Excerpt from course description

Managing for excellence

Introduction

This is a program on how to manage for excellence in organizations through a dual attention to what makes people thrive and grow and what creates extraordinary performances. The course assumes that employee and group thriving is the key to organizational excellence and that we need to understand how work practice can be generative for both individuals and organizations. Drive, energy, initiative, humility and action orientation are the basis virtues seek to develop.

We build on a fairly new and exciting tradition of research and managerial practice called Positive Organizational Scholarship. We also borrow from recent developments within practice-based approaches to organizations, narrative psychology, philosophy and the field of “design thinking”.

The target group of the program is middle managers, project managers, domain experts and other professionals in business, voluntary organizations and the public sector: people who are responsible for developing the performances of themselves and others in organizations.

We emphasize practice from both an academic and an action oriented point of view. Leadership and professional creativity to bring about excellence is first of all something that takes place sin everyday practice, something that we do.

You will be challenged to discover and/or cultivate those generative practices in which you yourself can thrive, manage at your best and be valuable to others. In line with the focus on practice, the course will present rich examples from recent research along with new theory and historical overviews. The course has five main themes. Each of them will be the subject of a separate program session.

1. High quality connections and energizing behavior
2. Motivation and driving forces
3. Positive organizational change and professional creativity
4. Experiments and prototyping
5. Culture and networks of excellence

Course content

1. Kvalitet og energi i relasjoner
2. Motivasjon og drivkrefter
3. Positivt orientert utviklingsarbeid
4. Eksperimentering og prototyping
5. Kultur og nettverk for varige prestasjoner
Meeting 1: High-quality connections and energizing behavior.

Objectives
· Get a broad introduction to the program and the lecturers, as well as getting to know and create relations to other participants
· Learn about key concepts and approaches within Positive Organizational Scholarship and some of the other main theoretical perspectives in the program
· Master and being able to apply theory about high-quality connections and energizing behavior as a basis for managing for excellence
· Kick-start the individual reflection log and clarify expectations to personal learning and achievements during the program, as well as organizational benefits

Cases: Southwest Airlines, elite skiing, oil exploration, ship building

Mandatory readings
Carlsen, A. Clegg, S. and Gjersvik, R. (2012). Idea Work. Lessons of the Extraordinary in Everyday Creativity. Cappelen Damm, kap 1, 9 and 10. (56 pages)
Collins, J. and Hansen, T. (2011). Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All. New York: HarperCollins, side 1-38
Dutton, J.E. (2003). Breathing life into organization studies. Journal of Management Inquiry 12, 5-19
Dutton, J.E. (2003). Energize Your Workplace. How to Create and Sustain High-Quality Connections at Work. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. (page 1-51; 79-139)
Grant, A. (2014). Given and Take. A Revolutionary Approach to Success. Viking Press, pg 8-39.
Best når det gjelder. Del 1 i Vinnerskaller (A.J. Riise, B. Stensbøl og A.M. Pensgaard)s. 12-33

Meeting 2: Motivation and driving forces

Objectives
· Acquire deep understanding of the motivational basis for achieving excellence
· Be able to apply this understanding to develop the motivation of oneself and others to pursue the extraordinary
· Understand and be able to apply theory on pro-social motivation through end user involvement, including the power of mastering experiences and the visualizing of progress
· Gain experience in using the reflected best self-portrait exercise as well as mechanisms for energizing behavior in one’s own organization
· Start term paper projects linked to strategic development challenges in (some of) the participants’ own organizations

Case: Muhammed Ali in When We Were Kings, Jiro Dreams of Sushi

Mandatory readings
Andersen, Svein. 2013. Casestudier. Kapittel 1 & 2.
Amabile, T. and S. Kramer (2011). The Progress Principle. Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement and Creativity at Work. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press, kap 1, 4, 5 and 6 (ca. 70 pages)
Carlsen, A. Clegg, S. and Gjersvik, R. (2012). Idea Work. Lessons of the Extraordinary in Everyday Creativity. Oslo: Cappelen Damm, kap 4, 5 and 6. (ca. 50 pages)
Grant, A.M. (2011). How customers can rally your troops: End users can energize your workforce far better than your managers can. Harvard Business Review, June: 97–103.
Kvalnes, Ø. (2012), Etikk og samfunnsansvar, del 2 og 3 (46s)
Roberts, L. M., Dutton, J. E., Spreitzer, G., Heaphy, E., and R. E. Quinn (2005). “Composing the reflected best self-portrait. Building pathways for becoming extraordinary in organizations.” Academy of Management Review 30 (4): 712-736.

Meeting 3: Positive organizational change and professional creativity

Objectives
Gain deep knowledge of systematic prepping for creativity and extraordinary performance
Understanding positive organizational change as systematically searching for and reinforcing positive deviance, looking for the positive in the negative and daring to stretch for the extraordinary
To acquire deep knowledge of practices and philosophy for performance development in two of Norway's high-performance organizations
Discuss experiences with the first phase of student term paper projects and set the final design

Case: Snøhetta, Olympiatoppen

Mandatory readings
Andersen, S. and Ronglan, L. T. (red.). (2011). Nordic Elite Sport. Same Ambitions, Different Tracks, Copenhagen: Copenhagen Business School Press, Chap 13 and 14 (50 pages)
Andersen, S. (forthcoming 2013). Casestudier - forskningsstrategi, generalisering og forklaring. Oslo: Fagbokforlaget. Chao 3,4 and 6.
Brown, T. (2009). Change by Design. How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation. New York: HarperCollins. (page 1-86)
Carlsen, A. Clegg, S. and Gjersvik, R. (2012). Idea Work. Lessons of the Extraordinary in Everyday Creativity. Oslo: Cappelen Damm, chap 2, 3 and 11. (ca 45 pages)
Collins, J. and Hansen, T. (2011). Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All. New York: HarperCollins, 1-39.

Meeting 4: Experiments and prototyping

Objectives
· Know the theoretical basis for and practices of different kinds of experiential learning as a work form in development projects, including prototyping and design of small experiments
· Get deep knowledge of design thinking bith in terms f theoretical roots and use in concrete development tasks
· Start to reap the awards of term paper projects and take a closer look at its prototypes
· Understand the theory and practice of making space for creative collaboration –through rooms, walls and artifacts, in particular with regards to visual sharing and early phase project mobilization

Cases: Apple, Ulstein, design firm

Mandatory readings
Andersen, S. (2009). Stor suksess gjennom små, intelligente feil. Erfaringsbasert kunnskapsutvikling i toppidretten. Tidsskrift for Samfunnsforskning 50(4): 427-461.
Andersen, S.S. og Hansen, P.Ø. (2014) “Coaching elite athletes: How do coaches stimulate elite athletes’ reflections?” Sport Coaching Review
Andersen, S.S. & P.Ø. Hansen (2015 – in press) How elite athletes reflect on their training: Strong beliefs – ambiguous feedback signals. Journal of Reflective Practice.
Carlsen, A. Clegg, S. and Gjersvik, R. (2012). Idea Work. Lessons of the Extraordinary in Everyday Creativity. Oslo: Cappelen Damm, chap 7 and 8. (35 pages)
Edmondson, A.C. (2011). Strategies of learning from failure, Harvard business review 89(4): 48-55
'Eksperimentering: å fungere i et ufullkomment system',
Kapittel 6 i Julian Birkinshaw (2014) Bli en bedre sjef. Cappelen Damm.
Sims. P. (2011). Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries. New York: Free Press. (page 1-163)

Meeting 5: Culture and networks of excellence

Objectives
· Learn about what characterizes organizations that remain high-performing through long periods of time
· Understand how excellence is developed and anchored in organizational culture and external networks
· Get and overview of and be able to analyze approaches to high-performance cultures, including the comparison of experiences fro elite sports, businesses and industrial clusters
· Being able to understand and critically assess recipes for managing for excellence
· Presentation and last look at term paper
· Summarize key learning across all five program themes

Case: Danone, education, Antoinette Tuff

Mandatory readings
Andersen, S. og Sæther, Ø. (2009). Kompetansemobilisering for prestasjonsutvikling. Hvordan oppnå fremragende resultater med vanlige medarbeidere? Magma 1(11). 10 pages.
Andersen, S. and Ronglan, L. T. (red.). (2011). Nordic Elite Sport. Same Ambitions, Different Tracks, Copenhagen: Copenhagen Business School Press, chap 1 and 2 (30 pages)
Collins, J. and Hansen, T. (2011). Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All. New York: HarperCollins, page 39-170.
Colville, I. D., Waterman, R. H. and Weick, K. E. (1999). Organizing and the search for excellence: making sense of the times in theory and practice. Organization 6(1): 128-149.
Dweck, C. (2010). Mind-sets and equitable education. Principal Leadership 10(5), 26–29.
Lervik, J. E., Hennestad, B. W., Lunnan, R., Amdam, R. P. and Nilsen, S. (2005). Implementing human resource development best practices -- replication or re-creation? Human Resource Development International 8(3): 345-360.

 

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This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.