Masterclasses and short courses

Five courses, five expert facilitators, over five days, in the heart of Brisbane's CBD.

In today’s fast changing world how do you find ways to constantly stay up-to-date, improve and have greater impact with your colleagues, clients, staff and outcomes, all while balancing the demands of work, family, friends, sport and everything else?

Communicating successfully, negotiating better, collaborating and influencing effectively, managing projects efficiently and understanding risk – these are all vital and highly effective skills relevant for today’s organisational challenges.

At ACU Executive Education we’re all about helping you to succeed. Fast. We’ve developed a range of exceptional short courses focused on improving essential skills. Succinct by design, you’ll gain maximum benefit with a minimum amount of time away from work.

Our short courses are unique in their offer and designed for busy professionals seeking to strengthen specific skill areas, leading to better leadership and enhanced business outcomes.

These courses have been designed by and for professionals, using a practical skill-based learning approach that is immediately applicable.

At just $500 + GST each, these courses offer exceptional value.

Choose one course, a few, or all of them.

About this course

This course is designed to enhance your ability to communicate with groups and individuals in all areas of professional life. You’ll identify your personal style of communication and understand how it shapes and affects others. Then you’ll recognise your strengths and challenges, and learn strategies and techniques to develop your vocal and physical presence. Finally, you’ll learn how to influence an audience, manage challenging situations and respond in the moment.

  • Greater understanding of your communication style and how it impacts others
  • Awareness of personal communication strengths and techniques on how to enhance them
  • Identifying your personal communication challenges and techniques to modify them
  • Communicate and articulate ideas clearly and effectively – helping you be succinct and to the point
  • Increased ability to engage and affect others with your communication
  • Increased confidence and improved delivery of presentations to small and large groups
  • Enhanced physical and vocal presence
  • Address nerves and limit their impact on you

You will leave with tools to bring life to words written on a page and integrate your body into your communication. Be memorable. Be inspiring!


Facilitator – Melinda Dransfield

 Melinda Dransfield

Melinda Dransfield is expertly and uniquely skilled. Her breadth of experience has seen her dazzle in front of stage lights, operate seamlessly behind them and use those skills to coach professionals in the art of successful speaking.

Melinda graduated from The Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, then went on to study at the Atlantic Theatre in New York in 2011. She has worked as an actor and voice artist throughout Australia, has produced her own theatre work and managed touring productions. She has taught at NIDA and the Australian Theatre for Young People, engaging individuals aged 5–75.

Melinda founded The Art of Speaking, a communications and speech training company, to best position professionals to get the most successful outcomes for their businesses. Whether preparing for a job interview or presenting a new vision for a brand, Melinda sees clear, confident and authentic communication as being paramount to defining who professionals and their businesses are, and believes everyone has the capacity to perform strongly provided they are equipped with the right tools.

About this course

Is your approach to risk actually creating your biggest risk?

Get ready to re-think how to better capitalise on opportunity and manage risk in this interactive session that provides a theoretical and practical counter-intuitive approach to risk.

We will explore an integrated approach to risk management and leadership. We need to manage the realities of a Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous World (VUCA) to succeed in today’s fast-paced operating environment. The innovation of risk is critical as we try to create the balance between process and people.

Aspects discussed include:

  • Embracing VUCA
  • What is Risk Intelligence (RI)?
  • How does RI affect leadership?
  • Introduction to the Psychology of Risk
  • Managers, leaders and risk – understanding the art of leading, following and influence
  • The intersection between leadership, risk and culture.

Facilitator – Marc Prospero

 Marc Prospero

Marc has performed numerous roles at the director and chief executive level across sectors including health, retail, education and training, services and digital business. He has held senior roles in government, Not for Profit, publicly listed and private sector organisations and businesses.

Marc is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and holds master level qualifications in business, administration and public policy, as well as numerous other vocational and postgraduate qualifications across a variety of interests from exercise science to languages.

Marc’s approach: 'I am more of a practitioner than academic and enjoy translating academia and theory in a manner that can be practically applied in the workplace or life in general'.

About this course

Achieving anything worthwhile means collaborating with people, whether it’s to understand an idea, support a project, or invest in a proposition. Leading and managing also require important collaborative elements. When you are managing a team, engaging stakeholders, or enrolling senior executives for support, you will not succeed unless you first know how to connect with people to achieve a better outcome than you could alone.

The quality of your collaborations is marked by the quality of your conversations, and in this program, you will learn the six step Collaborative Conversation model and how to apply it to your environment. This is perfect for collaborating in education, health, government or corporate environments. We also consider the collaborative economy and how collaboration is becoming the new strategy for organisations facing disruption, challenge and change.

After you have a collaborative conversation you may need to negotiate an agreement. This program works brilliantly with our one day Negotiate for Immediate Results course. Consider taking both.


Facilitator – Peter Anthony

 Stephen Kozicki

Peter Anthony is an international speaker, author and executive coach. As an expert in collaboration and communication, Peter has run collaboration workshops for thousands of people in 12 countries over 15 years. He has completed a Masters of Communication and uses an evidence based approach to his work.

Peter’s latest book, Influence People, outlines his process to achieve more with people one conversation at a time. He illustrates that knowing how to have a challenging conversation is the biggest single issue facing organisations as people work together in collaborative cultures.

About this course

Master the skills of a successful negotiator by focusing on the preparation, process and the people to develop creative solutions, stronger relationships and better deals.

You will gain comprehensive knowledge on all phases of the negotiation process: from scoping and preparing to post-negotiation analysis. Through interactive models, role-play and case studies, you will be introduced to the fundamentals of influencing and negotiation, given the opportunity to discover how to leverage value and guided to develop and refine your abilities. Then put that knowledge into action by developing a 30-day action plan for their selected real world negotiation.

Highly practical, this program will be immediately applicable, will set the foundation for positive change and will provide the skills to obtain desired outcomes from any negotiation process.

Negotiation is a skill that can be learned. Then achieve and sustain beyond the ability of your competitors.


Facilitator – Stephen Kozicki

 Stephen Kozicki

With over 25 years’ experience conducting high impact workshops in Australia and overseas, Stephen is a highly sought-after presenter. His areas of specialisation include influencing and negotiating in the 21st century, strategic account management and effective presentation skills.

Stephen has studied Advanced Influencing and Negotiating Skills at Harvard University and was involved in major contract negotiations with some of Australia's Top 500 companies. Stephen is the author of two best-selling books - The Creative Negotiator (which has been translated into seven languages with over 120,000 copies sold worldwide) and Persuading for Results. In late 2014, he was appointed to the prestigious advisory council for Harvard Business Review.

About this course

This course provides you with a solid foundation of knowledge and skills for project management personnel from any industry or technical background. It’s the perfect starting point for anyone who is:

  • new to projects
  • looking to take on projects in the future
  • already managing projects but was never training in project management (AKA ‘accidental project managers’).

The course is aligned to the global standard for project management theory – the guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge – and provides an overview of key project management concepts, processes, tools and techniques.

You will get the chance to practice using fundamental project management tools with the support of an experienced facilitator. Practical activities are based on a project case study and include developing a project charter, work breakdown structure, network diagram, Gantt chart, and project plan.
You’ll develop skills required to:

  • initiate a project and develop a Project Charter
  • define the scope using a Work Breakdown Structure
  • develop a simple project schedule
  • communicate and develop a Project Status Report
  • close a project and develop a Post Implementation Review.

Facilitator – Kestrel Stone

Kestrel Stone

Kestrel is a leading trainer, coach and assessor in project management. Her clients appreciate the way she integrates ‘soft’ interpersonal skills with ‘hard’ technical project management skills.

She assists managers develop practices and disciplines to more effectively manage projects. This includes developing skills in areas such as project planning, stakeholder management, project implementation and influencing.

Kestrel has been a leading trainer on project management for ACU and AIM. She has helped build project management capability for organisations such as NSW Department of Community Services, Railcorp, Thales, Optus, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, City of Ryde Council and HCF. She is the Chair, Project Management Office Special Interest Group for the Australian Institute of Project Management.