0839 Becoming a Global Leader
Univ.Prof. Dr. Günter Stahl
Contact details
Weekly hours
Language of instruction
09/14/22 to 09/26/22
Registration via LPIS
Notes to the course
Subject(s) Master Programs
Day Date Time Room
Monday 11/21/22 09:00 AM - 02:00 PM D1.1.074
Tuesday 11/22/22 09:00 AM - 02:00 PM D1.1.074
Wednesday 11/23/22 09:00 AM - 02:00 PM D1.1.074
Thursday 11/24/22 09:00 AM - 02:00 PM D1.1.074
Friday 11/25/22 09:00 AM - 02:00 PM D1.1.074

The goal of this course is to help participants gain a better understanding of the foundations of leadership and be more effective in leadership roles. This entails developing knowledge and skills to analyze key issues in motivation, influence, decision-making, interpersonal relations, team dynamics, and organizational change. Analysis of real-life case studies will demonstrate that effective leadership involves four critical processes: setting 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 provide participants with an opportunity to reflect on their “leadership story” (i.e., their personal development journey), evaluate their leadership development needs and goals, and create a personal development action plan.

In addition to the leadership fundamentals, the course will address the global and cross-cultural dimensions of leadership. Despite rising anti-globalization sentiments in many parts of the world, at no time in history has the contact between individuals and organizations from different countries been greater. The increase in global competition has spurred an unprecedented surge in cross-border alliances, mergers, and acquisitions. Managers travel around broader regions while their jobs remain headquartered in one place. Global virtual teams are created to address important strategic challenges. As companies are moving to more agile and flexible ways of working in a post-Covid world, part of the workforce is remote or hybrid, which brings its own leadership challenges. As a result, the demands on leaders have increased exponentially.

Another focus of this course is on contemporary leadership issues and emerging new trends in leadership. We will explore how leaders can help their organizations remain resilient in times of crisis and navigate through periods of turbulence and disruption, such as the global Covid-19 pandemic, the impacts of accelerated climate change, and rising geopolitical tensions. Leading with foresight and integrity in a VUCA world – an environ­ment characterized by uncertainty, volatility, and unpredictability – is fraught with difficulties and ethical dilemmas. Therefore, another goal of this course is to explore how to lead and make decisions under conditions of uncertainty, turbulence and crisis.

The course is thus organized around four major themes:

  1. Fundamentals of leadership and leadership development (Sessions 1-2)
  2. Leading and developing self (Sessions 3)
  3. Contemporary leadership issues and emerging new trends in leadership (Sessions 4-6)
  4. Global and cross-cultural dimensions of leadership (Sessions 7-8)

Important: Students who attended or are planning to attend the Becoming a Global Leader or Managing People, Teams and Organizations Across Cultures elective courses (in the winter semester) with Prof. Stahl are not eligible for this course.


Learning outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding:

  • First-hand accounts of the challenges facing global corporations and leaders.
  • Guidelines on managing people, teams and organizations in global contexts.
  • Better understanding of the ethical dilemmas facing global managers and strategies for dealing with those dilemmas.
  • Knowledge in culture theory and better understanding of how culture affects corporate strategy, organizational structure, and management practice.
  • Understanding of which attributes are important for global leadership success.

Cognitive and Subject Specific Skills:

  • Knowledge to manage and lead effectively in cross-border environments.
  • People management best practices and tools for managing organizational culture.
  • An awareness of the pervasive influence that culture has on organizational behavior.
  • The capacity to analyze differences in communication patterns and leadership behavior.
  • The capacity to develop and implement high quality solutions in a global context.

General Skills:

  • The ability to apply management know-how and skills to real-world leadership challenges.
  • The ability to analyze cases dealing with global management and cross-cultural issues and to apply the learning to practical business situations.
  • Experience working in multicultural teams and better teamwork skills.
  • Greater intercultural sensitivity and empathy.
  • Better implementation skills and the ability to balance global and local demands.
Attendance requirements

Participants are expected to attend all of the classes and to notify me by e-mail if an emergency or force majeure means they cannot attend. Missing classes will be noted as evidence of low course commitment and affect the grade for participation. Also, note that there are three mandatory classes that participants must attend (no exceptions!): Session 1 (course intro), session 3 (personal development plan and instructions for the reflection paper), and session 6 (group presentations).

Teaching/learning method(s)

The course is organized around eight 4-5-hour classroom sessions. Each session addresses a particular leadership challenge (e.g., leading a diverse team) or illustrates a particular leadership concept or principle (e.g., influencing without using authority). Participants will be provided with a set of concepts, analytical frame­works, and practical tools that will help them to develop their capacity to lead people and groups effectively. Our modus operandi will be dialog, and the teaching approach varied, with a mix of lecture input, group discussion, case analysis, videos, and assessments. Effective leadership requires self-awareness, so self-diagnostic tools will also be made available.




The course grade will be computed as a weighted average of three elements:

  1. Participation (30%)
  2. Group project: “21st Century Leadership” (30%)
  3. Reflection paper: Your personal development journey and “leadership story” (40%)

While evaluation is a necessary feature of this and any other course, it is not expected that participants will populate both tails of a normal distribution.

Prerequisites for participation and waiting lists

Students who attended or are planning to attend the Becoming a Global Leader or Managing People, Teams and Organizations Across Cultures elective courses (in the winter semester) with Prof. Stahl are not eligible for this course.


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The use of AI-based software in assignments is permitted, but course participants are required to provide indication for the corresponding sections (e.g., in a footnote). Note that the use of AI-based software, such as ChatGPT, for text generation in the reflection paper My Leadership Story is problematic. The focus of the paper is on your personal development journey and what leadership means to you (not what leadership means to ChatGPT). Output from any Generative AI tool must be carefully reviewed before that output should be used for any assignment. In short, I allow the use of AI in assignments, but expect that this is transparently explained, disclosed and justified.

Last edited: 2024-02-13