Postgraduate Course Assignments and exercises 1.Popular management book 2.Surfacing assumptions 3.Cognitive errors and biases 4.Critical thinking 5.Focused question 6.Search for evidence 7.Research designs 8.Critical appraisal 9.CAT
Postgraduate Course 1. Popular management book 1. Popular management book “Go to the bookstore and buy a popular management book.” (or provide your students with a popular mgt book)
Postgraduate Course 1.What types of sources are cited? 2.Approximately what proportion of sources appears to be personal or anecdotal based on so-called “best-practices” of other companies other business books or publications scientific evidence? (check 3 citations in ABI/Inform) 3.What do we know about the author? (check Google and ABI/Inform) 4.What do we about the proposed model / principles? (ditto) 5.Is the model/ principle generalizable to your organization? 6.Does the book appear useful (explain why)? 1. Popular management book 1. Popular management book
Postgraduate Course 2. Surfacing assumptions Bring along a policy paper, project proposal, strategy document or change plan from your organization and give it to a colleague student.
Postgraduate Course 1. Read the policy paper / project proposal / strategy document / change plan. 2. Underline all assumptions. 3.Determine the three most questionable or critical assumptions. 4.Make a suggestion on how these assumptions could be substantiated. 2. Surfacing assumptions
Postgraduate Course Give an example of three of the following biases and explain how they affect managerial decision making 3. Cognitive errors and Biases
Postgraduate Course Seeing order in randomness Mental corner cutting Misinterpretation of incomplete data Halo effect False consensus effect Group think Self serving bias Sunk cost fallacy Cognitive dissonance reduction 3. Cognitive errors and Biases Confirmation bias Authority bias Small numbers fallacy In-group bias Recall bias Anchoring bias Inaccurate covariation detection Distortions due to plausibility
Postgraduate Course Four exercises in critical thinking 4. Critical thinking
Postgraduate Course 4. Critical thinking 1: Try to determine whether each statement is a fact or an opinion. Apple makes the best mobile phones. Microsoft has more employees than Apple. My telephone number is difficult to memorize. Dogs make better pets than turtles. Smoking is bad for your health. Smoking causes 85% of all cases of lung cancer in the U.S. One out of every hundred American citizens is colour-blind. Two out of ten American citizens are boring.
Postgraduate Course 4. Critical thinking 2. Identify the hidden assumptions in these arguments All accountants I have met so far are detail oriented. Therefore, the accountants in this organization are very likely to be detail oriented. Apple is a very successful company, so Steve Jobs is a great leader. I think we should cut down on marketing costs. After all, Steve Jobs never invested any money in marketing. Most people disapprove of awarding financial bonuses to executives. So awarding financial bonuses is wrong. Most organizations with an HR department have low absentee rates. So all organizations should have an HR department.
Postgraduate Course 4. Critical thinking 3. The following appeared in a proposal from the economic minister of the country of Paraterra. Try to identify alternative explanations for the relevant conclusions or observations. Also, think about additional facts or information that would help determine the plausibility of the conclusions. "In order to strengthen its lagging economy, last year the government of the nearby country of Bellegea began an advertising campaign to promote ecologically sound tourism (ecotourism). This year the number of foreign visitors arriving at Bellegea's main airport doubled, and per capita income in Bellegea increased by ten percent. To provide more income for the population of Paraterra and also preserve the natural environment of our tiny country, we too should begin to promote ecotourism. To ensure that our advertising campaign is successful, we should hire the current director of Bellegea's National Tourism Office as a consultant for the campaign.”
Postgraduate Course 4. Critical thinking 4. The following appeared in a newspaper article about business schools in the city of Megalopolis. Try to identify alternative explanations for the relevant conclusions or observations. Also, think about additional facts or information that would help determine the plausibility of the conclusion. "In Megalopolis, the number of business school graduates who went to work for large, corporate firms declined by 15 percent over the last three years, whereas an increasing number of graduates took jobs at small, general practice firms. Even though large firms usually offer much higher salaries, business school graduates are choosing to work for the smaller firms most likely because they experience greater job satisfaction at smaller firms. In a survey of first- year students at a leading business school, most agreed with the statement that earning a high salary was less important to them than job satisfaction. This finding suggests that the large, corporate firms of Megalopolis will need to offer graduates more benefits and incentives and reduce the number of hours they must work."
Postgraduate Course 1.Read the following five scenario’s 2.Formulate on the basis of each scenario a focused question (use the PICOC format). 5. Focused question
Postgraduate Course “I am a change- and project manager at a local branch of an English bank. The management of this particular branch struggles with low job satisfaction among its employees. Management has tried several intuitive initiatives to improve this. However last year’s Job Satisfaction Survey shows that these efforts have not resulted in any improvement. After the outcomes of the Survey became clear, the management intuitively has organised a meeting with all employees to ask them one simple question: what, in your opinion, is important for your job- satisfaction. The outcomes of this session were the following four terms: Trust, Transparency, Pride and Fun. Employees and management together agreed that Trust was the most determinant variable and they decided to start from there. With my new found knowledge on evidence based management, I ask myself this question: is there scientific evidence that shows that organizational trust indeed has a positive influence on the level of job satisfaction among employees in the private sector? “ Scenario 1
Postgraduate Course Scenario 2 “I am a Dutch quality manager at a large international brewery. In the past 4 years I facilitated a lean management program that is running for more than 10 years in this organization. The program has a very complete training and development plan and a central audit organization In the first years the progress and results of the program grew very rapidly. Since a couple of years, however, we see a decline in results, such as: - The number of problem analysis and improvement teams has been increased, but the amount of breakdowns and short stops in the production lines are not decreased. - There is slow progress for the total program for the Netherlands at this moment. According to the middle managers the improvement program does not address really important topics. I would therefore like to know more about the long-term effect of lean management in terms of organizational performance and reduced breakdowns.”
Postgraduate Course Scenario 3 “I work for ABC, one of Germany’s key players in the national grid. The organization is responsible for a reliable network for gas and electric transport. Originally ABC depends on technology driven employees and many other specialists. Most managers are ‘doers’ (rather than ‘thinkers’) who got promotion by seniority. Too often they are technology-driven and substantively oriented. The Purchasing Department is led by a management team that is too operational. It needs to progress towards a more tactical/strategic level. What is needed to facilitate this development?”
Postgraduate Course Scenario 4 “During my career I have worked in many different types of organizations. The most interesting but also challenging experience I had was working with a dispersed group of autonomous professionals in a global company. However, despite the excitement of working across borders I gradually started to get frustrated, because my team did not perform the way I expected and reacted different than I expected than I was used working with collocated teams. As I gained more experience with this international team I started to question the difference between a virtual team and a collocated team and how they relate to team performance and leadership. Is there evidence on the influence of virtuality of a team on the team performance and does a virtual team require a different style of leadership?”
Postgraduate Course Scenario 5 “I am a manager at a small Italian IT firm (80 employees, annual turnover 10mln euro) specialized in the development of risk reporting software for the insurance industry. There is a clear ambition to grow. The four owner-managers perceive the current organization as too bureaucratic with a lack of entrepreneurship. The chairman of the management has been told by a business friend who works in a large enterprise that the concept of the balanced scorecard will help him to get the desired behavior of his employees. Intuitively I seriously doubt if the concept of the balanced scorecard is applicable to and usable for small owner managed companies. Before expressing my doubts to the chairman I want to gather evidence supporting my intuition.“
Postgraduate Course 6. Search for evidence 2. Search in ABI/Inform: 1. How many articles has Stephen Covey published in peer reviewed journals? 2. How many of these articles are based on scientific research? 3. Are there articles (by other authors) that are critical of Covey’s 7 Habits? 4. How many of these critical articles are based on scientific research?
Postgraduate Course 6. Search for evidence Q1: 4 articles: Q1: 4 articles: (Emotional bank accounts, The Journal for Quality and Participation 17. 7 (Dec 1994); Involving people in the problem, The Journal for Quality and Participation 17. 5 (Sep 1994); Principle-Centered Leadership, The Journal for Quality and Participation 15. 4 (Jul/Aug 1992); Principle-centered leadership and change, The Journal for Quality and Participation 17. 2 (Mar 1994) Q2: 0 articles Q3: 2 articles: Q3: 2 articles: Cullen, John G., How to sell your soul and still get into Heaven: Steven Covey’s epiphany-inducing technology of effective selfhood, Human Relations 62. 8 (Aug 2009): 1231. Jackson, Bradley G., The goose that laid the golden egg? A rhetorical critique of Stephen Covey and the effectiveness movement, The Journal of Management Studies 36. 3 (May 1999): 353-377. Q4: 0 articles
Postgraduate Course 6. Search for evidence 3. Search in ABI/Inform or BSE: Search for peer reviewed research articles to answer the following question: What is the long term effect of a hostile take-over on the financial performance of the acquired organization? Use the following search terms: “hostile takeovers”, “financial performance”, “long term” “hostile takeovers”, “financial performance”, “long term” How many studies did you find? How many studies did you find?
Postgraduate Course 6. Search for evidence 1.SU.EXACT(“Hostile takeovers”) OR TI(“Hostile takeovers”) OR AB(“hostile takeovers”) = 444 2.SU.EXACT("Financial performance") OR TI("Financial performance") OR AB("Financial performance") = 5054 3.1 AND 2 = 13 4.SU.EXACT("Long term") OR TI("Long term") OR AB("Long term") = 24.208 5.3 AND 4 = 1 6.limit ‘studies’ = 1 Mahendra Rajand Michael Forsyth, Hostile bidders, long-term performance, and restructuring methods: Evidence from the UK, American Business Review 20. 1 (Jan 2002): 71-81.
Postgraduate Course Assignment 1 1.Read the article by Shulman & Jones (cut off the methodology section!) 2.Determine the best study design for the research question and defend the basis of your choice. 7. Research design Shulman, K.R. and Jones, G.E. (1996), ‘The Effectiveness of Massage Therapy Intervention on Reducing Anxiety in the Workplace’, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 32 (2)
Postgraduate Course = even oneven 7. Research design: outcome 1
Postgraduate Course Assignment 2 1.Read the article by Boonstra & Govers and Bond, and the article by Flaxman & Bunce (cut off the methodogy section!). 2.Determine the best study design for the research question and defend the basis of your choice. 7. Research designs Frank W. Bond, Paul E. Flaxman, and David Bunce (2008), Journal of Applied Psychology, Vol. 93, No. 3 Albert Boonstra and Mark J.G. Govers (2009), New Technology, Work and Employment, Vol. 24, No. 2
Postgraduate Course 1.Read the article by Fairfield-Son et al. 2.Critically appraise the internal validity of the study (A, B, C or D?) 3.Write your results in a Word document of at least 250 words. 8. Critical appraisal James W Fairfield-Sonn, John R Ogilvie and Gerard A DelVecchio (2002), Mergers, acquisitions and long- term employee attitudes, The Journal of Business and Economic Studies; Fall 2002; 8, 2.
Postgraduate Course 8. CAT: Critically Appraised Topic A Critically Appraised Topic (CAT) is a structured, short (3 pages max) summary of evidence on a topic of interest, usually focused around a practical problem or question. A CAT is like a “quick and dirty” version of a systematic review, summarizing the best available research evidence on a topic. Usually more than one study is included in a CAT. Examples: http://www.cebma.org/presentations/