Oxford Women's Leadership Development Programme

Facilitate self-acceptance and self-development by acknowledging your own agency

Start date:


  • 6 weeks

Time commitment:

  • Short programme


  • Online


  • £2,200

About the programme

Increase your impact as a woman in leadership.

Developed from a study of women CEOs by Oxford Saïd academics, this programme helps to address many of the barriers that women must overcome in order to pursue their leadership ambitions.

The programme is guided by three overarching themes:

  • self-acceptance
  • self-management
  • self-development

The learning has been designed to better equip current leaders to navigate the many challenges and gender biases within the workplace, and develop the critical skills of aspiring leaders seeking to lead, influence, and mentor.

Examine your role as a leader as you gain skills to facilitate self-acceptance and self-development by acknowledging your own agency. Aided by tools and resources for self-management, you’ll learn to effectively navigate negotiation scenarios using your strengths and influence.

Delivered in partnership with online learning provider, GetSmarter, you will be part of a community learning together through a dedicated Online Campus.

An introduction to the programme

Woman stairs

What our alumni say

This is my first online course, and it far exceeded my expectations...The programme not only enhanced my understanding, it also gave me the confidence and framework to bring it into action in my job.

Stella YY Lee

Global Business Director, Omnicom Media Group


On completion of this programme, you’ll be empowered to:

  • Create a personal development plan so that you may move into the future with confidence as a leader
  • Critically examine your own identity as a leader and recognise your leadership potential
  • Understand how to respond to culture and gender assumptions
  • Take ownership of your career and learn to leverage your strengths and identify limiting behaviours
  • Evaluate a range of methods and resources for developing and transitioning as a leader
  • Join a global network of current and aspiring female leaders who are preparing to broaden their impact and influence
  • Guidance from leading industry experts and Oxford Saïd faculty, and access to the official Oxford Executive Education Alumni group on LinkedIn

Programme curriculum

Orientation module

Welcome to your Online Campus

Applications to join the programme will be accepted until the end of the orientation module. 

Module 1

Accepting yourself as a leader.

Reflect on how you have led in the past and acknowledge your abilities as a leader.


Module 2

Understanding your context.

Learn how to read and diagnose context and react appropriately.

Module 3

Negotiating as a leadership practice.

Understand cultural dimensions in order to negotiate effectively.

Module 4

Becoming an influential leader.

Recognise how to use your unique strengths to persuade and influence.


Module 5

Developing as a leader: What can help you?

Gain an appreciation for self-development as a lifelong activity.

Module 6

Imagining your future possibilities as a leader.

Create a personal development plan for your future as a leader.


Meet the faculty

The programme is led by Professor Sue Dopson and Kathryn Bishop, they will be joined by leading industry experts to share the depth of their knowledge and insight throughout the programme. 

Experts and contributors

The thinking behind the programme

The programme plays its part in the extensive research, programmes and activities across Oxford Said dedicated to women’s leadership. With ongoing work into the critical area of increasing women’s impact and influence in the world, Women at Oxford Said collates together the landscape of development Oxford is helping to facilitate.  

Participants will benefit from all that the Oxford community is sharing in this environment of women’s leadership development. Drawing on a learning approach that is rooted on an emphasis of reflection and sharing, within a ‘safe space.’

The structure is influenced by extensive research, tools and frameworks including:  

  • Claiming the corner office (Anathasopolou, Smets, Moss-Cowan, Morris)
  • Critical, tame, and wicked problems framework (Keith Grint)
  • Strengths-based leadership model (David Pendleton)
  • Strategies for influencing (HAY’s taxonomy)
  • Six styles of leadership (Goleman)


Programme impact

From 'aha' moments during journaling, enrichment activities and discussion boards, to feeling a sense of belonging and the challenges of learning online during a house move, participants gain a shared positive impact.

Laila Valterio and Liliana Bermudes share their experiences of the programme, and helpful tips for those considering this for their personal development journey.  

Continuing your development

Women Transforming Leadership

Explore next steps or if you are looking to develop a more experienced career path.

Our Women Transforming Leadership Programme is designed for women who have had more than one influential leadership role.

Equip yourself with the career strategies to get where you want to go and develop your self-awareness to succeed on the way.



The CPD Certification Service

This programme is certified by The CPD Certification Service. It may be applicable to individuals who are members of, or are associated with, UK-based professional bodies.


Options for organisations

If you are looking to integrate Oxford online programmes with your organisation’s Learning & Development strategy, we have tailored solutions to help deliver an innovative learning experience across teams.