Michael Grojean has joined the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Haslam College of Business as director of the Executive MBA–Strategic Leadership. He comes to the college from a private consultancy he formed after his tenure as professor of management and executive director of executive education at Rice University in Houston. Prior to joining Rice, Grojean was a faculty member at Aston Business School in the United Kingdom, where he served as head of executive education and associate dean for corporate activities and partnerships.
“Having been involved in both the practice and study of leadership for the better part of 40 years, I have a firm belief in the dual nature of leadership development and education,” Grojean says. “Our approach must not only be based in the scientific rigor of understanding leadership, but also with the practical relevance of leadership in action.”
Grojean was drawn to Haslam because the college’s approach to teaching leadership, which he describes as the “ideal learning laboratory,” fits with his own. Having started in January 2019, he is working to enhance the national rank and brand recognition of the Executive MBA–Strategic Leadership.
“We want to produce graduates who come from, and are hired by, world-class companies,” Grojean says. “Using the skills they develop in our program, these graduates will make a significant impact on their organizations, industries and communities. Haslam has been doing incredibly special work for years, and our intent is to make that known.”
The five pillars of leadership education Grojean will focus on include: Leading change, building collaboration, engaging people, focusing on performance and aligning systems.
Jonathan Harvey, executive director of the leadership division in graduate and executive education at Haslam, said that Grojean’s tenure brings a renewed focus on the core values of the Executive MBA–Strategic Leadership.
“Michael brings decades of advanced leadership expertise that will serve our Executive MBA candidates in strategic leadership well,” Harvey says. “His emphasis on the intersection between organizational change, strategy and leadership is a vital asset as leaders seek to best position their organizations for success and growth.”
Prior to his academic and consultancy career, Grojean served for 23 years in the United States Army. His final assignments were on the leadership faculty at West Point followed by serving as the Army’s leadership policy officer at the Pentagon. In this role, he was responsible for developing, coordinating and implementing leadership and leader development policy and doctrine for the 1.4 million-person active and reserve force of the U.S. Army.