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Jewish Wisdom for the Workplace

Join this weekly course from 15 November – 13 December at 15:00 – 16:30 CET

  • Can you lie to a donor if it is for a good cause? 
  • How do you steer people through challenging times? 
  • Does a leader always have to be strong? 
  • What do we do when all our energy has gone? 

These are some of the dilemmas we will be examining in Jewish Workplace Wisdom. 

Jewish Workplace Wisdom is a project of Yesod Europe and Hadar. The course empowers thoughtful and passionate European Jewish community professionals to embark on five weeks of virtual learning and discussion on the most pressing questions confronting the Jewish community and the world.  

From the permissibility of lying to dealing with burnout; from negotiating tricky dilemmas to showing our emotions at work, this course deals with situations we’ve encountered and suggests others we may not have come across. The course is aimed at bringing Jewish wisdom to every aspect of our work life. 

We believe it is essential for all Jewish community professionals to engage with Jewish texts and to be carriers of Jewish tradition. With the guidance of Hadar’s faculty, the Jewish Workplace Wisdom course will enable Jewish community professionals to explore our tradition for knowledge that will help us and our communities to navigate contemporary social, moral, and practical challenges.  

Classes will include discussion of dilemmas, examination of Jewish texts, and helpful ideas of how to use what we learn in our everyday work lives. 

Each class will run for 90 minutes. Program participants are expected to participate in and attend all sessions. To help you get as much from this interactive series as possible, participants are requested to join from a computer rather than a mobile device and to turn on camera mode. We also advise you to update to the latest version of Zoom available.

I’m Not Sure – Tuesday 15 November, 2022 , 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Avi Strausberg 

Covid. Conflict in Ukraine. Rising cost of living. All of these have awakened doubt and anxiety. How do we manage these feelings of uncertainty? What can Jewish tradition teach us about periods of transition and adapting to change? 

Flattery Will Get You… – Tuesday 22 November, 2022 , 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Elie Kaunfer 

There are so many reasons to flatter somebody: getting close to a source of power, securing much needed funding, a pay rise, increased opportunities. Is false flattery altogether a bad thing or is it sometimes appropriate to “adapt” the truth for some greater purpose? 

The Value of Vulnerability: On Truly Great Leadership – Tuesday 29 November, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Dena Weiss 

 According to the 18th century Hassidic master, the Maor VaShemesh, a good leader shares their own self-reflection and weaknesses to inspire others to do better. The Maor’s teachings ask us to examine what it means to be a powerful leader and what it takes to learn from one.  

Why Are You Here, Elijah? A Biblical Story of Burnout – Tuesday 6 December, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Tali Adler

Elijah is the persistant servant of God – until he crashes. Join us as we study the story of Elijah, what brings him to the edge of exhaustion, and what we can learn from his story about making a life of service sustainable.

Putting It All Together – Tuesday 13 December, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET  

Mordy Labaton &  Rabbi David Levin-Kruss 

A chance to reflect on the course as a whole and to share ways you have or plan to use your new insights in your work. 

I’m Not Sure – Tuesday 15 November, 2022 , 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Avi Strausberg 

Rabbi Avi Strausberg is the Director of National Learning Initiatives at Hadar, and is based in Washington, DC. Previously, she served as the Director of Congregational Learning of Temple of Aaron in St. Paul, Minnesota. Avi studied at Hadar as a year fellow, and served on Hadar’s summer faculty in 2014. She received her rabbinic ordination from Hebrew College in Boston and is a Wexner Graduate Fellow.   

Flattery Will Get You… – Tuesday 22 November, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Elie Kaunfer 

Rabbi Elie Kaunfer is President and CEO of the Hadar Institute. Elie previously worked as a journalist, banker, and corporate fraud investigator. A graduate of Harvard College, he completed his doctorate in liturgy at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he was also ordained. A Wexner Graduate Fellow and Dorot Fellow, Elie is a co-founder of the independent minyan Kehilat Hadar and has been named multiple times to Newsweek’s list of the top 50 rabbis in America.

The Value of Vulnerability: On Truly Great Leadership – Tuesday 29 November, 2022 , 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Dena Weiss

Dena Weiss is Rosh Beit Midrash and Senior Faculty at Hadar, where she teaches Talmud, Midrash and Hasidut. Dena earned a BA in Religious Studies from New York University and an MA in Theology from Harvard Divinity School. She has studied and taught in a variety of Jewish educational settings including, Drisha, Midreshet Lindenbaum, and Pardes.

Why Are You Here, Elijah? A Biblical Story of Burnout  – Tuesday 6 December, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Rabbi Tali Adler

Rabbi Tali Adler is a member of the Hadar faculty. A graduate of Yeshivat Maharat and alumna of Stern College for Women, Rabbi Adler has studied at a number of institutions including Hadar, Drisha, and Midreshet HaRova.


Putting It All Together – Tuesday 13 December, 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CET, Mordy Labaton & Rabbi David Levin-Kruss 

Mordy Labaton works as Hadar’s Director of Programs. Mordy was born and raised on the Jersey Shore where he spent his summers searching for uncrowded beaches. Following two years of study in a Jerusalem yeshiva, Mordy attended the University of Maryland where he studied History and Jewish studies. Prior to his current position at Hadar, Mordy was a fellow at Hadar’s year-long Yeshiva program and worked on the development team at the New Israel Fund.

Rabbi David Levin-Kruss  is Yesod Europe’s Jewish Learning Director, guiding professionals as they find or enhance their Jewish voice using rich and innovative Jewish content. In addition to working for Yesod Europe, David is also Director of Jewish Education for JDC-Europe.

The course is valued at 500 Euros per person. Yesod Europe will cover most of this cost, but we believe that participants’ organizations should, wherever possible, demonstrate commitment to your development with some level of financial contribution. We are therefore asking for a contribution from your employer of 50 Euros towards the course.  

While this is only 10% of the cost per person, we would not want this to be a barrier to you taking part. If this is not affordable for your employer, please do get in touch to discuss this with us. 

Spaces are limited and priority will be given to Jewish community professionals living and working in Europe/UK.

NB: Join at 15:00-16:30 CET (14:00-15:30 UK, 16:00-17:30 Baltics and Bulgaria).

Please register for the course here. We will aim to confirm your place within 10 working days.

Please be in touch with us at with any questions.