Cates_Karen 03092018
Karen Cates

Adjunct Professor of Executive Education

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As a lecturer and adjunct professor of executive education for over 20 years at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University Dr. Cates has developed programming and consulted to clients (domestic and global) around issues of organization alignment, leadership development, communication, strategic planning, and employee relations. 

Dr. Cates’ coaching and consulting experiences span a wide range of clients, from corporate leadership teams to trade associations to charter school principals.  Projects have included coaching mid- and senior-level leaders to create and implement strategic staffing plans, organizational climate surveys, the development and implementation of upward evaluation, 360 and other performance feedback systems, workplace mediation to manage in-house conflicts, and delivery of other relevant group and individual consultative services. She occasionally partners with licensed consultants who perform leadership-based psychological testing, and in 2009 was certified to administer Hay Group’s ESCI (Emotional and Social Competency Inventory).

Dr. Cates became a mediator in 1993 through the Center for Conflict Resolution, a not-for-profit founded by the Chicago Bar Association.  Dr. Cates mediated civil, criminal, property, small claims and employment litigation cases in the Circuit Court of Cook County in Illinois.  As a consultant, she provides conflict management services to all levels of the organization including facilitation of management team disputes, workplace investigations, and assistance with executive-level strategic planning and decision-making.

Businesses served:

Corporate and For-Profit businesses include: Hearst Corporation, Nossaman LLP, AKR Corporindo (Indonesia), Johnson & Johnson (U.S. & France), Union Pacific Railroad, O’Melveny & Myers, Baker & McKenzie, Baloise Insurance Group (Switzerland), CNA Insurance, Boyden International, Chicago Tribune, Wolters Kluwer, Merck KgaA (Germany), Bank of Montreal (Canada), Blue Cross/Blue Shield Association, Brunswick, Moore Corp.

Not-for-Profit and Public Organizations include: Montana Nonprofit Association, Livingston (MT) Farm to School Program, UChicagoImpact, University of Utah Health Services, University of Louisiana at Monroe, Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP), various U.S. Homeland Security agencies, the LAUNCH program for Chicago Public School Principals, Northwestern University (Library, Administration and various Schools & Colleges), Pediatric Faculty Foundation of Chicago’s Children’s Memorial Hospital, Covenant Theological Seminary, Illinois Secretary of State, Thresholds, Newberry Library, Community Alternatives Unlimited, American-Panhellenic Chamber of Commerce in Athens, Greece.

Association clients include:  National Roofing Contractors Association, American Association of Law Libraries, Million Dollar Round Table, American Theological Library Association, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, Women in Cable and Telecommunications, American Supply Association, National Association of State Treasurers, Legal Assistant Managers Association, PR Society of America, and National Association of Bar Executives.

Prior to academics and consulting, Dr. Cates was involved with industrial real estate development as a project manager responsible for the environmental safety and compliance of small hydroelectric power plant construction in New York and Washington States.

BS, Psychology, University of Illinois; MS, Human Resources and Human Development, University of Illinois; PhD, Social Psychology, Northwestern University

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PhD, 1994, Social Psychology, Northwestern University
MS, 1987, Human Resources and Human Development, University of Illinois
BS, 1982, Psychology, University of Illinois

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Executive Education
Energizing People for Performance

Participants in this highly interactive program, which includes personalized coaching, master the processes and tools required to unleash the potential in individuals, energize their teams and empower people to achieve consistently higher levels of performance and deliver better bottom-line results.

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