Tutman Leadership Takeover


“Proper communication is the root of everything,” claimed Paula Tutman, of Local 4 News.

Paula Tutman, a broadcast journalist at WDIV-TV Local 4 News, came to Oakland University recently to talk with student leaders. This presentation was the third of a four part leadership training series created for student leaders working for University Recreation and Well-Being.

Her presentation, Master Your Message, was extremely fitting for this speech. She discussed leadership, communication and ethics. She deeply believes in ethical leadership and ethical journalism, and she showed the students why she believes in those ideas.

Paula taught the student leaders that if you can communicate well, you can rule the room. However, if you do not communicate well, then things will most likely not have the best outcome, and could get messy.

Paula mostly spoke about leadership and communication in the work place and how it can be applied in almost any situation. She started off by asking the group of students what their idea of leadership meant. One student mentioned that a leader has to be trustworthy, while another stated that a leader is someone who can be followed, but can also follow others when necessary.

A very important key point that she touched on was that bad bosses turn good workers into bad employees. It is important to know that “stuff rolls down the hill” and upping productivity needs to start at the boss and work its way down.

A few more topics that she spoke on were how to spot problems without being the problem, having a sense of transparency, and having a true moral compass. Having a true moral compass includes having true compassion and true passion. Along with all of these things, she told the group to “resist all monkeys”. The monkeys she was referring to are gossip, addition, and anything else that keeps you from true leadership and communication.

In addition, she mentioned that communication is fragile. “Communication is the heart of leadership,” declared Paula.

Some valuable material to remember is although we can say whatever we want to say doesn’t mean we should say it. To add-on, we must also know how to manage our mouth because the way something is said is almost as important as what is said. The tone used can alter how the listener receives the message.

At the end of her presentation, Paula stated that if there is one thing the students should take away from her presentation, it is that “proper communication is the root of everything”.

Marie VanBuskirk, Coordinator of Student Employee Development, said that this presentation was based on the relational leadership model. “This leadership philosophy values being ethical and inclusive, and values leaders acting with purpose and empowering others. Paula’s dynamic presentation challenged our students to grow and be more intentional leaders. We have an exceptional group of student leaders working for University Recreation and Well-Being.  The time spent with Paula truly motivated our students to continue on in their leadership journey”.






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