This article is from the archives of the UB Reporter.

Greiner co-teaches course in leadership

Published: April 28, 2005

Reporter Contributor

William R. Greiner has brought his 13 years' experience as UB's chief executive officer into the classroom, co-teaching a leadership course in the School of Management with Fred Dansereau, professor of organization and human resources.

"Thirteen years at the helm of a world-class university have given Professor Greiner a wealth of experiences to draw from," says Dansereau.

Greiner, who retired as UB's president in December 2003, says it's a pleasure to be back in the classroom after a 20-year hiatus for other duties. "I am privileged to be teaching in three UB schools: Education, Law and Management."

Rather than alternating classes, Greiner and Dansereau teach as a team. "I start the classes off with a lecture on one of the major approaches to leadership," Dansereau says. "And Bill brings the lectures to life with real-world examples."

Greiner adds: "The leadership course is especially rewarding. Fred is a terrific teacher, and the students are great to learn with and from. Many are experienced professionals who bring a wealth of knowledge from their own work."

Students are giving the course positive reviews as well. "The opportunity to draw from Professor Greiner's wisdom as a university and community leader is a unique and invaluable academic experience," says Gregory Puff, a student in the school's Professional MBA Program. "It has definitely enhanced the quality of my studies here at the university."

According to Dansereau, both he and Greiner strive to provide an "active learning environment where students develop concepts of leadership and then analyze prominent organizational leaders to determine their leadership style."

Dansereau says the course is complemented by the use of various self-assessment exercises designed to help students focus on how to lead. "Our goal for the course is to provide students with a set of tools that they can use as leaders," he says.

Topics covered include "what it means to be a leader," "leadership traits, behaviors and relationships," "the personal side of leadership," "the leader as a relationship builder" and "the leader as a social architect."

"My hope and purpose is to add a bit of a different dimension drawn from my years in leadership roles at UB," Greiner says. "I am honored that Fred afforded me this opportunity to share some of what I have learned at this great university."