The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences


Dream Teams versus Scream Teams

On January 26, 2016 Dartmouth ’99 Kate Hilton, Director at ReThink Health, facilitated a MLDP session on the conditions that enable ordinary teams or even “scream teams” to become “dream teams.”

According to Hilton, “dream teams” are teams where 1) everyone knows each other and their respective roles, 2) there is a collective shared purpose, and 3) there is an enabling structure which allows the team to function efficiently. The strongest teams have the strongest ties and these bonds can only be formed when all three of these components exist.

While the first two components were pretty easy to grasp, the third one of "having an enabling structure reinforced by team norms," was harder for some in the group to appreciate as vital to team success. Students said creating norms in a group dynamic was often awkward and unnecessary. However, Hilton noted how important having norms is, especially postgraduate in the workplace.  "Effective management is holding your team accountable to its goals, which can sometimes be the difference between keeping and loosing your job," said Hilton.

Mini-Grants at work: Association for Moral Education Conference

The Rockefeller Center's Mini-Grants program funds registration fees for students attending conferences relevant to the Rockefeller Center's mission as well as the costs of bringing speakers to the Dartmouth campus. A recent grant allowed Andrew Nalani ’16 to attend the 41st Annual Conference for the Association for Moral Education (AME) Conference in Santos, Brazil. Here is his first-hand account of the experience.

Formal and Informal Leadership

Rockefeller Leadership Fellows met with Dartmouth College's Head of Athletics, Harry Sheehy. Sheehy has had an incredible career in athletics and has brought mission driven innovation to Dartmouth College's athletic program. Sheehy played varsity basketball at Williams college and was a two-time All American, as well as captain his senior year. Later, Sheehy became coach of Williams’ Basketball team and ultimately became the Director of Athletics there. Under his leadership as Director, Williams won 17 Division III national team championships.

Being Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

On Monday, January 25, 2016, Dottie Morris, Ph.D., Chief Officer of Diversity and Multiculturalism at Keene State College, spoke with students about Cultural Fluency. Program participant, Arati Gangadharan, shares her reaction to the experience here.

Understanding Your Strengths as a Manager and Leader

On January 19, 2016, the Management and Leadership Development Program hosted Gama Perruci, Dean of the McDonough Leadership Center at Marietta College. Dr. Perruci talked to participants about different personality strengths and where each one fit on the management and leadership spectrum. He stressed the importance that all personality strengths are valuable at some point, and that the best teams have a combination. Great managers and leaders will align their strengths with the needs of the organization, so every team member can be the most effective version of themselves. 

A manager is a person responsible for planning and directing the work of a group of individuals, monitoring their work, and taking corrective action when necessary, while a leader is a person who has a vision, a drive and a commitment to achieve that vision, and the skills to make it happen.  Dr. Perruci's message noted that leadership and management are not exclusive roles, but rather fluid depending on the context of the situation. MLDP’s logo is derived from this very idea, "Do the right thing (leadership), and do it right (management).”

Lessons of Leadership with Phil Hanlon '77

On January 21st, President of the College Phil Hanlon '77 joined the Rockefeller Leadership Fellows meeting to lead a session on Lessons of Leadership.  The session took the format of a lecture, and President Hanlon presented to the fellows ten concrete lessons that he learned about leadership throughout his experiences working at institutions of higher education, both as a professor and an administrator.  The tips he gave, however, were meant to be generally applicable to all types of leadership positions. 

Some people would argue that the qualities that make a consummate leader are vision, charisma and ability to motivate.  However, Hanlon argued that those things mean nothing if a leader lacks the ability to plan, execute, and think strategically about his or her cause.  Thus his first lesson on leadership: “We select leaders who can think on their feet. We should select leaders who can think on their ass.”  That of the ‘spiritual’ leader may be the most appealing style, but CEOs are the leaders that actually get things done. 

Global Citizenship and What it Means to have an International Identity

Gama Perruci, Dean of the McDonough Leadership Center, Marietta College, facilitated a Rockefeller Global Leadership Program session on globalization. He began with a brief explanation on how the form of the modern nation has changed over time. Dr. Perruci then explained the three stages of globalization and how today, in the third stage of globalization, national borders have become permeable as individuals are becoming increasingly mobile while corporations compete for talent in the international realm.

Leadership From Within: Part I

January 18th, 2016 marked the beginning of D-LAB, Dartmouth Leadership Attitudes and Behaviors, a six-week long program co-sponsored by the Rockefeller Center and the Collis Center for Student Involvement. David Pack and Robin Frye started the meeting by explaining how this program enables participants to reflect on individual values to increase self awareness. Another goal of the program is to identify one’s strengths and weaknesses and learn how they arise in a group setting. Student facilitator Austin Boral continued the discussion of D-LAB’s goals by introducing the concept of “breadth versus depth” and how it relates to leadership.  He noted how in high school most students possess a multitude of skills, but stated the importance in transitioning to possessing a few skills in areas one is most passionate about.  Over the course of the program, the first year student participants will have the opportunity to converse with their peers and upperclassmen about their experiences at Dartmouth, and discover the values most important to them.

Using Your Strengths for Effective Professional Communication

On January 12, 2016, Jennifer Sargent, Visiting Associate Professor of Writing and Rhetoric, facilitated a Management and Leadership Development Program session on the importance of understanding personality types and how to effectively communicate with other personality types.

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) test, which each participant took before the session, indicates individual thought preferences, and Professor Sargent explained to students how to use that information to their communication advantage.

She also demystified the notion that there is some ideal leader personality type. There are traits that have nothing to do with your personality preferences, such as active listening, balancing ideas, and recognizing the importance of every idea in a group, which enables strong leadership and management.

Cultural Expectations and Social Behavior

The January 11th RGLP session kicked off with several metaphoric activities intended to get students thinking about perspective. Holly Lanagely '19 and Ashley Dotson ’18 share their reactions here.


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences