Principle of Management Course: My Experiences

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Principle of Management Course: My Experiences

I believe that the Principles of Management course provided me with invaluable information which will help in furthering both my professional as well as personal life. I believe that learning is a process by which an individual undergoes certain changes. Also, during the learning process, many of the beliefs which a person holds are challenged. I underwent various changes during this course. This paper will explain those changes. Furthermore, I will detail the concepts, ideas and situations which had the greatest impact on me. Before taking this course, my definition of the concept of management would have been strictly based on power relationships within an organization, how to use power to achieve your goals and how to manipulate people. Although this definition might seem totalitarian, my background in Political Science supported my initial misconceptions of management. I am a political science major and the questions most often asked in political science courses deal with power within a structure and how this power is used, abused and expressed by those in control. Therefore, I came into the Principles of Management course with the notion that I was going to be learning about power. This notion was challenged as I learned that there are three different perspectives that are used to analyze an organization.

There are three different perspectives used to view organizational behavior and processes: Strategic-Design, Political and Cultural. Initially, I was looking at the organization and the process of management from the political perspective. This perspective deals with the use of power and influence throughout the organization. However, I also had to learn about the strategic- design perspective, which dealt with the differentiation, efficiency, strategy, coordination and integration of various tasks within the organization. I also had to learn about the cultural perspective which focused on the way in which people assigned meanings to their respective work experiences. I was beginning to understand that management and the organization are not just an arena for power relations. Instead, a variety of factors compose management. Management deals with the tasks, structure, culture and decision-making processes within an organization. In order to be an effective manager one has to study and analyze t he organization using all the perspectives.

This was the first phase of my learning: I was beginning to understand that the perspective from which I had been viewing the organization was insufficient because I was missing other important aspects of the organization. Therefore, I needed to use a multi-perspective lens to analyze the organization. I also learned about the roles that are present within an organization. These roles are: director, producer, facilitator, mentor, coordinator, innovator and broker. Each of these roles has a distinct function within the context of the organization. These roles can complement and supplement each other. After doing the in-class exercise, I discovered that I fell in Quinnís Rational Goal quadrant and was oriented towards director and producer roles. A director is expected to clarify expectations through processes, such as planning and goal setting. Directorís define roles and tasks, generate rules and policies and give instructions. After studying many of my everyday activities, I noticed that I was inclined to give orders and that I was highly competitive and goal oriented. I was also oriented towards the producer role. A producer is supposed to accept responsibly, complete assignments and maintain high personal productivity.

By identifying the roles towards which I was inclined, it made it easier to track and remedy my negative tendencies. For instance, the my most negative tendency emanating from the director/producer role is that fact that I can be insensitive...
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