The thesis of the paper will be the diagnosis and recommended solution of a management problem as applied to the student’s current place of work, previous place of work, or publicly traded company. “Diagnosis” means to identify the problem, give it a label, and then define that label using peer-reviewed literature. “Recommended solution” means to propose a solution and back it up using evidence of its successful implementation against the previously identified diagnosis as found in the peer-reviewed literature.
For example, if the problem the student identifies is one of low morale, the first step is to turn to the literature for a definition of low morale. The student must find articles that reference morale to see how it has previously been defined. Perhaps previous work cites unhappiness at work, low productivity, high turnover, high absenteeism, increased conflict, or some combination of those elements. Next, the student will propose a solution to the problem. The student’s goal is to be sure that the solution he or she proposes fits the problem he or she has defined. In this example, assume that the student feels that increased communication and improved training would improve morale. The student should turn to the literature again to find support for the assertion that improved communication and increased training have improved or likely will improve morale. If such support cannot be found, while the student’s assertion may be correct, it has not been scientifically validated and is therefore only unsupported opinion.
The body of the paper should contain a minimum of 15 pages and should be formatted according to the current edition of the APA Publication Manual. Utilization of the competencies of research ability, initiative, critical thinking, and effective communication will be required to successfully complete this project.
The paper will contain, at a minimum, a S.W.O.T. analysis of the student’s organization utilizing management theory as a basis of analysis. Management theory should be merged with organizational behavior and human resource theory to further analyze the organization. The student must demonstrate his or her ability to diagnose and formulate a response to a perceived organizational problem through the performance of basic research and the use of initiative and leadership to present ideas. The student will also demonstrate her or his ability to communicate effectively in written and oral format.
The paper must contain a reference list with no fewer than twenty (20) sources which must be utilized in citations throughout the body of the paper. The sources must be obtained from articles, books, etc., which may be obtained from the LIBRARY and/or its online resources. All sources must come from information which is considered scholarly resources. Any paper which is not properly formatted, referenced, or does not comply with APA guidelines will not be accepted by the instructor, and a failing grade will be issued for the assignment.
The paper must contain a cover sheet which is APA formatted.
1. Title Page
The title page should contain the name of the project and all other information required on a standard APA title page. The title page should be numbered “1”.
Note: The title page MUST have a running head and header. See Sections 2.01 on page 23 and 8.03 on pages 229-230 in the APA Manual.
2. Table of Contents
The table of contents is a listing of everything contained in the paper and where it is located in the document. Papers that contain a variety of charts and figures may also have a table of exhibits listing their titles and page numbers within the report. The Table of Contents begins with the paper and develops as the paper does.
3. Abstract (This section is not completed until the final Phase 3 version.
This section presents an abbreviated overview of the entire paper for quick management skimming (a maximum of 120 words). The abstract should be on a page by itself numbered “3”.
Note: See pages 25-27, 2.04, in the APA Manual.
This section of the paper must be “introduced” as a major heading (centered) entitled Introduction. Essentially, the introduction “introduces” the project and describes the purpose of the paper and what will be accomplished through completion of the project. This section should be no more than 1-2 pages.
Note: See pages 27-28, 2.05, in the APA Manual. Although the APA Manual does not require a specific “Introduction” major heading, the Management program requires it for clarification for this paper.
This section provides background information on the organization which should be limited to no more than one page.
6. Problems and Opportunities (SWOT)
This section summarizes the main problems and opportunities facing the organization. Some questions to consider in this section include: (1) What is a SWOT analysis? Provide a scholarly definition. (2) Why is it done? and (3) What does the SWOT analysis tell you about the viability of your particular organization and industry? Once you have completed the SWOT analysis, using critical thinking, you should provide a summary of your findings.
Note: See Course Documents in Blackboard for a template on completion of a SWOT Analysis in your papers.
7. Perceived Management Problem
What is the management problem you have diagnosed at your organization? Define the problem using scholarly research. Be specific and include details.
8. Literature Review of Problem
This section provides the research data from which the student will draw new meanings and apply critical thinking. This part should be rich in relevant information from scholarly sources. This portion of the paper should be at least six (6) pages in length.
9. Recommended Solution
This section provides the best recommended solution to the organizational problem and it must reflect your findings in your literature review.
This section should be the culmination of your analysis and critical thinking about the organization, the management problem that you identified, and the recommended solution to that problem. It should be rich with your own thoughts, analysis, and interpretation. It should endeavor to persuade the reader that you have completely analyzed the situation and recommended the best solution in order for the organization to thrive and move forward in a positive manner. Remember, this portion fully states the case concerning why the particular situation exists and what can be done to rectify it.
The only mandatory item that should be included here is a list of all relevant references sources used in the construction of your plan. A minimum of twenty-five (25) references are required.
This section includes any additional information or documents relevant to the paper. It may also include any graphs, charts, or other supplements. Each Appendix has its own page and must have the title on the top of the page and the citation of source on the bottom. Do not forget to include this citation in the References page.
Appendices come after the references in the Table of Contents. Appendices are indexed by capital letters, i.e. Appendix A: Lee County Population 1960.