UoC · June 29, 2020

I look forward to working with all of you in this workshop. Together we will work on personal and organizational renewal during this workshop. Our hope is that each one of us will learn tremendously and be energized during the workshop, and our organization (Air Asia in general as well as smaller teams within the company that you are part of) will be enhanced through your participation in this workshop.

In this short note, I wanted to take a few lines to introduce briefly the “participant-centred” learning or “case-based teaching” that we will follow during this workshop. I have been teaching for the last 27 years and can safely say that case-based classrooms works really well, especially with experienced managers and executives. Case-based learning allows us to draw upon your experience and wisdom in ways that a traditional lecture-based class does not. But the method works only if we all work hard – we have to prepare all the materials in advance and maintain norms during our class sessions that will allow all of us to be effective teachers and learners.

To make the sessions successful, I wanted to suggest the following norms that we use in classrooms at Harvard Business School and could use during this workshop.

• Please provide your full attention to each online class
• Sign in to eVarsity – Zoom so that we can all see you. You might consider adjusting the lighting and the position of the camera to enhance visibility.
• Find an environment with little or no background noise. Please plan to use headsets, if possible.
• Try not to sign-in while moving (e.g., while being driven in a car). Definitely do not sign in while driving.
• Try to eliminate interruptions
• Do not take phone calls or check messages during the session. Put your phone away (unless you need it for the call).
• Do not check messages. For example, I would suggest closing Outlook or whatever email software you use. Definitely, do not browse the web during the session.
• Shut down all applications on your device that you do not need for the session.
• Use appropriate technology
• If possible, sign in with a computer, not a tablet or a phone. A bigger screen will help, some of you might find it useful to connect a monitor or TV to your computer.
• Check that eVarsity – Zoom is working appropriately on your computer. Keep Zoom updated if required, ensure that your camera, microphones and speakers are working.
• Try to use the most reliable network. It might help to use a wired connection or get close to your wireless router. Have a backup plan; what will you do if you lose network connectivity? Do you have an alternate way to access eVarsity – Zoom?
• Classroom decorum
• During each session, I will often pose questions to the entire group and expect someone to volunteer (using the “hand raise” function in Zoom) to respond. I will also “cold-call” i.e., ask a person chosen at random to comment on a particular matter.
• Communication among participants is crucial to making the sessions effective. Listen carefully to what others are saying. Of course, disagree with others but do so respectfully. Do not monopolize conversation

I hope you understand the spirit behind the norms that I have proposed here. I would be happy to discuss these further. Looking forward to a productive workshop. Thanks.

Ananth Raman
UPS Foundation Professor of Business Logistics
Harvard Business School

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