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Organizational Behavior

Purpose of Course  showclose

There is no shortage of quotes in which inspirational business leaders describe the sources of their success. Their reasons are often diverse, but almost everyone comes back to the same thing: people. The people are the company; they create the success. In BUS301: Managing Human Capital, you learned how to find, train, and manage these people. Please keep in mind that there is more to successful business leadership than managing human capital. You must have a suitable structure and culture at your firm in order to achieve success. Imagine the U.S. military; it boasts some of the best-trained soldiers in human history, but that talent would be wasted without a structure designed to appropriately deploy forces. In other words, the military would not be as successful without streamlined organizational behavior. Organizational behavior (OB) is the study of how people interact in organizations. These interactions are governed by a number of factors, including your personal life, the personality of your boss or your boss’s boss, a direct report, the team you have been assigned to, or the direction that the top of the organization has given to you. OB researchers carefully monitor these dynamics within an organization, because any time there is friction, money is lost. A certain level of friction is to be expected (and often even desired), but most of the friction that occurs within an organization is counterproductive and detrimental to the bottom line. In this course, you will study the factors that have the greatest impact on organizational behavior. From managing individuals and understanding group dynamics to managing conflict and initiating change, organizational behavior affects everyone in a firm. Some of this material will overlap with BUS301, but all of business is cross-functional; stretching concepts across subjects is a powerful learning tool.

This course will cover five major OB areas including managing individuals, managing groups, power and politics, conflict management, and organizational change. Before delving into more rigorous content, it is important to understand what an organization is and the history of organizational behavior as a discipline. In taking this into consideration, this course will begin with a look at the basics of an organization.

Course Information  showclose

Welcome to BUS209: Organizationl Behavior. General information on the course and its requirements can be found below.

Primary Resources: This course comprises a range of different free, online materials. However, the course makes primary use of the following materials:
Requirements for Completion: In order to complete this course, you will need to work through each unit and all of its assigned materials. Pay special attention to Unit 1 as this lays the groundwork for understanding the more advanced, exploratory material presented in the latter units. You will also need to complete the Final Exam.

Note that you will only receive an official grade on your Final Exam. However, in order to adequately prepare for this exam, you will need to study the readings, lectures, and PowerPoint presentations in each unit.

In order to pass this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the Final Exam. Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it. If you do not pass the exam, you may take it again.

Time Commitment: This course should take you a total of 120.75 hours to complete. Each unit includes a time advisory that lists the amount of time you are expected to spend on each subunit. These should help you plan your time accordingly. It may be useful to take a look at these time advisories and to determine how much time you have over the next few weeks to complete each unit, and then to set goals for yourself. For example, Unit 1 should take you 16 hours. Perhaps you can sit down with your calendar and decide to complete the introduction to subunit 1.1 and subunit 1.1.1 (a total of 3.5 hours) on Monday night; subunits 1.1.2 through 1.1.4 (a total of 3.25 hours) on Tuesday night; etc.

Tips/Suggestions: As you read and view lectures, take comprehensive notes, marking down any important concepts, definitions, etc. These notes will serve as a useful review as you prepare and study for the Final Exam.

 
A version of this course is also available in iTunes U.
Preview the course in your browser or view our entire suite of iTunes U courses.  

Learning Outcomes  showclose

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
  • define organizational behavior (OB);
  • analyze and identify the current trends for organizational behavior;
  • explain the benefits of diversity;
  • describe the cross-cultural challenges of the workplace;
  • explain how work attitudes affect workplace behavior;
  • identify the key attributes that are relevant for performance;
  • explain how motivation affects performance;
  • describe various approaches to job design;
  • compare and contrast groups vs. teams;
  • describe and identify group development and group dynamics;
  • define power and recognize the sources of power;
  • describe and identify the factors of organizational politics;
  • describe the various types of conflict;
  • explain how to effectively manage conflict;
  • describe and identify negotiation strategies;
  • define organizational structure; and
  • describe organizational change.

Course Requirements  showclose

In order to take this course, you must:

√    have access to a computer;

√    have continuous broadband Internet access;

√    have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g. Adobe Reader of Flash);

√    have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer;

√    have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.);

√    be competent in the English language;

√    have read the Saylor Student Handbook; and

√    have completed the following courses from the “Core Program” of the Business major: BUS103 and BUS105.

Preliminary Information

  • Course Textbooks

    Organizational Behavior

    Reading: Organizational Behavior (PDF)

    You will be prompted to read sections of this book throughout the course. You can download the text in full now and skip to the appropriate section as prompted by the instructions in the resource boxes below.

    Terms of Use: The text was adapted by The Saylor Foundation under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License without attribution as requested by the work's original creator or licensee. 

    Principles of Management

    Reading: Principles of Management (PDF)

    You will be prompted to read sections of this book throughout the course. You can download the text in full now and skip to the appropriate section as prompted by the instructions in the resource boxes below.

    Terms of Use: The text was adapted by The Saylor Foundation under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License without attribution as requested by the work's original creator or licensee. 

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