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Presentations 12/10

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Today being the last day of presentations I thought the presenters did a great job. There were two Twins presentations in a row, with some of the same aspects and some different from their research on the organization.  Both talked about the key players, and thought that the best recommendation for the Twins was to resign Joe Mauer, which I think almost any Twins fan would agree with. Also, Andrew did a good job on comparing the Twins to other organizations based on revenue, and being able to draft great players over good players with being able to offer less money in a contract than a team such as the Yankees. Also, Sam's presentation on the YMCA struck me as interesting. She mentioned that most of the sites for YMCA branches are located in urban areas, but I have seen many in rural areas of Minnesota. Also, it was very interesting to hear that it is actually a global organization with locations all over the world.

presentations 12/8

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Today we had seven presentations, which is very hard to fit into one class period. I thought Brian did a great job with his presentation about the Pittsburgh Pirates. He seemed very knowledgeable about the organization itself, and passionate about the information he learned.  He did a great job of relating his information to the book and applying that to analyzing the Pirates. Becca did her analysis on the Intramural department at the University of Minnesota. She was very informational about the department because she works as a referee in the volleyball part, and she has her own opinions about the effectiveness of the organization. Ryan explained that the Charlotte Bobcats had different core values from other organizations which was interesting to hear. I also thought that Kristin's presentation on Under Armor was good. Her slides were pleasing to look at and she included her input on how she felt about the company and its products and related it back to her personal values.

Presentations: 11/24/09

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I thought Kristin Dockery did a wonderful job presenting today. Her powerpoint was very organized and concise. She was very good with her words and explaining the parts of her powerpoint that she thought were important in the outline of the organization's effectiveness. In the presentation she hit all of the key points that were required of the analysis. After seeing the presentations today, I feel that they have most definitely set the bar high for the presentations for the rest of the semester. It was also interesting that right after the Nike presentation, Adam Vargas had an analysis of the Adias corporation. It ended up being a perfect random order to have them both in consecutive order. Also, after viewing these presentations I believe that it will help me in preparing for my presentation and how I should organize and present my information about my organization. There were many key points that each of the presenters touched on and explained well that will help me in explaining different aspects of my presentation.

When reviewing my philosophy on organizational effectiveness I agree with everything I wrote but after some of the things I have learned in class I can apply a deeper knowledge and understanding to how to overall determine the effectiveness of the entire organization. First, the most important step is to determine the mission and the vision of the organization. The goals have to be clear, concise, and attainable. When the mission and vision are set, it is very important to communicate these goals clearly to the whole staff.  Next, the communication aspect of the organization is very important. It is important to have a structure that allows all employees to have their voice heard, and be able to communicate concerns or problems in the interior of the organization. An organization that can adapt well and overcome problems is very likely to succeed. The strategy the organization uses to achieve their goals is important because it can determine the success or failure for the company in that the wrong strategy can weigh the business down and create more problems which then cause conflict within different departments and subgroups of the organization. The environment also affects the effectiveness of the organization. The environment in which an organization survives is important to its success, and decision making process. For instance, the environment now is affecting every single organization. However, I think that non-profit organizations are affected more dramatically by the economy because they survive by the money they make off of their clients, and if their clients are not spending money on them they struggle. Being a non-profit organization they do not receive money from the government to stay effective. How a company can adapt to this change is important. Effective organizations can adapt internally and externally to change. Leadership and power is very important in the effectiveness of the organization because they can supply role modeling and guidance for all of the employees under them. Having a good leader that can motivate the workers and produce efficient and effective work by the company through the employees helps the company to be very effective. They are for the most part involved in the decision making processes that an organization undergoes, and help make and influence some of the most important decisions an organization may make. I think as far as picking the best approach for analyzing the effectiveness of an organization it really depends on the mission of the organization or the goals of the organization for that specific time. If the mission of the organization is to produce the best quality, and most spectators watching their team I would say apply the goal-attainment approach. The strategic constituencies approach could be used if determining whether all of the stakeholders in the company were satisfied with the outcome of the organization.  

Decision making is a big part of the organizational process. Slack describes two different types of decision making, programmed and nonprogrammed. Programmed decision making is the everyday decision making that a company makes based and policies and regulations of the company itself. The book says that problems solved by programmed decision making are well structured, and present enough information to clearly solve the problem. Nonprogrammed decision making is when a new problem arrives that the company has never had to face before. There are two different approaches to decision making each having their own several models to follow. The first is the individual decision making having a rational model and an administrative model to follow. The rational model is more a process of how to make the decision with eight steps to follow. The administrative model is a decision making process that is guided by emotions, time constraints, and imperfect information, which is why it is also known as the bounded rationality model. They describe it as this because the rational model is a good model, however most managers do not follow the process thoroughly. In the second approach, organizational decision making, there are five different approaches in it. The first approach being management science where uses mathematics and statistics to make a solution. Next is the Carnegie model where decisions are made by all subunits and managers in an organization. The Carnegie model describes decision making as a political process. The third process is the garbage can model where decisions are rarely systematic and logical. There are many things changing in an organization and many problems, participants, solutions, and choices are placed within the organization. Fourth is a process known as the structuring of unstructured processes which is pretty self explanatory.  Last is the process of the Bradford studies. Bradford studies focus on the actual process rather than the outcome and the implementation. It has five dimensions, surrounding twelve variables. The decision making process of an organization is very important to the effectiveness of the organization because it determines how things are run in the company. The decision making process is also tied in with the power of the company whether the power to make the decision is high up, or spread throughout the company. Organizations may have many problems and face those problems in different ways, they need to implement the right process for the company to become and stay effective.

Importance of Culture

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 Culture of an organization is defined in many ways but still today cannot be completely and satisfactorily described.  Combining the three different theorist's definitions in Slack and Parent, culture is defined as the beliefs, rituals, patterns and understandings that a company learns to develop for itself.  Some of the most important things that organizational culture focuses on is characteristics of stories, myths, symbols, and rituals of an organization.

Stories and myths are very important in analyzing an organization's culture because they can develop a feeling of belonging to new employees and a sense of togetherness for employees already in the organization. They help present a sense of the organizations history, they can help establish the organization as an enduring entity, and they help transmit messages about organizational goal and how they employees should act.

Symbols are used in a company to communicate meanings bout the organization itself to the members involved and to the public that recognizes the company. Companies and organization can identify themselves with a symbol that is used on all their merchandise, for example the Nike swoosh. Nike is such a global company that people all over the world can identify that certain apparel is Nike Brand because of the swoosh printed on the clothing. There are also symbols such as slogans that a company ties them with. Once again, Nike developed the slogan of "just do it", and has been very successful in taking it as a strong significance for the company.

Language of organizations can vary from specific organizations to the wide culture of something such as a specific sport itself. The language is used between people of the organization or of the culture to communicate with each other. Language serves to strengthen the social network of the organization.

Lastly ceremonies and rituals are something that organizations develop as a tradition for that organization. They can be simple things such as team nights out, or a company trip to a conference in a different area of the country each year. When rituals are performed it shares and strengthens the values of the organization. They can also demonstrate when the organization values through their ceremonies and rituals. For example when a team prays before a game, it demonstrates values of religion and beliefs.  The book identifies different types of rites, or rituals, one being a rite of passage. This is described as marking the change in the role or status of the person or persons involved. Also there is a rite of degradation, which points out the faults of performance in a person associated with power in the organization.

Overall, it is important for an organization to have a strong culture. Having a strong culture helps an organization collaborate ideas, and traditions and can help get everyone on the same page. It can develop a sense of belonging for employees and can be used in determining the overall effectiveness of an organization.

Leadership

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When determining leadership in an organization, there are many factors to take into account.  The things that affect and impact leadership in a company are the company's actors, the processes the company's uses in things such as decision making, the culture of the organization, how the organization is structured, and also the environment that the company survives in.

The structure, and social structure of an organization can affect the organization economically affects the organization in three main ways. The power and politics of the company affect the flow and quality of the information within the company.  Also in the social structure there is an important of reward and punishment for completed jobs. Third, there is a need for trust in the organization that the people with the highest power will make the right and best decisions for the company regardless of incentives. The actors involved with the organization hold importance because they have a say in how the company adapts, changes, and evolves. Certain actors in the organization have insight on how to manage certain relations in regards to the company's best interest. The processes the organization uses to for example most information throughout the organization, or how to implement change impact the organization greatly because one process may not work well for a company in reaching their goals, and they need to be adaptable and able to change processes to survive. The culture of an organization is very important in its success. An organization must develop and create a strong culture to create norms and tradition in the workplace. The culture includes many different aspects such as things like heroes, traditions, stories, speech and many others. In order to develop a strong leadership a company needs to have a good culture and connection with their employees to develop a trust and understanding that everyone is there to reach the same goals. When the official referee from the NBA  came in to talk about his job and his position in the contract renewals he explained part of the culture of the organization and the subgroup of the referees. He explained how the main leaders of the referees were the older and more experienced guys.  They had been through a contract negotiation before and were trying to lead and coach the younger less experienced refs how to handle and deal with the NBA in order to get more money and be able to support their families in the same way as before.

There are few different types of changes an organization can implement. They can have technological change, structural and systematic changes, and people changing. All of these include changes in processes, addition, modification, or deletion of areas in the organization, modifications to areas of sport in the book it suggests the division of labor. In regards to changes in people it describes how people change and act differently or how they relate to other workers. Overall there are two types of change described in the book, radical change and convergent change. Organizations need to undergo different types of change depending on the different problems in the company. Things such as not producing enough resources cause a call for change, which would bring in the resource dependence theory for change. This theory also depends on the changes in the environment, which then the manager needs to work off of the environment changes to implement changes within the organization itself. There are different reasons an organization needs to make change. Causes for change can come from internal or external factors. Change in technology can call for new equipment which shows an external factor influencing a change internally in the organization. They talked about changes in government legislation such as Title IX influencing many changes within organizations. I would apply this in changes in regulations that organizations such as the NCAA had to undergo to meet the requirements of the new legislation. Change agents are very important in determining what needs to be changed and how the process will be developed to make the necessary changes. There are also resistances to change in organizations. Resistance also has internal and external factors. Slack and Parent explains that not all resistance to change is bad, if there is resistance there must be some reason, which means it is not all dysfunctional. Some of the resistances to change are self-interest, cost, differing assessments of change consequences, and a lack of trust and understanding about the implications of change.  There are six stages to Greiner's change process. The first stage is pressure and arousal, which puts pressure on the management to make changes. The second stage is intervention and reorientation, where an insider is brought in to avoid any conflicts on the internal side of the organization. Third, is diagnosis and recognition. The fourth stage on invention and commitment involves inventing solutions and developing the commitment to those changes within everyone in the company. Then there are the last two stages of experimentation and search, and reinforcement and acceptance which involves testing the solutions and then accepting the positive solutions as a new process in the organization.

Kenny Mauer

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Ken Mauer's presentation was very interesting and integrated some concepts we had learned about in class. Ken introduced himself first and gave us his background about how he got to where he is today.  He began his sports career as a baseball player on the team at the University of Minnesota during college. His family is heavily involved in athletics also. He is related to the Minnesota Twin's baseball player Joe Mauer. His father and also all of his brothers were referees in sports.

Ken is an official NBA referee since the 1986-87 season. He began refereeing in his home state of Minnesota. He spent nine years at the collegiate level, and six years in the Continental Basketball Association. He was then hired by the NBA. He explained his life as a referee and how it affects his family. He was talking about how he spends much of his time on the road, ref-ing games all over the country, many of the games on the west coast. He also talked about how the refs are responsible for arranging their own hotels in the cities they are working in, which I thought was very different since they are working for an organization such as the NBA officially. It was very interesting to hear about his relationships with coaches, players, and fans at the games.

Ken spent a lot of time talking about the contract negotiations between the NBA and the official referees. He explained in as much detail as possible about how the process works. Since he is one of the most experienced and older referees in the NBA he explained how they deal with the contract negotiations and tries to coach the newer and younger referees along so they can get the most money and benefits as possible from the NBA. He explained that the longer they wait the more money they would get, but the younger referees had no experience in contract negotiations with the NBA like he had, and he did not know how long they would hold out for. I thought about the power and politics of the organization when he was explaining the process. The NBA has a lot of power over the referees since the organization offers them their contracts and their benefits. Also, the politics of how the contract negotiations take place by offering and denying offers until the refs and the NBA reach an agreement.

Conflict in an Organization

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Organizations have two different types of conflict, functional and dysfunctional conflict. One of them is good for a company and the other is bad. Organizations should focus on functional conflict to help them grow and succeed because only good suggestions can come from functional conflict. Dysfunctional conflict consists of daily social interaction situations that can bring the company down. In the five stage model of conflict the first stage is latent conflict. There are three types of latent conflict, first of them being scarce resource competition. This can be described when two different areas or departments, for instance the men's and women's athletics departments for the university, believe they should have more of a specific resource, in their case equipment. This can create conflict between the two different sides of the athletic department. The second is the drive for autonomy. There may be certain people or subunits as the book says, that want to work alone on something or take something over themselves. Lastly it can be the differing goals of different groups in the company. I think this should be resolved by everyone and every group in the company working essentially towards the same goal. The second stage is the perceived conflict stage. This is a stage where rumors of conflict beginning have been brought to the attention of one or more of the parties in the company. Third stage is felt conflict, which is where the negative emotions are met. The next stage is manifest conflict where the behavior of the conflict is shown. The last stage is the conflict aftermath, which is where either it is resolved, or the basis for more conflict later. The book acknowledges multiple sources of conflict in an organization. The different sources are differentiation, interdependence, low formalization, competition over resources, differences in reward systems, power incongruence, communication problems, participative decision making, and role conflict. I think the ones that are the source of most conflicts in an organization are the power incongruence, communication problems, and participative decision making. I think that these the most driving sources to conflict because I feel many people have problems not being heard in a company or when the power of the company is not where it should be or is being abused. Also the participative decision making can cause problems because they have too many opinions being spoken about how the company should evolve in many different aspects. For effectiveness of an organization the company needs to recognize its functional conflict and work with it, while at the same time dealing with the dysfunctional conflict in a positive and fair manner so the conflict and be resolved.