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Organizational Structure and Managerial Decisions

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Assessed Coursework

Steinway & Sons

You will find this case in the Cummings & Worley Textbook (page 102 in the 10th edn.). It is a short case of just over 2 pages. It details the Steinway & Sons (Organisational Level) environment and issues related to the strategic position of the company.

As one of your two assessments on this module (the other is also worth 50% and is an online multiple choice test) – you are required to produce a report which details Steinway and Sons position at an Organisational Level through using the ‘Comprehensive Model for Diagnosing Organizational Systems’ (below) to aid systematic diagnosis / evaluation of their strategic position.

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  • For example in terms of the inputs – for ‘General Environment’ (read 5-4a of the core text to see what constitutes the ‘General Environment’) – we read in the case (2nd column, 2nd para) that the sale of pianos dropped …. And this may have been a result of technological change (which is included in 5-4a) the increased sale of electronic keyboards.

    So the technological change of increase sale of electronic keyboards may be one feature of the ‘General Environment’ of Steinway & Sons
  • Continue on through the theory model – for each part of this model systematically read the detail of was is said in the textbook about that part of the model – and identify a sample from the Steinway & Sons case which illustrates this.
  • Remember to do wider reading – so for example – with regards to the ‘General Environment’ demonstrate that you know about the by finding a good quality academic source on e.g. PESTLE. For the ‘Task Environment’ Porters 5 Forces are mentioned in the text – so read up about Porter’s 5 Forces – and make sure you put in a good quality reference for that. As well as then seeing if you can identify 5 Forces in the Steinway case etc.
  • There are 46 notes at the end of the chapter which contain numerous other ‘good quality source references’. – there are therefore plenty of other good academic quality sources you can read and cite.

In terms of style, you should write in a management report style rather than essay style. However, it should be different to a management report in one significant respect - you should reference throughout and reference from your wider reading of the subject of OD. In effect a "management report with references" is suggested. While this is a hybrid approach it is recommended in order to bring together a rigorous academic approach with a business style. Stress is placed on referencing in order to demonstrate that you have done wider reading.



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