Plan B Option
According to most forecasts, the uncertainties brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic will be with us for some time to come and could also affect this course. In case of a suspected case or illness, people could be quarantined and/or areas on campus could be closed. Travel restrictions may prevent both international students and faculty from being at WU at the beginning of the semester. These are just some of the possible scenarios for the winter semester. Hence, we need a plan B. Plan B for this course is to hold the course in synchronous hybrid mode (i.e., the course will be held in presence for a part of the participants; at the same time the course is streamed for all students who cannot be on campus).
The goal of this course is to help participants gain a better understanding of the foundations of leadership and help them to be more effective in leadership roles in their organizations. This entails developing knowledge and skills to analyze key issues in motivation, influence, decision-making, interpersonal relations, team processes, and organizational change. Written and video cases, experiential exercises and real-life examples from the instructors’ extensive experience as a senior executive (Dr. Waltl) and management educator and consultant (Prof. Stahl) will demonstrate that effective leadership involves four critical processes: establishing direction, aligning people behind it, setting and maintaining values, and growth of self and others. These leadership tasks require self-awareness and self-management skills, therefore this course will also provide participants with an opportunity to reflect on their development as a future leader (hence, the course title “Becoming a Global Leader”). Participants will have an opportunity to analyze their leadership style and competencies; reflect on their personal development needs and on how to improve their effectiveness as future leaders; design a customized strategy for increasing expertise in their weak areas; and create a personal development plan.
In addition to covering the fundamentals of leadership, another focus of this course is on how to lead with foresight and integrity in a global, highly dynamic and turbulent environment. Today’s executives face unprecedented levels of complexity and have to make decisions that have huge social, economic and environmental implications. In so doing, they find themselves torn between the different and often conflicting needs and expectations of global and local stakeholders. Leading in such a context is fraught with ethical dilemmas and “integrity landmines”, and another goal of this course is to provide participants with strategies to navigate those tensions. Thus, this course is designed to help participants develop a deeper understanding of the challenges that confront global managers today and to prepare them for leadership roles in their organizations.
To achieve these goals, we will approach the subject of leadership from a variety of different angles and draw on insights from diverse disciplines, including global strategy, organizational behavior, human resource management, social psychology, behavioral ethics and cognitive neuroscience. Throughout the course, Dr. Waltl will share personal experiences and insights from his 32-year career with Shell, where he held various senior executive positions in Europe, North America and Asia, and offer career advice to participants. Prof. Stahl will provide insights and ideas based on cutting-edge research and his years in consulting and management education; and equip participants with a set of management concepts, analytical frameworks and practical tools that can help them deal more effectively with key leadership challenges.
Participants are expected to attend all of the sessions.
The course is structured around five 5-hour classroom sessions. Each session is a module addressing a particular leadership or leadership development challenge. Our modus operandi will be dialog, and the teaching approach varied, with a mix of lecture input, group discussion, case analysis, experiential exercises, and videos. Effective global leadership requires self-awareness and awareness of one’s own cultural background, so self-diagnostic tools will also be made available.
The course grade will be computed as an average of two elements:
a) Participation (40%)
b) Individual Paper (60%)
Given the interactive format of this course, active participation in class discussions is required. This includes evidence of thorough preparation of course materials, particularly case studies and pre-class assignments. Participants are expected to attend all of the sessions. Classroom performance will be evaluated based on attendance, preparedness, and quality of contributions (please note the word ‘quality’).
b) Individual Paper
Participants write a reflection paper, focusing on their “leadership story” or leadership development journey, as part of the course requirements. This assignment offers you the opportunity to consider how your personal experiences shaped your views of life and who you are as a leader (or a potential future leader). It is meant to be a first step toward better understanding your authentic leadership style and how it might be further developed, by reflecting on questions like: “What motivates me as a leader?”, “How do my life experiences shape my approach to leadership?”, “What are my most deeply held values and the philosophies that guide my life?”, “What is my vision of what I want to achieve in my life and career?”, “How can I capitalize on what is special or unique about myself and develop my trademark leadership style?”, and so on. The purpose of this self-reflection exercise is to provide a basis for crafting your“Leadership Story”. Like a good story, it captures the essence of who you are as a person and as a leader – your unique identity that sets you apart from others, and this should be the basis for your leadership development. This opportunity to reflect deeply on your inner (and outer) journey, as well as your talents, ambitions and goals in your life and career is best combined with a personal development plan. In this course you will be given the opportunity to create a development action plan. Further instructions will be provided in class.
Please note: This course is limited to 30 participants. Students who attended or are planning to attend the “Global Management Practices” (“Responsible Global Leadership”) Core Course with Professor Stahl are not eligible for this course.