LIS 580 Management of Information Organizations

Course Description: Introduction to internal and external management issues and practices in information organizations. Internal issues include organizational behavior, organizational theory, personnel, budgeting, planning. External issues include organizational environments, politics, marketing, strategic planning, funding sources.

Essay: Communication Across Management Hierarchy

This essay responded to readings on communication strategies, many of them highlighting communication failures and their consequences. The readings seemed rather consistent in their assumptions of a closely defined power hierarchy that rigidly governs communication within an organizational setting. My essay questions this premise and points out communication flows disregarded by the “official view” of what goes on in an organization as well as structural changes caused by technology, among other developments. For example, as remote work teams communicate via online tools, writing skill becomes highly privileged in its persuasive power, potentially far in excess of putative authority based on hierarchical position. The product demonstrates analytical ability to dissect text and comprehend its important elements, along with ability to compare multiple sources and note their points of agreement and variance. It also demonstrates awareness and thinking outside traditional limitations assumed in source documents to discover and consider new perspectives on the questions engaged.
Complete document (.doc, 50k)  – Category: Information Service – All Coursework

Essay: Triangulating Perspectives on 3D Reality

Venerable management theorists Henry Mintzberg and Peter Drucker both addressed a manager’s ability to see and understand activities within their operating environments from a single, somewhat isolated position in an office within a department within an officially designated organization. My essay considers their diagnosis of this sort of management myopia and their prescriptions for correcting vision to promote broader awareness. I draw a visual metaphor to illustrate this predicament and suggest tools and techniques for rendering distance in better detail. The product demonstrates experience in both the theory and reality of management situations, based on both extensive reading and long experience in a range of real-world organizational settings — staff member, free-lance contractor, volunteer, and others. The essay shows an ability to frame a complex topic in compelling, accessible terms.
Complete document (.docx, 19k)  – Category: Information Service – All Coursework