Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 14:42:51 MST
                                        From: Renee Buchanan <>

University of Utah
Management 368 "Effective Behavior in Organizations" To be first taught Spring 1997
Larry E. Pate, Professor of Management & Organizational Behavior

Office: KDGB 204; 801-585-6924 phone;


This course is designed to introduce the student to major theories and research about the way people behave in the workplace and enhance the student's diagnostic skill in understanding why people behave as they do in organizations. Students will also study and learn the ACES Decision-Making Technique which will assist them in developing knowledge and skill to work effectively in groups. Through interaction with community service agencies, students will apply theory to tough problems facing the organizations.

  1. Students in the class provide a needed service to individuals, organizations, schools, or other entities in the community. Students will study individual and group behavior within the context of an organization. Topics and theories include motivation, decision-making, leadership, job design, group dynamics, organizational structure, and processes of change and improvement in organizational setting. Students work with nonprofit community agencies to provide creative solutions to tough problems faced by the agency. The students will learn how to apply the ACES Decision-Making Technique to the identified agency problems. Specific recommendations and a report will be provided to the agency.
  2. The service experience relates to the subject matter of the course. The interaction with the community agencies will give the student an opportunity to see difficult problems the community service groups face. The ACES Decision-Making Technique takes on more meaning when they see the relevance to different types of decisions. The students will have to become very familiar with the agencies, their challenges and problems to apply the ACES technique. The community agencies will provide ample challenge to the students in research, comprehension and application of relevant theory for problem solving.
  3. Activities in the class provide a method or methods for students to think about what they learned through the service experience and how these learnings related to the subject of the class. The students will study different decision-making styles and how those style affect organizational behavior. The student will apply the decision-making technique to tough problems and create alternative solutions with the ACES technique. The student will clarify assumptions, identify what they want, and create a greater number of alternative solutions. In-class group discussions and a written graded assignment provide learning opportunities.
  4. The course offers a method to assess the learning derived from the service. Credit is given for the learning and its relation to the course, not for the service alone. Grading will be distributed in accordance with the School of Business guidelines. Grades will be based on the following:
 Instrument analysis                          10% of grade
 ACES Decision making paper                   15% of grade
 Community service project analysis           20% of grade
 Midterm examination                          20% of grade
 Final examination                            35% of grade

5. Service interactions in the community recognize the needs of service recipients, and offer an opportunity for recipients to be involved in the evaluation of the service. The ACES technique was designed to address tough problems, precisely the kind of situations facing community agencies where none of the available options seem good enough. This course is designed to actively involve the students in community issues by having them work closely with the agencies to identify the tough problems and work the problems through using ACES. The student must have a good working knowledge of the agency operations to understand the problems the agencies face. The student will also provide specific recommendations identified to the agencies. Where applicable, the student will assist in the implementation of solutions. Agencies will be asked to provide an evaluation of the students' assessments and interactions and offer feedback on the process.

6. The service opportunities are aimed at the development of the civic education of students even though they may also be focused on career preparation. The application of Organizational Behavior theory and the study of decision-making and the ACES technique will be applied in the service sector, rather than the traditional business organization typically discussed in management courses. The opportunity to examine and work with community- based organizations will broaden the students' exposure to different business environments. Whether the student pursues a career in service or traditional business the student will better understand the community and world he/she lives in.

7. Knowledge from the discipline informs the service experiences with which the students are involved. The study of effective human behavior and decision-making will provide the student a unique opportunity to examine the value of theory in non-traditional organizations. This enhances course work in business and management classes. Students will be able to examine comparisons and differences between traditional business and service organizations.

8. The class offers a way to learn from other class members as well as from the instructor. Group discussions and presentations will allow added insight to a wide range of service organizations. The group interaction provides students an additional opportunity to study their decision-making and behavior styles in a small group setting. Class activities will include interactive course discussion and group projects.

Course Description

This course serves as an introduction to the study of individual and group behavior within the context of an organization. A primary objective is the development of the student's potential for becoming an effective organizational member and manager of people. Case studies, experiential learning methods, and films are utilized to actively involve the student. A wide variety of topics and theories are covered, including motivation, decision making, leadership, job design, group dynamics, organizational structure, and processes of change and improvement in organizational settings.


The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the study of human behavior at work and the application of that study. We will examine what makes an organization effective, the focus throughout the course is on @u and what you can do within the scope of your own responsibilities and roles to be an effective organizational participant. The material to be studied is behavioral in the sense that it emphasizes observation and measurement rather than merely philosophy. The material to be studied is scientific because it has been generated by research methods where such observation and measurement have been carried out in as controlled and objective a manner as possible, utilizing certain tools for the purposes of prediction and explanation.

The course examines what we know and, just as important, what we do not know about ourselves and about various aspects of managing people at work. We will first consider the nature and influence of individual differences and motivational processes, including a discussion of personality, perception, learning, and the interplay between attitudes and behavior. We examine the relationship between person factors (motives and skills) and job factors (incentives and demands), in the context of a Person-Job Fit model of work behavior. Next we take a look at the decision making process and individual decision styles, with emphasis on identifying decision making techniques for increasing vigilance, improving communication between group members, and improving a work group's effectiveness. Following this we concentrate attention on service leadership, group dynamics, group decision making, work design and the larger organization design. Throughout, we examine a number of elements of the management process: setting objectives, controlling behavior through rewards, leadership issues, and managing conflict. Finally, we consider how to implement change and improvement through service organization development strategies.

In short, the purpose of this course is to:

(1) expose students to the major theories and research about the way people behave in organizations;

(2) enhance the student's diagnostic skills in understanding why people behave as they do in organizations;

(3) enable students to better understand themselves as individuals and their own styles of leadership and decision making;

(4) assist students to develop increased knowledge and skill to work effectively in groups.

(5) apply theory and skills to assist community organizations in resolving difficult problems.


Grading will be distributed in accordance with the School of Business guidelines. Grades will be based on the following:

 Instrument analysis                          10% of grade
 ACES Decision making paper                   15% of grade
 Community service project analysis           20% of grade
 Midterm examination                          20% of grade
 Final examination                            35% of grade

Text and Materials

One required text is used in this course: (1) Luthans, F. (1996). Virtual Organizational Behavior. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Additionally, we will be using a required packet of questionnaire instruments that you can purchase from Alpha Graphics, 273 South 1300 East (tel. 582-8282). 1 also recommend a book that will add greatly to your learnings experience: Bennis, W., & Goldsmith, J. (1994). Learnings to Lead: A Workbook on Becoming a Leader. Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley.

Instrument Analysis

In class, you will complete the three questionnaire instruments that are contained in the Alpha Graphics packet. You must bring the questionnaire packet with you to class on the specified date. If you show up without it, you will be asked to leave. Please do not wait until the last minute to purchase these packets. Your responses are sent to the Decision Dynamics Processing Center in Los Angeles, California, and in order to get your results back in time it is critical that you attend all scheduled classes. The purpose of these questionnaires is to improve your understanding of the value of instrumentation and also to assist you in gaining additional insight and self-awareness. These three instruments are:

(1) Driver Decision Style Exercise (DDSE) (2) Driver-Streufert Complexity Index (DSCI) (3) Emotional Reactions Inventory (ERI)

The purpose of the Instrument Analysis assignment (4-5 typed double-space pages) is to insure that you understand the meaning of your own test scores and can interpret these scores accurately within the context of the relevant theory. We will review in class the theory behind each of the instruments. By reviewing and interpreting your scores (both individually and collectively), you should become more aware of your natural tendencies when interacting with others, possible blind spots, and areas for professional development.

These instruments provide scores that represent stable factors (e.g., operating style), as well as factors that are more easily changed or influenced (e.g., role style). Generally, looking at the scores from any one instrument will provide less information than looking at the scores from several of them. It is this pattern that emerges from the set of instruments that we are most interested in. For example, both the DDSE and DSCI identify five decision styles (one of which represents your dominant style and a second of which represents your backup style), however the DDSE is referencing operating style whereas the DSCI references role style. How are these two styles related? What kind of work conditions are most suited to your dominant and backup styles? What is the relationship between ERI scores and DDSE scores? Are your ERI results consistent or inconsistent with your expectations? Why? What do high repression or high boredom scores represent (and what are your scores)? Which decision style would be expected to reflect the highest tolerance for ambiguity? These questions merely illustrate the kind of questioning and probing I expect from you in writing the Instrument Analysis.

In short, your Instrument Analysis should contain:

(1) a complete listing of the individual test scores from each of the above measures;

(2) your interpretation of the meaning of these scores, individually and collectively;

(3) your reflection on the interpretation, particularly areas that are consistent or inconsistent with your self-perception and experience.

Decision Making Papers

I will give you practical tools, and not just theory, for problem solving. Therefore, a requirement of the course is that you write two short papers (about 5 typed double-space pages each) that apply the ACES Decision Making Technique. The first is an individual paper that addresses a career/professional or personal decision you are currently faced with. The second is a group paper that addresses a significant community issue and provides a project analysis. You will be assigned to three-person groups and will be working with United Way agencies on the community projects. The ACES Technique typically takes on more meaning for people when they see the relevance to different types of decisions. More information on the papers will be provided in class. Please turn in two copies of each paper on the due dates shown in the Course Schedule.

Midterm and Final Exams

The two exams will each contain three types of questions, drawn from the Luthans text, class discussions, and assignments. These are: (1) multiple choice questions (typically about 30 at 2 points each), (2) fill-in-the-blank questions (typically about 10 at 2 points each), and (3) short answer essay questions (typically about 4 at 5 points each). I will provide review materials and study guides one week prior to the exams; I will also conduct review sessions in the class periods immediately prior to the exams, as shown on the Course Schedule below. Please come to the review sessions prepared with any questions you want to ask. I avoid "trick" questions and you will not be required to match names of theorists or researchers with their work. I am interested in your ability to demonstrate your understanding of the material and to apply that material to the workplace. If there is a major section in the book (e.g., Expectancy Theories), you should probably study it. You should also study the end-of- chapter review questions. The final exam is cumulative.

Assignments Via Internet

My web page is located at http:llinfo. business. utah. edul-mgtlpl (on the faculty site of the University of Utah web page). I will post class information and assignments there throughout the Spring Quarter. My teaching philosophy statement, information on the ACES Decision Making Technique, and frequently asked questions about the course are currently on my web page. You may send comments, suggestions, and questions through the Internet.


Week One

        Introduction to the Course
        What Is Organizational Behavior?
        Learnings vs.  Evoking Management Skills
        Overview of the Person-Job Fit (PJF) Model

 +      Read chapter 1 - "OB: The Science Behind Management"

Week Two

        Personality and Attitudes
        Individual Differences (Perception, Attribution, Attitudes)
        Petal Model of Personality (Perception, Motor, Memory, Motivation)
        PJF Model Application: Individual Motives and Skills
        PJF Model Application: Job Demands and Incentives
 +      Read chapter 2 - "Personality and Attitudes"
 +      Complete 3 questionnaire instruments
                1) Driver Decision Style Exercise (DDSE)
               2) Driver-Streufert Complexity Index (DSCI)
               3) Emotional Reactions Inventory (ERI)
        Due: Write brief paragraph of personal goals; select community agencies

Week Three

        The Nature and Importance of Perception
        Perceptual Selectivity
        Perceptual Organization
        Social Perception
 +      Read chapter 3 - "The Perception Process"
 +      Film, "Dead Poet's Society"

Week Four

        What Is Motivation?
        Content versus Process Theories of Motivation
        Importance of Expectancy Theory
        Two Integrative Models (Hackman-Oldham and Porter-Lawler)
 +      Read chapter 4 - "Motivation"
 +      Read handout, "Understanding Human Behavior"

Week Five

        Learnings and Reinforcement Theory
        Principles of Learnings: Reinforcement and Punishment
        Organizational Reward Systems
        Behavioral Management
 +      Read chapter 5 - "Learnings"
 +      Case discussion and exercise

Week Six

       Review all material for Midterm Exam
              +     Midterm Exam

Week Seven

Decision Making Models of the Person (Rational, Administrative, Humanistic)

Current Issues in Decision Making (Maximizing vs. Satisficing, Environmental Load)

        Decision Making Under Certainty, Uncertainty, and Risk
        Dynamic Decision Style Model (Information Use, Focus)
        ACES Decision Making Technique
        Individual versus Group Decision Making (Delphi and NGT)
 +      Read chapter 6 - "Decision Making"
 +      Read ACES handout, "Improving Managerial Decision Making"
 +      Prepare *ACES worksheets in class
 +      Discuss ACES as a community action tool; group discussions

Week Eight

Early Approaches to Job Design (Simplification, Enlargement, Enrichment)

        Work-Group and Outcomes Approaches to Job Design
        Goal Setting Theory and Applications
 +      Read chapter 7 - "Job Design and Goal Setting"
 +      Due: Decision Making Paper

Week Nine

        Leading as Organizations Evolve
        Leadership Theories and Models (Trait, Behavioral, 
        Leading in Times of Radical Change (Weber, Bums, Zaleznik, 
       . Syncretical Model and Emerging Approaches (Attribution, 
Charismatic, Transformational)
 +      Read chapter 8 - "Leadership"
 +      Review instrument summary data
 +      Discuss recommended Bennis-Goldsmith book
 +      Due: Community project analysis

Week Ten

        Nature and Types of Groups (Formal, Informal, Ad Hoc)
        Group and Team Development
        Team Management Matrix (Goals, Roles, Climate, Behavior)
        Team Building (Role Negotiation and Clarification)
        Thanksgiving Holiday
 +      Read chapter 9 - "Groups and Teams"
 +      Due: Instrument Analysis

Week Eleven

        Understanding Organizational Change
        Overview of the Organization Development Process
        Lewin's Force Field Analysis (Environmental vs.  Internal 
        The Manager as Initiator of Change - Managing the Dream
        Some Guidelines for Managing Change
 +      Read chapter 10 - "Organization Development and Change"
 +      Read handout, "Managing the Dream"
 +      Review all course material