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WIP: Emergence of Shared Leadership Dynamics during Engineering Student Design Projects

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Conference

2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Works in Progress I

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

Page Count

11

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/31249

Download Count

16

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Paper Authors

biography

Malini Natarajarathinam Texas A&M University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-1684-6476

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Dr. Malini Natarajarathinam joined the faculty of Industrial Distribution Program at Texas A&M University in 2007. Natarajarathinam received her Ph.D. in Supply Chain Management from The University of Alabama. She received her Bachelor of Engineering (Major: Industrial and Systems Engineering) from Anna University [Tamilnadu, India], her MS in Industrial Engineering from Auburn University, her MA in Management Science and MS in Applied Statistics from The University of Alabama. She has experience working with many industries such as automotive, chemical distribution etc. on transportation and operations management projects. She works extensively with food banks and food pantries on supply chain management and logistics focused initiatives. Her graduate and undergraduate students are integral part of her service-learning based logistics classes.

She teaches courses in strategic relationships among industrial distributors and distribution logistics. Her recent research focuses on engineering education and learning sciences with a focus on how to engage students better to prepare their minds for the future. Her other research interests include empirical studies to assess impact of good supply chain practices such as coordinated decision making in stochastic supply chains, handling supply chains during times of crisis and optimizing global supply chains on the financial health of a company. She has published her research in Journal of Business Logistics, International Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management and peer-reviewed proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education.

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Lei Xie Texas A&M University

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Lei Xie is a doctoral student at Texas A&M University. He is currently majoring in Human Resource Development in the Department of Educational Administration & Human Resource Development. His research interests include conflict management, organizational learning/change, knowledge management, learning organization, and International HRD. As a second year international graduate student from the People’s Republic of China, he has been actively engaged in academic research. He is working on several book chapters and an independent research project on the subject of organization development/change and organizational learning. He earned a Master’s degree in HRD from Texas A&M University in 2013. He graduated from Henan University of Technology in China with a Bachelor’s degree.

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biography

Michael Beyerlein Texas A&M University

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Michael Beyerlein is a Professor in the Human Resource Development Graduate Program at Texas A&M University. Formerly, he was professor and department head of Organizational Leadership & Supervision at Purdue and prior to that Founding Director of the Center for Collaborative Organizations and Professor of Industrial/Organizational Psychology at the University of North Texas. His books, book chapters, and articles usually address the topics of teams and collaboration, creativity and innovation, knowledge management, and intangible capital. His research interests include: team creativity, emergence of virtual organizations, and innovation science. His most recent edited book is The handbook for high performance virtual teams with Jill Nemiro and others.

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Rodney Boehm Texas A&M University

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Rodney Boehm is the Director of Engineering Entrepreneurship and an Associate Professor of Practice in the Texas A&M University College of Engineering. He has broad industry experiences, including over 35 years in all aspects of the telecommunications industry (sales, marketing, manufacturing, business development, and technical design), the creation of a telecommunications standard (SONET - Synchronous Optical Network) for the fiber optics industry that is still in use internationally over 30 years later, a wide variety of business experiences in international companies, and startup experiences. This has helped him lead a very successful industry career.

Currently he is using his technical business experiences to develop and run innovation and entrepreneurial programs for the Engineering Innovation Center, a 20,000 sq ft rapid prototyping facility. These include Aggies Invent, TAMU iSITE, Inventeer, and Pop Up Classes. In addition, he mentors multiple entrepreneurial teams.

Formerly he was a Senior Vice President of Fujitsu Network Communications, headquartered in Richardson, Texas. With over 30 years of experience in telecommunications, Rodney was responsible for developing partnerships with leading network technology providers and driving marketing efforts for optical, access and data products developed by Fujitsu. Rodney was Chairman of the T1X1 Technical Sub-Committee (the organization responsible for SONET standardization) from 1990 through 1994. He has been active in SONET's National and International Standardization since 1985. In addition, Rodney has published numerous papers and presentations on SONET.

Rodney began his career with Fujitsu Network Communications in 1989 as the Director of Strategic Planning. He also held the positions of Director of Transport Product Planning, Vice President of Business Management, Senior Vice President of Sales Management, Senior Vice President of Manufacturing, and Senior Vice President of Business Development. Before joining Fujitsu, Rodney worked for Bell Laboratories, Bellcore (now Telcordia), and Rockwell International. He earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering at Texas A&M University.

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Jill Zarestky Colorado State University

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Jill Zarestky, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Adult Education and Training in the School of Education at Colorado State University.

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Abstract

Due to the complexity and scale of many engineering problems, engineers often work in interdisciplinary project teams. In outstanding performing teams, every voice is heard and every point of view is taken into consideration. These teams synthesize all members’ resources and weave them into a creative solution; ultimately, members share the leadership. However, most teams are average or mediocre in their performance and therefore need improved skills for teamwork. As an extension of team performance, contemporary workplaces generally require all STEM graduates to be well equipped with teamwork and leadership skills. The main purpose of this paper is to untangle the construct of shared leadership and identify its different dimensions in those engineering student teams operating without formal leaders. We also seek to find the pattern of how the different dimensions of shared leadership emerge during teamwork processes. More research on shared leadership is necessary to better understand the way different types of leadership behaviors intertwine to determine the quality of the team’s process. The concept of shared leadership has only recently become popular in research and is still evolving. Shared leadership acknowledges the interdependent nature of leadership through collective achievement, shared responsibility, and the importance of teamwork. For our study, we recruited research participants from a 48-hour intensive interdisciplinary team design competition called _____ (AI), which is held by the College of Engineering at ______ University three weekends per semester. From our previous pilot study of student teams in the College of Education, we found shared leadership was a critical factor for performance of teams with no formal leaders. Aggies Invent will provide us with more data of STEM student teams. Those teams work together many more hours than the pilot teams and develop solutions to real world problems contributed by sponsors from business, industry, and not-for-profit organizations. An in-depth analysis of patterns of shared leadership within these teams should provide important insights into the ways that team dynamics drives performance. For our study, we chose a research method new to the study of project teams: Capturing and analyzing data through video and audio recordings. This research method not only considers the products of team effectiveness, but also examines processes behind it. This method will present a more complete analysis of the complex nature of team members’ interactions and teamwork than a study which chooses just one method of analysis, such as surveys. Using video and audio analysis also allows for the close examination of team members’ patterns and behaviors – a micro level picture of team dynamics. No studies of the complete engineering student project team design process that used video analysis to study interactions were found in the published literature.

Natarajarathinam, M., & Xie, L., & Beyerlein, M., & Boehm, R., & Zarestky, J. (2018, June), WIP: Emergence of Shared Leadership Dynamics during Engineering Student Design Projects Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/31249

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