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Fundamental of Management for the Technical Professional
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Graduate Students: Please answer 5 questions from the FOM section and 5 questions from the AITL section.
Undergrad Students: Please answer 3 questions from the FOM section and 3 questions from the AITL section.
- Define organizational behavior and describe its goals.
Organizational behavior is a field of study that is concerned specifically with the actions of people at work. It focuses primarily on two areas, individual behavior and group behavior. Individual behavior includes topics such as attitudes, personality, perception, learning, and motivation. Group behavior includes norms, roles, team building, leadership, and conflict. Organizational behavior is normally used as a tool to understand how people behave in an organization
The goals of organizational behavior are to explain, predict, and influence behavior.
Managers need to be able to explain why employees engage in some behaviors rather than others
Predict how employees will respond to various actions the manager might take, and
Influence how employees behave.
- Identify and describe three traits associated with leadership.
There are in all seven traits associated with leadership, which are as follow: Drive, Desire to lead, Honesty and Integrity, Self-confidence, Intelligence, Job-relevant Knowledge, Extraversion. Among all I would describe the three traits, which I think, are most important and they are explained below:
Honesty and integrity: Leaders build trusting relationships with followers by being truthful, or no deceitful, and by showing high consistency between word and deed.
Self-confidence: Followers look to leaders for an absence of self-doubt. Leaders, therefore, need to show self-confidence in order to convince followers of the rightness of their goals and decisions.
Intelligence: Leaders need to be intelligent enough to gather, synthesize, and interpret large amounts of information, and they need to be able to create visions, solve problems, and make correct decisions.
- Describe how managers might motivate professional workers.
There is a different needs and expectations of professional workers compare to Non-professional in their jobs. Professional workers have a strong and long-term commitment to their job. They use to learn more and more knowledge to keep their job and work and they work with full dedication without defining their working schedule as 5 days a week.
Professional workers are not motivated by money or by any raise in their job; tackling new problems and finding solutions motivate them. When managers praised their work and dedication they himself got motivated and works more efficiently in other words they get motivated by their work and value of support. They simply values challenging work, problem solving and supports. Different professional haves different values of motivation which managers needs to understand to motivate them.
- Discuss the three sets of variables that have been found to stimulate innovation.
Structural Variable: Organic structures, Abundant resources, High interunit â€¨communication, Minimal time pressure, Work and nonwork support.
Human resource variable: High commitment to training and development• High job security • Creative people
Cultural variable: â€¨• Acceptance of ambiguityâ€¨• Tolerance of the impractical • Low external controlsâ€¨• Tolerance of risksâ€¨• Tolerance of conflictâ€¨• Focus on endsâ€¨• Open-system focusâ€¨• Positive feedback.
A. Structural Variables Affect Innovation
First, organic structures positively influence innovation.
- They are lower in work specialization, have fewer rules, and are more decentralized than mechanistic structures; they facilitate the flexibility, adaptation, and cross-fertilization that make the adoption of innovations easier.
Second, easy availability of plentiful resources provides a key building block for innovation.
- An abundance of resources allows management to afford to purchase innovations, bear the cost of instituting innovations, and absorb failures.
Frequent inter-unit communication helps to break down possible barriers to innovation by facilitating interaction across departmental lines.
- 3M, for instance, is highly decentralized and takes on many of the characteristics of small, organic organizations.
B. Cultural variable Affect Innovation
- Innovative organizations tend to have similar cultures.
- They encourage experimentation.
They reward both successes and failures.
- They celebrate mistakes.
An innovative culture is likely to have the following seven characteristics:
- Acceptance of ambiguity.
- Tolerance of the impractical.
- Low external controls.
- Tolerance of risk.
- Mistakes are treated as learning opportunities.
- Tolerance of conflict.
- Focus on ends rather than on means.
- Open systems focus.
C. Human Resource Variables Affect Innovation
- Innovative organizations actively promote the training and development of their members so that their knowledge remains current, offer their employees high job security to reduce the fear of getting fired for making mistakes, and encourage individuals to become champions of change.
- Once a new idea is developed, champions of change actively and enthusiastically promote the idea, build support, overcome resistance, and ensure that the innovation is implemented.
- Research finds that champions have common personality characteristics: extremely high self-confidence, persistence, energy, and a tendency to take risks.
Champions also display characteristics associated with dynamic leadership.
- They inspire and energize others.
- They are also good at gaining the commitment of others to support their mission.
- Champions have jobs that provide considerable decision-making discretion.
- Discuss why people resist change due to the fear of losing possessions or status. Include an example to support your answer.
It is clearly stated fact that people resist changes in their profession and their workplace. There can be many reasons behind this like losing profession, their status, position, reputation are some major reasons. People use to resist change as they already have given lots of efforts and experience to their work. They have worked for day and night, invested lots of money and energy and respect. They can’t easily loose this all in a matter of time. And as a professional I think they are doing right.
For example: Long year back there was no such technologies which can compute the work in just a fraction of seconds and at that time people use to work and get success in their profession. But now a days if people are not familiar with technology then they have a fear of loosing job and status. So they use to learn and improve their skills to remain on there position at workplace.
- Are IT applications an asset or an expense?
In my point of view IT applications, can be asset or can be expense, if IT application helps any organization to grow its infrastructure and technology along with its platform in which it works then it will be taken as an asset. And these days many new applications and newer versions of present application are introducing, which are to buy by the organization to improve and grow, then those it application will be consider as an expense for organization. As organization will buy the newer and improved versions of application and they have also bought the older one too. I have seen an example in book AITL, which is like hardware’s are taken as asset where as technologies like software are taken to be expenses.
- What processes need to be in place to effectively establish IT project priorities?
To have any successful project, the project must be taken care of concept like Planning, Organizing, controlling and leading, which are know to be effective process in fundamental management. Planning is said to defining schedule, goals and task of the project. Organizing defines as work and task allocation to team members, like what tasks are to be perform and who will perform those tasks. Controlling is defined to monitor and checking for the jobs are going in the right direction and getting things done in right manner. Leading can be said as the proper utilization of tools and resources during the project and to achieve the desired goals.
In my thinking planning, organizing and controlling are the most important roles to accomplish any IT project. Planning in such a way that successful project can be achieved in desired time and budget. Organizing peoples, tools, budget and resources to generate the best possible result. Controlling can be done at the time of completion of each task and to check that the output at the end of task is same as it was planned. This monitoring is needed on every single task of project to have a successful project.
- What should be the ideal ratio of maintenance to new application?
It completely depends on what type of organization we are talking; if it is a professional IT organization then they have to design new technologies and application for the growth, but if it not a IT organization then that organization can buy and maintain new application from market. But for a Non-IT organization it will be costly to maintain application.
Lets take an example of IVK, this organization is a financial based company and has to maintain certain records and data in their database. That is the reason they have to invest near about 20% for new technologies and application. Where as a company apple, they especially need new innovation to grow their business. They have to invest near about 70% of their budget on R&D department to generate new application. So I can say IT organization has to keep 70-30 ratios and where as non-IT organization has to 20-80 ratio.
- Would Barton make a good next CEO for IVK? In what ways might he differ from past leadership?
In my thinking after going through the book, Barton can never be a good CEO, as he was sensitive and over friendly with the employees of IVK, which can be considered as black spot on him for CEO position. He was great on position of CIO at the time of crisis. And the present CEO William was good at CEO position during the issue he handles well.
Some of the decisions, which were made by William, were instant and spontaneously taken of firing which is a plus point for William. But if we consider Barton as CEO than decision-making could not have that effective, as he could have think before taking such an action. By the decision of William IVK has recovered really fast. In other words William believes in result and Barton believes in process and this personality differences, I think Barton could not be a good CEO for IVK but he can be a good COO.
- Which job offer should Barton accept?
I think Barton was not having three choices, he was considering to leave IVK. He was having two choices one is go with kid and other with Bob Goldman. In my thinking Barton should go with Bob offers, as he was the inspiration of JIM and giving a position of COO. Bob and KID both were also offering Barton a huge amount of salary, so it won’t be considered as reason. KID offered Barton CIO position but in my thinking Barton works good at COO position, as he was confident of what he is doing. After going thru the book we all know he was a confuse person at CIO position. So, I think Barton should have taken BOB Goldman offer and work in a manner as he like.