The Hyatt-Fennell Minute

Recent Posts

University Presidents: How Do You Know When It’s Time for a Change?

The average tenure of university presidents has been on the decline. The amount of turnover is undisputed, but what are the right reasons to move on? Our own Dr. Marylouise Fennell offers insights to guide your evaluation: Timing. Leaving at a crucial time not only damages the university’s success, but your credibility. Aim to leave on a high note. “Foundations and corporations, as well as individual major donors, want to see success, momentum, and stability.” Rationale. It is natural to want to leave out of frustration with situations or politics, but be aware that overcoming a difficult season will make you more hirable for your next position. “Among the most positive reasons for leaving i

3 Steps to Improve Networking

Everyone talks about the importance of building a network of strong relationships. Some are naturally better at this than others. For those of us for whom it feels difficult or even overwhelming, here are three things you can do to begin: Focus on what you can give. Many people only think of networking when they need something, but successful networking is founded on respect and reciprocity. Make a practice of sending interesting articles to those you know would benefit from them. When attending an industry-event, invite a colleague to join you. As you do these things, you will increase your credibility as a team-player and someone adept in their field. Schedule it in. With so many things vy

Does Your Executive Bio Sell You or Sink You?

An executive bio essentially functions as a personal elevator pitch. While your resume provides the nuts and bolts of your credentials, your executive bio gives a sketch of who you are and why people should be interested in you. Not all executive bios are created equal. An effective bio includes the following elements: What have you accomplished? This is not an exhaustive list, but a highlights reel. Your executive summary should show what results you have a proven track-record of producing. Show trends and continuity. For example, “Ms. O’Conner has chaired numerous successful capital campaigns, the most recent exceeding fundraising goals by 17% at $3.9 million.” What is your competitive adv

Does Academic Envy Stifle Your Faculty? Read One Person’s Admission.

Tenure-track positions in education are increasingly hard to come by. Competition for those positions is fierce and such an environment does not always foster harmony among those trying to get ahead. Theresa MacPhail candidly shares her own feelings of frustration and jealousy at the success of others. She writes, “my colleagues’ combined successes had temporarily made my own self-confidence dip. I worried that my own work might not be as good as theirs.” Read her reflections in their entirety here. How have you experienced envy throughout your career? Have you witnessed it’s poisonous effects in your departments?

A Strong Legacy...

In the past, university presidents were academic and internally focused; today business acumen is prized and the majority of time is spent on developing relationships and fundraising. What are the distinctions that separate a strong legacy from a floundering leader? Marylouise Fennell shares these key areas: Perceptions matter. As the figurehead of an organization, your actions reflect on your office. Two rules of thumb: “How would it look on the front page of tomorrow’s paper?” and “What would happen to the institution/community/profession if all presidents emulated this action?” Spend judiciously. “Mishandling or perceived misuse of institutional funds has probably compromised the effectiv

How Is Your University Addressing the Skills Gap in Nursing?

There is increased demand for nurses and healthcare workers, with more needs projected as Baby Boomers age. Even once workers grain credentials, there is a significant problem with attrition in recently graduated nurses. How is your university making sure students are work-ready? Carlow University supplements traditional clinical and transitions programs with their Nursing Lab, “The Nursing Skills Lab—which resembles a six-bed hospital acute care unit—enables students to practice nursing techniques on lifelike mannequins that can simulate a patient's breathing, pulse rates, and levels of consciousness.” University of Pittsburgh’s school of nursing pairs nursing students with preceptors for o


Congratulations to Barbara Garii, who was named Vice President for Academic Affairs at St. Joseph's College in New York. Saint Joseph’s is a thriving college that offers students opportunities in the classroom as well as the city. Recently 2016 graduate Jasmine Elshear. Read a profile on Jasime and her work here.

Great Campuses

The Chronicle of Higher Ed has released their list of great colleges to work for. Did your university make the list? What do you value most in a university? Has that list of values changed as you’ve progressed in your career? Share your thoughts on social media.

Does Your Online Reputation Need A Tune-up?

“Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! ....My reputation, Iago, my reputation!” —Cassio in Othello The old adage holds that you are only as good as your name, but do you know what others are saying about you? With communication and commerce increasingly online, it is vital that you regularly audit and augment your online reputation. This doesn’t need to be an exhaustive (and exhausting) process. Here are the essentials: Search regularly. Figure out what rhythm works well for you, whether at the end of a semester or on a quarterly basis. Google yourself. What are the top results that come up? What photos can people see? Where are they coming from? Peruse sites like

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