A Methodology for Engineering Leadership Development by Dr. David Bayless

Thursday, April 27, 2023 at 12:30pm to 1:30pm

Toomey Hall, 199
400 W. 13th St., Rolla, MO 65409

Dr. David Bayless is the Chair and a Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Missouri S&T. Previously, he was the Gerald Loehr Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Ohio University and the Director of the Russ College’s Robe Leadership Institute. He has led several research and development teams, including directing the Center for Algal Engineering Research and Commercialization (an Ohio Third Frontier Wright Project) and as the Technical Administrator for the State of Ohio’s Coal Research Consortium. 

Dr. Bayless formerly worked for American Electric Power and was an officer in the United States Navy. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Missouri and Ohio. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. He was the recipient of the 2016 Ohio Society of Professional Engineer’s Outstanding Engineering Educator for the State of Ohio. He is actively engaged in teaching and developing leadership skills for engineers and was the founding Chair of the Engineering Leadership Development Division (LEAD) of the American Society of Engineering Education. Dr. Bayless received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from S&T (then UMR) in 1987, Ph.D. from the University of Illinois and graduated from the Executive Leadership Program at the Voinovich School for Leadership and Public Policy at Ohio University.


A Methodology for Engineering Leadership Development

Abstract: Skills needed to be a successful professional engineer include technical competence and passion for one’s work, but also the ability to work in and lead teams. Such teams may be cross-functional, meaning they have multiple disciplines (marketing, finance, sales, HR, as well as engineering) to address wide-ranging challenges. The skills needed to working within such teams and even lead them is often left to ‘on-the-job’ training - something you will try to pick up, usually via trial-and-error and observation of what might have (or might not have) worked for others. But there is a better way to integrate the skills needed to lead and collaborate successfully with such groups.

Dr. Bayless will present the leadership development triangle – a methodology to help anyone build upon their existing (and to-be-learned) skills related to exerting influence in the most effective way given the set of circumstances being addressed. The triangle consists of learning about oneself (including how your personality connects with others and characteristics you possess that align with leadership), understanding skills and styles related to influencing others successfully (including Goleman’s six styles), and integrating this knowledge with the immediate circumstances (roles of leadership, personalities in your team, goals to be achieved) through focused reflection. This methodology for leadership development has been presented as a focus of the American Society of Engineering Education’s Engineering Leadership Development Division and described in peer-reviewed publications.

Only an academic to make something so important to professional success into something that sounds dry and boring, but learning about the leadership triangle is anything but boring. It will give you a framework that you can use right now and for the rest of your life in becoming a better leader (and follower) as your professional roles change throughout your career.

Event Type

Meetings, Lectures and Conferences


College of Engineering and Computing, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Open to Public

#lecture, seminar

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