Executive Education

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Module 2 - Leading Innovation and Effective Communication

Course Description

Emerging Leaders Module 2

The design thinking methodology is a tremendous shift in approach for anyone involved with process improvement projects. Typically, organizations use data to drive changes to process. The design thinking methodology tackles process improvement from the human perspective or how people interact with processes.  Participants will be introduced to design thinking through a realistic simulation that goes through the methodology in a logical and easy-to-understand manner.

Good communication skills enable us to work more effectively in groups and teams and to build positive relationships.  Communication is about more than just exchanging information. It's about understanding the emotion and intentions behind the information. Effective communication is also a two-way street. It’s not only how you convey a message so that it is received and understood by someone in exactly the way you intended, it’s also how you listen to gain the full meaning of what’s being said and to make the other person feel heard and understood.  Effective communication is the glue that helps you deepen your connections to others and improve teamwork, decision making, and problem solving. It enables you to communicate even negative or difficult messages without creating conflict or destroying trust.

Effective communication also encompasses presenting yourself and your ideas to others. The best ideas will get nowhere unless people understand them and believe in you. It starts with presence, or your ability to connect with others.

Presence plays a role when we respond to the question, “Can you tell me about yourself… or your idea?” How do you show up when you must quickly summarize your background or vision?  What considerations apply to presenting impromptu, or giving a formal talk? What changes when you speak in a small conference room, a large auditorium, or on a webinar? 

This session focuses on presenting yourself and your ideas. You will learn tips and techniques to be more credible, confident and concise.

Key Objectives

  • Understanding the design thinking methodology
  • Learning how to better manage relationships in a negotiation
  • Leaning how to create value for both parties in a negotiation
  • Explore how to increase executive presence with mindset and behaviors
  • Practice giving your “elevator pitch” and receive feedback
  • Gain strategies to be a more effective impromptu speaker, including question and answer sessions
  • Learn to:
    • Create content that resonates
    • Move from monologue to dialogue
    • Incorporate stories to captivate people

Available Industries: Leadership

Duration & Dates

2 Days


    Lea Anne Law, Director
    +1 (865) 974-1622

    Becky Powell, Program Coordinator


    This course is offered at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


    J. Elaine Seat

    Elaine Seat is on the faculty of the Management Department of the Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee. Elaine arrived in the Business School via an unusual ...

    Martha Weeks

    Martha Weeks is a communications coach with clients in the technology and healthcare industries, and academia. She teaches workshops and coaches executives, engineers, entrepreneurs and clinicians to create and deliver ...


    Individual two-day modules cost $1,600.