discussion 19

1. 

On page 258 our textbook describes five different methods of departmentalization.  While some organizations may use several different types and some may use some type of combination, see if you can determine what type of departmentalization one of the two companies you researched for Project 1 uses.   Explain what you find to your classmates. 

Or perhaps you can use the organization you work for and discuss they method it uses?

 2.How many employees can one person actually manage?  For example in my job as a VP I had about 6 people who directly reported to me.   While in my entire division there were many more, I actually did the performance evaluation and set goals for only 6 people.    Look at the criteria provided starting on Page 255.  Use that criteria to discuss a management position you observe in your own organization.  Alternatively, if you have entrepreneurial aspirations, think about how many people you might be able to directly supervise as you start up your new business.

3.

Like it or not change is all around us.  As managers we need to be change agents and change champions.  We are the models of how to embrace change that others will emulate.   And we need to manage the process of change and reduce the expected resistance to change as much as we possibly can. 

Our college was getting ready to implement a new software system.  The new system would integrate student records, financial and accounting  data, class enrollments and schedules, financial aid and various other departments.  We had been using the previous software for many years and as you might expect there was great anxiety about the change.  But those of us who could see the future knew that once the new software was implemented our employees would love the impact it would have on their ability to get their job done.

Using the information provided by the textbook on page 326, discuss what you might have done as the manager to reduce the expected resistance to change.

4.

Notice I titled this conference “managing” conflict and not “settling” conflict.    There are three things I believe about conflict after many years of managing people.  First, it is going to happen so get ready for it.  Second, the manager does not have to manage all conflict.  Sometimes it is better to let people work out their own problems.  Third, conflict can have outcomes that benefit employees and the organization. 

Think of situations where you have seen a manager use on the four strategies for settling conflict as presented in our textbook starting on page 332.  Please share the story with us citing how the strategy was used and providing enough information for us to have an opinion about whether the strategy was appropriate. 

Perhaps you can think of an example where conflict has actually led to an improved outcome. 

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