Dave Conrad: New leaders should learn to listen

“Leaders may get so wrapped up in making decisions they forget to just sit down and talk with their staff members,” wrote Dave Conrad, Augsburg College’s assistant director of the Rochester MBA program, in his latest column for the Rochester Post-Bulletin.

A problem exists, according to Conrad, that new leaders can believe their first priority is to develop new game plans independently rather than to get to know staff members to solve problems collectively. Read Conrad’s column, “New leaders should learn to listen,” for tips on how to create an effective workplace communication system.

Dave Conrad writes on leadership and respect

PostBulletinIn his latest column for the Rochester Post-Bulletin, Dave Conrad, associate professor of business, counsels a reader who feels overwhelmed with conflicting advice by summarizing great leadership into one directive: treat employees with respect.

Conrad argues that, “Showing respect enhances a leader’s influence and performance,” but warns against insincerity. “I think employees are sensitive to phony displays of praise and recognition from their managers and perceive these acts as a form of manipulation,” he writes.

Read: Dave Conrad: Good leaders show employees respect on the Post-Bulletin site.

Augsburg alumni bring ‘Hoopla Train’ to rural Minnesota

sodhouseThis summer, Sod House — a theater company founded by Augsburg College Chair of Theater Arts Darcey Engen ’88 and her husband, Luverne Seifert ’83 — brought a production of “Hoopla Train (with Yard Master Yip and his Polkastra)” to 14 historic ballrooms in different Minnesota cities including Barrett, McGregor, Nisswa, and Sleepy Eye.

Engen and Seifert shared the stage with a troupe of performers to put on the production billed as “Lawrence Welk meets ‘Hee-Haw.’” The Sod House Theater project began in 2011 when Engen and Seifert collaborated to create the condensed version of Anton Chekhov’s play “The Cherry Orchard” with Twin Cities colleagues including Sarah Myers, associate professor of theater at Augsburg.

This year the “Hoopla Train” has garnered the attention of media outlets across Minnesota, including the following organizations and stories:

Dave Conrad: Listen to employees’ ideas

PostBulletinIn his latest Rochester Post-Bulletin column, Dave Conrad, assistant director of the Augsburg College MBA program in Rochester, responded to a reader’s question on how managers should respond to employees’ ideas. Conrad suggested that businesses need more skeptics involved in planning and that constructive criticism should be welcomed. To review his comments, read “Managers should listen to employees and their ideas” on the Post-Bulletin website.