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2016 Cohort Day 1 Summary


The day began with The BEST Group Presentation analyzing Challenge the Boss or Stand Down.  Excellent group discussion was had by all.  Group I members included: Cheryl Gordon, Alicia Houston, Marty Inman, Valerie Joiner, and Kathy Van Cleave.


Ms. Judy Phillips presents on “Big Data”


Topics for the day included “Difficult Conversations” presented by Dr. Laura Marler.  Some of our favorite tips were to avoid “always” and “never” language; consider non-verbal communication; follow-up; outline the conversation; and speak from the heart.    Through self – assessment of the “Mum Effect” we discovered why leaders are reluctant to have difficult conversations, including self-concern, concern for others, sugar coating, and avoidance.


Mandy Stanley on Emails


Laura Hipp discussed the proper use of Social Media in state government including tips for posting frequently, be catchy but careful, read it aloud, create a plan but be flexible.  Hipp encouraged leaders to consider developing policies identifying the use of social media, who can post, protocols for reviewing posts, and policies for citizen and employee conduct.  Most importantly, Hipp stressed the importance of developing a written Social Media policy and distributing it throughout the organization.



SEDI Cohort 2016


Motivation, presented by Dr. James Vardaman, encouraged participants to explore how to determine if our actions are Effective vs. Efficient and if tasks are Urgent vs. Important.  Group members agreed that the most useful suggestion is to set the following day’s top 3 priorities an hour before leaving for the day.  The three items become the top priority for the following day’s agenda.


Mandi Stanley presented several useful “nuggets” of information including useful tips for e-mail structures, proper use of subject lines, attention to detail, correcting grammatical errors, e-mail etiquette and using mind mapping techniques to structure e-mails, project planning in professional and personal settings.


Group members appreciated reviewing Dr. Suzanne Bean’s presentation o
n Generations and are hopeful that she can elaborate on her work later this week.  We wish her a speedy recovery!


The day ended as it began – with a Wonderful meal.  The best part, however, had to be sharing a vat of delicious World famous ice-cream from the Mississippi State Creamery!  We can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds!


Day 2:

Day Two Summary



Team Two Presentation:

Do Something!  He’s about to snap!


Team two presented a case study through PowerPoint and oral presentation, regarding a scenario of an employee that coworkers had become concerned about. Issues discussed included deciding on appropriate actions to take regarding the employee. Class joined in to the discussions on next steps.  The presentation was well received.



Performance Benchmarking – Dr. David Ammons


Dr. Ammons discussed Missions & Goals, Objectives, Performance Measures, and Performance Management. He reviewed SMART Goal setting (Specific, Measurable, Aggressive but Attainable, Results-oriented and Time-bound)


Dr. Joel Collier next presented on negotiation.  He discussed the four styles of negotiators: avoider, compromiser, competitor, collaborator. He also discussed BATNA which stands for best alternative to a negotiated agreement.


Freddie “Flip” Phillips presented on State budget issues. He covered the organization of DFA, how the State budget is set, tort claims, MAGIC and composition of State budget.


Scott Stricklin then came to discuss his experience as Athletic Director at MSU.  He discussed his management philosophy, important leadership skills, and “hiring people smarter than you are.”  He also recommended the book “The Energy Bus” and discussed his philosophy on winning.


Dr. Melissa Moore closed out the day with her presentation on Marketing that included philosophy, attitude, perspective and management orientation. She discussed the new definition of Marketing which is “satisfying customers needs.” She covered the four P’s of the Marketing Mix that are Product, Place, Price and Promotion.


The night concluded with dinner at Mugshots with mayors, and other civic leaders.  A good time was had by all.

Day 3