Manager Fundamentals


Equipping managers for success!


“Would 100% recommend to others in the industry. Thank you for starting this course. There’s nothing else like it out there for us.” 2023 participant

This course will help managers identify their own management style, equipping them with the skills to guide and motivate teams, delegate and communicate effectively, set and track goals, provide feedback, ensure staff wellbeing, and handle difficult situations with confidence.

Meet your Facilitator & Lecturers

Weekly facilitators (live session)

Julie Dormand
Julie Dormand
Managing Director, The Works, part of Capgemini
Oliver Ward
Oliver Ward
Managing Director, Team X Australia & New Zealand
Amanda Fuller
Amanda Fuller
Managing Partner, DDB Remedy Australia

Video lecturers (pre-recorded)

Jennifer Hegarty
Jennifer Hegarty
Director of People & Culture, M&C Saatchi Australia
Jessica Farrell
Jessica Farrell
General Manager, People & Culture ANZ and Head of DE&I ANZ, Publicis Groupe
Gavin Bain
Gavin Bain
Former Chief Consulting Officer, ANZ and Managing Director, Perth, VML
Andy Wright
Andy Wright
Co-Chair, Mentally-Healthy
Tanya Vragalis
Tanya Vragalis
Former Managing Director, TBWA\Australia
Kara Bombell
Kara Bombell
Chief Operations Officer, Digitas Australia
Chiquita King
Chiquita King
Founder & Managing Director, Cocogun
Courtney Robertson
Courtney Robertson
Director, the human co


What to expect

A learning program that provokes and challenges your thinking.
A collaborative environment for problem solving.
A sense of community and camaraderie with fellow participants.
A chance to question, experiment and push yourself.
The opportunity to learn from the best.

This course has two main elements – a pre-recorded video lecture for participants to watch in their own time, and a live working tutorial session led by the course facilitator where participants can put theory into action. Additionally, this industry certified course includes homework/assessments.

Please note, if you have enrolled in an online course the “working tutorial sessions” are delivered live via zoom/teams.

Who’s it for?

For those individuals who are managing a team of one or more including Senior Account Directors and above, Strategy Directors, Creative Directors and Senior Producers.

Course Content

Week 1: Finding your style
Presented by: Tanya Vragalis

We’ll explore different management approaches to help you better understand and develop your own personal style. Key topics:

  • Managing versus leadership
  • Building confidence
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Authenticity

Week 2: Motivating teams
Presented by: Chiquita King

We’ll explore some principles and ways to manage people which help empower and enable them to be at their best. Key topics:

  • Vision and goal setting
  • Empowering your team
  • Importance of recognition
  • Learning & development

Week 3: Performance management
Presented by: Jennifer Hegarty

We’ll cover how to get the best out of people’s performance at work by regularly keeping track of goals, recognition and feedback. Key topics:

  • Goal setting
  • Giving feedback /coaching
  • Managing under performance
  • Remuneration discussions

Week 4: Managing confrontation
Presented by: Gavin Bain

This part of the course will look at different types of potential conflict and how to best handle confrontation at work in a timely manner. We’ll also look at several ways of fostering collaboration. Key topics:

  • Difficult conversations/personalities
  • Discipline process
  • Conflict resolution
  • Team collaboration

Week 5: An introduction to recruitment and onboarding
Presented by: Courtney Robertson

This part of the course will explore the overall candidate and onboarding experience and why it is the most important part of building a strong team. Key topics:

  • Unconscious bias
  • Recruitment process
  • Interview techniques / evaluating candidates
  • Importance of onboarding

Week 6: Wellbeing
Presented by: Andy Wright

We’ll cover the importance of creating workplace wellbeing which promotes both mental and physical health. Key topics:

  • Prioritising wellbeing
  • Stress management
  • Mental health
  • Maintaining healthy habits

Week 7: Creating safe spaces
Presented by: Jessica Farrell

An overview of the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion both in your workplace and in our industry. Key topics:

  • Inclusivity in virtual/hybrid team
  • Equal opportunity and allyship
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Change management

Week 8: Presentation

This industry-certified course includes homework/assessments.

Bonus Content: Managing expectations
Presented by: Kara Bombell


Become the best manager you can be by Amanda Fuller, Managing Partner, DDB Remedy
Advertising, we have a problem by Sarah Jones Palmer, Co-Founder and Director, The HumanCo
Q&A with Julie Dormand, Facilitator, Manager Fundamentals
AdSchool launches Manager Fundamentals

Participant feedback

Last year I had the privilege of taking the inaugural AdSchool Manager Fundamentals with Amber Martin. Not knowing what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised with the course content and discussions we had as a team. I recently discussed with a fellow participant; that we missed our weekly group therapy sessions. It was refreshing to hear that others in the industry are facing similar challenges in management positions and to work through solutions for being a better leader in the future.

Amber was incredible to learn from and made the environment safe to discuss sensitive issues.

Highly recommend to anyone looking to take the next step in their career.

Eloise Cribb (she/her)
Senior Business Director
303 MullenLowe

The Manager Fundamentals course was a very insightful and rewarding course.

The practical knowledge I gained was highly relevant and applicable to my own management role. The added benefit of meeting similar people within the industry, including our senior facilitator, provided a great opportunity to hear and learn more about everyone’s own unique management experiences.

I would highly recommend this course to anyone wanting to develop their management skills.

James Slevison (He/Him)
Account Director
Fenton Stephens

A practical, applicable course that helped empower me to become a better manager in my team and within my company.

Julie was a fantastic facilitator.

Anna Boucaut
Head of Digital Programs
Howatson + Company


Insights from our Facilitators

Our industry is flooded with incredibly ambitious people who progress to being people managers based on excelling at their craft.

However, we do them a disservice by promoting them to lead colleagues without properly training them. By improving how we manage and develop our teams, we’ll positively impact the careers of so many professionals within the Australian advertising industry.

Julie Dormand, Managing Director, The Works

Creating safe spaces is vital in our industry. I am excited to have open conversations with the participants about how to get the best out of their teams. Ultimately aiming to create an inclusive place – where all kinds of talent can thrive.

Being a manager can be complicated, challenging and also endlessly rewarding. If you are a manager, this course will help you guide and mentor your team with confidence. Building the skills needed to lead a successful team.

Amber Martin, Managing Director, Hypnosis Creative Agency

As a facilitator, I’m really looking forward to sharing some of my own (good and bad) experiences to help bring our fantastic lecturers’ topics to life for each participant. My aim is to have each aspiring manager leave the course with a very personal and purposeful approach to developing their managerial style.

Oliver Ward, Managing Director, Team X