Communication and Persuasion

How can leaders motivate global citizens to protect the sustainability of our civilization? Last week, we discussed the principles of servant leadership, and we applied them to a contemporary character in a television series.

We also discussed the importance of researching the lives and backgrounds of individuals whom we wish to influence. And we explored methods of profiling individuals in order to plan our interactions.

As case examples, we explored situations involving job interviews. We also noted how Ray Bradbury’s Depression-era upbringing, Prince Charles’ interests in urban planning and green architecture, and Gene Roddenberry’s eclectic religious beliefs influenced their works.

So where do we go from here? Next week, we’ll discuss how leaders use frameworks, models, and language itself to engage in persuasive communication. And during the following week of February 5th, we’ll apply these themes to the civilization that confronts Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.

But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves! To prepare for this week’s lessons, we are assigning a relatively light amount of advance preparation activities. We ask that you take advantage of this opportunity to progress through the Frankenstein novel.

And what will our quizzes cover this week? On Wednesday, we’ll focus our closed-book quiz on the embedded elements of the Octopus Model. You can find the graphic and its elements presented as Figure 2 on the bottom of page 13 of The International <IR> Framework.

And then, on Thursday, we’ll focus our closed-book quiz on a written text and a video clip. The text is Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.

And the video clip is an interview with Jeff Bezos that includes a description of a typical business meeting at Amazon. Please begin watching the video at the 5:45 mark (i.e. 5 minutes and 45 seconds into the video), and stop watching at the 7:45 mark (i.e. 7 minutes and 45 seconds into the video).

When you review this framework, this text, and this video, consider how the structure of the communication process facilitates the conveyance of persuasive information. And please remember to bring a mobile phone, tablet, or laptop computer to class so that we can begin taking our quizzes electronically!

Also, please keep in mind that the electronic quiz platform requires each student to take quizzes with his or her assigned section. We’ll adjust our grading processes to ensure that one or two absences will not result in any penalties.

Finally, this week, we’ll begin to define our term project requirements. Please start to think about a sustainability challenge that you wish to explore for your project.

It’s obvious that we have quite a bit of content to cover this week. But we’re not worried … as long as we can rely on our own servant leaders to help us master the material!