"The timing is ripe for a program like this..." - FORBES

Forward-thinking companies know it’s time for new ways to inspire & ignite the talent of women.

Hear from our students

For High-Potential Women and Managers – To Help Companies Pave the Way for Women to Succeed

With lawsuits, gender pay gaps and lack of board seats dominating the news, it is clear that the old ways of working, aren’t working.  Forward-thinking companies are looking for new ways to pave the way for women to succeed at work and to get women and men engaged in the process.

We focus on hard and soft skills (confidence, communication, time management, goal setting, financials, negotiations, etc.) along with action steps for results. There is a graduation retreat and six-month follow up to keep the momentum going. All of this is done with no time away from work and at an accelerated pace, to start seeing results quickly.


"It's an engaging online experience. Women are raving about the content, approach and camaraderie!" - COMCAST


Program includes:


  • 8 Weekly Online Classes/Group Coaching Sessions
  • Workbook and materials
  • Graduation Retreat in Boston
  • Certificate from UMass Boston Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship
  • 6-Month Follow up
  • Lifetime access to material and network
  • Optional onsite workshop for men and women is also available

90-Day Action Plan Workbook

"It’s the combo of having a career coach, motivational speaker and a source of practical advice for business, all rolled into one.” - TESLA

Lesli Ann Agcaoili, Senior Design Quality Engineer - TESLA MOTORS

The program is taught by Erin McCormick, Director, Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at UMass Boston and founder of Year of Action.

Erin was CIO of two companies, has started three companies and the former Director, Curriculum Innovation and Technology at Babson College – #1 in the world for entrepreneurship education. She is the author of Year of Action: How to Stop Waiting & Start Living Your BIG, Fabulous Life.

The Best-Seller,
Year of Action, and 90-Day Action Plan Workbook

FACULTY DIRECTOR                                                      

Screenshot 2016-04-02 19.04.21




Learn how to get focused and get past what’s holding you back in your career

Click the ⊕ for more info

Week 1: Be Unstoppable

  • Develop an ACTION MINDSET for success

  • Learn Top 10 things holding women back today
  • Learn how to push past fear and doubts that hold you back
  • Learn a framework for how to take action and get results
  • Dream Big and get focused on what you want
Week 2: Set 90-Day Goals

  • Learn where your time is going and how to be more productive

  • Identify 1-3 goals to work on over the next 90 days
  • Learn the B-SASi method of goal setting
  • Learn practical strategies to get past obstacles when you get stuck
Week 3: Get Focused

  • Create a “30-second pitch” to deliver to the class

  • Use the B-SASi goal method to plan out your action steps for the next two weeks
  • Finalize your time-study results
  • Exercises about creating work you love
  • Determine one strategy to be more productive
  • Put that strategy in place over the next week
Week 4: Get Clear on Your Value

  • Develop an Entrepreneurial Mindset to solve problems in the Innovation Economy
  • Learn how to create your Blue Ocean Strategy
  • Understand your unique strengths and value
  • Create your action steps for the next two weeks
  • Progress on your goals


  • a process to push past fear and doubts and get results
  • a system for how to set and reach your goals
  • how to focus on actions that get results
  • how to get unstuck and how to turn ideas into action
  • how to work in sprints (like developers do) for faster results
  • how to identify your strengths and skills
  • how to develop an entrepreneurial mindset to solve problems from a new perspective
  • You will complete Action Sheets and videos on:
    • Goal Setting
    • Time Management/Analysis
    • Productivity Tools
    • Exercises to develop your confidence, skills, strengths and more


Learn the basics of Communication, Financials, Negotiations and Sales

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Week 1: Own the Room

  • Tools to develop your executive presence 

  • Learn practical communication strategies for meetings and presentations
  • Assessment of how you are being perceived now; know your value
  • Role-Playing scenarios
  • Check-in on goals and action steps
Week 2: Know the Numbers

  • Get comfortable with the financials of a business – explained in plain language

  • Learn your money mindset and how it impacts your actions
  • Learn how your role impacts the company’s bottom line
  • Overview of financial basics in a business (Balance Sheet, Income Statement, Cash Flow, Profit Margin)
  • Action Sheets to figure out profit margin, revenue and more
Week 3: Negotiate Like a Pro

  • Learn to Ask, Get comfortable with negotiating

  • Develop your negotiation skills
  • Practical scripts and strategies to use while negotiating a new job, raise, salary adjustment, vendor discussions and more
  • Role-playing
  • Check-in on goals and action steps
Week 4: Sell it

  • Learn basic sales skills

  • Understand who your customer is and what problem you are solving
  • Move from a selling to a solving mindset
  • Ask for the order
  • Write a 30-second pitch that articulates your value


  • how to “own the room” in a meeting; how to speak up and be heard
  • how to negotiate better (job offers, salary negotiations, vendors)
  • how to develop your executive presence
  • where you offer the most value to an organization
  • how to understand basic financials of a company

You will complete Action Sheets and videos on: 

  • Presentation skills
  • Negotiations
  • Finance Basics
  • Business Models
  • Sales skills
  • Role-playing

"You need to take this course, it will change your life.”

Marissa Fortin, Consultant


Samples from classes

“Guest Rockstars” –  SETH GODIN

"It really works.”

Kathleen Finnegan, President - FINNEGAN INSURANCE

Our accelerated program boosts women’s confidence, courage and clarity along with key business skills, by using practical action steps in a relaxed setting, to get results quickly.

We call this framework the new "MBA"

The new skills you need to succeed today

Confidence, Courage and Clarity

It all starts with a positive mindset and attitude for success. We help you build your confidence, push past fear and doubts and develop an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset to see and solve problems in new ways. We help you set big goals, get laser-focused and develop the skills, support and action steps to get there.

Hard and Soft Skills

We take the intimidation out of business education. We teach essential skills you need to succeed today – communication, creative problem-solving, time management, goal setting, sales, negotiations, financial – in plain language. We help you apply these skills to solve real-world problems to succeed in the innovation economy.

Design thinking, Lean startup, Challenges

Talking is fine, but you have to get out there and do something. Take action. Meet with a customer. Speak up in a meeting. Create a prototype. Think big. Push yourself. Do something. Learn how to launch something new. We help you break down big goals into small action steps. We help you put the learning into practice to deliver results.

How Does It Work?

3 Main Components

Weekly online sessions, action items and community

1. Weekly Online Group Sessions: 7-8 pm EST
Connect from anywhere. Keeps you accountable and moving forward. All recorded if can’t make the live class.

2. Weekly Action Items
We email action items for you to do each week. There is a private website with videos and material.

3. Network of Women
We use a private Slack Group to connect with each other between weekly classes.


Onsite workshop, Graduation Retreat, Six-Month Follow-up

Optional Kickoff Workshop
for men and women at an organization to get everyone engaged and inspired.

Optional Graduation Retreat
in Boston. Retreat, materials and lunch included with the program. (Hotel/Travel not included.)

Six-Month Follow Up
We check in with you six months after the program ends. You have lifetime access to the material and community.

HOW MUCH TIME DOES XAP TAKE?                                           

Estimate 2-3 hours a week – which includes 1-2 hours of work and 1 hour for the weekly call. Plus, the work can be completed in short bursts of time.

Students who complete the program receive a certificate from the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, UMass Boston College of Management. 

There is also a 6-month follow up to check in and help you keep the momentum going.

Graduates are invited to a Saturday Retreat in the Boston area.

Graduation Retreat in Boston



Retreat, materials and lunch included.

(Hotel and travel not included.)

Let’s inspire & ignite the talent of the women in your organization.


Quick question? Click the chat box at the bottom right