Transcript of "Management Communications Syllabus"
SPRINGFIELD • MISSOURI
BACHELOR of BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
3 Credit Hours – 5 Weeks
Mrs. Nancy Pace-Miller
865-2815 Ext. 8414
Degree Completion Program
Dear Degree Completion Student,
Greetings! I am excited about our time together in Management Communication. In the
next five weeks, we will have many opportunities to share how we communicate in the
workplace and manage our face-to-face communication.
This seminar course is a practical business management skills course, specifically related
to human communication. The weekly sessions are designed to focus your learning upon
the techniques and skills of communicating effectively as a professional in the corporate
environment. My goal for this course is to make it as interesting, substantive, and
engaging as communication is itself. We will look at communication in a range of
context – organizational, multi-cultural, small group, and interpersonal.
The syllabus that follows is your guide to this course, but the success of this course is
largely dependent on you. In order for you to receive the full benefit from Management
Communication, your active participation will be required. The course discussion and
exercises are structured around your experiences. Together, we will learn and exchange
ideas that will make everyone participating a stronger communicator.
I encourage you to keep up with the reading and outside assignments. Information
obtained in your personal study will assist you in participation, as you and your
colleagues learn from each other. My part in your learning is to help you with skills
development that energizes and motivates; to highlight current communication and
business theory that makes practical sense; and, to continue your growth in critical
thinking, specifically in diversity.
Be prepared for the next five weeks to be filled with the wonderment of communication.
I am looking forward to meeting you and sharing in your experience of completing your
Welcome to the Management Communication course. This seminar will provide
practical business management skills, as it relates to communication. This seminar is a
required course toward attainment of your Bachelor of Business Administration degree.
This course is designed to focus your learning upon the techniques and skills of
communicating effectively as a professional in the corporate environment.
Learners demonstrate writing and speaking skills essential for effective managers.
Studies include intercultural communication, gender and diversity-related issues, crisis
management, conflict resolution, media writing, and career development.
The following performance objectives are provided as a focus for learning in the
management communication course. You may wish to further refine or expand upon
them for personal growth or work responsibilities. If so, please discuss your personal
needs with the instructor prior to the first class meeting or on the first night of class.
Prior to and during session one, learners will:
1. Identify the most significant characteristics employers look for in valuable employees.
2. Explain how communication behaviors translate in face-to-face communication in the
3. Identify the fundamental concepts of the communication process, specifically
4. Identify organizational cultures and philosophies.
5. Identify an audience-centered approach to communication.
6. Examine intercultural competence.
7. Analyze gender and diversity-related issues.
Prior to and during session two, learners will:
1. Identify the basic dimensions of human relationships.
2. Conduct a mini-survey on the perception of workplace job titles.
3. Identify and clarify the communication behaviors that will make and improve
judgments about others.
4. Explore, analyze, and create effective ways to improve relationships by sharpening
5. Identify and correct semantic problems in verbal messages.
6. Explore, describe, and analyze nonverbal messages occurring in your work
environment and personal life.
7. Identify the impact of nonverbal cues as it relates to environment, proxemics, and
Prior to and during session three, learners will:
1. Identify conflict and its causes.
2. Assess personal conflict strategies and conflict management styles.
3. Examine constructive versus destructive conflict styles.
4. Discover how to work with difficult people at work.
5. Uncover new ways to get more out of employees and others.
6. Identify ways to be more effective in a corporate crisis.
7. Explore concepts of “winning.”
8. Determine personal rhetorical sensitivity.
9. Practice resolving conflict through role play.
10. Identify and examine group dynamics in business communication.
11. Explore the uses of media.
12. Take assessment one.
Prior to and during session four, learners will:
1. Analyze and identify the purpose of effective speech development.
2. Organize and define parameters of a working outline for a persuasive or informative
3. Examine and utilize text material and handout content as another means of research
for speech development.
4. Explore graphic development of communication materials.
5. Discuss meetings and small group communications.
6. Review business writing: Formal and informal reports
7. Write a letter of complaint/negative response.
8. Write a thank you card.
9. Write a professional e-mail.
10. Explore other corporate writing formats.
Prior to and during session five, learners will:
1. Prepare presentation review for cohorts.
2. Be prepared to present oral presentation to class. (5-7 minutes)
3. Organize and develop questions, using a directive interview strategy.
4. Conduct an interview with a higher ranked co-worker in order to explore career path
5. Identify and present a formal interview schedule and summary.
6. Analyze, identify, and critique key components in an effective resume and cover
7. Take assessment two.
Adler, R. & Elmhorst, J. (8th Ed.) Communicating at Work : Principles and
Practices for Business and the Professions. New York: McGraw-Hill.
The Business Writers Handbook, Alred. 7th ed. Bedford Publishing.
Grades will be determined according to the following point distribution:
Formal written assignments 50
Informal/reflective writings 10
Assessment/Chapter Activities 10
Oral Presentation 100
Course Assessments (2) 100 each
Please use the grid provided to track your grade.
Assignment Week Possible Points Earned
Communication Problem 1 10
Organizational Culture Used in Workplace 1 10
Ethical Scenarios 1 10
Audience Acrostic 1 10
Vikings Worksheet 1 10
Index Card 1 10
Creative Project/Human Communication 2 50
Mini-survey/Perception 2 10
Semantics Exercise/Media 2 10
Nonverbal “Rules” in the Workplace 2 10
Layout/Office Drawing 2 10
Essay/Organizational Conflict 3 10
Meeting Evaluation Summary 3 10
Announcement 3 10
Corporate Media Piece 3 10
Assessment One 3 100
Written Summary of Oral Presentation 4 10
Outline 4 10
Letter of Complaint 5 50
Thank you note 5 50
Professional E-mail 5 50
Presentation Packets for Cohorts 5 10
Oral Presentation 5 100
Critiques 5 10
Interview Schedule 6 10
Cover Letter/Resume 6 50
Assessment Two 6 100
TOTAL POINTS 740 points
95% - 100% = A 85% - 80% = B 69% - 66% = D+
90% - 94% = A- 79% - 76% = C+ 65% - 60% = D
89 % - 86% = B+ 75% - 70% = C Below 60% = F
The assignments for this module are designed to enable you to apply text theory to your
current work position and continue your personal professional development. The
practical nature of the Evangel Degree Completion Program is designed for learners to
apply text theory to real-life situations. Accordingly, please be prepared to share
assignments with your colleagues during class time. During the next five weeks you will
be doing work-related research, discovering your personal conflict style, completing self-
assessment activities, organizing and writing a persuasive/informative speech,
writing/rewriting your resume, and a host of other activities.
IMPORTANT – Please Note:
All written homework should be presented in a formal, professional manner. Work
should be well-written, proofed, and edited; however, reflective writing can be
written in first person (informal). Please use the following format guidelines: 12-
point font (preferably Times or New Times Roman), 1” margins, single sided, and
double spaced (exception, business letters follow their own format). Minimal
corrections can be made on your paper, please use a black pen. Please title every
activity clearly with its homework name. Also make sure that you put your name
on every assignment.
Homework for each week should be placed in a pocket folder with your name
clearly indicated on the front of the folder and all work included in the folder. I will
collect homework at some point during the class. You will need TWO pocket
folders for rotation of homework assignments.
Late assignments will earn no more than a grade of a “C” – 70%; probably, lower.
Please be timely with your assignments.
Always be prepared to discuss the text information contained in the assigned
readings and any readings given as handouts. You may call or e-mail me with any
questions you may have while completing the assignments. Please allow 24-48 hours for
a response due to personal schedule.
Put all your homework and personal responses
in a folder.
This is for your benefit as well as mine.
It is a class requirement.
Week 1 To be completed prior to and submitted on the first night of class
Adler & Elmhorst, Chapter 1, pp. 3-35
Communicating at Work
1. Employers search for individuals with certain characteristics. Research this. Can you
name some of those? Be prepared to discuss in class why many of the characteristics are
communication-driven even though they are abstract terms, such as motivated. What are
the differences between downward communication, upward communication, and
horizontal communication. 2). Use these terms in class discussion to illustrate your
understanding of these concepts, illustrating situations in your own workplace. How
does technology play into the business of communication? Have you had a
communication problem caused by technology or know of someone who has? Write
a short paragraph describing that event/situation. These will be collected at break.
Chapter 2, pp. 39-68 Cultural Diversity and Communication
2. This chapter describes organizational culture. I want you to have a thorough
understanding of traditional and post modern organizational cultures. After reading this
chapter, can you describe the most prevalent culture type in your work environment?
Why? Write a short paper indicating the organizational culture of you workplace
and why you think that. At the bottom of this paper, make a list of the positives and
negatives in your organizational environments. Be prepared to share these.
Chapter 2 Ethics in the workplace
3. Ethical issues directly related to intercultural business interactions and to gender and
diversity-related situations. After reading this chapter, please consider these
scenarios and answer the following questions. Short answer format is appropriate.
a.) An individual who is a supervisor of the company you work for has experienced a
tragedy in his life. This individual is distraught and depressed. One evening, while
working late, he approaches you and gives you a lingering hug that makes you feel
“icky.” What do you do? Explain your answer.
b.) You are working on a project with another company employee. It is you and your co-
worker’s responsibility to solve the problem or find a resolution to the problem
happening on the project. After many hours of discussing and researching the
information, you realize that you have differing opinions, but your opinions are not based
on fact. Rather, your differing opinions are based on your value systems. How do you
work this out?
Week 2 To be completed prior to and submitted on the second night of class
Chapter 5, pp. 134-168
1. The fundamental element of an organization’s social system is human relationships.
After reading the handout given to you last week, I want you to discuss your
understanding of the dimensions of human relationships. Remember, the four
dimensions do not operate independently. This conceptual notion is based in systems
theory as discussed last week. To help explain the nature of human relationships
based on the dimensions, construct a visual image (use construction paper, sticks,
buttons, noodles, anything available – be creative) to explain your understanding of
these concepts. Be prepared to share your visual with the class.
2. After reading chapter five, I want you to ask yourself, “How do I feel about titles and
office perception?” “What do titles communicate in the workplace?” Conduct a mini-
survey at work, church, or with friends. Ask 10 people if they would rather have a
monetary promotion or a title change? They can’t have both. Many times, promotions
are given without additional compensation. How do you feel about that? Write a short
summary paper of your results. Be prepared to discuss your findings in class.
Chapter 3, pp. 71-103 Verbal and Nonverbal Messages
3. Understanding that cues transmitted (use of symbols, signs, and rituals) can easily be
altered in both verbal and nonverbal messages is the first step to improving human
communication. Based on your reading, find a printed example (newspaper,
magazines, brochure, advertisement, news release, personal letter, more) where
semantics interfered with the understanding of the message. Bring the actual piece
or a copy of it to class for discussion.
4. The old adage, “Actions speak louder than words,” is evident in the study of
nonverbal communication. Have you experienced a situation in the workplace where
things are “just understood,” but not spoken? Be prepared to discuss your experiences.
How do your co-workers respond to these written/unspoken “rules?” How do new hires
learn these “rules?”
5. As you are studying nonverbal cues in your work environment, please do an
observation exercise. Draw the basic layout of your general office area (The area
where you work mostly). How far apart are employees? What does the décor say?
How are the work situations set up? Where is the supervisor in relationship to the
workers? What does your supervisors office say? What does your office say? Please
answer the questions above. Short answer format is appropriate. Your answers
should be attached to your work environment drawing.
Week 3 To be completed prior to and submitted on the third night of class
Chapter 4, pp. 106-131 Listening
Review pp. 146-151 again Managing Conflict
1. After reading the text, you will have a basic theoretical understanding of corporate
conflict. Do you agree with the authors? Be prepared to explore other conflict
management concepts in class. If you have additional resources on conflict management
that you feel are important to share, please bring these to class for group discussion.
2. Write a descriptive essay in which you “fought a good fight.” Include in your
writing if it was an organizational conflict, a conflict with individuals, a conflict
within individuals, or if it was between organizations. How was the conflict
resolved? How did you “feel” about the resolution? Was it a “win/win” situation?
(Names of individuals/organizations may be changed for private reasons.)
Chapters 8 and 9, pp. 241-308 Working in Groups and Effective Meetings
3. Groups take structure. What task role do you generally see yourself fitting into when
you are in a group? When the group is functioning, what building and maintenance role
do you perform? Have you ever found yourself in a self-centered role? Which one?
Think back over the meetings you’ve been in both at work and in your extracurricular
activities. Do you see a pattern of your interaction? Think about these questions and
make notations in your text. Be prepared to discuss.
4. On page 298 of your text (Table 9.4), there is a checklist for conducting a
meeting. Please attend some kind of meeting (church, work, school, phone
conference, etc.). I want you to write an evaluation of the meeting you attended,
using the criteria in the table. Write a one-page review, incorporating the
information on the checklist into a concise and precise evaluation. No more than
Chapter 8, pp. 250-258
Business Handbook, pp. 341-355
5. Write an announcement for a meeting. Create your own purpose, list of attendees,
agenda, etc. Use your Business Handbook text for reference. This should be structured
like a business memo.
Review Business Handbook, p. 341
6. Bring to class an example of media being used for the corporate environment (a
press release, publicity, advertisement, etc.) Attach a short summary sheet,
answering these questions. What was the purpose of the media piece? Was it
successful? Critique the piece – is it good or bad? Why?
7. Be prepared to take assessment one.
Week 4 To be completed prior to and submitted on the fourth night of class
Chapter 14, pp. 426-460 Types of Presentations
1. Prepare a written summary of your speech, by answering the following questions.
What persuasive technique are you trying to accomplish – to stimulate, convince, or
actuate? Which interest value is the most apparent in your speech? Which interest value
is the least apparent? How do you rate your accuracy, completeness, unity, and
meaningfulness? Can you articulate your speech’s specific purpose? What is your
thesis? What research tools were used in your speech preparation?
Chapters 10-11, pp. 314-365 Developing the Presentation/Organizing Your Ideas
2. Please prepare a written outline for your presentation. Follow a business outline
form. See handout.
3. Start preparing a persuasive or an informative speech that is directly related to a
current work project or is of interest to you. Visual aids may be used if they bring
meaning to the speech; however, this assignment is emphasizing speech organizing and
delivery. You do not have to use visual aids.
Business Handbook, pp. 222-243 and 486-487
Please read through your handbook. Review all grammar sections, specifically things
like comma usage, number usage, etc. Come prepared to talk about all kinds of
Business Handbook, pp. 19-23, 45-46, 72-73, 109-110, 133, 187-191
Adler and Elmhorst, Appendix 2, pp. A-5 to A-23
4. Write a letter of complaint/negative response. Possibly use this to write that letter
of complaint that you have been putting off. If you don’t have a complaint issue, then
please write a mock complaint letter to a restaurant, telling them about the poor service
your received on your birthday while dining at their restaurant. This is a formal business
letter. Watch content, structure, and form.
5. Write a professional thank you note. Reference handout materials for help.
6. Write a professional e-mail. You will send it to yourself. Print off a hard copy and
put in your homework folder for grading. You can create a mock e-mail or you can do an
actual e-mail that you wrote for work, making a copy for me to grade. Make sure your
name is on the e-mail and in your folder.
Week 5 To be completed prior to and submitted on the fifth night of class
Chapters 12 and 13, pp. 368-423
1. Prepare your presentation review materials for cohorts. The presentation review
should include your audience, thesis, objectives, strategies, and tactics. Any
demographic or psychographic information should be included as well. Some
corporations prepared these (large version) and call them “leave behinds.” They are
prepared so that the receiver can examine the information again at another time. Put
anything that will enhance your topic on this presentation review document.
2. Be prepared to present your oral presentation. Time limit: 5-7 minutes
(depending on cohort).
Chapters 6 and 7, pp. 169-238
3. Prepare an interview schedule (a list of specific questions that you want to ask).
Using a directive interview strategy and your interview schedule, conduct an interview
with one of your co-workers (if possible, a manager). Take notes. Within a 24 hour
period after the interview or sooner, I want you to write a summary page about your
interview. Indicate speaker, question(s), and response. The purpose of the interview is to
use interview methods to trace the career path of your co-worker. What experience did
he or she have? What launched his or her career? What mistakes were made, but
overcame? Did you learn anything about career advancement for this interview?
Business Handbook, pp. 316-317, 493-506
3. Identify and analyze key components in an effective resume. Please bring a current
cover letter and resume. Be prepared to work in groups, evaluating and critiquing.
4. Be prepared to take assessment two.