Commentary by the Atlas editors: The syllabi (particularly the class titles and the readings), of this class (taught by Professors Peter Zimmerman and Steven Strauss), have been very valuable in the Atlas's specification of teaching topics in several different public management subjects. The course is unusual in that its teaching topics are associated with several (five) public management subjects. The course deals with somewhat the same subject matter as the MLD-101 core course for MPP students but MLD-110 is designed for students with management experience.
The two professors take somewhat different approaches to course design.
Professor Zimmerman (MLD-110A) provides two useful definitions at the outset:
Management and leadership are activities intended to influence, guide, channel and direct the actions of others toward desired ends through formal and informal organizations.
Public management is the work of mobilizing others to accomplish socially useful purposes and advance the public interest.
and notes that management and leadership activities are strategic in two senses:
- As one’s actions take into account and are conditioned on the predicted response of others. Strategic behavior exploits the interdependence of human perception, interpretation, analysis and action in social, political, and organizational life.
- As one acts to bring coherence and focus to one’s actions and the actions of others across time and space. Strategic management brings coordination, alignment, coherence and force to the actions of diverse individuals in dispersed settings. (Syllabus, p 1-2)
Zimmerman's class titles are: What is Strategy; Organizations (2); Leaders and Managers (2); Leading Change (3); Organizing for Performance (7); Leading Change; Organization, Teams and Leadership (2); Organizing for Performance, Collaboration and Partnership (4); Leadership and Decision (2).
Zimmerman assigns five required textbooks:
- Mark Moore, Creating Public Value, Harvard University Press, 1997
- Joseph Nye, The Powers to Lead , Oxford, 2008
- Edgar Schein, Organizational Culture and Leadership, (fourth edition) Jossey Bass, 2010
- Max Bazerman and Don Moore, Judgment in Managerial Decision Making, (seventh edition), Wiley, 2009
- W. Richard Scott and Gerald Davis, Organizations and Organizing: Rational, Natural and Open Systems Perspectives, Pearson/Prentice Hall , 2007
Professor Strauss (MLD-110B) lists the strategic actions to be examined in the course: setting and articulating goals and missions; aligning strategy with mission; leading organizational change; managing with performance information; improving work processes; structuring networks and partnerships; and dealing with crises and environments in transition. He notes (MLD-110B Syllabus, p 1) that the course uses organizational theory and practice to explore alternative models of leadership and authority in organizations - models which profoundly challenge the default organizational paradigm governing so many of our assumptions about how organizations operate.
He notes (MLD-110B Syllabus, p 1) that strategic thinking will be an important theme in this course and provides a concise definition:
- Strategy is the process by which we leverage resources at our disposal to maximize the likelihood of achieving the outcomes we seek.
He notes that "We achieve such leverage by discovering synergies among our available resources, and exploiting those synergies to create coherence in our actions, directed toward our organizational purposes. We will explore ways to release the power of strategy and strategic thinking from boundaries imposed by traditional models of organization, in order to deeply transform public organizations and the services they provide."
Strauss sets out the titles of his 26 classes as follows:
8. Performance Information – NYC Police and Crime
STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT AND ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE
1. Introduction – Strategic Triangle
2. Organizational Culture
3. Setting Strategy – Aravind Eye Hospital
4. Setting Strategies and Goals – Bills of Andalucía
5. Bureaucratic Entrepreneur – Student Aid in Sweden
6. Consensus Building – Providence Schools (Mandatory Assignment)
7. Innovation - GSA
STRATEGIES FOR IMPROVING PERFORMANCE
9. Changing Organizational Culture – Mayor Williams and DC
10. Performance System and Summary (Optional Assignment)
11. Learning Organization – Children’s Hospital
12. Balanced Scorecard – City of Charlotte
13. Regulatory Performance – OSHA
14. Alignment – Centrelink
BEYOND ORGANIZATIONAL BOUNDARIES: NETWORKS, PARTNERSHIPS AND COALITIONS
15. Networks - IHI
16. Competition – City of Indianapolis
17. Partnerships – NYC Parks
18. Coalitions – Rev. Brown
LEADERSHIP, JUDGEMENT AND DECISION-MAKING
19. Employee Motivation - TSA
20. Evaluating Talent - GE
21. Bias – One Church, One Child
22. Group Identity – Star Distributors
23. Leadership Styles – General Petraeus (Optional Assignment)
24. Leadership and Strategy - Michelle Rhee
26. Summary/Special Topics
Strauss recommends students acquire the book:
- Elaine Kamarck, The End of Government…As We Know It, Lynn Rienner Publishers, 2007.
Page created by: Ian Clark, last updated 13 February 2013. The content presented on this page, except in the Commentary, is drawn directly from the source(s) cited above, and consists of direct quotations or close paraphrases.