About Us

Our goal is to provide insights for improving teamwork, whether in the workplace or in the classroom. My two collaborators and I have spent time in the real-world practicing these ideas as well as in classroom teaching them. For more details, see our brief bios below.

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Timothy M. Franz, Ph.D., St. John Fisher College & Franz Consulting 

Tim, the owner of Franz Consulting and this site, is an Industrial and Organizational Psychologist at St. John Fisher College. He is a Professor of Psychology, and past Chair of the Psychology Department, and past Program Director and Chair of the Organizational Learning and Human Resource Development Department.  In addition to his academic work, he also works as an independent organizational consultant.

His topical areas of expertise include individual and small team decision making, improving team performance, and using teams to drive organizational change.  Some of his ideas about improving teams are in his forthcoming book, titled Group Dynamics and Team Interventions. He is also an experienced applied researcher, specializing in conducting focus groups and individual interviews, designing custom surveys, analyzing employee and workplace data, and evaluating the effectiveness of training programs. He received his Doctorate in Social/Organizational Psychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago and his Master’s degree in Psychology from the University at Buffalo.

Tim spends a considerable proportion of his downtime outside, in activities like bicycling, hiking, paddling, and skiing. He’s an active member of National Ski Patrol and Mountain Bike Patrol.


Collaborators

Seth R. Silver, Ed.D., Owner of Silver Consulting, Inc.

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Seth R. Silver

Since 1998, Seth has been the principal of Silver Consulting, Inc., an independent consulting practice.  His work has included consulting to senior management on such topics as cultural change, employee engagement, and customer loyalty; working with leadership teams to increase effectiveness and performance; providing clients such services as executive coaching, strategic planning, and organizational diagnosis; and teaching employees professional skills and strategies for workplace success. In his consulting, Seth has developed and trade-marked a unique business process called The Workplace Covenant, which helps parties in any organization to exchange and agree upon reciprocal Obligations so they can ensure trust, feedback and alignment in their relationship. He has served as an Assistant Professor at St. John Fisher College and was on faculty at the Rochester Institute of Technology as a Lecturer in their HRD Masters program.

Seth holds a Bachelors degree in Social Psychology from the University of Toronto; a Masters in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University; and a Doctorate (Ed.D.) in Human Resource Development from The George Washington University.  His doctoral research examined the relationship between leadership behaviors, engineers’ perceptions of empowerment, and team and individual performance. He has published in Training Magazine, the Academy of Management Journal, the Journal of Management Inquiry, and Training and Development (T&D) Magazine. He is also on the Board of Directors for several non-profit organizations in the Rochester area.

Seth, who holds dual Canadian/US citizenship, spends his personal time volunteering, exercising, and hiking. In addition, he’s a blackbelt who teaches karate at a local fitness center.

Find more information about Seth at his website

Lauren Vicker, Ph.D., Professor of Media and Communication.

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Lauren A. Vicker

Lauren Vicker is a Professor in the Department of Media and Communication at St. John Fisher College. She became interested in studying group dynamics and group processes while working on her Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Pittsburgh and has taught Group Dynamics and Group Communication at Pitt, St. Cloud State University, Syracuse University, and St. John Fisher where she often team-teaches the course with Tim. She is a past chair of the department, directed the department’s internship program for over 25 years, and for four years hosted a weekly department podcast. Her teaching expertise includes public speaking, interviewing, career preparation, and communication skills for business and health care professionals, along with group dynamics. These roles have led her to focus on preparing students for professional success and equipping them with the skills they need to effectively work with others regardless of their field of study or organization.

In addition to Making Team Projects Work with Tim, Lauren is the co-author of three other books: The FastForward MBA in Business Communication (Wiley), The Complete Academic Search Manual: A Systematic Approach to Successful and Inclusive Hiring (Stylus); and Applied Mass Communication Theory: A Guide for Media Practitioners (Taylor & Francis), soon to be released in a 3rd Edition. She has presented at the American Association of University Professors, the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, the Association for Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication, and the Team-Based Learning Collaborative Conference, among other regional and local meetings. She is a member of the Programming and Marketing Committees of the Team-Based Learning Collaborative.

Outside of her work at Fisher, Lauren has volunteered her time doing public relations and marketing for non-profit groups in the Rochester area and beyond. She is an avid biker and gardener and organizes a group of women who knit and crochet for local non-profits.