Crain's Leadership Academy

CRAIN'S Leadership Academy FAQs

Who is the Crain's Leadership Academy for?
Crain's Leadership Academy brings together a cross section of industry professionals who are eager to develop their leadership styles, leverage their strengths, and build their teams while establishing a strong peer network of like-minded professionals.

Past participant's titles included: Manager, Senior Manager, Senior Associate, Division Vice President, Director, Supervisor, Principal Senior Client Advisor, and other senior level candidates who oversee one to several employees.

What makes our program different?
Crain's Leadership Academy is an experiential program that brings the best of personal development, professional growth, leadership exposure and civic outreach through discovery sessions and guest CEO speakers. This is an intensive 5-session program. Over the course of our time together, you will access a panoramic view of some of Chicago's most interesting venues, key leaders, cross-sector perspectives, and gain a new peer network to tap throughout your career.

Who will I meet?
Past participants have been leaders across a wide range of organizations and industries, including professional services, banking, retail, mining, communications, real estate, digital media, economic development, government and academia. Titles included: Manager, Senior Manager, Senior Associate, Division Vice President, Director, Supervisor, Principal Senior Client Advisor, or other mid-level titles, from small to enterprise companies.

How does the nomination/application process work?
This program requires a nomination from the CEO of your organization or senior management. Once nominations open, we will review and notify the candidate and their company of acceptance and/or if we have questions regarding the nomination. From there the accepted candidate will complete an application form and a link will be provided for payment. Please keep in mind, participation is limited.

How much does it cost?
$5,500 covers all meals, assessments, supplies, outings and coaching over the course of five sessions, including two Friday retreats and three Friday afternoon lunch sessions. Once your application is reviewed and accepted we will send a link for payment or we can provide an invoice.

Where will sessions be held?
Full-day Friday sessions will take place at Crain's Chicago Business' offices, located at 150 N. Michigan Avenue. Garage parking options and public transportation are nearby. Friday half-day lunches and discovery sessions will take place in and around downtown Chicago. Agenda will be provided before the start of the program.

Are meals included?
All meals and snacks are included during the two Friday retreats and three Friday afternoon sessions. A class reception at the close of both full day Fridays is also included.

What do I need to bring?
You will receive reading material, including pre-selected books before arrival of the first Friday retreat. This will give you the opportunity to begin preparing for the program ahead of time. You will receive a special journal and folder with handouts. You are welcome to bring a laptop, iPad or tablet.

What should I wear?
You should dress business casual and comfortably for the entire program.

What if I miss one of the sessions?
We recommend committing fully to all sessions, including the two Friday retreats and three Friday afternoon sessions, in order to optimize the experience, build your network, and realize the full value of Crain's Leadership Academy. If something comes up and you miss a session, we will be happy to get you up to speed at a mutually agreed upon date/time prior to the next session. We will also host brown bag sessions in-between each Friday session, at Crain's headquarters, so you can continue your journey with our facilitators.

When is the next Leadership Academy?
The next Crain's Leadership Academy will kick-off Friday, August 28. The nomination page will open in February. Space is limited and your nomination form, followed by your application and payment, will need to be completed before the start of the program. If you have any questions please contact us at

Additional Questions?
Please contact and we will be happy to assist you!