Managing, Organizing & Motivating for Value (1816)
HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL
This course is about how to become a better value creator. Managers and negotiators create value by influencing (e.g. persuasion skills) and motivating (e.g. incentive systems) the behavior and decisions of others. This course provides a powerful framework (and set of practical skills to help managers and negotiators work value propositions with excellence. It is useful for students in all career tracks and with any industry focus.
The course builds frameworks for:
• Understanding the sources of value creation/destruction, and how a dynamic strategy built around “learning, adapting and influencing” is central to developing and executing value propositions.
• Understanding the behavior and motivation and behavior of people (including ourselves) and
• Becoming a more effective value creator by building skills around agile thinking, trust-building and emotional/social intelligence.
• Effectively working value propositions in negotiations concerning pay, incentives, budgets, decision making authority, and resource allocation.
• Aligning incentive systems with organizational strategies.
• Understanding how to build, manage and implement incentive systems so that they motivate value-creating behavior of individuals and teams.
The starting point of the course is that the purpose of organizations is to create value. The goal of individuals, therefore, is to motivate the value-creating decisions and behavior. Manager-Negotiators do this by persuading and influencing others through dynamic strategies centered on “learning, adapting and influencing.” This is the focus of the first half of the course (which strongly overlaps with “Complex Deals.”) The focus in the 2nd half of the course shifts from how Manager-negotiators create value to how Manager-Organizers create value. Manager-organizers build organizational systems and structures, and especially incentive systems, that align rewards (broadly defined) with value-creating behavior. (The second half draws heavily on a former course, CCMO-Coordination, Control and the Management of Organizations).
The first half has two modules. Module one explores the value-creating framework of the course, emphasizing the significant challenges and opportunities associated with fostering cooperative and coordinated behavior. The focus of is on dynamic settings that require quick/agile thinking in settings where you often don’t know what you don’t know. Static strategies are unhelpful and dangerous. Thus, we develop insights based on a dynamic strategy of “learning, adapting and influencing.” Module 2 focuses on how you can become a better value creator in such settings. Insights are drawn from game theory, “improv” comedy, social/emotional intelligence, lie detection and military strategy.
The second half also has two modules. The first module extends the logic of the framework to incentive systems. The framework centers on the three crucial features of any reward system: the allocation of decision rights, the performance measurement system and the reward/punishment system that aligns rewards and performance. The second module focuses on developing, managing and implementing the many types of incentive schemes including: bonus design, sales plan incentives, promotion-based incentives, option and stock-based incentives, subjective vs. objective plans, and human capital strategy more generally, especially with regard to alignment with organizational strategy. The framework synthesizes insights from a variety of fields, including organizational economics, labor economics, strategy, human resource management, psychology and organizational behavior. (Section times: TBA)