By Alison Giblin, Sarah Hart, Lauren Knisbeck & Morgan Andrews
The Leadership Across Generations event was held on May 3, from 6:30-8:00 pm at The University of Wisconsin – Green Bay (UWGB).
This event focused on Phillip G Clampitt and Bob DeKoch’s book together, Leading with Care in a Tough World. The event had four panelists join the discussion on leadership across generations. These panelists were: Laurie Butz, a CEO of Capital Credit Union; Alida Al-Saadi, the Senior Partner of Korn Ferry; Mark Murphy, the President and CEO of the Green Bay Packers; and Barbara Lawton, a two-term Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin.
Each guest who attended the event received the book for free. There were around 200 guests who attended the event. These guests included students, professors, alumni, and leaders of other companies. A number of these guests were VIPs who came an hour early to network and enjoy hors d’oeuvres.
The event started with introductions from Phillip Clampitt and the four panelists who attended. Each panelist was asked to answer questions based on leadership and the challenges that leaders face in all different workplaces. The panel ended with each panelist sharing their favorite quote about leadership and what that quote meant to them.
Following the event, Clampitt reflected on his takeaways. “After listening to the panel, I was struck by how much agreement there was on basics of good leadership across generations, such as collaborating, listening, and building good relationships,” said Clampitt.
“The challenge in that setting was to talk about how to do this on both visible and subtle levels to yield the results all these incredible leaders have experienced. The book, which I hope everyone will read and debate, outlines many of those visible and subtle practices.” Clampitt also expanded on his hopes for everyone who attended the event. “I hope everyone takes away one new idea or perspective,” Clampitt said. “But also hope everyone walks away with renewed zeal and commitment to effectively leading others.”
Sarah Hart, a senior at UWGB, attended the event. Hart was personally encouraged to attend the event by Professor Clampitt; Hart said, “It seemed like a great opportunity to learn from the best leaders out there and gain some insight as to how I could better my own leadership skills.”
Students can pull many lessons from their experiences with Clampitt. Hart said her biggest lesson learned was, “Each generation is incredibly different when it comes to their leadership styles. It can take a lot to bridge the generational gap, but a good leader will try to understand where each and every person is coming from.”
Hart received a book at the event, and she is looking forward to reading it. Hart said, “I think that specifically in Phil’s Organizational Communication class, this book will add a whole new level to the leadership styles unit. I think that Phil can really use this book to showcase the concept of a “dance manager” and how to reach that important balance of empathy and logic.”
Daniel Bestul, a junior at UWGB, bought Clampitt’s book and read it prior to the event. Bestul received a second copy of the book at the event and will read it for a second time. Bestul said, “I’m excited to read the book again, and I enjoyed the event a lot. The speakers offered great insight on how to offer better leadership through workforces and just in life.”
Bestul is a big fan of one of the panelists, Mark Murphy. “Mark Murphy was my favorite just because he is the President of the Packers. I am a huge Packers fan, so it was cool to actually meet him. The other speakers were great, too. Don’t get me wrong, but Mark Murphy was interesting to listen to. I learned a lot from what they had to say, like how to be a great leader and deal with leading different generations,” said Bestul.
Associate Teaching Professor Shauna Froelich came out to show her support. “I came out tonight because Phil Clampitt has been an incredible influence in my life. I really admire his leadership, and so I wanted to support him, and then I also wanted to learn myself.” Froelich thought the event was a success and learned valuable techniques from the panelists on how to improve her leadership. “I think the largest thing I heard myself is being able to take enough time to listen to someone and to actually engage,” she explained, “I just think there’s a human element to that needs to be recognized and engaged more.”
As a professor, Froelich acts as a leader in the classroom and has reflected on how she can use these new techniques in that space. “So I love working with students. Most people know that. I think one thing that I love about students is they’re more vulnerable, they’re more honest, and so they’re actually asking to be listened to,” she said. Froelich said she’s excited to see how the blending of generations in the workforce will look in the future.