IEM: What are three main things clients will learn from taking your class?
1. Lessons can be learned from leadership styles in all organizations. Look for the lessons that can be learned from organizations that experienced success and also from those that have experienced failures.
2. We can always learn from others. I hope from the structure of my class that is evident. My lectures rely heavily on interaction from the clients. Their insights and experience make each class a different experience and I hope every client benefits from that.
3. I like to focus on the "Common Ground" approach in people, projects, and processes. Organizations can realize much greater success when we stop looking out for our own personal interests and instead work for the common good.
IEM: What are you looking to provide for incoming clients as part of their IEM experience?
David: I hope my class reflects and enhances the image that Dr. Callahan and the other faculty have built for IEM. The great thing about this program is that it never gets comfortable and settles. The classes and curriculum are always in touch with industry needs and reacting in a way that produces a competent, confident graduate.
IEM: What's your favorite part about IEM?
David: I like that this program meets you where you are at and at the same time creates an uneasiness and desire to change and improve yourself. The online component allows the clients both local and distant to participate in classroom discussion and projects. The "brick and mortar" classes allow that face to face time with the other clients that really adds a lot of value to the program.
IEM: How is what you learned as an IEM client informing your approach as faculty?
David: The focus on the client. I really appreciated it when I was in the program and I want to convey that to current and future clients in IEM. I really liked the fact that I could email an instructor and if needed have discussions on topics covered in class or other situations at work that could benefit from the experiences of others.
IEM: Where do you want to see IEM moving towards in the future? What role do you seek to play in that advancement?
David: I am excited that IEM is looking to build the next great app for personal devices. I am hoping to get involved with the development of that product. If done right, the IEM experience could be as close as your IOS or Android device.
IEM: If you could change one thing about IEM, what would you change?
David: That's a tough question. I would love to make the online experience even more interactive for all involved to get it as close to possible to the in-class experience.
IEM: We ask everyone, what is the one place you think someone new to Birmingham should be sure and visit while they are here in town?
David: I would say if it was a nice spring/summer day they should catch a game at the new Regions Field. Home of the Birmingham Barons.
IEM: Are you reading a book right now? If so, which one?
David: I just finished "Death By Meeting" by Patrick Lencioni. It is an interesting take on the concept of bad meetings and how they can completely demoralize an entire team.
Thank you, David, for your time and for answering our questions. It was great talking with you! Welcome to IEM!