Leadership & Personal Development

Women's Leadership Programme

Aiming Higher


Programme Description

Would you like to be promoted next year? Are you looking for a new challenge with more responsibility or a broader sphere of influence? Are you a female manager or specialist or have you been identified as a young talent? 

The "Aiming Higher - Women's Leadership Programme" offers women the right content to advance their careers. In addition to obtaining a deeper understanding of leadership in organisations and companies, you will reflect on your own leadership competencies, enhance your negotiation skills and personal impact, and participate in a unique mentoring programme that will help you achieve your next career steps.

The programme is designed in an online learning format. All seven modules are live, half-day online events, making the course compatible with even the busiest of schedules.

The programme language is English. However, participants who feel more at home in the German language will have the opportunity to complete preparation assignments, in-class group discussions, the personality inventory as well as the mentoring programme in German. 

Target Audience

  • Women in lower to middle management positions


Start Dates
3.5 days (seven half-day online modules)
Number of ECTS Credits
Level of Experience
Senior Manager
Functional Manager
Functional Specialist
High Potential
Programme Type
CHF 4'900
Special Discounts
Company discount for 2 or more registrations and corporate packages available upon request. Contact: Patricia Widmer, patricia.widmer@unisg.ch
Individual Modules Bookable
Flexible Entry
Programme Language

Programme Benefits

  • Strengthen your leadership competencies and negotiation skills
  • Receive valuable input for your personal development
  • Meet other female leaders and have the opportunity to exchange ideas
  • Benefit from a new online mentoring programme
  • Create a personal career plan including next steps
  • Expand your personal network with valuable contacts
  • Further your education from the convenience of your home or office

Application Criteria

The prerequisite for participation is a university or university of applied sciences degree or, in exceptional cases in which the Programme Head has a final decision, an equivalent educational certificate. The number of places is limited.

Course Structure

The "Aiming Higher - Women's Leadership Programme" is composed of seven half-day online seminars that are spread over a two-month period. The programme offers in compact form valuable expertise in the areas of leadership competences and leadership styles, stakeholder management, personal impact and negotiation skills. Participants will learn these leadership fundamentals in a highly personalized and practice-oriented way and will also receive concrete guidance for planning the next career step.

As an integral part of the programme, participants will reflect on their social skills and personal strengths by completing an online personality inventory (Hogan), followed by a personal debriefing. Each module is designed with ample time for group discussions and peer-to-peer exchange, in order to accelerate learning and foster network-building.

After completing the seven modules, participants will continue their learning journey by taking part in an innovative online mentoring programme. In addition, a reunion will be held in the greater Zurich area six months after the seminar to enable participants to further cultivate their network.

Aiming Higher Programme


Content & Faculty


Kick-off Meet & Greet Session

Thursday, 7 October 2021
5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

On the eve of our first course date, we will meet online for a brief and informal virtual reception. This "not to miss" event will provide you with the opportunity to meet the programme director and to get to know your course colleagues. Take this opportunity to start building your network and to establish rapport with those who will be accompanying you on the exciting journey ahead!


Dr. Patricia Widmer, Programme Director for Diversity & Management Programmes, Executive School of Management, Technology & Law, University of St. Gallen


Leadership I

Friday, 8 October 2021
8:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

“New Leadership and Purpose" deals with the topics of leadership, new working environment and the meaning in your work. Especially in times of change and Covid-19, leadership and purpose play an outstanding role. You will gain insights into current research findings and best practices for leaders. The online seminar is designed to be interactive, so that you can also exchange ideas about your leadership challenges virtually and receive concrete tips.


Prof. Dr. Petra Kipfelsberger is assistant professor for Leadership and Organizational Behavior at the University of St.Gallen. She advises business leaders in the areas of leadership, new work and cultural change. Petra Kipfelsberger has received several awards for her academic work.


Leadership II

Friday, 22 October 2021
8:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Based on your personal results of the Hogan personality inventory, you will discover more about your own personal leadership style. You will identify individual strengths and development potential and receive inspiration for integrating best practices into your own leadership style. A particular focus will be on the growing need for inclusive leadership and how to effectively manage and empower diverse and remote teams.


Christine Lemke is a business psychologist with a Master’s degree in leadership behaviour.  As a consultant at metaBeratung, Christine advises people and companies through change and transformation processes, delivers workshops for teams, and advises international clients on personnel selection and development – from trainee to C-level executive.

Dr. Patricia Widmer is Programme Director for Diversity & Management Programmes at the Executive School of the University of St.Gallen. She has a background in banking & finance and recently completed her doctorate on the topic of gender disparity, diversity management, unconscious bias and stereotypes.


Stakeholder Management

Friday, 29 October 2021
8:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Skilled stakeholder management is a key factor for professional success at higher management levels. How can you act authentically and achieve your goals in a political corporate environment? In this module you will learn how to communicate effectively and increase your own visibility. You will gain new insights for clear communication and for maintaining positive relationships with key decision-makers and stakeholders within the organization as well as with various external stakeholders.


Dr. Achim Wolter is Head of People and Organisational Development at Baloise Group. He has a PhD in Economics and years of experience in consulting and leadership development with various multinational companies in Europe.

Dr. Mike J. Widmer is founder and CEO of aalto, a boutique consulting firm for leadership, executive search and career consulting. He is a seasoned cross-sector executive search expert for C-level and board positions and has a substantial background in senior management consulting in Switzerland, Germany and the U.S.


Presence & Impact

Friday, 5 November 2021
8:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Each personal encounter is an opportunity to win somebody over. In this workshop you will deal with your personal presence and impact. You will get to know your strengths and learn to communicate in a self-confident, joyful and solution-oriented way.


Norina Peier is founder and owner of the company by the same name for organisational development. She is a psychologist with a specialisation in industrial and organisational psychology (Master of Science in Applied Psychology at the ZHAW), a solution-oriented coach (ICF) and a certified actress (ZHdK).


Negotiation Skills

Friday, 12 November 2021 and Friday, 19 November 2021
8:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Negotiating successfully in challenging situations is a skill that can help you advance both professionally and personally. In these two interactive modules, you will learn proven methods of conducting negotiations according to the Harvard principle. You will be able to focus on the interests of your counterpart and find constructive solutions in conflict situations without losing sight of your own goals. 


Catherine Mehrtens is Principal at Egger Philips and has over 10 years of experience as an international negotiation consultant and trainer. In addition to her work as a systemic coach and expert in innovative/digital learning, she has supported over 1,000 executives in negotiations.

Jochen Luksch is Managing Partner and President of the Board at Egger Philips. Jochen Luksch began his career as an attorney at law and has over 20 years of negotiation experience. He has trained, consulted and coached over 5’000 executive managers worldwide and also serves on the jury of the International Negotiation Competition.


Taking the Next Step

Friday, 26 November 2021
1:00 p.m. - 17:30 p.m.

Be the author of your own career success story! In this final module, you will acquire tools to help you identify your options and map out your next career step. You will also gain first-hand insights into the world of Executive Search and the latest top-level recruitment practices.


Dr. Mike J. Widmer is founder and CEO of aalto, a boutique consulting firm for leadership, executive search, and career development. He is a seasoned cross-sector executive search expert for C-level and board positions and has a substantial background in senior management consulting in Switzerland, Germany and the U.S.


Mentoring Programme

Take part in a unique online mentoring programme offered by Volunteer Vision to continue your personal learning journey and discuss your next steps. The customized matching process and structured online content ensure maximum personal benefit.



Six months after the programme has been completed, participants will reconvene for a special reunion in the Zurich area to further cultivate their network. 

Further information

Corporate Partners

Volunteer Vision

Press Coverage




As a mother and leader, this program was the perfect fit during COVID-19 for me as I could participate online without any travel constraints and restrictions. It’s absolutely the ideal program for leaders, supporting you with new perspectives on how to inspire others and be the best in your discipline, accompanied by a fantastic new network. A must have for leaders.
Vanessa Gentile
Vanessa Gentile
Director Alliance & Channel Switzerland, Salesforce
The Women's Leadership Programme was the perfect framework, on the one hand to gain the latest leadership know-how, and on the other to intensively deal with my personal competencies. The professional and open feedback from the qualified instructors and participants regarding my social skills and personal impact was extremely valuable for me. This has enabled me to make targeted use of my strengths in my everyday work, to position myself clearly and to take on leadership responsibilities.
Karin Manser
Karin Manser
Senior Consultant, IMPLEMENT AG
Most of all, I valued interacting with ambitious & interesting women. Everyone was willing to learn, challenge & support each other. The class diversity, in terms of background, experience & personality, allowed me to explore topics from various perspectives. All classes were well structured and the instructors encouraged participants to leave their comfort zone to put theory into practice. I truly enjoyed reflecting on my leadership skills and learning new ones in a professional environment.
Silvia Pelli
Silvia Pelli
Head of HR and Services, TEAM Marketing AG
Thanks for the great program. It empowered me and gave me new impulses for my daily job as well as my private life.
Viola Sini
Viola Sini
IT Revisionsexpertin, Die Schweizerische Post
Conversing with competent course instructors, participants and with role models from politics and business was a first-class motivational cocktail for me. I was able to broaden my horizon, question myself and gain new strength for what is coming up next. This is exactly what I want from continuing education.
Monika Röthlisberger
Monika Röthlisberger
Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office FSVO

Why HSG?

Executive education at the University of St.Gallen (HSG), one of Europe's leading business universities, provides you with an optimal preparation for the future. The University of St.Gallen is more than just an educational institution; it is a place of inspiration that stimulates you to think. You will acquire up-to-date knowledge that is of great practical relvance, and gain valuable insights. This will enable you to make an important contribution to social and economic progress and to your own personal development. "From insight to impact" is not just our message; it is a promise against which we can be measured. 

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