Instructor: Dr. Rhonda Taylor
Completed Summer 2008
Theories, processes, behaviors, and issues that allow knowledge-based institutions to transform themselves into ones that organize and share knowledge in an effective, efficient manner; leadership, motivation and organizational communication; management of knowledge workers, ethical and legal aspects of managing information and knowledge organizations.
Student Learning Objectives
Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
Grants Administration and Planning
While most of my assignments for this course constituted brief exercises of little note, this short essay offers a glimpse of my past grant writing work from a management perspective. Reflecting on the planning processes involved in my work as a grant writer allowed me to consider effective application of the planning process to library management activities, which may include outcome measurement or grant application. As the Grants Coordinator of The Salvation Army, Tulsa Area Command, I identified new sources of funding and wrote effective grant applications [ALSC CC] for almost three years. Managing the physical and digital files documenting grant application history to foundations, corporations and government agencies familiarized me with many concepts, issues and methods related to the maintenance of collections, including preservation and conservation [ALA CC]. I worked to improve the efficiency of knowledge organization and knowledge sharing within the agency. Grant writing for nonprofits also provided me with a window into the principles of planning and budgeting in libraries and other information agencies [ALA CC].
Assessing nonprofit services through customer surveys and consulting frontline service staff in order to design meaningful surveys and administer the surveys appropriately demonstrates my ability to apply theory-based techniques to organizational problem solving. In order to evaluate program outcomes and provide grant reports to funding sources, I documented details regarding the extent of services and number of clients served, and I administered and analyzed anonymous client surveys [ALSC CC]. Conducting outcome measurement for nonprofit services facilitated my understanding of the concepts behind, and methods for, assessment and evaluation of library services and their outcomes [ALA CC]. For more information about my grant writing and outcome measurement experience, see the Grant Writing page.
In evaluating my strengths and weaknesses as a decision-maker, I have identified areas in need of improvement. By placing myself in decision-making roles as an OLISSA officer, an OUTSA representative and a member of the Curriculum Committee, I have sought opportunities work on my weaknesses and utilize my strengths for the good of my fellow students. My impetus to put plans into action led me to take over administration of the OLISSA website and to create and administer a Facebook page for OLISSA for the purpose of connecting students to useful information and peer networks. For more information about these activities, see the Organization Membership & Service page and its subpages.
Conflict Management Paper
Conflict management is one of the many responsibilities of management and human relations professionals. In my career, I am likely to serve in a management position at some level. Conflict is an inevitable occurrence in the workplace, and my ability to negotiate conflicts with customers and coworkers will have a profound influence on my success as an information professional. Researching and writing this paper allowed me to identify and evaluate techniques for analyzing complex problems and creating appropriate solutions [ALA CC] with regards to conflict management. This document shows my knowledge of problem-solving, decision making, and mediation techniques [ALSC CC] for conflict management. Moreover, this document demonstrates my understanding of the importance of effective communication techniques, both verbal and written, [ALA CC] in order to avoid unnecessary conflict and negotiate constructive conflict. Researching the topic of conflict management led me to identify methods for successful interaction and conflict negotiation with individuals of all ages and groups, which will assist me to provide consultation, mediation, and guidance for customers in their information quests [ALA CC]. Understanding common conflict management techniques and best practices will assist me to implement effective personnel practices and human resource development [ALA CC] in my profession, as well as to communicate constructively with “problem patrons” [ALSC CC].
Conflict management is involved in nearly all management responsibilities. Conducting performance evaluations, revising job descriptions, helping employees adjust to organizational change—all of these activities involve some conflict negotiation or prevention efforts. In order to ensure fairness and minimize liability, it is imperative for an agency to have policies in place so that formally expressed conflicts can be addressed according to appropriate procedure. Researching conflict management has provided me with valuable insights that are certain to inform my performance of managerial responsibilities.
This paper illustrates accomplishment of the following course learning objectives: demonstrate ability to apply the planning process to management activities; demonstrate ability to apply a variety of theory-based techniques to organizational problem solving; and demonstrate ability to formulate appropriate responses to organizational change. This document also provides evidence of my ability to create special tools, such as abstracts and annotated bibliographies, to increase access to library resources and motivate their use [ALSC CC].