Final Project – Business Model Assessment

Goal: Conduct/construct an experiential evaluation/assessment of the business model of your organization (or one with which you are closely familiar) using the business model canvas and related sources.

Introduction: Managers who want to improve the effectiveness of their business model and organization, as well as to increase their own ability to manage, use diagnostics/assessments to determine the reality of business effectiveness in comparison to what they originally envisioned. Good feedback contributes to the development of plans to improve business/organizational effectiveness and management performance.

Instructions: Students will write a 2500-3000 word (about 10 pages in the main body) properly formatted APA paper (including a title page and references page, but no abstract) that evaluates/assesses the overall effectiveness of the business model used by your organization. This is the third of three assignments that draws from your association with your organization. The previous two “canvas” assignments flow into this one. Identify one or more of the building blocks from the business model canvas where modification should be recommended. Be careful to avoid bias in determining the issue/problem identified by using the canvas . Do not merely critique, but contribute to your organization’s overall success. This paper should be the culmination of the overall work you have done with the business model canvas so that all the pieces go together.

Your final paper should include:

· Your business model canvas – Post-It notes discussion/observations (week 2)—summarize this area, but provide the initial canvas.

· Identification of theoretical/behavioral trends that you observe in the business model and organization (week 5)—summarize this, do not merely cut and paste.

· Discussion of appropriate theory, metaphors, and frames with which to describe your business model in operation, as well as to identify areas needing improvement and how to get there.

· Use of the course resources to evaluate and diagnose your organization’s business model, as well as an integration of the course materials into your writing and consideration.

· Recommendations for improvements identified using the canvas, theories, and assessment tools used in this course. What are the expected outcomes.

· Use eight scholarly sources (especially case studies) to undergird your assertions from peer-reviewed literature.

· Thoroughly familiarize yourself with the assignment specs and ask questions if you are unsure of expectations.

The paper must have at least eight scholarly sources. No abstract is necessary, but a title page and references page should be included. Write your paper in third person , even though you are writing about an organization that you are familiar with. To do this, write from the perspective of a scholar who observes and researches about the case. Therefore, first person should be avoided.

IMPORTANT: Do not use macros or automatic referencing in your papers for this course. The auto features usually cause unforeseen problems in format.

DIAGNOSING THE BUSINESS MODEL

INTRODUCTION

Welcome to the module 8 lesson, your last lesson for this course. The main topic we will explore this week is organizational development. The purpose of organizational development is to make improvements in the organization’s health or effectiveness. This can encompass all of the lesson topics covered throughout this course and several other areas. In weeks one through seven, we identified potential areas of improvements in our own organization. Now, we can apply what we have learned to make improvements. Even if our organizational culture and health are in good shape, we can find areas to work on to make our organization even better.

low/facilitate/impede this interaction.

Problem

A problem meets one of the following conditions:

· Something that is not happening, but should be happening

· Something that is happening, but should not be happening

· Something that is happening and should be happening, but is not happening at the desired level

To understand O.D. problems more fully, consider some of the topical areas O.D. professionals involve themselves in the table below. The table is representative, but not exhaustive.

 

Conflict Resolution Organizational Citizenship Behavior Retention
Family-work conflict Work-family conflict Organizational commitment
Organizational support Workplace violence Downsizing and the subsequent behavior problems that result
Motivation Situational leadership Organizational communication
Leadership succession Person-job fit Person-Organization fit
Team building Workgroup effectiveness Organizational culture
Organizational identity Power and organizational politics Change, and resistance to change
Goal setting Spirituality in the workplace  

Although O.D. consultants do interact with senior leadership in the areas of strategy and general operations, for the purposes of the Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership program we will restrict our scope of O.D. examination and intervention to the organizational leadership of people-to-people topics.

 

Example

A client consults with an O.D. specialist because the client perceived a lack of commitment by employees, and the client provided observed evidence of a lack of performance in assigned tasks. (The problem here is that performance is not as high as it should be, which ties to the third listed type of problem).

But what should be the solution? The traditional proverb that “fools rush in where angels fear to tread” appears appropriate here. There is a need for an organizational diagnosis here, and a diagnosis is just that—a diagnosis—not a solution.

A masters-level approach would seek a solution and an implementation plan, usually resulting in less than desired results. However, if we keep implementing solutions—sooner or later we might solve something. The doctoral-level approach involves considerable effort to find the correct diagnosis because if the diagnosis is correct, the solution is usually quite straightforward.

 

Theory

What could be causing the reduced performance in the above problem? This is where theory comes into the diagnostic process. Kurt Lewin said that there is nothing as practical as a good theory, and that certainly is true for O.D. work. Theories explain and predict. Selecting the appropriate theory should explain and predict appropriate action. If the theory explains the problem then O.D. specialists know they can manipulate the variable(s) to change the process outcome.

But which theory should be used? Consider the problem stated above regarding reduced performance. Does McGregor’s Theory X/Theory Y apply? Or what of Hersey-Blanchard’s situational leadership theory? Or what of Pfeiffer’s institutional theory? Or what of Fieldler’s contingency theory? Or what of Locke’s goal setting theory?

To determine which theory to use we need to collect some data on the problem. We need to find out what the deeper issues to the problem are. To do this we could gather some data by asking the employees in the above-stated problem what is wrong. Perhaps we hear the employees tell us that they do not know how to do the job, and from another folk, we hear that they do not care if the tasks are done. This data eliminates some of the theories listed above that we considered.

Of the theories that we considered, Hersey-Blancard’s situational leadership theory still applies. Hersey-Blanchard’s theory states that performance is dependent on the correct leadership style called for by the situation. Hersey-Blanchard determined that two levels (high and low) of two variables (a) follower-readiness and (b) follower-willingness created a 2 x 2 grid of leadership styles. (Note that Hersey-Blanchard changed the titles of these variables over the years).

of the variables of a theory apply to a problem.

Data

To determine if we have the correct variables—and thus the right theory—we gather data that is variable specific. To determine if the readiness variable is correct, we could review training data to discover if all affected employees received training for the specific tasks and if there were measures for attaining performance objectives in the training programs. For the willingness variable, we could collect data on follower commitment, organizational citizenship behavior, etc.

What do we do if we find that the two variables are the useful variables? We know we have the correct theory, and we know that we train leaders on how to choose the leadership styles from the right quadrant of the Hersey-Blanchard model. We can also advise the client that changing the training programs will change the quadrant that the employee fits in.

We also know that we need to investigate the reasons for the reduced willingness. This requires additional research to determine if the problem involves person-job fit, or motivation, or values congruence, etc. When we know the root-cause of the problem, we can take the correct intervention steps.

But what do we do if we find that the variables are not the correct ones? We start over. This is what a medical doctor does when a patient comes in with a set of symptoms. The doctor looks for a cause (problem) and then treats the condition to affect a certain outcome.

Conclusion

Through this lesson, we learned how to identify problems and work through to a solution. We learned how different variables could affect the outcome of our problem-solving steps and you were provided a few ideas if you encounter roadblocks or difficulties. This is where situational leadership really comes to light. I hope you have enjoyed this course and have learned several things that will be useful to you now or in the future.

 

References

Learning & Organization Development. (n.d.). Retrieved October 25, 2017, from  http://ucsfhr.ucsf.edu/training/info.html?x=195

Organizational Development. (n.d.). Retrieved October 25, 2017, from  http://www.coloradocareers.com/?s=organizational%2Bdevelopment

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