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“Decision Making: The Full Monty!” – A Uniquely Inspired Leadership Training Experience

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Distance Education and Engineering Workforce Professional Development

Tagged Division

Continuing Professional Development

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.1403.1 - 23.1403.19



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Paper Authors


Noah Miller Northrop Grumman, Electronic Systems

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Noah Miller – Change Agent, Intrapeneur, and Software Engineer – brings passion to all that he does, especially in fusing technology and people to accomplish the mission. Most recently, “His business awareness and leadership skills have grown in scope as he takes on challenges beyond his cost and schedule objectives that are geared towards helping elicit excellence from others in the company.” He has kicked it into high-gear as an engineer-teacher after graduating from a prestigious experiential leadership training program in the Spring of 2010.

His unique perspectives on leadership come from experiences in both small, private companies with at most ten people to large, public companies that include upwards of fifteen thousand. He has worked as a facilitator, trainer, engineer, mentor, and leader within his ten years of industry experience. As part of a legacy greater than himself, Noah is a true believer in the divine, and seeks strength through diversity in both perspectives and open and honest dialogue.

Noah holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Computer Science from the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia, located in Charlottesville. He has recently relocated from Virginia to Chicago, IL. In his past life, he became an expert in modeling and synthesizing machinery control systems for the Maritime industry and founded the OWNERSHIP process as means to drive culture change from all directions within the organization. He currently works as a senior engineer to develop cutting-edge infrared counter measure systems, striving to use technology as a shield to human life. It’s all about the ends, not the means.

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Timothy Boyd Northrop Grumman Corporation

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After graduating from the California Institute of Technology in 2006, Tim started working at Northrop Grumman as a Systems Engineer. Since 2006, Boyd has not only been involved in performance analysis and on-orbit sensor characterization but has also managed technical teams as a technical team lead and a deputy Integrated Project Team lead within the SEIT (Systems Engineering Integration and Test) organization. Boyd has presented his work at both academic and industry conferences.
Furthermore, to address his passion for leadership development and community building, he kickstarted a chapter of Connect1NG; a professionally recognized yet non-traditional development program focused on engaging and assimilating new employees to the workplace through leadership development activities and networking. He is currently one of two Western Region liaisons for the program.
Boyd was also selected to be a part of the company’s prestigious LTP (Leadership Training Program) and, just two cycles from graduation, planned and facilitated two recent offsite retreats, events involving a hundred participants, requiring months of detailed planning and acute project management.
An avid nature lover, Boyd’s hobbies include back country camping and hiking as well as learning self reliance in the wild.

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Eric Paul Pearson Northrop Grumman

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Eric Pearson has experienced an extensive career of personnel and technical development during the past twenty-nine years at Northrop Grunna Corporation. After leading teams through intense technical radar development programs he transitioned to personnel development and Unveristy recruiting in 2000 creating both a world class New Grauate Professional Development Program and a unique Experiential Leadership Training Program for Northrop Grumman, Electronic Systems that recently celebrated it's tenth year in existance.

Eric brings a passion for people and their development based on twenty years of high level coaching of several sports in addition to having taught middle school science prior to his curent position at Northrop Grumman as the Director, Cross-Sector Develpment Programs.

Eric holds a BS in Education from Bowie Stsre University and a Dual Masters from the Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering.

In addition to his passions for developing future technology leaders, Eric has served on several University Engineering Board of DIrectors and has presented on leadership and recruiting at Several Conferences including ASEE, CIEC, NACE and SoACE for the past eight years.

In his spare time, Eric serves as a volunteer Adjunct Professor at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA.

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“Decision Making: The Full Monty!” – A uniquely inspired leadership training experienceLeadership development is considered one of the most critical challenges facing manyindustries today. Most commercialized leadership training programs provide classroomtraining, team building opportunities and cross-team projects; however, few have theinsight to engage participants in a safe environment where they are allowed to learn andgrow in a remote location, away from their daily, risk adverse responsibilities. Morespecifically, a safe environment is one in which failure is not only an option but highlyembraced when it occurs during a stretch assignment; for it is well documented thatindividuals learn far more from failures, than from successes.Developed over the past ten years, the Leadership Training Program (LTP) at XXXCorporation) provides this critical component in the form of an experiential educationexperience where participants have the opportunity to introspectively assess themselves,and interact with like-minded peers in search of extreme leadership lessons. To those inthe XXX LTP, this experience is known as an offsite and considered by many to be aleadership "boot camp". Instead of what normally takes ten to fifteen years of progressionthrough multiple levels of corporate leadership, LTP alumni that take full advantage of theprogram gain a fast-forwarded experience over a three to four year period.As alumni of the program, the authors have benefited from the "complete experience,"growing from participants to facilitators, facilitators to coaches, coaches to planners, andplanners to leads. Through the evolution of the program and many lessons learned, theirexperience has helped them identify two main approaches to offsite execution: experientialand skills-based. While each type of offsite includes overlapping spheres of learningdevelopment, such that some of the elements are inseparable, their execution is unique.This paper will focus on the execution of an experiential offsite; one that is focused on self-discovery and knowledge acquisition through full immersion into a simulated situation,preferably based in real-world application. Multiple modules are linked together to createa continual learning experience in which the outcomes of a previous module will affect thesetup of the next module; thus, a master simulation is executed over the entire duration theoffsite.The ability to make sound decisions, if developed and utilized correctly, will become one ofthe most valuable assets to any individual in the organization. Based on the corporateenvironment at the time of inception, the authors saw an emerging need for all futureleaders to realize and embrace their responsibility to understand the full picture before,during, and after making a decision. Decisions have consequences, and consequencesrequire further action. The continuity of an experiential offsite afforded the ability toprovide greater exposure to the idea of consequence, thus, the planners chose this type ofoffsite with an intense focus on the decision making process.This composition will take you through the authors' journey to design, develop, andexecute a 4-day experiential offsite for the LTP at XXX. Furthermore, the composition willattempt to validate the development methodologies chosen by the offsite planners alongwith qualitative results realized through the final execution. Finally, the composition willdescribe in detail the critical effect team coaches and intentional feedback have on thesuccess of the simulation.

Miller, N., & Boyd, T., & Pearson, E. P. (2013, June), “Decision Making: The Full Monty!” – A Uniquely Inspired Leadership Training Experience Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19028

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