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APRIL 2018

BB&T Leadership Institute promotes the art of effective leadership

BBT_Certification032Florida State University College of Business MBA and undergraduate students who completed last month’s BB&T Emerging Leaders Certification program – presented by The BB&T Leadership Institute – came away with a clear picture of what it takes to be an effective leader.

The six-hour program for Master of Business Administration (MBA) students – and an abbreviated three-hour session for undergraduates – is predicated on the idea that beliefs drive behaviors, and the extent to which leaders understand and manage themselves has a direct and definite impact on their ability to lead others.

Sophomore accounting and finance major Sam Maxwell, a member of the Student Leadership Council (SLC) who also heads up the college’s Wall Street Prep program, was impressed with what he learned from Jasmine Edmonds, the BB&T Leadership Institute’s Student Leadership Fellow who facilitated the training.

“One thing I picked up at the training is the realization that I’ll have to be very cognizant of how people I work with perceive my leadership style,” said Maxwell, whose long-term goal is to hold an executive position with a corporation in the medical industry. “The training also pointed out how important it is for me to understand each individual I work with and to mesh my leadership style with their personality and work style. That makes a lot of sense.

Because the program targets students on the fast track to success and leadership, officers of student organizations were invited to attend as were full-time MBA students.

"From this experience, they will have more self-awareness and have learned how to lead others more effectively. After identifying their signature strengths, leadership preferences and leadership purpose, the students leave with practical tools and strategies that can be used immediately,” Edmonds said.

After completing the program, students received a certificate indicating their achievement – one that is an impressive addition to resumes and LinkedIn profiles.

The BB&T Leadership Institute, now in its fourth year, is an arm of BB&T, which is one of the nation’s largest financial institutions and headquartered in Winston-Salem, N. C. Its mission is to expand the learning experiences of the next generation of business leaders and create awareness of effective leadership concepts, Edmonds explained.

Formed in 2014, the institute has trained hundreds of executives from top national companies through its for-profit program. A portion of the course fees from that endeavor allows the institute to take key components of the executive leadership curriculum and make them available to emerging leaders in colleges within BB&T’s 15-state footprint at no cost. By the end of the 2017-18 academic year, the institute will have presented the BB&T Emerging Leaders Certification program at 46 colleges and certified more than 1,500 students, Edmonds said. Florida State is among the first colleges in Florida invited to take part in the training.

“Before this leadership training session, I had not really taken the opportunity to step back and evaluate my leadership practices,” said finance junior Derek Strauss, who is minoring in business analytics and founded the Cryptocurrency Club at FSU. “The program is challenging me to think of ways I can adapt to the situations at hand and individuals and become a better leader of my organization.”

By Barbara Ash 

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