Delivering Excellence in Lifelong Learning
young male professional pointing at a whiteboard while giving a presentation to a male client in a boardroom young male professional pointing at a whiteboard while giving a presentation to a male client in a boardroom

The Essentials

Learning for Professionals

Skills for success with these focused programs.


Critical tools for success

Are you as efficient and productive in your day-to-day work as you’d like to be?
Do you have the people and professional skills you need to succeed in today’s competitive business environment? The six Essentials Programs offer you the critical tools you need to succeed today, through a series of highly concentrated classes that you can tailor to your precise needs and interests. With the Professional Development Essentials, you’ll gain insights you can begin applying right away—without spending a lot of time in a classroom.

Business Essentials Program

Succeeding in any business endeavour really comes down to a few time-honoured principles that apply in a variety of business settings. Learn the core competencies that distinguish effective managers from the rest, ranging from effective management strategies, communication, finance and excellent customer service skills.

Communication Essentials Program

Knowing how to communicate effectively is an indispensable—and highly valued—skill. Being able to express yourself clearly and with confidence is essential in both your business and personal lives and can have a significant impact on your relationships with others. Learn the crucial interpersonal, written and verbal presentation skills that will guide you to better communication immediately.

Innovation Essentials Program

Everyone can be creative and adopt innovative thinking. The first step is understanding what these topics really mean, and the multitude of ways they can occur. Learn how to implement strategies that will generate new ideas and solutions and explore and expand possibilities using an innovative mindset.

Leadership Essentials Program

Great leaders are made, not born. Learn how to connect with your own inner self-awareness, tap into your natural leadership abilities, and enhance your effectiveness and credibility within your organization. With the insights you’ll gain in this program, you’ll be able to motivate your team to even greater productivity and effectiveness, and innovation.

Productivity Essentials Program

Studies show that during a typical workday, a significant amount of time is lost to disorganization.  This program will teach you the secrets of effectively organizing your time, setting your priorities and optimizing your interactions with co-workers, customers and management. By implementing these highly effective—and easy to follow—strategies, you’ll be well on your way to achieving a new level of personal productivity. 

Team Essentials Program

Highly effective teamwork is essential to achieving optimum productivity and harmony in the workplace. This program reveals the crucial qualities that foster truly outstanding teamwork. You’ll discover the keys to effectively managing, motivating, and working as part of a successful team; resolving conflicts; and discovering how to take full advantage of team members’ personal strengths, in order to bring out the best in the team.

Multi-Competency Essentials Program

Show your variety of skills and emotional intelligence by taking any five days' worth of our Essentials course offerings. This new certificate of completion will provide you with greater flexibility and you will not be limited to any specific Essentials stream. 

Corporate & Custom Training

Any of the Essentials courses or programs can be customized and delivered on-site or at One James North.  Don’t let the list of courses deter you from inquiring about other topics – we can contact an expert on virtually any skill your organization requires training on!  Learn more about corporate training.


Watch our latest program preview webinar to learn more about ​Essentials Programs and how to get started:​


What People Are Saying


Sue Graci, McMaster University Financial Affairs Account Payable Associate:

“ The Creative and Critical Thinking course was incredibly enlightening, opening my mind up to seeing situations in a completely different light. I am now able to analyze an issue with a set of steps designed to define the actual issue (often not at all what I THOUGHT it was!) and consider it from multiple angles, all leading towards effective and efficient solutions. This is one of the most valuable courses I have taken and the instructor was enthusiastic, knowledgeable and really invested in helping his students understand and then put into effect their new skills. We used a work issue that we pulled from our own jobs to work through the course and that has changed the way I do my job. I never expected to have so many tools given to me out of a single course.

And the instructor was entertaining while he taught, which is something rare. I learned while laughing at his examples. I would love to take another course with him, he was that good.”