Reflections of a teacher (?) conceptual and pedagogical challenges in teaching OB/HR Prof. Bholanath Dutta.

by leslie-allen





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  • Reflections of a teacher (?) conceptual and pedagogical challenges in teaching OB/HR Prof. Bholanath Dutta
  • Agenda for the session Challenges in teaching OB/HRM in MBA programs Conceptual limitations Pedagogical limitations Alternate methods and forms Integration and realignment “being a learning self”– redefining the role of being a facilitator
  • Challenges in the MBA program Young graduates – not aware of organizational realities Expect tools and techniques – to take away Believe that “hard subjects” like finance and marketing are more important than “soft subjects”—peripheral subjects OB/HR seen as a “feminine discipline”
  • Challenges in teaching OB/HRM Reality more complex and integrated– classification of OB/OT/HRM not representation of reality Roots being different --- OB comes dominantly from psychology or social psychology; OT coming from sociology and anthropology or management science, HRM – atheoretical
  • Changing organizational contexts Dominant logic : rational, resource dependence not normative Espoused values about people to reality – divergence high Organizational cynicism among practitioners high about HR Increasing pre-occupation with the short term – market driven
  • Conceptual challenges Assumptions about human nature – nurture vs. nature –our bias Levels of analysis – micro, meso and macro Universality vs Specificity in human behaviour Interaction effect of variables – what is dependent, independent? Eg does motivation lead to job satisfaction or does satisfaction lead to motivation? Does leader create culture or culture select leaders?
  • Pedagogical challenges Content: OB syllabus is organized around research areas (leadership, power, motivation, communication) whereas HRM syllabi is organized around functional activities (training, performance management, employment laws) Textbooks: often need to be customized with readings
  • Pedagogical challenges Objective of the course vs methodology Create awareness Build understanding Enable analysis Foster application Encourage synthesis Apply judgment Arrive at a decision
  • What does business expect from HR professionals? Mastery over a body of knowledge Critical thinking skills – HR is always gray, therefore the need to find alternate solutions Understand business and the organizational strategies Building relationships and developing people Project management, when you have outsourced the function Consulting skills
  • Stimulating and retaining attention Align with student interests – career, identity, perceptions, motivation – recognize the constellation of logics in an youngster’s world Use strategy, marketing or finance cases to teach OB/HR Organize courses around problems/challenges --
  • Alternate methods and forms Group activities – projects, assignments (need to process this information as we go along) Interview an HR executive or a line manager with a reporting authority Use of games, simulations and videos Use of exercises, tools, cases, Learning dairy – what did I learn?
  • Continued… Use of movies “twelve angry men”, “Erin Brokovich”, Matrix, The corporation, lagaan, modern times, My fair lady, Gandhi Use of autobiographies, Gandhi, Lenin, Newton, Plato, Socrates, Hitler, George Washington, Lincoln Use of innovative newspaper items
  • Challenges in discovering self Never offer the same course with the same structure the next year. You will become complacent What is working well, don’t tinker. It can’t get any better Challenge yourself conceptually???? Be willing to accept that you could be wrong and that there could be many rights…..
  • An old model applied theoretical micro macro OD HRM OB OT
  • Conceptualizing leadership As a trait As a style As a contingency behaviour As an influence process As followership As decision making process Change agent Psychodynamics
  • Seeing organizations Rational logical systems Machine Bureaucracy and rules Chaos Power play Organic Networks
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