Personal Skills Development Program Group 1 (ILV)


Course lecturer:

 Eithne Knappitsch


FH-Prof. Mag. Dr.

 Dietmar Sternad , BSc MBA

Course numberM4.05170.10.041
Course codePersSkills
Semester of degree program Semester 1
Mode of delivery Presence- and Telecourse
ECTS credits6,0
Language of instruction English

Professional skills and expertise
The focus of this module lies on enabling students to acquire a range of different personal skills that are needed in an international management context. The module consists of (1) a global case study challenge, in which students enhance their intercultural teamwork skills, (2) a coaching program, in which students learn how to coach others and recognize their own goals and strengths, and (3) elective skills development seminars, in which students choose 2 out of the following 3 seminars: "Cross-border negotiations", "Communicating with impact" and "Learning, thinking and problem-solving strategies".
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • describe how methods and techniques in the chosen elective skills seminars can contribute to managerial effectiveness in an international business context
  • apply coaching techniques to support others in identifying their strengths and goals and finding the right approaches to reaching their goals
    Personal skills (problem-solving/critical thinking, social and communication skills, self-competence)
    In the global case challenge and the coaching program, students will acquire the following personal skills:
  • build trust and collaborate effectively in global virtual teams
  • develop intercultural competence through working on case studies in intercultural teams
  • support others in identifying their own strengths and goals, devising plans to reach their goals, and reflecting on learning experiences
  • recognize their own strengths and personal and career goals, and develop strategies for reaching these goals
Dependent on the choice of skills development seminars, students will acquire the following personal skills:
  • recognize culture-based differences in negotiation style and apply appropriate negotiation techniques in an intercultural negotiation situation (in the "Cross-border negotiations" seminar)
  • improve their communication skills in terms of precision, structure and clarity, persuasion, and visual representation of knowledge (in a variety of different genres including, for example, academic articles, social media posts, and managerial report) (in the "Communicating with impact" seminar)
  • extend their repertoire of learning, thinking (analytical, critical, and conceptual thinking) and problem-solving methods (in the "Learning, Thinking and Problem-Solving Strategies" Seminar)
Digital skills
In this module, students will acquire the following skills related to the use of digital technologies:
  • using digital tools for communication and cooperation in virtual global teams
  • communicating more effectively on social media channels

This module covers the following topics:
I. Global case study challenge
• Collaboration and cultural intelligence in global and/or virtual teams
• Working on case studies in global virtual teams
II. Coaching program
• Coaching as a development process
• Coaching techniques
• Peer coaching exercises
III. Personal skills development electives
A. Cross-border negotiations
• Process dynamics in cross-border negotiations
• Cultural and personal differences in negotiation style
• Distributive and integrative negotiations
• Practical negotiation exercises
B. Communicating with impact
• Effective communication in different genres (including, for example, academic writing, social media posts, and managerial reports and presentations)
• Audience analysis, clarity of purpose, structure, and precision
• Developing credibility and being persuasive
• Visual rhetoric (effective visual communication)
C. Learning, thinking and problem-solving strategies
• The neuroscience of learning
• Effective learning techniques
• Models of habit creation and behavior change
• Analytic, conceptual, and critical thinking approaches
• Problem-solving models
• Learning, thinking, and problem-solving exercises

Bailey, S. (2020). Academic Writing for International Students of Business and Economics. 3rd ed. Abingdon: Routledge.
Barmeyer, C. & Franklin, P. (2016). Intercultural Management: A Case-Based Approach to Achieving Complementarity and Synergy. London: Palgrave.
Collins, S. (2019). Neuroscience for Learning and Development: How to Apply Neuroscience and Psychology for Improved Learning and Training. 2nd ed. London: Kogan Page.
Fells, R. & Sheer, N. (2019). Effective Negotiation: From Research to Results. 4th ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
O´Connor, J. & Lages, A. (2019). Coaching the Brain: Practical Applications of Neuroscience to Coaching. Abingdon: Routledge.
Ragins, B. R. (2012). Editor's comments: Reflections on the craft of clear writing. Academy of Management Review, 37 (4), 493-501.
Usunier, J.-C. (2018). Intercultural Business Negotiations: Dealmaking or Relationship Building. Abingdon: Routledge.

  • Lecture and discussion
  • Role play
  • Peer coaching
  • Practical exercises
  • Written assignments

Integrated module exam (immanent examination character):

  • Case analysis presentation and reflection (30%)
  • Coaching diary (30%)
  • Personal skills elective paper (40%)