Corporate Communications

1. Objectives

The course is designed to:

  • help students understand classical, rhetoric and the dialectic
  • help students develop an understanding of persuasion and an appreciation of persuasive communication and personal magnetism (“soft” power), as a management tool;
  • develop participants’ rhetorical skills (persuasive skills) in corporate speaking and in interpersonal encounters.
  • develop students’ own communication style.

2. Content

The course has a number of distinct modules:

  1. drafting and delivering persuasive type speeches;
  2. developing the ability to use stories, anecdotes and other rhetorical tools;
  3. understanding the communication styles of four political personalities;
  4. understanding both charismatic and non-charismatic leadership from a corporate communications point of view; and gaining an understanding of the psychology of persuasion and its practices;
  5. using the dialectic in both its forms.

Drafting and delivering corporate speeches: Cocom is a follow on to the first Year Management Communication course. The course will concentrate on three different speech models of communication given to a variety of audiences such as those given to various external business audiences such as shareholders. Part of this module will be devoted to story telling as used in business situations. Here students will be encouraged to use analogies, examples, illustrations in their communications. Speeches will be video-taped.

Understanding different communication styles:In this part of the course we will discuss four well-known political personalities from both a communication and a charismatic leadership point of view. Each of these speakers excelled in one form of public discourse. For example, Margaret Thatcher was a forensic type speaker who became famous for her argumentative style, John Kennedy was an orator and many of his speeches are still remembered, Lyndon Johnson was a supreme negotiator, and Ronald Reagan was a persuasive speaker who left office with one of the highest ratings for retiring presidents in the history of the United States.

Developing corporate communications skills (including corporate storytelling): This module is a broad one, which includes the understanding of persuasion, influence, and the dialectic. The module also deals with problems such as those encountered in interpersonal relations, and in listening and understanding. The module seeks to identify effective persuasive strategies and also involves an appreciation of how different audiences are most likely to react to various communication initiatives.

3. Methodology

  • Class participation: 20% (including participating in the media exercises)
  • Speeches/exercises: 60% (each student is required to present at least 3 times)
  • Paper: 20% (papers must be submitted two weeks before end of term – topics for papers must be agreed with instructor)
  • Text: Leggett, Brian. “Persuasion”

4. Course Evaluation

  • Papers: 25%
  • Speeches/exercises: 75% (each student is required to present at least 3 times)

11 thoughts on “Corporate Communications

  1. Communication skills and styles can be so different sometimes that people can`t undersatnd each other at all. I believe that these courses can help a lot of people around the world actually.

  2. A few years back I found it really challenging to deliver a message in a positive way. Nerves often got in the way until I realised I was missing structure, the ability to tell a story and relate that back to the people I was trying to convey a message to. The skills listed here are essential..well they are for me!

  3. thank you for the course, each individual has their own style and how to present it, with this course I got a little picture of corporate communications

  4. I definitely like objective #2 “help students develop an understanding of persuasion and an appreciation of persuasive communication and personal magnetism (“soft” power), as a management tool”

    However, I think the ‘SOFT’ side will have to be emphasized. It will be a powerful tool as long as they use it ‘gently’ IMO 🙂

  5. It is critical that everyone understand their own personal communication styles and those of the people around them. If a communication is not understood, it is not really a communication at all. Thanks for teaching this at the university level so students are better prepared with this critical skill when they enter the workforce.

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