December 2009 Archives

Organizational Strategy

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Organizational strategy is huge when talking about the effectiveness of an organization. Every sport organization implements strategies in the front office all the way down to the players and coaching staff. The text book talked a lot about the different levels of strategy. There are four different types of corporate strategies which include: growth, stability, defensive and combination strategies. Business strategies include cost leadership, differentiation strategy, focus strategy. All the strategies that the text book talked about are vital in within an organization. I think a key component is selecting the appropriate strategy. Selecting the strategy is the final stage in the strategy formulation phase. The choice of strategy will depend on the sport organization's mission statement as stated in the text. I think that any decisions made by an organization are within a strategy and work towards common goals. When leadership is put into place, so is strategy. I think each leader has their own vision in mind and a strategy they want to implement. For example, when David Kahn took over the Timberwolves, he had a plan for the draft and was also looking down the road at saving up money for free agents. Kahn's strategy at the present time may not be apparent, but down the road he has pieces in place to succeed long term. I think working for a sport organization would allow you to experience the different levels of strategy. For example, if I'm working at an entry level position, I will be told how to do my job within the strategy that has been put in place by the people at the top of the hierarchy. When transition occurs with leadership, strategy can completely change or change in the slightest. If the new leader wants to operate similar, then the transition will run smoother than if the new leadership style has completely different values and goals.
The most interesting lecture in this class was Kenny Mauer's guest appearance. Many times in the professional sport industry we have seen debates, strikes, and conflict surrounding contracts and salaries. Before Kenny spoke with us, I had never heard a first hand story or opinion on the topic. The conflict that Kenny presented was between the referees of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the NBA itself. Kenny, being a veteran official of the NBA gave us great insight into the previous conflicts that he had dealt with. He personally had experienced multiple times when the NBA officials were dealing with contractual changes, most of which turned into strikes. The conflict that Kenny and other NBA officials dealt with was vertical conflict, which arises between different hierarchical levels of an organization (Slack, & Parent, 2006). The conflict arose between the league commissioner, David Stern, and the NBA officials. The conflict occurred because David Stern was attempting to change the officials contracts, which affected their salaries in a negative way. Kenny mentioned that there were quite a few younger officials that had never seen a strike before and these officials were more likely to believe David Stern about how great of a contract they were receiving than to listen to the veteran officials about continuing to hold out. This is a demonstration of legitimate and coercive power. David Stern, because of his position as league commissioner, has the legitimate power (Slack, & Parent, 2006). With his legitimate power he can make the decisions on what he want the officials contracts to consist of. He also used coercive power to instill fear into the younger officials. David Stern acquired new officials while the NBA officials were on strike and claimed that if a decision were not reached about the contracts then he would use the new officials all year. This would result in the young officials missing out on an entire year of their contract. Kenny Mauer stated that there was no way the NBA would use unqualified officials for an entire season, but the younger officials were scared that David Stern would. Ultimately the coercive power must have had a significant impact on the officials because they ended up voting in favor of the new contracts much sooner than Kenny Mauer and other veteran officials would have liked.
Most of our lectures in this class consisted of one main topic of the organization and management of sport. I think that when we had the panel of guest speakers in class we were presented with the main topic of organizational conflict and change, but also given an inside view on other important management topics. It was fascinating to hear Mr. Maturi speak about the organizational change he experienced when he became the University of Minnesota Athletic Director. He gave personal insight into the process of organizational change and also mentioned other management topics such as culture, decision-making, leadership, and power and politics. Mr. Maturi focused mainly on his approach to the organizational change of combining the men's and women's athletics departments. He explained that he used his first year as the Athletic Director almost entirely to personally adapt to the culture of the University, the two athletic departments and the people who were involved in them. In his first year, there was not one athletic department employee who got fired. Mr. Maturi decided to throw out the idea of radical change for the first year by not eliminating people and positions. Coming into the situation, Mr. Maturi knew that there would potentially be strong resistance to the change that he was hired to coordinate. The men's and women's athletic departments were completely separate in everything they did, so he expected them both to have different ideas in the process of combining the two. To combat the resistance to change that he expected, Mr. Maturi used participation and involvement of the men's and women's athletes, which Slack and Parent (2006) claim is one of the most effective ways to deal with resistance to change. The men's and women's athletic departments each had different logos before the merger. The men used the block "M" and the women used a "Ms.". Mr. Maturi asked both the men and women to come together and collectively make a decision on what the new logo for the University of Minnesota Athletic Department should be. The athletes chose the block "M" almost unanimously. This exercise helped show Mr. Maturi's commitment to the process and allowed him to gain the trust and support of the athletes. Overall, Mr. Maturi's speech on the organizational change that the University of Minnesota experienced shed a new light onto many organizational processes. His leadership and ability to make decisions has helped the merger go smoothly and has created an effective athletic department.

Kenny Mauer

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When Kenny Mauer came to talk to our class I was pretty excited. I have always been a huge basketball fan and especially the NBA. What was most interesting to me was what he talked about during the referee lockout. I was not very familiar with how a lockout really worked until Kenny explained it to us. I learned that it was very important for the members of the refereeing organization to work well together in order to get the maximum results. Kenny was not pleased with all of the new referees because they did not listen to the more experienced referees in the organization and as a result, their efforts did not gets the results that they wanted. I understand Kenny's point of view because he wanted to make more money before he retired and was also trying to help out the upcoming referees to make the money they deserve. I also understand the new referees perspective as well. They did not want to make their bosses (the NBA that employs them) angry by seeming like the type of group that will complain when they are brand new to the league. The newer referees had just started and wanted to make sure that they had a job. If they were to protest, then they would have to sit out and not be making the money that they could be making had they not protested. Kenny knows that they could be making more money via the lockout, but he may have been biased because he may have had the money that allowed him to pay his bills while still sitting out until necessary. By looking at the referee organization from a constituencies approach we are able to see that the lockout was not affective because not all of the referees got what they wanted. If all of the referees were satisfied with the decision that was reached, then the choice could have been seen as successful. Kenny said that he and other referees were not happy with the choices that the younger referees had chosen, therefore the refereeing organization was not an effective organization.

Organizational Culture

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Organizational culture is an idea in the field of organizational studies and management, which describes the psychology, attitudes, experiences, beliefs, and values of an organization. I think that defining organizational culture is key to understanding how the organization works and what will make it work better. Having organizational culture known and upfront leads to knowing exactly what type of leadership is needed along with what type of decision making process should be used. By knowing the culture of an organization, you know how things are run and know what will work and will not work. It is very important to understand the culture to make sure the communication throughout the organization is good as well. Culture is key to understanding the whole organizational effectiveness and the culture leads to everyone trying to achieve the same goals. This also leads to a great leader and shows if the goals are being obtained as well.
Throughout this course I have learned in the readings about many different ways that organizations can be effective. I believe that my initial thought on what makes an organization effective was correct and I do not think it changed at all. I think that being very goal-oriented, having great communication and great leadership is the key yo having an effective organization because they all work together. Being goal-oriented is great because you have something to work towards, but you need to make sure that they are reasonably attainable. This leads into the communication aspect because the employees need to be aware of everything that is going on throughout the organization so that they can successfully be heading in the same direction at the same time. Communication also leads to making sure all the roles in the organization are being accomplished and to make sure that no two people or more are working on the same project that only needs one person. Then all of this also leads to having a great leadership to make sure that all of the goals are attainable and to make sure the communication is spread throughout all of the organization. Great leadership will make everyone work towards the goals of the organization and hopefully fulfill those goals. Also the leader needs to make all the quick, but effective decisions for the organization so that they can be effective and efficient. The leader also needs to make sure that all of the decisions good or bad get filtered down throughout the organization, so that they can form new goals and streams of communication if needed.
Today's was a very interesting day for the presentations. Starting out with back to back twins organizational analysis was a coincidence. I thought it was interesting to hear about the organization by two different people giving their own viewpoint. Andrew told us that he did not think that the Twins were an effective organization but that they were an efficient organization, while Dustin said the Twins were effective based on success in recent years and the level of fan support that the organization has. I also thought it was surprising that two people today could not find a mission statement for their organization. I was surprised when Ben talked about the structure of the Chicago Blackhawkes. He said that the structure of the organization was flat and I would think a professional sports team would have a tall structure with all the coaches, managers, front office staff, etc. Overall, I thought the presenters did a very nice job.

Last day of presentations

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I found today's presentations very interesting. With the two Twins presentations back to back at the very beginning it was interesting to see some of the similarities and differences. I thought that it was interesting that they both addressed doing things the "twins way" in their presentation. They both found this to be very important to the organization. One thing I noticed that was different about the presentation is that one of them chose to focus a lot on the new stadium and the opportunities this opened up for the organization and the other focused more on the players the organization had and the things they could do personnel wise to improve the team in the long run. I personally am more into the personnel side of things so I really liked the points that Dustin made about keeping Mauer and Morneau and using some of the extra revenue from the stadium to bring in some solid free agents.

December 10

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Today's presentations were interesting and gave cultural analysis from some different perspectives. The presentation on the golf course at Gull Lake was interesting and different from any other presentation we have had. Being able to gauge the effectiveness of a golf course organization is unique because it is based on the money being generated as opposed to the success on the field like other organizations. Today we had two presentations on the Twins. Both gave similar points and they talked a lot about the Twins moving into Target Field and the impact it will bring. Both presentations mentioned the potential signing of Joe Mauer. The official's organization was also unique because it is organized different than the others that we have seen. I thought it was interesting that the managers of each sport have less control than the top. Overall, the presentations were beneficial in understanding how different sport organizations are structured and run.

Presentations 12/10

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Presentations today flowed very smoothly! Everyone was well-rehearsed and seemed to know exactly what they wanted to say. I thought it was really interesting that there weren't more Minnesota professional sport teams chosen to be analyzed. I thought that the reasoning behind choosing the Twins made a lot of sense. The team is not over-powering but consistently competitive in their Division and with the new stadium's opening fast approaching there is a lot of change happening in the organization. I also thought that the presentation about the resort's golf course was really interesting and different since I know very little about the running of a golf course and no one had done that type of an organization.

Final Day of Presentations

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I felt like the last day of presentations were very well done and I enjoyed them a lot. Specifically I enjoyed the presentation about the Classic at Madden's. Minnesota is a great state for golf, and it was interesting to hear about one of the most prestigous courses in the state. In addition, I found Bryan's presentation on the Texas Rangers interesting to me. I'm very firmilair with the Arlington area and Texas sports, but I learned a lot about the history, structure, and power of the Rangers organization that I did not previously know. I also found both presentations on the Twins very interesting. It was interesting to see that both presenters had different recommendations for the Twins in order to improve their effectiveness. Lastly, I thought that the presentation about the referee association was very interesting. I did not realize that the Twin Cities had so many associations specifically dedicated to providing and improving referees for high school athletics.

Presentations Dec 10th

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I thought the presentations as a whole were very interesting today. It was neat to see two presentations on the Twins back-to-back. It was evident that both had valid research, but both presentations were different from each other. It didn't feel like we heard the same presentation twice. I also enjoyed Sam's presentation on the YMCA. I didn't know that the YMCA was an international organization. The Y is an organization I am familiar with through working out there in high school but I did not know any information about it's history or mission. Since my hometown does not have a LifeTime or other big fitness club, everyone works out at the Y which does not make it seem like it is aimed at lower-class families. Sam was very clear in the way she presented her information. Overall, the presenters today did a good job of not reading straight off the slides which helps make the presentations more interesting. The presenters today provided a solid conclusion to the Organizational Analysis presentations.

I thought today's presentations went really well. All of the presenters had the key points on the PowerPoint and expanded into detail and not reading directly off the slides. I felt that the presentations got better and better as the day went and today was a good way to end it. They were all cleared about the information and well researched. It was interesting to hear the two guys presented on the Twins since they researched the same organization and it was presented back to back. But they both presented different information and there were less over lapping which was really good. In general, from all the presentations, it was interesting to hear all the different kind of organizations people presenting from professional sports teams, sports clubs, and private organizations and others. I was able to learn many different kind of structure of the organizations across the nation for sports.

Presentations today were very helpful to hear. I actually enjoyed when the two students who presented on the Minnesota Twins went one after the other. Typically, I think it is looked down upon when two students present the same thing one after another. The two students did a great job sharing different information. I felt like the second student who presented on the Twins did a great job off not covering material the previous student had covered. I also enjoyed the Minnesota State High School League presentation. I thought this was a well put together presentation and it was helpful that the presenter had an internal perspective, considering she is an official for the MSHSL. I enjoyed hearing about this presentation because I was a high school athlete under the MSHSL, which made it interesting to hear more about the organization. Overall, the presentations today were well done and were a good complement to the rest of the course.

12-10-09 Presentations

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I must agree with Emily in saying that the presentations have definitely improved as this was the last day of presentations. It is good to see that people have taken note on what can be improved upon when presenting and they made sure of that we creating and practicing their own presentations. I thought people did better with adhering to the time restrictions as well as not including so much text on slides. Although I think some people still did this, the majority did better with that. It was interesting to learn about the referee association that Ashley did her case study analysis on because it was a much smaller organization and you could tell that it really hit home with her since she is a referee herself. One of the harder parts to get through was the back to back Twins presentations but it's not as though they can help it.

-Kristen Dockery

Presentations 12/10

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The presentations today were all very interesting and very well researched. The presentation that really intrigued me was the analysis of the Chicago Blackhawks. What was most interesting to me was that the mission statement of the organization was nowhere to be found on the website. This is one of the problems that I showed the lack of leadership and vision the former owner had and as a result the Blackhawks were lacking competitively. Another flaw in the organization was their lack to market their product to a broader audience. I feel since the ownership has turned over to a new regime and the fact that the organization has been able to select young talent, it is going in the right direction. One of the missions the organization did have was their commitment to get youth in the surrounding area involved in hockey and develop positive values and work ethics. This will go a long way to develop youth and maintain a positive image of the organization in the community.
The last day of presentations went very well, not a big surprise for me. As a whole, throughout the entire presentation period, I witnessed presenters that were well prepared in giving their information on the organization they chose. I thought it was very interesting that to start the day we had two Minnesota Twins organizational analyses. You would think that picking random pieces of paper out of a hat would make it very difficult for this to happen. I guess not! Andrew went first and gave us the analysis based more on the organization as a whole, while Dustin gave us an analysis more based on the on-field performance of the team. As I have stated on my previous blogs about the class presentations I enjoy when the presenter chooses an organization that they have firsthand knowledge in. We had two presenters go in Ashley and Alyssa W. who provided just that.

Presentations 12/10

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Today was our last day of presentations and I think today's presenters ended on a good note. In one of the earlier presentation days, a classmate presented on the Minnesota Twins and said he believed they were a very effective organization and he did not really have any recommendations for them. It was very interesting to hear a completely different perspective by Andrew today in the first presentation about the Twins. Andrew raised good points about the Twins' comparatively low revenue, low team value (solely in terms of money), and their lack of a World Series appearance since 1991. When considering these factors the Twins don't appear to be as effective of an organization as originally presented. I think the move to Target Field will help the Twins greatly with the first two points Andrew mentioned. Although I focused on Andrew's presentation, the rest of today's presentations were good too. I found it especially interesting that the leadership in the Chicago Blackhawks organization was able to raise season ticket sales from about 3,000 to 14,000 in a year! One thing I also learned today was that the YMCA was an international organization; I am not sure why, but I had just never thought of that as a possibility.

Presentations 12/10

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Presentations 12/10/09

 

The presentations as a whole seem to be getting better every class period.  I have commented after past presentation that it seemed like too many individuals are reading the information on their slides.  That seems to be happening less and less.  The majority of the presentations now use their PowerPoint's as a guide to the topics they are discussing.  

Two presenters today are or were part of the organization they talked about, which is great, because it gives them a unique perspective on the issues discussed.   However, neither one of them made it explicitly clear that they had been or are a part of the organization.  It was a little confusing when half way through the presentations the presenters went from talking about their organization from an outside perspective to changing and talking about how they are involved.  Simply by talking about how "we" communicated or what "we" could improve upon.  This could have been easily avoided in both situations by mentioning at the beginning of the presentation how they are involved within the organization the decided to analysis.

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.

Presentation 12-10

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In today's presentations, there were many good points from each presentation. The one which really stood out was the two Twins presentations. I thought it was funny how they were back to back so we had 20 minutes of Twins organizational information. In the first presentation done by Andrew, he was able to give a nice background overview of the organization. The slides were all very clear and easy to follow. His recommendations were also interesting and were ones that I would agree on. In the second presentation done by Dustin, his information was obviously the same but he was able to add some extra points to. I liked the way that Dustin set up his slides in his presentation because they were all bullet points which was a great way to not get caught reading right off a slide. Overall, both of the presentations were very good and provided with some interesting views on the Twins organization which I haven't really considered before.

Presentations 12-10

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       Today was a full day of presentations but i think that everyone did a really good job at getting all there informationa across in the ten minutes that they had.  Over the semester we have gone over a lot of diffrent organizations and much to my surprise there hasnt been a over lap in any of them, well at least till today.  I thought that it was really wired that the only two organizations that were the same were back to back.  I thought that both of them did a really good job at presenting different information.  I dont really remember which one was which, but one of them was focused on the structure within the organization and the other was foused on the environment.  The twins is diffucult topic to discuss because it is easy to assume that everyone knows what is going on with them.  I think that both of the guy did an excelent job digging deep and giving us a different look. 

       Just as a little side note i really didnt know that the YMCA was do diverse and had so much to the orgnization.  I thought that this presentation was very good.

Presentations 12/10

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It was really nice to round out the final day of presentations with a fluster. I thought the majority of presentations were well organized and delivered. I thought the presentation on the Texas Rangers was the epitome of what a presentation should be. We had talked about brevity and being concise in our presentations and I thought the presentation on the Rangers was exactly what we had talked about. I appreciated that Bryan was so brief and concise with his presentation because he only presented information that was relevant and demonstrated that he had controlled and synthesized a large amount of information into an effective presentation. It was interesting to see recommendations for an organization like the Rangers who really don't deal with issues relating to resources. A lot of the presentations, like those on the Twins, dealt with organizations that have to struggle with being effective with their financial resources but in the case of the Rangers there is an apparent abundance of financial resources and it was interesting to think about an organization that could have the financial ability to change the course of the organization without severe financial hardship. Overall the presentations I think hit there mark but it was continually difficult to manage the time restraints that each day of presentation was on and there were some overall issues with too much text in the presentations which makes it difficult to be drawn in to the topic of each presentation.

Dec. 10

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I enjoyed all of today's presentation and thought that they all seemed very well rehearsed and informational. The presentation that I found to be the most interesting was Sam's presentation about the YMCA. I had never been to a YMCA and didn't know that they focused so heavily on giving back to their community and providing opportunities to less fortunate families. I always heard that the YMCA was very expensive to join and it would have been beneficial to Sam's presentation if she would have listed the membership cost for some YMCAs around the Twin Cities; she could have then took those costs and then compared them to what the average family pays with aide. Some comparison like that I think would have been very interesting. Another presentation that I found interesting today was the Texas Ranger presentation. I never really knew much about that organization either, except that it was a baseball team in Texas, which is pretty obvious. I found it interesting that they have a 28 year old general manager and that from what was presented, he is doing a good job at being the general manager because he can relate to his players on more of a one-on-one level because he is about the age of the players. I also learned a lot about the Twin's organization from the two presentations that we had today, and I think that it is great to see people interested in learning about professional sports teams in the metro.

12/10 Presentations

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I really enjoyed the YMCA presentation as well as the Glof Course presentation. These are both organizations in which I have had contact with but I did not know any of the detailed information the presenters gave. I grew up going to the YMCA because it was the only fitness facility in Grand Rapids. I participated in soccer and swimming leagues at the YMCA and can definitely see how the target market is for lower income family. I think it is a little different in Grand Rapids because it is the only fitness facility in Grand Rapids, so all demographics use the YMCA but the child care center and youth center cater to the lower class. They also have an after school program where youth can come hang out and use the rec facilities for a very reduced cost, which keeps kids out of trouble. Alyssa's presentation on the golf course was very interesting. I liked that she chose to do a golf course rather than a sport team like most people did. It was shocking to me that 2 days of lost business resulted in 20,000 dollars in lost revenue because of the storm. That goes to chow how much weather influences and effects a golf course or other outdoor sport organization. In relation to the Twins presentations, the weather factor makes me wonder if the Twins will suffer alot in making revenue when it gets cold or rainy outside when it is much easier to just watch the game on TV.

Presentations 12/10/09

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The presentations are consistently getting better.  The presenters are taking the knowledge they have learned from the class and the knowledge they have learned from the first presenters in how to make the best presentation possible.  They have learned that reading off the slides are probably not a good thing to do and that having short bullet points and expanding on them is probably the better way to go.  I liked how Ashley referred to Kenny Mauer in her presentation because he spoke in our class and I thought that was really great that it applied to him and his area of work.  I really liked the Madden's golf resort as well.  i thought it was a really clever idea because no one would have ever thought about doing something like that. I thought it was really original and I actually have friends that go there, so I was interested in seeing what their organization was all about.
There were a number of presentations today that caught my eye. I specifically enjoyed the presentation about the Texas Rangers and also the presentation about the YMCA. It was interesting to hear about another professional baseball team, since often times we hear only about how the Twins organization works because of their close proximity to the University of Minnesota. The Rangers seem like a very centralized organization, with key decisions being made by three people (Owner, President, and GM). It was also interesting to learn that the General Manager is the youngest in baseball, and came into the position when he was only 28 years old. I was interested in the YMCA presentation because as a kid I grew up playing in Y-league youth basketball leagues. During high-school I also coached basketball through the YMCA. A lot of what Sam talked about was giving people an opportunity to experience things they may not be able to because of their social and financial situations. As a part of the organization I could see on a personal level just how important the YMCA is in many communities because it really does give people a chance to be successful or at least give them an escape from their everyday routine.

December 10th presentations

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I thought there were several presentations that were very interesting.  I thought the Texas Rangers presentation was interesting to hear about.  The Rangers seem like they are few steps away from being a championship caliber team.  The Rangers are a centralized organization with all of the decisions being made by three people, the owner, the president and the GM.  It was neat to learn about the GM and how he is the youngest in the major leagues and seems to be doing a great job.  It was also interesting to hear about their best players because they are usually not on national television.  The YMCA was interesting and I took a lot out of the presentation.  I didn't really know much about the YMCA prior to the presentation, but after I felt as though I knew a good amount of basic information.  The YMCA seems to be an organization that gives underprivileged people the chance to be physically active.  I think the presentation demonstrated how important the YMCA can be to communities around the U.S.

12/10 Presentations

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Today's presentations we're interesting and full of useful information. I thought Sam did an excellent job with her YMCA presentation at describing exactly how the organization was effective in terms of going global, reaching out to millions, and using its profits not to necessarily be the most technologically advanced in terms of equipment but to aid people in becoming members. Brian's presentation on the Texas Rangers was very informative as well. You could tell he really did his research because he expanded on a lot of topics on his slides rather than reading directly off of them. He even called in to inquire as to what the mission statement was since it was not clearly posted anywhere in his research. I think people had more time to see what the previous presentations were like and thus had a good idea about what information to present and how to go about presenting it. All in all, this was a very good day of presentations.

12/10 Presentations

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Today's presentations were some of the best I think. All of them were well put together and the organizations were analyzed very well. I liked the two presentations on the Minnesota Twins because I also did my presentation on the Minnesota Twins Organization and it was interesting to see some other aspects of the organization that were covered. It was good to see that they focused on the history and how one focused a little more on the team and the other focused a little more on the business side, with revenue and what not. The presentation on the Golf Course was also very well put together and was interesting to see exactly what went into a specific venue like that to see how they were effective and I am guessing from what she was saying she works at the Golf Course, but she never stated that. They were all very good presentations today. i also liked the one on the YMCA because it was very informational, all topics were covered well and it was easy to follow. Finally, another presentation that caught my attention was the Chicago Blackhawks presentation because I did not know much about that organization and it was interesting to find out that they did not have a mission statement for the team. It was also nice to see the organizational change and it was discussed very well. How it went from a terrible team that was not televised because of a greedy owner not wanting fans to see the game for free on TV and high ticket prices, to becoming a winning franchise, that now has TV contracts for every regular season game along with cheaper ticket prices with the new president.

12/8 Presentations

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I thought that all of the presentations today went great and that they were very well prepared to present their organizational analysis to the class. The Pop Warner organization was the most interesting to me because I knew that Pop Warner was a large organization and it was very good to hear about how it is actually run and how they measure if they are effective or not. Also, I did not know that they did other sports, I just always affiliated Pop Warner with football, but it was good to find out that they also represented other youth sports. The presentation on Under Armour, which was already done was very good and it explained the company well even though we had heard a presentation about it before. Also, it was nice to see that they information from both presentations lined up. I liked that she had made a comment about the models as well and how they need to change it because not everyone is going to meet the criteria of the model that is wearing the apparel, so they should try to use real life people as well, so they can relate to all the customers as well. The presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates was also very good because it showed true understanding of the organization and how it was run. I liked how he explained exactly what was causing the problems and the recommendations that were stated were great for the specific organization and really showed the understanding of how things need to be handled in that organization from now on to make they effective and efficient in the future.

December 10th Presentations

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I thought the presentations today went well and it seemed like almost everyone that went had some sort of passion in what they were presenting. The people that went really did not have to look at the slides a lot, but more of you the slides as a guide and talk about everything from the key points on the slide. They were all well prepared in knew a lot about what they were talking about. The one presentation that I really liked was the first Minnesota Twins presentation and how the change of the new stadium is going to effect them in many different ways. This I thought was very neat and informative because of the differences between the metrodome and an out door stadium. Overall this is the one presentation that I took a lot of information away from and I learned a lot about the history and overall structure of the organization. It was nice to listen to because he was not reading right off his slides but using them to work off of.
This has been an extremely busy week for me, with four presentations and two papers, so I forgot to post my blog about Tuesday's presentations. I thought the presentations were good, I thought that the presentation about the Pop Warner participants was a really cool idea. I think it was something that no one would ever think of. I do not really find the sports team's presentations very interesting because I feel like once I have heard one description of an organization, I have learned them all, with some slight variations. I really like hearing about organizations that I have never heard about before. One thing that I did notice in these presentations was that they all seemed to use the SWOT analysis in their presentation. I used this in my paper, but I did not specifically do it in my presentation. I touched on some of the strengths and weaknesses with Under Armour and some opportunities for them to utilize, but I feel as though the groups saw what others did and that is why the people that went today used the SWOT analysis as part of their presentation.
I thought today was the best day of presentations thus far. The presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates was done tremendously. Not only did Brian explain each aspect of effectiveness thoroughly, but he did so in a way that portrayed how informed he really was about the organization. In terms of his slideshow, each slide only had a few words, but a lot of pictures, drawing the attention to the slideshow, and keeping the audience into the presentation. Since each slide didn't have a lot of words on them, it allowed Brian to talk about the organization in his own way rather than reading right from the slides. Also, Brian pointed out in the first few seconds of his presentation that his entire analysis was structured around the Goal Attainment Approach of goal setting and effectiveness. This was a unique twist on the presentation that no one had done before. I also like how in the Under Armour presentation she explained her own personal views of the organization and how she found them very effective but disagreed with a few of their procedures, like the 5'8" modeling requirement. It was also neat to see that each Under Armour presentation found the same facts and levels of effectiveness overall. Helps assure the audience that they are indeed an effective organization. Alyssa's presentation on Pop Warner's Little Scholars intrigued me because it was a nation-wide organization I had never heard of before.

Fast Show Comments:

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Fast Shoe Comments:

I like your idea of using a mock company to illustrate your point. 
From your example of Fast Shoes purchasing another company to gain entrance into the track apparel market, Fast Shoes must consider many other things.  For example it cannot just look at this situation from a market share or earnings standpoint.  Fast Shoes must consider the internal power struggle that will likely occur between people at Fast Shoe and at the company they choose to purchase.  There is likely to be some cross over of positions between the two companies and Fast Shoes must do a considerable amount of planning to make the transition less difficult.  Such things would include deciding what employees Fast Shoes should keep from the company they purchased.  Fast Shoes would have to decide on a specific way to measure an employee that was fair, objective and establish who is the more productive employee.  Or maybe productivity is not you goal; maybe it is profits, market share or overhead costs. Either way a clear way to measure employees and decide what position would be eliminated must be formalized. They would also have to create an environment that was welcoming to the new company and its employees.  This would require the capacity within the leadership at Fast Shoes to recognize the problem with purchasing another company and then carefully consider if they still think acquiring a track apparel company was the best decision for Fast Shoes.

Presentations

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December 8th presentations:

 

Brian Grant's presentation of the Pittsburgh Pirates came across very well.  I liked that fact that Brian explained how he was approaching his organizational analysis assignment.  Specifically he used a goal attainment approach to measure how his organization was effective.  Brian mentioned this specific approach several times throughout his presentation to reinforce the fact that this was his approach to this assignment.

            I also enjoyed the organizational analysis of the Intramural Department at the U.  Due to Rebecca's unique perspective of insider for the organization it was interesting to hear her own personal stories about some of the aspects of waste within the organization.  It was also interesting to hear about her recommendations for the organization because of her unique perspective.

            The Under Armor presentation was interesting because it was very similar to a presentation that took place previously.  While much of this analysis was similar to Emily's analysis, I found interesting that two different projects came up with very similar analyses to each other.  This leads me to believe that both of the presentations were well researched and based on class concepts.

12/8 Presentations

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Today's presentations were very diverse and full of information. My favorites would have to be the under armour presentation, the Pittsburg Pirates and the Oakland Raiders presentations. They were all very good at describing every slide and every aspect of the organization they thought were important. I thought the recommendations for the Oakland Raiders were very good: to hire a new GM and get a new scouting department to increase the success of the organization, from an administrative objective and a goal-orientated objective or achieving more wins. I also thought the way the Pitt Pirates presentation was set up made it much easier to understand. When he started out saying he was taking the view of a goal-orientated organization approach, it made it much easier to understand where he was going with his presentations and why he gave the recommendations he did. Overall the presentations went very well again and were very enjoyable.

12/8 Presentations

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The presentations I found most intriguing today were the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Charlotte Bobcats presentations.  What was interesting from the Pirates presentation was that the Steelers and Penguins were both a strength for the Pirates.  In most situations, competing franchises would be a weakness or threat, but the recent winning trends of the Steelers and Penguins have created a culture of success in Pittsburgh, and this is almost forcing the Pirates to strive to increase their product.  It's not like they aren't trying, it's just what they've tried has worked to this point.  I completely agree with the presenters recommendations for the organization.  The Pirates really need to work hard to rid themselves of the revolving door that is attached to the organization.
What I found interesting from the Charlotte Bobcats presentation is all the opportunities they have to grow.  The organization is located in a fast growing state, has a huge college basketball fan base, and has an opportunity to take advantage of the "social networking revolution".  Targeting the college fan base would be a great way to bring in fans that may not have been previously affiliated with a professional team.  Using social networking to reach the college fan base would be the most effective way in my opinion, as the majority of social network members are of college age.   

12/8 Presentations

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Overall, today's presentations were excellent. Among the best was Brian's presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates. Not only was his PowerPoint visually attractive with few words and great use of pictures, but he also specified that he was using the Goal Attainment Approach and he based his whole organizational analysis around this approach, therefore putting a different spin on his presentation. I feel that taking this approach to my organizational analysis may have made it a bit easier to construct and also made it easier to follow when reading and explaining it. The other presentation that really stuck out to me was Alyssa's on Pop Warner. This was of interest to me because I had never heard of Pop Warner and listening to her presentation broadened my horizon a bit. I really enjoyed the presentations that were on unfamiliar topics; they kept me intrigued through the entire presentation. Being unfamiliar with the YMCA is mainly why I chose that as my topic, I wanted to take this opportunity to learn more about the YMCA as a business organization.

Presentations 12-8

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I thought that the presentations went really well today. I really enjoy it where there are a lot of pictures on slides verses just words. It helps to keep my attention focused on the presenter and their topic. I thought that both Bryan and Ryan did a good job of using photos in their presentations. Personally I found myself to be interested in Becca's presentation of U of M intramural sports. I had no idea that we had so many different sports offered at the intramural level. Before the presentations I believed it to consist of the usual sports such as basketball, soccer, volleyball, and flag football. The presentation that I believed to have the most originality today was that of Alyssa's. Her choice of organization was unique. I had never heard of "Pop Warner Little Scholars" before her presentation. I was surprised to find out that it was also in 48 different states. Overall the presentations were very well done, and very informative.

12/8/09

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I was very interested in the presentations today. I thought Ryan did a very good job with the Oakland Raiders organization. He did a nice job of showing an ineffective organization which is different from what everyone has been doing. The other presentations were also very informative and enthusiastic. The Pirates presentation also showed an ineffective organization which went well with the Raiders presentation. Showing the ineffective organizations is also important because we can learn from their structures and environment. The recommendations for these organizations make more sense since their needs to be changes made. When presenting my organizational analysis on Thursday I will use the mistakes shown by organizations in today's presentations to show how my organization is effective.

12/8/09

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I was very interested in the presentations today. I thought Ryan did a very good job with the Oakland Raiders organization. He did a nice job of showing an ineffective organization which is different from what everyone has been doing. The other presentations were also very informative and enthusiastic. The Pirates presentation also showed an ineffective organization which went well with the Raiders presentation. Showing the ineffective organizations is also important because we can learn from their structures and environment. The recommendations for these organizations make more sense since their needs to be changes made. When presenting my organizational analysis on Thursday I will use the mistakes shown by organizations in today's presentations to show how my organization is effective.

December 8th Presentations

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Today's presentations all went very well. I really liked Brian's presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates. He gave great insight into the organization and had a great recommendation of "committing" to their leaders. In Rebecca's presentation, it was nice to hear that someone else feels the U of M intramural program needs to provide better officiating. I think Ryan N. gave a great presentation on the Oakland Raiders. He centered his presentation around the owner Al Davis, which is exactly how the organization is run and he gave a great recommendation as to hiring a General Manager. I enjoyed hearing about the Pop Warner Little Scholars. I did not know much about that organization before hearing Alyssa's presentation. I thought Kristin's presentation on Under Armour was great. I really like hearing about Kevin Plank's style of leadership and how it effects the entire organization in a positive way.

presentations 12/8

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One of the most interesting things about the presentations is that there have been very few repeats! I think it's great that almost everyone in class came up with an original organization. There were a lot of presentations today but I was impressed that everyone was able to stick to their time limit and fit everyone in. I also thought it was an interesting idea to chose organizations that have not been super successful in recent years because there are a lot of recommendations to be made and a lot to say about conflict and change, a big example is the Pirates organization. I also like that people have not just been reading off the slides but adding in more information that sounds much more rehearsed. I also was impressed that Kristin was able to squeeze in all her information under pressure and with a smaller amount of people in the room.

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.

Day 4 presentations

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The presentations today were the best day of presentations so far. Every single presentation that went today was very impressive. All of the speakers seemed very well prepared and were very time oriented. I believe that they had a major advantage by getting to see many other presentations before them and I think it benefited them greatly. They were able to use all of the previous information from the previous presenters to incorporate it into their presentation. What this also proves to me is how impressive some of the first presentations were. Those that did not have much, if any, previous knowledge to base their presentation on and still succeeded were more impressive than the presentations that followed.

Day 4 presentations

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The presentations today were the best day of presentations so far. Every single presentation that went today was very impressive. All of the speakers seemed very well prepared and were very time oriented. I believe that they had a major advantage by getting to see many other presentations before them and I think it benefited them greatly. They were able to use all of the previous information from the previous presenters to incorporate it into their presentation. What this also proves to me is how impressive some of the first presentations were. Those that did not have much, if any, previous knowledge to base their presentation on and still succeeded were more impressive than the presentations that followed.

I thought today's presentations went really well even though we were crushed in time for the last presentation. All the presenters had good information and presented very clearly. Also every presenter did a good job on expanded more on the information for each slide and not just reading off the PowerPoint which made the presentation much better. I really liked the presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates, it had a really good flow and it was well presented. Also it was nice to see an organization which is not currently effective since there will be a different perspective on talking about the areas in conflict and change compare to an effective organization.  

Day 4 presentations

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I thought that all day's presentations were very well done.  The first presentation about the Pittsburg Pirates was very well organized and the presenter really understood the concepts and applied them well.  I took interest in the presentation because I realize how bad the Pirates organization has been the last decade and knowledgeable of how the organization use to be in the past previous to the presentation.  The presentation furthered my understanding of how change in the upper and lower management has put the organization in a constant rebuilding and as a result a winning environment has been nonexistent.  It shows how it is essential for an effective organization to have a philosophy that is clear and leadership within the organization to relay to all the levels of management.  With the environment of the city of Pittsburg as being a city rich with championship attitude the Pirate should regain their fan base if they were to change the culture of organization to a winning one.  

December 8th Presentations

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I thought todays presentations went very well even though we were crunched for time at the end of class. All the presenters did a very good job in presenting there information very clearly and descriptive in the certain topics. The one presentation that really stood out to me today was the one on the pittsburgh pirates. I found it very interesting to hear him talk about the history of how good they were back when and now people do not even know who they are. The funny thing was when listening to that is I am not a very big MLB fan and I have really never even heard of the pittsburgh pirates. That was something that really hit home when he was talking about them and how people do not even exist and one of those people was me. He gave a lot of reasons and recommendations on why they are not really performing that well and what they can do to improve there organizations. I believed the recommendations he gave are very achievable and would really approve there appearance.
The presentations for today were very interesting. One that stuck out to me was the sport organization analysis of the Pittsburgh Pirates. The material was presented well and the presentation had a good flow to it. I enjoyed hearing the Packers presentation because of the history of the Packers that was shared. The student who presented appeared to know some smaller details that were not mentioned on the slides. It was evident that he was a Packer fan through the ways he presented the material. It was helpful to hear about the intramural sports organization, here at the University of Minnesota. I enjoyed hearing the conflict they encountered with double booking the coaching staff. The organization was able to adapt accordingly to avoid the same mistake in the future. The presenter was an official for volleyball within intramural sports, so it was interesting hearing her perspective from an internal standpoint.

Day 4 Presentations

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I thought the presentations today were good for the most part. I thought the idea to choose the Pittsburgh Pirates and Oakland Raiders was smart because there is a lot to talk about in the area of conflict and change. I thought the presenters were very well prepared today and did a good job of expanding on information not found on the slides. One issue I noticed with the Pittsburgh Pirates presentation as well as previous presentations is deciding to use pictures as slide backgrounds. I think if done properly this is an effective method. The issue I'm noticing however, is the use of black writing that is tought to read because of the picture. If you are going to do it this way you need to make sure the slides are easy to read by all.

Day 4 Presentations

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I thought the presentations today were good for the most part. I thought the idea to choose the Pittsburgh Pirates and Oakland Raiders was smart because there is a lot to talk about in the area of conflict and change. I thought the presenters were very well prepared today and did a good job of expanding on information not found on the slides. One issue I noticed with the Pittsburgh Pirates presentation as well as previous presentations is deciding to use pictures as slide backgrounds. I think if done properly this is an effective method. The issue I'm noticing however, is the use of black writing that is tought to read because of the picture. If you are going to do it this way you need to make sure the slides are easy to read by all.

December 8th Presentations

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I really enjoyed Brian's presentation about the Pittsburgh Pirates. Of all organizations in professional sports, I would presume the Pirates would be one of the least effective. They haven't had a winning season since 1992! However, the way Brian was able to analyze the organization, he convinced us all the organization was effective in reaching their goals. While they do have a lot of ground to make up compared to other organizations, His reccommedations of removing the "revolving door" in the organization are spot on. The Pirates are notorious for trading players away, acquiring new players, and then trading them...and they rarely take the time to develop any talent. Brian's presentation was very well put together and he presented it very clearly.

December 8 Presentations

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We had a full day of presentations and I think Brian's presentation on the Pirates was professionally done. He seemed to have knowledge in almost every aspect of the organization as if he currently worked for them. I enjoyed hearing about the history of their organization and how he related it to the team's current state. Overall the presentations are getting better. I think the more presentations we see, we are easily able to dissect an organization and evaluate its effectiveness. The presentation on Under Armour was interesting because the presentation was pretty cool. The slides were well done and because it was not the only Under Armour presentation, it was nice to be able to compare. I think it is cool to see the difference between all these organizations. Between sports teams, companies, venues or organizations, I find the most interesting to be the professional teams because I am working towards a career in the pro sports industry.

Today's presentations were okay. I'm finding it harder and harder to stay awake and engaged in the presentations because we are going through so many so quickly. I am sure I am not the only one who feels this way. This is nothing against the presenters though. Anyway, as for today's presentations, I thought that they did pretty well. I think that still we have too many people putting tons of text on their slides. It's one thing if you have multiple points, but when you put full out sentences on them in tiny font that is when you run into a problem. It is not nearly as interesting for the audience. It actually distracts them so I would recommend including more pictures in the power point because that keeps them more focused and then they are listening to what you are saying as the presenter instead of reading off of slides. Not trying to be a know-it-all, because I certainly could have improved in these areas as well when I presented.

-Kristen Dockery

Day 4 Presentations

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I personally felt that today's presentations were some of the best we have seen thus far. In particular, I thoroughly enjoyed the presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates. Like many people have already said, many of us are choosing organizations that are currently effective. I think that the Pirates are a great example of an organization which we as students can look at and watch to learn how to improve the effectiveness of an organization. Like the presentation detailed, I also agree that the Pirates must committ to consistency throughout their organization in order to become successful once again. Whether it is consistency in management strategies, player selection, or leadership, some level of consistency and dedication must be obtained in order to reduce the amount of conflict and change within the Pirates organization. Although conflict and change can be good, the types of conflict and change the Pirates have experienced in the past have proven to be detrimental to their overall effectiveness.

Day 4 Presentations

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I personally felt that today's presentations were some of the best we have seen thus far. In particular, I thoroughly enjoyed the presentation on the Pittsburgh Pirates. Like many people have already said, many of us are choosing organizations that are currently effective. I think that the Pirates are a great example of an organization which we as students can look at and watch to learn how to improve the effectiveness of an organization. Like the presentation detailed, I also agree that the Pirates must committ to consistency throughout their organization in order to become successful once again. Whether it is consistency in management strategies, player selection, or leadership, some level of consistency and dedication must be obtained in order to reduce the amount of conflict and change within the Pirates organization. Although conflict and change can be good, the types of conflict and change the Pirates have experienced in the past have proven to be detrimental to their overall effectiveness.

Presentations 12/8

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Obviously the presentations today were really crunched in terms of time. Despite the time crunch I felt that there were some really interesting things to come out of the presentations today. The presentation on the Oakland Raiders really brought to light some issues with the organization that I don't feel get discussed enough. Al Davis was at one point, as the presenter indicated, an innovator. However, I think over the last decade or so, through senility or just general mental distance, Al Davis has lost touch with the current version of the NFL and how a team needs to operate within the framework of the NFL. I commend the presenter for touching on this issue in a very interesting way, with the billboard paid for by the fans. This is a tremendous representation of how the leadership of this organization is stuck in a thick culture (resistance to change) that no longer exists or is no longer active. AL Davis and the Raiders were once a proud organization and have since fallen, much like the Pittsburgh Pirates, but in order for the Raiders organization to change Al Davis needs to do the exact opposite of the Pirates organization. Al Davis needs to understand his limitations in the current NFL system and advance toward a future where others, who can better lead and conduct the business of the Raiders, are placed in a position to help this team move forward toward the image of the once proud franchise that the Raiders once were.

Day 5 Prsentations

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I found the information and the presentation on the Pittsburg Pirates this morning was very well put together and presented. I am impressed with all the information that the organization had. I thought with a losing team such as the Pirates then you do not have much information on how to turn it around and what you are going to do. What I found was that the ownership and the Gm seem to be working on a plan to get players to come in and put together a young organization eventually instead of just trading away talent after a year or two. The presentation about Pop Warner football was very interesting because of how intriquet the organization is and how old it is. I never knew all about that organization and what they brought to the table on a regular basis. Overall I feel all the presentations today were very in-depth and provided a lot of information within the organizational structure.
The two presentations that really stuck out to me today were the ones about the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Oakland Raiders. Most people it seems have chosen organizations that are currently fairly successful, and it was interesting to see a few organizations that are struggling at the present time. It was interesting to hear the specific reasons why these teams have not been successful. Things such as the Raiders not having a true GM and the Pirates having such internal turnover have definitely contributed to the lack of organizational success. When you look back at what made these organizations successful in the past it seems evident that stability within the organization was a common factor that contributed to success. In Pittsburgh you could always count on Willie Stargell and Roberto Clemente to be a part of the organization. However, now it seems as if there are new players and upper management individuals coming into the organization every day. Both of these organizations need to get some stability in within their organization before they ever return to their "glory days."

Presentations - D

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Overall I thought today's presentations were all pretty good. We were definitely pressed for time again today as we slightly went over our class time. I really enjoyed Ryan Hoosier's presentation on the Charlot Bobcats. His slides were really well organized and he was able to expand upon his points he brought up in the slides. One thing I think he did really well was keeping the background of the slides the same for all of them. I feel that this is more professional than having a different picture as the background for each slide. A picture as the background can be distracting especially when it changes. It can also cause problems with the changing colors on areas where words go over an area with a same color. It becomes harder to read. I would recommend to the people who still have yet to present to only add pictures as part of the slide and not as the background.

Dec 8 Presentation

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The presentations today where really good. There were two presentations that stuck out to me. The presentations about the pirates and the bobcats I thought where really good. The reason that I really enjoyed them was because they both did a good job at showing how two teams that really aren't that good in regards to wins, can still be effective. My personal thoughts on the team, to be completely honest, the pirates are a terrible team that ships all there good players out for money so they can keep the organization a float. But after the presentation I realize that this is the way the organization wants to run it. They think that by breading there own talent they keep this home grown organizational feel that they want. I thought that the bobcats presentation was a good presentation because it was interesting to see how an organization that is just starting up values its effectiveness. In a society where winning is everything, the bobcats know that they are not going to win and they still value the team as effective. They focus more on what they want to give back to the people that come to the games, like the family experience, rather then winning.

Dec.

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12/3 Presentations

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There were a few things from the presentations today that kinda stuck out to me.  First, from the presentation on the Fargo - Moorehead Red Hawks, is the way that power and authority is evident from the coach's position.  The example of the player showing up to batting practice hung over, shows the power the coach has by controlling that information.  Whether the player plays or possibly whether he's on the roster or not, is in the coach's power.  If he decided to disclose the information to the owner/GM, the player would most likely be disciplined and possibly cut, if he doesn't the player plays.  The coach is in an important position of power, especially from the players perspective.
From the presentation on Life Time Fitness, what stuck out to me was how to contract length offered by the club is both benefitial and detrimental.  By offering month to month contracts, the club is able to attract more clients, but at the same time, their ability to retain their clients is hindered.   This means that the club really has to work hard to impress and retain their clients.
What I found interesting from the First Tee presentation was how being a formalized organization both helps and hinders it.  Being sport specific means instructors are knowledgeable, but offering only one sport may be a turn-off for kids who can join a program or group with a wide variety of activities.  Offering more activities may keep kids interested in the organization, where as offering only one may cause the kids become "burned-out" on golf.


Presentations 12/3

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I really liked the variety in today's presentations. It was nice to see professional teams, local teams, national governing bodies, youth programs, a corporate fitness chain, and an association. The presentation quality was fairly good today; everyone seemed well-versed in their respective organization. One fact I found intriguing was from the presentation on the U.S. Olympic Committee; they have had six different CEOs in a very short period of time. For such a large and important organization, you would think their CEO would be around for a long time. It is surprising the turnover rate is so high and it seems to suggest there are deeper problems within the organization that need to be addressed. I was also fascinated that the First Tee organization Chris presented on relies on over 3,000 volunteers. I imagine that there must be very strong leaders in the organization to recruit and retain so many volunteers, year after year.

Dec. 3 Presentations

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Today's presentations were very interesting. My favorites were Ryan's and Parker's. I like how Parker had a very personal perspective on the organization and could share stories from the inside of the organization instead of just looking at it from an outside view. The story about the player that came to practice drunk made the presentation a lot more interesting. Ryan's presentation about Lifetime Fitness was very good and informative without needing to look at his slides often. He seemed to know a lot about the organization. The structure of Lifetime is what I would expect with an organization that large, with the leaders at the top making the large decisions and the rest of the smaller ones made by management lower in the organizational hierarchy. All the presentations today were very informative and it seems like they are getting better as we go on, those going now have learned from the people who have gone before.

Presentations Dec 3

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Today's presentations were all very well put together and informative.  I felt that Parker's presentation was very informative and gave a personal insight that was interesting.  The overall structure of the organization was very well assessed, and the recommendations were very appropriate.  I think for an organization to be most effective the power needs to be a shifted to all aspects of the organization.  This would have been essential in the case of the player who was regularly coming to batting practice drunk and the information was keep away from management who would possibly not condone such behavior for fear of a negative backlash on organization.  Another aspect of the recommendations was the continued and increase of community involvement of the team.  I believe it is very important that the organization keep the positive community image and also giving back to the people who support and keep the organization running.  Without community involvement, especially in youth development, the organization can maintain a positive image.

Day 4

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All of today's presentations were really good and informational. The one that I most enjoyed was the one about Lifetime Fitness. I think that he did a really good outlining the presentation and explaining what the different parts of the organization were. I also agree with the recommendations that he gave about opening up gyms in the west and east coast, I think that doing that would opening up the demographics that they could market to. I also thought that we talked about how Lifetime was opening up gyms overseas, but I could be mistaken. I also enjoyed the presentation about the Minnesota Wild, a lot of the information I did not know beforehand and I think that it is important information to know since it is one of the biggest sports in Minnesota and a new and upcoming team. The presentation about the Olympics I felt was a little rushed, but it is completely understandable since there are a lot of aspects to that organization that could probably not fit into a ten minute presentation. I thought that an overall strength that many of the presenters had today was not fully reading off of the slides that they had, I think that they have learned from previous presenters that summarizing is the best way to present because you grab both Lisa's and the class's attention more.

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Today's presentations were filled with information. The one that really stuck out to me and one that I remembered well was the LA Fitness presentation done by Ryan Prochaska. He had a very nice background and history for his presentation which really helped me get familiar more with the business side of the organization and not just the facilities. The structure of the organization was similar to what I would expect in a large organization like that. By having the people up at the very top only dealing with the large issues, it frees up the lower level people to handle the smaller tasks or issues which could pop up. One thing that I thought was interesting was the fact that they lost 5 percent membership to the club but that was still looked at as a good year. Since many of the clubs lose more, it is safe to say that LA Fitness is effective since they are doing better than the competitors.  

Presentations

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Day 4 Presentations

 

After watching several days of presentations I have noticed that almost every presenter seems to be reading the slides to the class.  While this approach is fine for certain slides like a Mission Statement, the information should be expanded on besides the basic information about the topic that is on the slide.  I am able to read and would like more information then what I can read.  As an example Parker Kruckenberg's presentation, was very well done.  Parker had basic information on his slides but then shared a bit more about the topics presented.  Parker's story about the baseball player that would show up to practices hung over was presented in a basic manner on the slide.  After reading the slide Parker then expanded on the information by giving specifics about how he knew this information to be true and how it was not communicated vertically within the organization.  While Parker could have typed out all this information and read it to the class it was just as effective to tell the story without having to read it to us. 

December 3rd Presentations

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I really enjoyed today's presentation about the Moorehead RedHawks. It was very interesting to hear how a smaller, local sports organization is run, compared to the professional organizations we have been hearing about in previous presentations. The thing that surprised me the most was the amount of authority/power the coach had within the organization. In most professional organizations, the coach has very little control over anything but the team. In other words, you would never see Ron Gardenhire making marketing or ticketing decisions. However, the coach of the Moorehead RedHawks made decisions right along with the owners and other managers. Many of these decisions were not related to the team at all! I thought this presentation was very insightful and had a lot of first-hand knowledge included in it.
The presentations today were also very good. Parker started the presentations off with a bang. He decided to choose an organization that he was very familiar with and could give us firsthand knowledge of the way the organization operates. Ryan chose to analyze the effectiveness of Lifetime Fitness as an organization. I think he brought up some key recommendations that would make already an effective organization more effective. Again, I like the reasoning behind deciding to analyze the ABCA organization by Dan. Doug seemed to know a lot about the Minnesota Wild environment and culture because his family has had season tickets for the past several years. Chris finished the presentation at the buzzer. I enjoyed learning more about the First Tee Organization. Watching golf events I learned that it existed to help young golfers. I did not know they were learning about life skills that will not only help them on the golf course but in everyday life as well.

12/3/09

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Today's presentations went well. All of the presenters completed their own analysis in a precise and timely manner. With there being so many presentations I will not cover each one, but will cover them collectively. The baseball presenters seemed to have knowledge of the organizations they analyzed, or at least the background of them. The other presenters also seemed well informed of their organizations, and gave examples on how they were effective. Today had a broad representation of organizations from small like the coach organization, to growing like Lifetime Fitness, to the USOC dealing with the Olympics. I thought they all did a very fine job of covering certain areas, and in particular leadership and structure was covered well by all the presenters. I will use some of the problems and some of the effective ideas from these presentations when presenting my own organizational analysis next week.

Presentations-Day 3

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The presentations today as a whole were very well put together. There was a wide assortment of organizations analyzed which kept the presentations interesting all class long. Parker's presentation was interesting to me because he was so informed about the organization through growing up around the team and knowing sources that were affiliated with the organization. While there is a lot of information about most organizations online, having a direct personal source to the organization is extremely beneficial. It was cool that Parker could share actual stories about the team during his presentation. Ryan's presentation today about LifeTime Fitness intrigued me the most. I liked that he didn't just read from the slides. You could tell he was well-prepared for his presentation, and knew a lot about his organization. While discussing the structure aspect of the organization, there were 4 brief bulleted points on the powerpoint slide but he was able to talk about the structure for at least a few minutes. The use of statistics was an interesting turn that helped support his argument that LifeTime Fitness is an effective organization. Overall I think the presentations are going really well so far, each person is adding their own little twist to make their presentation unique.

Presentations December 3

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The presentations today were fairly strong. The one that suck out the most to me was the Lifetime Fitness presentation, but the others were good as well. I liked the Lifetime Fitness presentation mostly because of the statistics that were shared about the organization. Research can only go so far in helping a sport organization, but I think that the statistics shared were relevant to Lifetime Fitness. Things such as, 66 percent of Americans are considered obese and that only 15 percent of Americans are members of a health club. Statistics like this are valuable information for Lifetime Fitness and other health clubs in the U.S. Lifetime Fitness does appear as though it has been an effective organization considering their increased popularity and the statistics shared in class about them only losing two percent of their members over the last year. Obviously it would be ideal for that number to increase but in these tough economic times Lifetime Fitness appear to be effective.

Presentations 12/3

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The group of presentations today as a whole was probably the most well put together and most well articulated group of presentations that we've had to this point. I was very impressed with Ryan's presentation on Lifetime Fitness. For the first time in these presentations I felt that someone actually made a presentation that wasn't completely text laden. Ryan did a great job of speaking to individual point rather than reading large portions of text that were on the slide. I felt that many of the other presentations did a very good job of creating slides that were not extremely heavy with textual information. Ryan's biggest strength was that he was also providing information that was NOT contained on the slide. That's a sign of a good presentation. I'm fully capable of reading the information on a slide so having an opportunity to hear information that I wasn't already reading kept me more engaged with the topic and therefore I paid more attention to what Ryan was telling me about Lifetime Fitness. Obviously some of the later presentations were pressured for time but I thought the group of presentations as a whole today were phenomenal and did a great job of balancing their time appropriately.

12/3 Presentations

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Todays presentations were some of the best we have had so far I think. I feel that the presentations are getting better and better as the days go on because the class has more ideas to draw off of seeing as we have already watched so many presentations. There are a number of different topics that we can talk about in ten minutes to try and give the class a good feel of our organization, and I think that the class is really beginning to realize which points are the strongest, such as showing an organizational chart and describing recommendations, in showing the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of their organizations. Today I think that Parker's presentation about the Fargo-Moorhead Baseball Team was among the best of the presentations because he had a number of good references to the book and from growing up around the team he knew a lot of inside information which helped his presentation out greatly.

Day 4 Prsentations

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Parker had some good comments this morning on the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks. I grew up in northern Minnesota and I watched one of the players in Derek Dormanen as he grew up and then began to play for them. I think it is just great how they build up players and give them a chance is such a small remote city like the Fargo area. It gives small town boys that are playing baseball in the north a chance to look up to players from the area.

I think all the presentations went really good today. They did a good job on the length of time for the presentation and the PowerPoints were creative and clear. They all had good understandings of the organization about if they are effective or not and presented clearly for us to understand the structure of the organization. Most of the presenters had a good introduction why they had chosen the organization; some had an experience with the organization, or wanting to become part of the organization in the future. From today's presentations it was interesting since it was a wide range of organization from professional teams, local teams, national governing body, youth programs, and corporate fitness chain. For all organization it is important to keep the positive image to the community to keep the organization effective.

Presentations - Dec.3

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The presentations in class today were very good. There was a lot of good information in everyone of them. The one presentation that I found really good was Parkers, on the Fargo/Moorhead Redhawks. Like parker I also grew up in that area. My grandfather is a very big baseball fan and ever since the development of the team he has boughten season tickets. I loved going to there games every summer. Even though I have been involved with them for so long I never really understood the structure and how things work behind the scenes. One thing that he toched on that I can relate to is the players and staff giving back to the community. The area is based a lot around agriculture and every year during harvest time the players will volenteer there time to help out the farmer. In return in the spring and summer the farmmers come out and support the team. One other point that I thought he did a really good job at getting across was how much different it is from like a minor league team. The saint paul saints was a good example.With all the different promotions and games that they play it is almost like the teams are there to play baseball but also put a show on for the fans. Very good job.

Day 4 of presentations

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I really enjoyed day 4's presentations but I felt that some of the people at the end of class had to rush through their presentations. I enjoyed the presentation about the independent league baseball team because it was a smaller organization in a small market and it was nice to hear some of the inside information he had about the team. Also, I thought the presentation about Lifetime Fitness was very interesting because it is a company that is Minnesota based and their were a lot of things you could talk about including how the company is dealing with the struggling economy and the potential loss of members.

Day 3 Presentations

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Overall I think the presentations went well, and there was a lot of difference in sport and also in the size of some of the organizations. It was kind of neat to hear about a smaller minor league baseball team where they are just trying to get going and they are already having to deal with change. It was interesting to hear about some of there struggles and the different things that they are trying to do as an organization to really hype up the name of there team and get people watching the games. I think we had individuals presenting that were either a fan, athlete of the team, or either works or nows someone high in the organization. That is really neat to listen to each side of the different presentations. One guy thats a fan of the steelers could present one way and a worker of the steelers could present something totally different. Overall I learned a couple things about some sports and organizations that I never knew before.

Day 3 Presentations

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     The presentations from day 3 went pretty well.  The ones that really stuck out to me were the Pittsburgh Steelers, The NHL, and the Brainard Lakes Lunkers.  The Steelers presentation was interesting because it was the perspective of a fan.  I wonder how different the analysis would have been coming from a Browns, Ravens or Bengals fan.  It just makes you realize that the organization should also consider the evaluator when looking at an analysis. 
     I thought the NHL analysis was also interesting because he looked at a problem between two separate parties, DirectTV and Versus, that affects the organization.  The problem seems to have reached a point where rather than trying to resolve the problem, the separate companies are basically slinging mud, and this is affecting how many people are able to watch and follow the NHL.
     Finally, I though the presentation the the Lunkers was interesting because it was a smaller organization in a smaller league.  I knew a little bit about the Northwoods Baseball League, but I never realized the St. Cloud River Bats owner could also own another team in the same league.  You'd think it could possibly be a conflict of interest, but I guess the league is meant to be more of a developmental league than an extremely competitive one. 
 

After taking this course I think it is important to reflect on what my philosophy for a sport organization should be. There are many different things to consider, such as the environment (task and general), the structure of the organization, the power and leadership roles of different individuals, the culture, the constituents, etc. But what do these things have to do with the philosophy of a sport manager? In my opinion, they mean a lot but they should not be the determinant of what your philosophy is as a sport manager. I believe that an effective sport manager will be an upright, moral, selfless, encouraging, and honest leader. I believe that as a sport manager you need to lead by example in all of these areas, so that in return your employees will reflect these characteristics they will be seeing in you. An effective sport manager should create the mission, values, and goals of the organization with the above characteristics in mind. So, when considering the different dynamics of a sport organization mentioned above such as environment, structure, culture, etc., it is important to consider them when pursuing the goals of the organization. With this being said, I do not believe that these aspects of the organization should determine the philosophy of a sport manager. A sport organization needs to be founded on solid, moral practices and not be altered because of certain influences. But, I do believe that the philosophy of a sport manager can change and does not need to be permanent. I believe that there should be core pieces such as values, communication, and honesty that need to be present throughout time. But, as things change in the different dynamics of the organization such as the structure, culture, etc., the philosophy may grow and adapt. My philosophy is that a sport manager needs to be clear about their values and make them clear to anyone who plans on joining the organization. This is very important because it has a large impact on the culture of the organization and can create disunity if the people being hired are not on board with the values of the organization. My philosophy is that communication is of utmost importance because it will allow the employees of the organization to be on the same page and be more efficient in their work. Not only is it important to communicate within the organization but to communicate to all constituents, or at least have information available for them, so that the supporters and those involved in all aspects of the organization stay informed. My philosophy is that honesty needs to be displayed and highly valued and it needs to start with the leaders of the organization. If employees within the organization are experiencing corrupt behavior from their leaders then it will lead them to believe that those are accepted practices. Do you believe that these characteristics of an organization make for a good philosophy? Do you have aspects of your philosophy that conflict with aspects of my philosophy?

 

The presentations today were very interesting to hear about and were helpful in learning more about different sport organizations. I enjoyed hearing more about the Under Armour organization and how their owner was willing to decrease his salary significantly to do what was best for the organization. This reflects good leadership and a selflessness on his part. One of the recommendations that was made for the Under Armour organization was to advertise more heavily towards women. When I initially heard this I thought it would be a great idea because I do not recall seeing many commercials or advertisements where women were highly portrayed. After more thought, it made me wonder whether or not Under Armour wanted to target women as heavily as men. When I watch Under Armour commercials I feel as though they are definitely targeting men. Under Armour may think it would be more effective for them as an organization to focus their efforts on the male population. Obviously they sell men's and women's apparel, so they have entered into the female market, but could do so more heavily, unless that is not their intention.

Presentations - 12/1

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Today's presentations were interesting and unique to some of the other presentations to this point. The presentation on the Steelers gave us the point of view from a fan, which I thought was interesting because he seemed to know more details and knowledge of the organization. The power point was also interesting and I thought it was different when he talked about the Steelers not being technology advanced as some of the other teams in the league. Another presentation that I thought was unique was Emily's. She did a good job giving us perspective of a smaller organization; a baseball team from the Northwood League called the Brainerd Lunkers. Up to this point, most of the presentations have been covering larger sport organizations or teams, and Emily's presentation was cool because the smaller teams like the Lunkers, are run so much different. Overall, today's presentations covered a good variety of sport organizations in the sports industry.

I thought most of the presentations today went pretty well. There was couple presenters went a little over time but had great information. Some of the powerpoint had a lot of text in the slides and reading right off the slides. However, they all have presented good information about their organization and very interesting. I think Alexa gave some great recommendations to the organization.  Being part of the gymnastics team at the university, I agree about what she has stated about getting another coach to the program to support the team and promoting more about our gymnastics program to the university by hosting clinics for students. So we could increase attendance at our competitions. About Emily's recommendation for the Under Armour, I agree about what you have stated in your presentation, it will be nice to have more women's apparels not only men's apparels in store. I think to increase that, they could learn from its competitors like Nike and Adidas since they have been increasing their sells on women's apparels too.

Day 3 of presentations

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I think most of the presentations went well today. Some of them were a little long and they all had a lot of information but for the most part they were enjoyable. I like Tony's choice of the Saints for his organization to evaluate for a couple of reasons. First, the team has put a lot better product on the field over the last few years and have become a consistent contender every year. Also, I like the choice because its fairly original. I doubt that many people thought of doing the saints for this project but there are a lot of things that you could discuss with a team that had to deal with hurricane katrina and the fact that they were so bad for so many years and now have seemed to turn it around.

Day three presentations

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Overall I thought that today's presentations were very informational. I noticed that a lot of the presenters read from their slides almost word for word, which ended up making their presentations less captivating as than they had potential for. Also the two presentations that went over I noticed that they were talking very slow in their presentation, if they would have talked at a faster pace than they could have stayed in the ten minute time frame. The presentation that I liked the most today was the under armour presentation. I liked that she did not read completely off of the slides and she also incorporated fun facts into her presentation to make it more interesting and to keep the class's attention.

Presentations 12/1

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Today's presentations were overall pretty good. Some of the presentations ran long and the PowerPoint presentations were heavily loaded with text. Beyond that small complaint, I think they all presented good information about their respective organizations. The Steelers presentation brought up a very interesting point that they are choosing not to utilize social media. I have spent most of the semester in my public relations class discussing the role of social media in society. It is a very useful public relations tool for organizations to utilize, for free! I think Nathan was right in suggesting that as an opportunity for the Steelers to enhance their public image and widen their fan base even more. I think Alyssa and Emily also offered great recommendations for their organizations. The Lunkers have the opportunity to increase ticket sales by targeting tourists and Under Armour has the opportunity to increase their market share by increasing the amount of advertising for their women's clothing. These recommendations are both realistic and appropriate suggestions to improve the organizations.

Day 3 presentations

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Most of the presentations that happened today went pretty well. There was one presentation that I believe was not the best prepared. One person performed their power point by pretty much reading straight from the screen. It did not seem like much of a presentation to me as opposed to a class reading. I realize that the person did a lot of research in order to do the presentation to get the information, but almost everything that was said was able to be read from the power point. Other than that, I thought that all of the presentations were very informative and well put together.

Day 3 presentations

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Most of the presentations that happened today went pretty well. There was one presentation that I believe was not the best prepared. One person performed their power point by pretty much reading straight from the screen. It did not seem like much of a presentation to me as opposed to a class reading. I realize that the person did a lot of research in order to do the presentation to get the information, but almost everything that was said was able to be read from the power point. Other than that, I thought that all of the presentations were very informative and well put together.

Day 3 Presentations

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Day three presentations had a lot of information, but overall were too long and slides were bogged down by text. The general rule of thumb is to have no more than five bullet points with no more than five to ten words per bullet point. Having too many words on the slides results in the presenter reading directly off the slides, this happened today. I know that public speaking can be very nerve racking for some, but if you practice your presentation enough you should not have to read off the slides. Having said that I thought the Under Armour presentation was interesting. Mentioned in the presentation was the salary cut of the owner. I would like to know if the stock options he picked up as owner made up for the salary cut he took. A lot of times in big companies the owner's salaries are not overboard, but when you look at their stock options and benefits they make large amounts of money.

Day 3 Presentations

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Day three presentations had a lot of information, but overall were too long and slides were bogged down by text. The general rule of thumb is to have no more than five bullet points with no more than five to ten words per bullet point. Having too many words on the slides results in the presenter reading directly off the slides, this happened today. I know that public speaking can be very nerve racking for some, but if you practice your presentation enough you should not have to read off the slides. Having said that I thought the Under Armour presentation was interesting. Mentioned in the presentation was the salary cut of the owner. I would like to know if the stock options he picked up as owner made up for the salary cut he took. A lot of times in big companies the owner's salaries are not overboard, but when you look at their stock options and benefits they make large amounts of money.

Blog 10

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Initially at the beginning of this class I believed an organization must have one strong leader, which makes work fun and interesting. I also believed that the employer must have goals set for the organization that the employees should strive for. Lastly, I found it important that the organization strives to please every customer in order to have a successful business.

Now that I have a lot more education in the area of organizational effectiveness it is apparent that there is much more to an organization than I had thought originally. There are many different structures an organization can have depending on the size and complexity of the organization. There may be many different departments with different leaders, or just one whole staff with one sole leader. Each organization must find out what is best for them. The next thing that was something I had not considered much before was how much the general and task environments affect the organization. These are huge things that an organization must take into account when developing their organization initially as well as keeping the organization afloat. The power and politics of an organization, such as networking and coalition, is another part to an organizational strategy I had not considered before. An organization must have relationships with many different stakeholders and get sponsors through these relationships. Networking is very important for a new organization in order to get the word out about their product or service. Another thing I learned from this section was that a leader has many different kinds of power depending on their position and can use this power to get an organization where it needs to go. It is so important for those in positions of power to keep track of their resources and understand the importance of each one. Next, there must be a system in place for dealing with conflict and change within an organization. Conflict is something that will occur on a regular basis as well as change. The outside market is constantly changing and one must be able to keep up to survive.

All of these aspects are huge players in being able to achieve organizational goals. In summary, I have learned so much from this class about organizational effectiveness and what a manager needs to do to be effective and successful.

The presentations given today were pretty easy to listen to.  I enjoyed some of the reasons why presenters decided to choose that specific organization to analyze.  I also enjoyed Laura's presentation because it featured a small organization for a changeup to the large organizations that most everyone one else was picking.  She could also use her firsthand knowledge of the organization in her presentation.  It was interesting to hear that the owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers was very instrumental in some of the recent changes in the National Football League.  The New Orleans Saints organization was also in the limelight today.  I thought Tony did a good job of displaying the change that had taken place in 2006 to get the organization going in the right direction towards obtaining their on-field goals.  There were some flaws in every organization and the presenters came up with great recommendations for each of their organizations.

Day Three presentations were fairly good overall, however, some went over the time limit. I understand that it is hard to simplify all of the information that we covered in our papers into a presentation, but I think that it can be done. Perhaps, a word of advice to those who haven't done their presentations yet is to practice your presentation and time it so that you can determine whether or not you need to add or cut out information in order to meet the time limit requirements. I thought that a couple of the presentations had a lot of text on them which can be distracting to the audience because they are busy reading the text on the slide rather than listening to what the presenter has to say. I am not trying to be overly critical just trying to give advice to those who have not yet given their presentations. I have found the topics very interesting and it is refreshing that we have learned about a lot of different sport organizations.

-Kristen Dockery

Presentations 12/1

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Presentations today were long in general and a little heavy on the text and reading from the slides. From a presentation stand point there were some areas that could have been cleaned up but at least the information seemed relevant and well researched. I thought the presentation on the New Orleans Saints was very interesting from the perspective of how a team's actual performance can change the culture and effectiveness of an organization as a whole. To consider that the Saints were so poor in terms of performance for so long and yet able to turn that's culture of failure around nearly instantaneously coinciding with the arrival of Drew Brees and Reggie Bush. Now, it's probably not surprising that a number two overall pick can have the potential to change the performance of an organization but for the culture to change as fast as it did with the Saints is very interesting and something that other organizations may need to try and identify in the future. If the Saints can change their culture so quickly with these individuals other teams and organizations should make concerted efforts to identify these kind of high quality and high character individuals and make that a focus of the individuals. The other presentations today were pretty enlightening albeit a little boring in the delivery but I suppose that's all to be expected. At least the information is very good.

12/1 Presentations

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Today's presentations had a good variety of information. I thought the Steelers presentation was interesting in that, they opted not to use current forms of mass media advertising like Facebook and Twitter. While I think that might hinder the ability to reach out to more people, I think it enables the organization to retain its extremely loyal fans. It is a very bold move and something I admire about this team. I thought the presentation by Alexa on the Women's Gymnastics team was very good because she did not overcrowd her slides with alot of text or information. Her points were short and simple and she spent her own time elaborating on them rather than reading directly from the powerpoint. This kept the audience's attention because all of the facts were coming from her and not the screen. Emily's presentation on UnderArmour was very good. She used many pictures of products and logos that really depicted what the organization was trying to achieve. She too, did an excellent job at elaborating on her ideas from the slides. Everyone today was well prepared and able to really expand on their ideas.

12/1 Presentations

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The presentations today were very interesting to watch because there was a good diversity of organizations; small town baseball team, professional football teams, professional football organizations, college athletic team, and a major sport product manufacturer. The only critique I have is that there was too much writing on a lot of the slides. I think PowerPoint presentations are much more effective if the main points are highlighted on the slides and then the person reads from note cards or re-calls from memory. The women's gymnastics presentation was very good because it did not have too much writing on the slides, thus making you listen to the speaker more so you could get the information. On the opposite side, every presentation today had very good pictures. Pictures keep the class looking at the slide, and in a sense, keep them listening to presenter until the end.
Today's presentations were very good, just like they have been thus far. I was particularly interested in the Under Armour presentation by Emily as well as the presentation on the Brainerd Area Lunkers by Laura. As someone who uses almost exclusively Nike products, the presentations helped me gain an appreciation for the Under Armour brand. I thought it was interesting that the creator of the company was a former athlete who decided to make a product that was specific to sport and the sweating that goes along with it. I think that anyone involved in athletics in any capacity should be thankful of Under Armour's innovation, because companies like Nike and Adidas were forced to create a similar product in order to continue to compete in that market. The presentation on the Lunkers interested me for a number of reasons. First, baseball is a huge part of my life and I could see myself working within the industry in some capacity. I was also interested in this presentation because my own organizational analysis was for a minor league baseball team, which is a similar product to the Northwoods League in many capacities. It would be difficult to analyze an organization after only 1 year, when the structure and culture are still getting settled. I liked that Laura talked to the people in the front-office to get her information. Great presentations today overall.
Today's presentations I thought went pretty well. They started off with two presentations that went slightly long but not too bad. With these some things possibly could have been summarized a little more instead of expanding on them. I really thought that the presentations today were very well organized. I found Laura's presentation to be the most entertaining. She chose an organization that most people in the class probably didn't even knew existed, the Brainerd Lakes Area Lunkers. This is a baseball team in a league for developing college level players. It was a nice change to do such a small organization compared to the other presentations today like the NHL, NFL teams, and Under Armour. I also really enjoyed Alexa's presentation on the U of M's Women's Gymnastics Team. In regards to her recommendations, specifically when she mentioned possibly putting on clinics for students, I know I would be interested in attending something where I could possibly learn some basic gymnastics maneuvers.

Day 3 Presentations

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Once again I thought that today's presentations went very well. For the most part the presenters showed genuine interest and passion in the sport organization they chose which enhanced their overall delivery of information. I was very intrigued by Tony's presentation on the New Orleans Saints. I find it very inspiring that a team that represents a city that was so devastated and diminished after Hurricane Katrina has demonstrated so much recent success and organizational effectiveness. As Tony said, the Saints may not be as effective as other teams in the league in terms of revenue, but on the field they are definitely effective. A catastrophic event such as Katrina can pose many threats to an organization, but the Saints have clearly shown that they were able to employ many strategies and high quality leaders to get through the catastrophe to come together as one unit playing and working for their community. I also found Laura's presentation on the Brainerd Lunkers very interesting. Baseball is a huge part of my personal and professional life, so it was very interesting to hear about a new organization that is trying to build a brand and following in the Brainerd area. I think that Laura's presentation was enhanced by her inside knowledge obtained from the upper management of the organization. I think that the Lunkers are relatively effective given their situation in a relatively small market. As Laura explained, the Lunkers are consistently trying to increase attendance by executing promotions and attracting interest. I have seen many smaller sport organizations that are similar to the Lunkers fail miserably in their first few seasons, but the fact that the Lunkers were able to reach a decent amount of success in filling seats and meeting their goals as an organization is a good sign that they will be able to consistently improve their organizational effectiveness in years to come, hopefully becoming a well-known and highly successful organization in the Northwoods baseball league.

Day 3 Prsentations

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I though the information on the Brainerd Lunkers was very informative towards how a very small market team is run and operated. I took special interest in the subject because I am from up north and know the area quite well. There are many opportunities up there with so many vacation travelers liking to watch baseball in a small town atmosphere. The Pittsburg Steelers analysis was very informative with all the information regarding their history and how the organization has beaten the odds by having so many traveling fans. This presents nothing but opportunity and growth even during the down seasons when the team is not doing very well. I am surprised by the Under Armorer product that the CEO took a pay cut because the revenue coming in was not to his liking. I was very shocked to see someone that cares that much about the organization do such a drastic measure. I guess when you have built something from the ground up, you are more likely to care and have more passion towards accomplishing your goals.