Adaptive Leader 1 (AL-101)

6-week Online Course

Course Fee: $90 (Invoiced to students during the first week of classes)

Required Text: Leadership Without Easy Answers by Ronald Heifetz, Harvard University PressMcGraw Hill Books, 2003

This course is based upon the work of Ron Heifetz and Marty Linsky at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. In this course you will learn to define adaptive leadership and distinguish leadership from authority. Students will be able to apply principles of adaptive leadership and learn how to lead both with and without authority. This course is designed to help you determine the difference between adaptive problems and technical problems and the importance of addressing each type of problem differently.

According to Heifetz, leadership is an improvisational art that requires experimenting using smart risks. To exercise leadership, even with smart interventions, can be a perilous activity which can take you out of the game quickly. This course will identify the dangers of leading and provide some tips on staying alive. I’m excited about these new cutting edge concepts that can make us all more effective problem solvers.


  • Understand the prescribed definition of adaptive leadership.
  • Be able to define the types of problems you face in exercising leadership.
  • Understand and address Type I, II and III problems.
  • Know the dangers associated with leading.
  • Be able to decide smart risks and maximize the chances of success in interventions.