Effective Leadership and Teamwork Skills

109 Business Administration

Martin, TN 38238

Ph:

(731) 881-7208

Em:

mba@utm.edu


Effective Leadership and Teamwork Skills

Learning Goal/SLO Definition

Graduates of the MBA program will be capable of demonstrating leadership and teamwork skills typically required in business settings. Leadership and teamwork are defined as the student’s ability to (1) state the principles of leadership, group dynamics and teamwork, (2) appreciate the challenge of transforming knowledge of leadership & teamwork into practice, (3) apply knowledge of leadership & teamwork skills within relevant settings, and (4) interact with fellow students to increase personal and collective understanding of leadership & teamwork skills.

Learning Goal/SLO Relevance

Leadership involves creating an inspiring vision to motivate people based on an ideal of what can be achieved (Russell L. Ackoff) and making people feel confident to accomplish whatever they can imagine (Warren Bennis). Leaders and managers are different in many aspects: managers are administrators but leaders are innovators; managers maintain the business operations and accept the status quo but leaders develop and challenge the status quo; managers ask how and when and imitate others but leaders ask what and why with unique ideas (Hughes et al., Leadership: Enhancing the Lessons of Experience, 2015). Thus, leaders often design their own management functions by involving team-members; likewise, leaders develop their own way of inspiring teams to follow their guidance (Maccoby, The Human Side, 2000).

 

A team is usually defined as “a distinguishable set of two or more individuals who interact independently and adaptively to achieve specified, shared and valued objectives.” Moreover, “teamwork skills training provides various advantages for students as it promotes higher-level thinking, greater satisfaction with the learning experience, and higher levels of communication skills, self-management, planning effort and work, and understanding others’ emotions” (Bravo et al., Studies in Higher Education, 2016).

 

The Chronicle of Higher Education reported “widespread and continuing employer complaints about the lack of teamwork skills among new college graduates” (Hobson et al., Business Education & Accreditation, 2013). Furthermore, a survey of upper-level managers conducted by the Center for Creative Leadership revealed that over 90% asserted that teams were “essential to their organizations’ success” (Hobson et al., American Journal of Business Education, 2013).

 

Due to the importance of leadership and teamwork skills in organizational functions, businesses in the United States have requested that higher education improve the manner in which its assesses and develops student leadership and teamwork skills. The MBA program strives to educate its students in leadership and teamwork skills as a key dimension of business practices.

Where are leadership and teamwork skills covered in the MBA program?

MBA students are introduced to leadership and teamwork skills in Business Administration 722: Leadership, Group Dynamics and Teamwork which is described as follows (UTM Course Catalog 2016-2017, p. 359): “This course introduces the student to the view that leadership, group dynamics and teamwork are important facets of human performance in social systems. Through readings, conversations and exercises, students will develop skills necessary for the higher-risk environment of the world after the MBA, in the relatively low-risk environment of the classroom.

How does the MBA program measure a student’s understanding of the leadership and teamwork skills dimensions of business decisions?

The following rubric is used by students to evaluate the leadership and teamwork skills of their peers for the project given in BADM 722. As part of the course requirements, students evaluate each group member’s leadership and teamwork skills using the rubric

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