COMMLD 540: Distributed and Diverse Teams

Course Description:

Through this practical and applied course, students will build their leadership and communication effectiveness to work in distributed teams at the global, national, or local levels. With increasing interconnectedness that builds larger and more complex teams and also reduces face/face time of those teams, competencies in distributed leadership are a rapidly evolving must-have set in any professional context but especially in the field of communications. And yet opportunities to sharpen those nuanced skills remain less than optimal. Students will embark on a full-immersion experience by working in distributed teams using a combination of relevant practical materials and readings, ongoing team and individual assignments, personal self-reflection and improved self-awareness and the planning and execution of a class-wise exercise such as a strategy retreat or other learning event. Topics covered will include project planning, goal setting, managing through direct and indirect influence and communicating with impact over the e-highways. Distributed team technology will anchor the students together as they move through coursework that will help them to stretch, struggle, and succeed. By the end of the course, students will be able to not only recognize their progression but will also be able to more effectively articulate the related competencies using terminology and language relevant for professional pursuits. Please note that this course models distributed team leadership in that students will have a weekly distributed leadership team call and work in addition to the 4 on-site classes; this applied approach to the course offers deeper leadership transformation as well as practical skill development.