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COURSE TWO – Leading Teams & Organizations: Psychoanalytic Dimensions – A virtual offering.

COURSE TWO - Leading Teams & Organizations: Psychoanalytic Dimensions – A virtual offering.

Course Coordinator: Kas Tuters

Seminar Leader: Barbara Williams

Tuesday, 9:00 am – 11:00 am (tentative): October 13, 20, 27, November 3, 10, 17, 2020 (6 evenings)

Fees: $360

Preregistration is required.

** DISTANCE PARTICIPATION ONLY – This course will be conducted online.

Purpose of the course: The course offers participants an opportunity to explore the ‘under-the-surface’ and unconscious processes that effect leadership, team and organizational functioning, and provides an opportunity to consider how to address those aspects toward task completion and the capacity to work well together.

Given that much more virtual work has become the norm globally, for the first time, TPS will offer this course virtually. To participate, all members must have a stable internet connection which supports video connectivity, the zoom application downloaded onto whatever device is used to connect, have a (mostly) private uninterrupted space for the 2 hour class for video contact. Each participant will have a short interview with the course instructor.

The sessions will run for 6 weeks for 2 hours. Given that this is a distance course, the dates and timing of the class will be dependent upon the registrants. However, the intention is to begin on the week of October 12th. There is a strong possibility that the course would run on Tuesdays from 9:00 am EST – 11:00 am EST.

This course makes use of the Tavistock theoretical and practice tradition to explore the less known, unconscious, and irrational aspects of how groups and institutions function. Through readings, discussion and a small study group experience, participants will be i) introduced to foundational writings and psychoanalytic theories related to leadership, organizations, teams and, ii) tasked to explore the experience of being in a small temporary group which studies itself in the here and now virtually.

Each session will be divided into two parts: the first portion will be didactic and interactive, and will explore concepts from selected readings (e.g. Klein, Bion, Menzies, and others). All the readings will be available on a Dropbox link. The second part 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 some common social defences against anxiety in the workplace.
  3. Describe the central importance of “self-as-container” of anxiety in transforming “beta elements” into “alpha elements” in relationships and work.
  4. Experience some of the afore-mentioned unconscious processes in a small group.
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Kaspars Tuters, MD, FRCP(C)

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

Barbara Williams, EdD

Director of Bureau Kensington Consulting, a psychoanalytically oriented organizational consulting practice; Member of the International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations, and Organization for Promoting Understanding of Organizations; Advisory Editor for the Journal of Organizational and Social Dynamics. Guest of the TPS.

The Extension Courses are eligible for Section 1 CME credits (0.5 credits/hour).

Full-time students in universities and colleges, and mental-health trainees are eligible for a 25% reduction in course fees. Proof of 2020/2021 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: or email

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