Leadership is the ability get a group of people or organization to work towards the achievement of a particular goal. Because leadership is such a complex and ambiguous topic, I try to approach it from a starting point of humility and curiosity. I am hopeful that my own enthusiasm for exploring leadership concepts and practices can be instilled in my students. Unlike some subjects, I don’t consider there to be a “right answer” when it comes to leadership practices but instead a variety of potentially effective approaches that must be tailored to the participant(s), the task(s) and the setting. On this page I provide a high-level overview of the leadership topics, resources and examples that inform both my leadership teaching and my own personal leadership actions. Last Updated: August 4, 2021.
COMM 4881 Leadership Practicum
Spring 2021 Inaugural Students – It was my honor and pleasure to have these six students in our first ever Leadership Practicum class. They helped establish a strong foundation for the practicum in future years and I have no doubt they will each be impactful societal leaders!
- Sterling Clay (Linkedin Profile)
- Blythe Engel (Linkedin Profile)
- Du Gao (Linkedin Profile)
- Katie Morse (Linkedin Profile)
- Dayna Richards (Linkedin Profile)
- Maen Soufi (Linkedin Profile)
Spring 2021 Guest Speakers – As a class we identified a wide variety of leadership profiles of interest. Each of these speakers was generous to share their time with us during the semester.
- Feb 22 – Carl Zeithaml, former Dean, McIntire School of Commerce
- Feb 24 – Justin Dillane, Assistant Manager, Wal-Mart Distribution Center, Zion’s Crossroads, VA
- Mar 3 – Jennie Blumenthal, former Partner at PriceWaterhouseCoopers
- Mar 10 – David Eaves, Lecturer, Harvard Kennedy School and Technology Thought Leader
- Mar 17 – Austen Murrow, Management Consultant, Accenture and 2015 McIntire Alumnus
- Mar 24 – Heather Moyse, Two-Time Gold Medalist in Women’s Bobsleigh, Member of World Rugby Hall of Fame, Professional Author and Speaker
- Apr 7 – Jack Doughtery, Co-founder, Dougherty Dialectics
- Apr 14 – Wanda James, Founder, Simply Pure
- Apr 21 – Bryan Myers, CEO, [solidcore], former BCG consultant, McIntire alumnus
General Leadership Topics and Related Resources
Popular Leadership Textbooks and Related Books
- The Leadership Challenge, 6th Edition, Kouzes & Posner – This is the book I am using for COMM 4881 Leadership Practicum. It is filled with practical advice and draws on extensive surveys of practicing managers to inform its recommendations. I supplement it with a variety of cases and readings on topics not covered such as managing up, inclusion and diversity, cross-cultural/international leadership, etc.
- Leadership Practice, 8th Edition, Northouse – This is a more academically oriented textbook and used in McIntire’s COMM 2600 introductory leadership course
- Leadership in Organizations, 8th Edition, Yukl – More suited to graduate students with a deeper theoretical orientation
- Dare to Lead, Brene Brown, 2018 – This popular press book from a well-known University of Houston professor has attracted a devoted following amongst practicing leaders and has been mentioned by multiple COMM 4881 guest speakers.
- Turn the Ship Around!: A True Story of Turning Followers into Leaders, David Marquet – More of an extended leadership case study based on a real-world military leadership success story
Cases and Resources on Managing Up
- Cases: Managing Up (A) – Grace, Managing Up (B) – Jada, Mellissa Dayton Case (Darden), Erik Peterseon at Biometra (A,B,C,D), Building Effective One-on-One Work Relationships (HBS), Webinar on “The Art of Managing Up, Down and Sideway”
Cases on Cross-Cultural Leadership
- Cases: Managing a Global Team – Greg James at Sun Microsystems – A & B, Michael Fernandes at Nicholas Piramal, Leading Change across Cultural Boundaries (A), Mary Guerrero and the Advancement of Latinx Talent: Developing an Employee Resource Group at a Top Tier Bank (A) and (B)
Cases on Change Management
Cases and Simulations on Crisis Management – Simulation: Patient Zero, Everest Simulation
Cases on Career Management
Cases on Project Management – Cases: Adobe Systems – Working Towards a Suite Release (A)
Cases on Diversity and Inclusion – Rosalind Fox at John Deere
Cases on Human Resources – Cases: The Wonderful World of Human Resources at Disney, Two Tough Calls (A), Two Tough Calls (B)
CEO Activism – Academic Article – Out of character: CEO political ideology, peer influence, and adoption of CSR executive position by Fortune 500 firms
Specific Leadership Examples and Settings
I have found that examples of effective and ineffective leadership can be found in almost any type of setting, including amongst friends and family, within community organizations, in professional sports, and in government and politics.
Examples – Travis Kalanick at Uber, Elizabeth Holmes at Theranos, Jamie Dimon at Citigroup,
Family & Friends
Examples – H3 Sabres Baseball, lead by UVA alumnus Jeff Burton
Cases – Nonprofit Boards: It Is time to Lift Your Gaze and See the System, St. Martin de Porres High School (A), This Old House of Worship: St. Anthony Shrine (A) and (B)
Cases – Barbara Norris – Leading Change in the General Surgery Unit
Examples – U.S. Women’s Soccer fight for equal pay, various Professional Sports Franchise Owners (Mark Cuban, Robert Kraft, Al Davis, George Steinbrenner, etc.), various Professional League Commissioners (David Stern, Adam Silver, Gary Bettman, Paul Tagliabue, Roger Goodell, Vince McMahon, Juan Antonio Samaranch)
Cases: Steve Kerr – Coaching the Golden State Warriors, Cricket Australia – Leadership in Crisis, Malcolm Turner at Vanderbilt
Government, Military and Politics
Examples – various World Leaders,
Documentary – Statecraft: The Bush 41 Team
Cases – USAF 99th
Leadership “Gurus” – The subject of leadership seems particularly effective at generating a number of celebrity “gurus” who develop large followings of people who appreciate their insights. While I am generally view these “Gurus” with some skepticism I think there is also much to learn from both their messages and their popularity.
Leadership Academic Programs at UVA
UVA is blessed with a number of different academic leadership programs affiliated with a variety of different entities.
UVA Athletics is also working on a new Center for Citizen Leaders and Sports Ethics which includes the Virginia Athletics Leadership Academy.