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MGMT 591 All DQ's Week 1 to Week 7
MGMT 591 Week 1 DQ 1
Is there a danger in over communicating? Can a leader over communicate to the point that people start tuning them out? There is an old saying: What is right is not always popular, and what is popular is not always right. With this in mind, I’m wondering: what are your thoughts on consensus? Are there times when a leader must act without consensus? If so, what about the risks that comes with such a maneuver? Each workplace is unique. Do you think that there are certain items which would be needed in your workplace in particular, that are not on the list?
MGMT 591 Week 1 DQ 2
Assume you are new to your job and on the first day you have a conversation with your boss, who says, “Satisfied workers are productive workers.” Do you agree with her statement? Why? Why not? Can you think of a situation where employees might be very satisfied, and very unproductive? What exactly does it mean to be “satisfied” at one’s job? What are some of the core things that you think are needed for one to feel “satisfied” with their job? Where do we draw the line in creating a “satisfied” workforce, and creating a workforce that is simply “out of control and turning the office into a fun house”?
MGMT 591 Week 2 DQ 1
How do the new practices at Sodexho align with the essentials of performance management? How is Sodexho using social networking to its advantage? What are some potential problems that can arise from organizations using money as the primary means of motivating their employees? Do you have any examples of the problems that can arise? What is cultural stereotyping? “What assumptions and stereotypes might people start making about me?” Do you like these assumptions? If not, are there things you might change about yourself in order to combat any assumptions that you do not like? Has anyone heard of a concept called the “emotional bank account”?
MGMT 591 Week 2 DQ 2
“Ethics in OB” features an ethical scenario where an employee finds confidential papers on a photocopier. Of course, she reviews the papers and notes they are full of information on performance evaluations, pay and bonuses. Using the motivational theories studied, how would you explain what motivates the employee? Explain in-depth what you would do if you were that employee? Please briefly state what Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is about. Passion is an interesting topic when it comes to motivation. Specifically, it gets interesting when we look at the subject of how to motivate people who are NOT passionate about their job. Let’s face it, some jobs are a bit difficult to get passionate about – such as working in a noisy restaurant or working as a toll collector on a bridge. What techniques can we use to motivate employees in positions that do not arouse much passion? We’ve probably all had horrible managers at some point in the past. Have you ever had a manager that was so bad, you found yourself actually demotivated by them? Specifically, what was it about him or her that caused you to loose motivation?
MGMT 591 Week 3 DQ 1
In what aspects does the class resemble a team? Are there parallels between the stages of team development and the progression of our class? What type of team formation is going on in this classroom? Does the notion of social loafing apply to our class in any respect? Psychologists have noticed that there are four stages of group behavior/performance. They have identified these stages as the forming, storming, norming, and performing stages. What are these stages about? If you would, please briefly describe them here. Do you agree with this 4 stage theory on group dynamics? Specifically, do you have any examples where you have seen these 4 stages at play, perhaps in the workplace or in your private life when meeting new friends, etc.? What exactly is social loafing? Have you seen this happen in your workplace? Have you ever actually managed a team where you noticed social loafing going on? What “diffusion of responsibility” is? Have you seen diffusion of responsibility happen in your workplace?
MGMT 591 Week 3 DQ 2
Is there a difference between a leader and a manager? If so, what do you think the difference is? Are there situations where it is best to have a leader running the show? Are there situations where it is better to have a manager in control rather than a leader? What examples might you have? It has me wondering – to what extent can someone be taught to be a leader? We all know that someone can be taught to drive. But that said, there are good drivers and bad drivers, even though they may have been taught the exact same things in driving school. With that in mind, to what extent can leadership be taught? When picking someone to build a team, would you want to pick a “manager” or a “leader” for this task? Is it possible for someone to be a great leader yet a terrible manager? Is it possible for someone to be a great manager and a terrible leader? Can you cite any examples from your personal experience?
“Help! I have just been assigned to head a new product design team at my company. The division manager has high expectations for the team and for myself, but I have been a technical design engineer for four years since graduating from college. I have never ‘managed’ anyone, let alone led a team. The manager keeps talking about her confidence that I will be very good at creating lots of teamwork. Does anyone out there have any tips to help me master this challenge? Help!” You immediately start to formulate your recommendations. What are the three key things you will advise her to do, and why those three first?
MGMT 591 Week 4 DQ 1
Can you provide an example from your personal or professional life, of where you used this strategy? How did it work out? I’m wondering – at your current place of employment (or at a previous place of employment if you’re not working at the moment), which of the 5 conflict management techniques did your supervisor use most often? Were they picking a good choice in retrospect? Were they able to properly use the technique they chose? Please critique their choice and use of the conflict management technique they would most often use. Have you ever had a conflict erupt with someone on email? How about in a chat room or through text message? What ideas do you have for managing remote conflicts with people we must work with? The opening readings for Chapter 10 on “Eduardo Saverin: You’re Out” have many different types of conflict and negation scenarios that are noted between Mark Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin in their conflict for control of Facebook. What direct and indirect conflict management techniques did these players employ? Drawing examples from your own work and personal experience, what conflict resolution strategies have you employed? Which ones have you seen be successful? What are the effects of unaddressed conflict?
MGMT 591 Week 4 DQ 2
What exactly is “active listening”? Can you describe a situation you have experienced, where you saw active listening being used? What was the result? Let’s expand the size of our hypothetical organization however. Suppose it is not 10 or 50 employees. Rather it has 1,000 employees or even more. Is an informal communication design still a good idea? Are organizations forced into formal channels of communication as they grow? If so, why? Taking it a step further, do you think we’re also at an increased risk for legal problems among employees and the organization? Are there unique situations where you think that face to face communication is definitely the way to go when getting a message out in the workplace? Conversely, what situations can you think of where electronic communication is definitely the way to go?
It seems common in many of today’s workplaces that people don’t actually talk to one another frequently. We rely on e-mail, or the even less rich communication channel of text messaging. The benefits of moving lots of information quickly around an organization and between individuals are real. However, people can too frequently “hide behind” their computers and send messages electronically that they might otherwise censor or re-think in face-to-face communication. What approaches would you recommend\implement as a new manager taking over an organization to improve communications without abandoning the use of e-mail?
MGMT 591 Week 5 DQ 1
What is the difference between position power and personal power? Can you provide an example to illustrate the difference? What flaws do you see in the leadership style of your current manager? Remember, it’s not just good leaders we can learn from. Often we can learn more by looking at bad leaders and asking “what were theydoing wrong?”. What words of advice would you have for your current manager in order to help them improve their leadership abilities?
From the “Finding the Leader in you” highlight on page 272 in the text, we read about Nelson Mandela’s use of power for the greater good. Using the books’ discussion of power and influence as a backdrop, analyze Mandela’s power from multiple perspectives and assess how his use of power changed the perspective of a nation
MGMT 591 Week 5 DQ 2
What leadership style dominates at Novo Nordisk? Cite examples from the case and specific information from the text to support your opinion. How doe Novo Nordisk’s leadership influence its organizational design and shape its competitive strategy?
Do you agree with this comparison of leaders vs followers?
Leaders vs. Followers
When leaders make a mistake, they say, “I was wrong.”
When followers make mistakes, they say, “It wasn’t my fault.”
A leader works harder than a follower and has more time;
A follower is always “too busy” to do what is necessary.
A leader goes through a problem;
A follower goes around it and never gets past it.
A leader makes and keeps commitments;
A follower makes and forgets promises.
A leader says, “I’m good, but not as good as I ought to be;”
A follower says, “I’m not as bad as a lot of other people.”
Followers just wait until it’s their turn to talk.
Leaders respect those who are superior to them and tries to learn something from them;
Followers resent those who are superior to them and try to find chinks in their armor.
Leaders feel responsible for more than their job;
Followers say, “I only work here.”
A leader says, “There ought to be a better way to do this;”
Followers say, “That’s the way it’s always been done here.”
What makes someone a good follower? Is a good follower someone who blindly follows orders at all times? Is a good follower someone who constantly challenges the leader’s ideas? Do you think you are a good follower? What characteristics might you want to change in yourself in order to be a better follower?
MGMT 591 Week 6 DQ 1
Using the OCI instrument online, and the cultural change background information on Conglomerate, Inc. provided in Doc Sharing, we will be identifying and prioritizing cultural attributes and also identifying areas for change.
Review Profiles 1a (workforce results) and 1b (senior leadership team’s ideal state) closely.
Identify and describe the cultural aspects that management cites as important and contrast them to the cultural attributes that employees report as being expected. How do employees believe they are expected to act to “fit in?”
What are the most significant gaps between management and staff?
What observations can you make on the differences between Conglomerate Inc.’s preferred culture and “ideal” culture presented by HSI?
Once we’ve identified and discussed the gaps, I’ll cue everyone to move onto the review of the suggested change initiatives and onto observations around your own OCI results.
Suppose you were the top manager at your organization. What changes would you make, if any, based on the OCI results you have seen for your organization? How much pressure do you think exists at your organization, for people to fit into the cultural norms at the organization? Think carefully before answering this, Sometimes pressure can be outwardly very heavy. Other times it can be subtle but very strong. What do you think? How strong are the cultural norms? How much pressure is on employees to conform to these cultural norms? Would it be a big breach of etiquette to violate the established norms?
MGMT 591 Week 6 DQ 2
When Jorge Maldonado became general manager of the local civic recreation center, he realized that many changes would be necessary to make the facility a true community resource. Having the benefit of a new bond issue, the center had the funds for new equipment and expanded programming. All he needed to do now was get the staff committed to the new initiatives. Unfortunately, his efforts have been met with considerable resistance to change. A typical staff comment is, “Why do we need all these extras? Everything is fine as it is.” How can Jorge deal with the employees’ resistance to change, to enable him to move the change process along? What is escalation of commitment? How does one get buy in? Getting buy in is sometimes VERY difficult if not impossible without a plan of action. So let’s take this conversation from a “worst case scenario” perspective. Assuming you are a new CEO entering a company with an entrenched culture that has REFUSED to change with several past leaders, what would you do? Might employers sometimes want to prompt turnover at times, by introducing change as a way of getting the turnover?
It is certainly a sneaky and underhanded strategy. Have you ever seen it used by management in the organization where you work?
MGMT 591 Week 7 DQ 1
Describe your current or most recent employer’s organizational design (mechanistic, organic, hybrid). Is the structure consistent with the company goals? What are the advantages and disadvantages of the org designs you chose? What is your opinion of your organization’s design? Do you think it is the most effective design for your particular workplace? From an organizational design perspective, what changes would you recommend if you had the power to alter the current design? When an organization is small (10 employees for example), an informal design tends to be convenient and practical very often. However, suppose it is not 10 or even 50 employees. Rather it has 1,000 employees or even more. Is informal design still a good idea? Have you ever worked for a company where the very structure of the organization was a hindrance to its mission? If you were the manager of the organization, what changes would you have made?
MGMT 591 Week 7 DQ 2
Over the last three weeks we have focused very much on leadership, power, organizational culture, and organizational change. Our case study for the week is a great synthesis piece that addresses all of these topics through a detailed study of firm’s attempted move to team-based management…. Have you ever seen a workplace situation where 1 person was dragging down an entire department because of their negative energy? Ever been at a meeting with a nay sayer among the ranks? This is the person who is just waiting to shoot down any idea that comes along at a team meeting – they are chronically dissatisfied with any and all suggestions. How do we deal with these people? Debate is absolutely essential and healthy in most situations. However, simply shooting down someone’s idea without offering something as al alternative – well, that’s a bit lame isn’t it? Assuming you are a new CEO entering a company with an entrenched culture that has REFUSED to change with several past leaders, what would you do?
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