “basic assumption groups”.
  2. List two common social defenses against anxiety in the workplace.
  3. Describe the central importance of “self-as-container” in transforming “beta elements” into “alpha elements” in the workplace.
  4. Experience the central importance of the aforementioned unconscious processes in a small group.

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Kaspars Tuters

Kaspars Tuters, MD, Psychoanalyst in Private Practice. Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, University of Toronto; Fellow, British Psychoanalytical Society. Faculty, TPS&I.

Howard Book

Howard Book, MD, FRCP(C), Private Practice in Psychoanalytic Organizational Consulting. Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto; Guest Faculty, INSEAD School of Management, Fontainebleau, France & Singapore; Past Board Member, International Society for the Study of Organizations; Editorial Board, Journal of Organizational and Social Dynamics. Guest of the TPS.

Barbara Williams

Barbara Williams, EdD, Director of Bureau Kensington, a psychoanalytically oriented organizational consulting practice; holds a Doctorate in Education from University of Toronto; visiting professional at Tavistock Institute, London; Member of the International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations, and Organization for Promoting Understanding of Organizations; Guest of the TPS.

Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits are available. This event is an accredited group learning activity (section 1) as defined by the Maintenance of Certificate Program of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, approved by the Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA). The specific opinions and content of this event are not necessarily those of the CPA, and are the responsibility of the organizer(s) alone. As per the Royal College standard, each presentation provides a minimum of 25% interactive learning.

Full-time students in universities and colleges, and mental-health trainees are eligible for a 25% reduction in course fees. Proof of 2016/2017 status needs to be provided. Please contact the tps&i directly to register at a discount.

Refunds must be requested in writing two weeks prior to the beginning of a course. A handling fee of $30 will be retained. After these two weeks, fees cannot be returned.

For more information about and for registration in the tps&i Extension Programs, Scientific Meetings, Training Programs, Study and Supervision groups and Special Presentations, please visit our website: torontopsychoanalysis.com or email info@torontopsychoanalysis.com