The capstone project will consist of three options, and you will complete one of them as part of the course.
The first option is working with senior-level executives to help them solve their most pressing leadership challenges. Two (2) senior-level executives from leading organizations will provide detailed descriptions of ongoing leadership challenges that they are currently facing within their organizations. The challenges will be real and current. You will be asked to help the executives think through how best to approach and address their respective leadership challenges. Specifically, you will be tasked with drafting a memo to one of the executives outlining your recommendations for how best to address the leadership challenge. To offer effective advice and counsel, you will need to use course concepts and frameworks to (a) diagnose the fundamental issue(s), and then (b) develop a coherent set of solutions or recommendations. The memos will be evaluated based on how effectively you apply course concepts to diagnose the problem and how well you link your proposed solutions to the diagnosis. The best submissions will be sent to the executives for their review, and each executive will offer feedback that will then be shared with the entire class to advance everyone’s learning. The second option is to identify your own leadership challenge (e.g., at work, at school, in your local community). You should be directly involved in the challenge, and the challenge must align with at least one topic from the specialization. You will develop a presentation where you use course concepts and frameworks to (a) diagnose the core leadership challenge and barriers to effective performance, and then (b) develop a coherent set of solutions or recommendations for your own leadership challenge. The third option asks you to interview an executive of your choosing. In this interview, you will ask questions about the challenges faced by that executive with respect to leading people and teams, as well as the practices used by the executive to address his or her challenges. In your written submission, you will use course concepts to organize the major leadership challenges faced by the executive, highlight the strategies and practices used by the executive to address the core leadership challenges, and then to evaluate the effectiveness of the executive’s practices related to leading people and teams. You can expect to receive staff feedback on your assignment 4 to 8 months after you submit your assignment.