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What every American should know… May 4, 2007

Posted by Janine in Cases, civil society, Class announcements, Government, Military, Public Interest.

Here is a link for a documentary on the 9/11 incident. 


Now it is about an hour and a half, so watch it when you have some time.  This does not really apply to organizational theory or practice, but I think that this is a video that we as Americans should watch and know.

 Now, after having watched it, you are entitled to make your own judgments and form your own beliefs and opinions, but please if you have time, watch it and let us all know what you think.  I know I am very curious to hear what you all have to say!


The Informant April 11, 2007

Posted by Kira in Class announcements, Organizational Design, Organizational Environment.
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As I was reading my book for the project, I found a part that relates to my last blog entry.  In my last blog, I discussed a little bit about the Japanese culture or style of doing business.  I discussed how corporate takeovers used to be rare because of the deep cultural aversion to selling one’s company and how this was considered a humiliating failure by the founders and owners.  I also mentioned how there is also a cultural aversion to confrontation.  In the book The Informant, the main company ADM is involved in price-fixing with Japanese companies.  At one of their secret price-fixing meetings, the book describes a variation of a classic Japanese negotiating strategy known as “naniwabushi.”  The book states that “in Tokyo, the method is effective in resolving disputes without confrontation” (195).  I thought that this parallel was interesting.  The Japanese have maintained their strategy and culture of avoiding confrontation that was used in the price-fixing negotiations up until now in the recent article I read.  

I am half way through the book- it moves pretty quickly.  There are so many different characters and detailed conversations that take place in the book that it is hard to remember it all and keep it all straight!  I can’t believe that this investigation is a true story- how does so much illegal activity take place and be kept so quiet?  I guess that is where the organizational structure and culture come into play.

I think for our project just focusing on what is going on inside ADM, the main company, which allows for all of the illegal activity, is the best approach.  I think it may be interesting to try and set up an organizational chart for the company- it seems as though it would be very fragmented and would have bad flows of information between employees and product divisions.  Do you think it would be interesting to try and provide a recommendation for the company on how to fix their structure and maybe even design a new organization chart?  Do you think we should focus on the organization of ADM or the FBI?  The main character is also very interesting and complex- do you think we should deal with him also?  Maybe relate his actions to business ethics and how the organization of ADM allowed for his actions to take place?

Sorry it is kind of hard to understand this blog unless you have read the book- I don’t want to give too much away on here though!    

How to use the Blog for next four weeks March 30, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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A student emailed me and asked about my suggestion that you use the blog to advance your thinking and writing.

A good question.

Here was my response:

In short: the blog is a learning resource for you and everyone. Imagine three students writing blog posts. First has vague idea of topic and writes about 2 companies that may or may not be better understood in organizational decline. Second has taken idea of organizational decline and realized that there is an unresolved question about the role of management turnover (does it help or hurt recovery?). Student writes this up and wonders if there are examples of both possibilities. Third student has a clear argument and example. She writes up first two paragraphs of paper and posts them on blog for feedback.

All three are entirely acceptable.

Roll Call! March 20, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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Looking for posts from Brian, Bertan, Brendan, Meg!  Roll Call time!

Great Opportunity to Network and Learn (and Earn $5000 on $25!) March 12, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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Here is an opoortunity Professor Santanen mentioned to me:

The Simon Graduate School Early Leaders Case Competition brings together undergraduate students and recent graduates with less than three years post-baccalaureate work experience to compete in a business case competition designed to simulate decisions faced by business leaders across the globe. Once on Simon’s campus, participants are divided into teams and under tight deadline requirements, each team’s creativity and problem-solving skills are put to the ultimate test. Teams compete for a $5,000 first place prize, with additional awards for runner-up teams.

They seem to cover room and board expenses if you are out of town.

Let me know if you want more info.

Internships- Get your Hands Dirty in the Public Interest March 6, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements, Public Interest.
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The career center has a program, BPIP, m to highlight Public Interest internships.

@BPIP’s goal is to keep you updated on events and information pertaining to the non-profit / public interest sector that will help you prepare for your next step, whether it is landing an internship, a full-time job or going on to graduate school.

Reasons to look into these:

  1. You can pursue an interest of yours or develop a new one.
  2. The size and nature of these organizations  means you are likely to get much more intense experience.
  3. The issues of power, organizational politics, and change are throbbing in public interest organizations.
  4. They make you more distinctive in interviews for jobs or graduate schools.  They reflect someone who has a developed sense of self and of public engagement.  Every employer wants someone who can work for the greater good.
  5. There has been huge growth in civil society/public interest organizations.
    1. There has been a dramatic expansion in the size, scope, and capacity of civil society around the globe over the past decade, aided by the process of globalization and the expansion of democratic governance, telecommunications, and economic integration.  As an illustrative example, the number of international NGOs was reported to have increased from 6000 in 1990 to 26,000 in 1999.
    2. One study estimates that about 8.8 million Americans work in the non-profit sector.  This is 8.2% of the labor force, more than work in financial services and transportation and about the same as in durable goods manufacturing.

I would be happy to talk/persuade more of you about this.  For example, the current BPIP newsletter has an internship at the NY Museum of Television and Radio.

You are all editors… February 21, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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You are all editors now.  Please be careful not to delete posts!

Come up with a Better Blog Name! February 13, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.

Click on the “why we blog” tab above and in the comments you can suggest a name!

Test poll from www.luckypolls.com February 6, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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Which ad did you like?
1) Fed Ex
2) Crabs
3) CokeView ResultsMake your own poll
    I did this poll by going to luckypolls.com, typing out my question, and then giving my email. Then I posted the HTML with Links script into the post window here. Same way I ddi the change the blog name poll.

NO CASE THIS WEEK. February 6, 2007

Posted by Jordi in Class announcements.
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There is no case this week.

I will always let you know when there is one.