(1) Select an organization to study. The organization can be public or private. The most
important consideration factor in choosing your organization is access: you need to be
able to have a contact person who can participate in your study of the organization and
give you access to the information yourequire and people.
(2) Establish a contact person. Find someone in the organization who can grant you
access to organizational information and members. Explain how you wish to study
their organization for class.
(3) Select an issue. The range of options is large. It needs to involve organizational
behavior topics that are relevant to the organization you select. You can choose among
topics discussed during lectures (see the list of topics in this syllabus) and/or in the
textbook. For example, you may be interested in employee motivation and job
satisfaction. It is very important that you focus your analysis on one key issue.
(4) Gather relevant information and data. You have several options for gathering
information and data. You may create and administer a survey or you may interview
key informants from the organization you are studying. You may observe workers.
Use any data collection procedure that will help you achieve your goals.
(5) Analyze your problem or issue. Using the information you have gathered about the
organization, draw some conclusions about the issue you are studying. Draw on the
organizational behavior literature relevant to your topic to help you analyze it. Your
analysis should be clear, logical, and based on what you have learned from your data,
the class, the text, and other readings. It is often helpful to include tables and figures
in the report to clarify your analyses.
) Generate suggested solutions. Given your analysis of the problem, generate key
steps an organization can take to improve any problems and build on any strengths.
Your suggestions should involve things an organization could actually do given
constraints. It might be helpful to first lay out all possible solutions, including “ideal”
ones in a world without constraints, and then select from those, attempting to
approximate the ideal ones. Your suggestions should be based whenever possible on
general and guiding principles of organizational behavior learned in the course.