COM 597: Leadership and Teams

Course Description:

In this highly interactive course you will learn to notice, describe, and assess how formal and informal leaders organize and participate in workplace meetings in ways that enhance group creativity and effective problem solving. The course integrates the classic wisdom on effective leadership in workplace groups with the newest research on virtual teams, computer-assisted group problem solving, and the facilitative potential of leader communications. In the course you will learn and practice a research method and skill—the real-time analysis of leader behavior in work group interactions, and you will learn how this skill will enable you to enhance the creative and problem solving performance of workplace groups in which you participate and t hat you lead. Taking this course can help you develop your personal capacity as a constructive participant in work groups and teams. It can also provide you with research-based understandings of how various leadership communications can facilitate the effectiveness of work groups, as well as equip you to do qualitative real-time analyses of the functioning of work teams of which you are a member, observer, or facilitator. Finally, it will introduce you to methods of analyzing and assessing the role that groups can play in the work of particular networks, communities, or organizations, including the benefits and costs to an organization of work in groups.

Student Testimonial:

I really found this to be one of the most valuable courses yet that I have taken while in the CommLead program. Dr. Philipsen is a wonderful teacher and has an instruction style that resonates with me. He is a great listener and is deeply engaged in all aspects of in-class discussion. While he is approachable and laid-back, he asks incisive questions and elicits critical thought from all members of the class. The content of the course is especially pertinent for any CommLead students who are in or who anticipate being in positions of leadership in their respective fields. I learned a tremendous amount about different group discussion and creative work processes, and the science that serves as the foundation for those processes. There is so much from this class that is directly and immediately applicable to group interactions in professional settings. This course was fantastic, and I am a better leader because of it.