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MGMT1110 Summer course 2013

List of biases we discussed in class. For each of those biases you should be able to :

  • Describe the bias in your own words.
  • Give an example for the bias from an organizational context.

Biases :

We discussed in the beginning of the 3rd class your quiz answers and some of the problems.

This is a list of things you have to watch out for when answering questions in the exam:

  • I need to be able to read your answers - write in clear handwriting.
  • Maintain coherent structure. I should be able to follow the flow of your answer.
  • Use only the space provided to you, not more. Part of the challenge in answering an exam question is answering to the point.
  • Make sure you answer all parts of the question. Some students only answered the first part of the question.
  • Make sure that you answer with something we studied in our class, not some other class. The exam requires you to demonstrate what you learned in this class.
  • Some of the examples provided did not make sense. If you're not sure you know – it's best to use the examples we discussed in class.
  • Everything we study in class has managerial implications which I'm very likely to ask about in a quiz/exam. If you learn something in class but you thought about it and you're now sure how this applies to management – ask!
  • I asked for one bias, some students gave me all 6. There's no need and in this case - more is less (more chances to get something wrong and deduct grade). When I ask for one - give me one.
  • When I ask for an organizational example, I expect an example from work life. A general example is not good enough.
  • I will only test on things I mentioned in class.

The following are definitely going to be on the exam. This does NOT mean the other topics we discussed in class won't be, but I will definitely highlight the following and ask the more complex open-questions on those.

Organizational Culture

  • 7 dimensions of an organizational culture
  • Weak versus Strong cultures (comparison, advantages/disadvantages, implications)
  • Three components of organizational culture.
  • ASA theory.

Personality, Values and Attitudes

  • The Big Five personality traits
  • Personal values structure (the 4 dimensions)
  • Differences between personal values and personality traits
  • 3 components of attitudes (differences, examples)
  • Job satisfaction and Job commitment.

Managerial ethics

  • Why do people cheat?
  • Be able to recognize and analyze an ethical dilemma and then offer a solution.


  • Goal setting theory (SMART goals)
  • 3 forces in motivation (direction, effort, persistence)
  • Intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation
  • Needs theories (only 2 out of 3) - Maslow Hierarchy of Needs, McClelland’s Needs Theory. Make sure you can analyze a case study and recognize what kind of organizational rewards fit to which kind of needs.
  • Common motivation mistakes

You will write an analysis of management issues of a company based on managerial articles.

In the paper, you should:

  • describe the management issues presented in the clippings,
  • identify the managerial challenges, problems and / or opportunities presented in the clippings,
  • analyze the issues with relevant theories and concepts you learnt from the course, and
  • discuss implications based on your analysis, such as your recommended next course of action or potential consequences emerged from the identified issues.

Each group will prepare a maximum of five-page analysis (12pt, Times New Roman, 1.5 lines-spaced), not counting the cover page and reference list.

Towards the end of the term, your group will give an 8-minute presentation to the class based on your written analysis. There should be no less than 2 presenters from each group. At the end of each presentation, there will be a 2-minute question and answer session. The entire class will vote for the best presentation of the day at the end of the lecture. The group with most votes in their respective lecture session will receive 10 bonus points for their group project presentation score.

You must choose one of the companies below and use the articles provided to review and analyze the managerial issues the company is facing. You don't have to use all the articles, and you may use other articles you find about the company as long as :

  1. The articles should not be older than 2 years.
  2. The articles must be from one of the following sources : Business Week, CNN, Fast Company, Financial Times, Forbes, Fortune, Harvard Business Review, International Business Times, New York Times, South China Morning Post, The Economist, Time, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post.
  3. You must clearly and explicitly state which articles you use and where they can be found.
  4. You follow clear rules of citation. If you use a piece of data in your project, it must be cited appropriately and credit must be given to the source.
  1. Group projects will be submitted through Turnitin. Make sure you do your own original work, be careful to cite and quote appropriately and give credit to sources when credit is due. We will not tolerate any form of plagiarism.
  2. Group projects are a group effort. In the last page in your project you are asked to detail what each member has contributed to the project. Also, you will be asked to evaluate your group mates and indicate the effort contributed. I expect a fairly equal contribution from all group members. If one or more of your team are not putting in their part, please do let me know.

To write a good paper, follow the following …

General advice

  • Develop a theme – e.g. develop a question which you will provide answers to in your paper. That question is the title of your paper.
  • Apply adequate amount of theory / framework – i.e. just do a SWOT analysis as an analytical tool in not enough.
  • The yardstick is: you need to show you have well- understood and applied the management concepts / frameworks.
  • You must have a topic for your group project. In essence, the topic is the theme you set to analyze. The general advice is to explore a controversial (debatable / argumentative) topic so that you can present both sides of the argument. This approach can reflect more of your critical thinking than answering questions that start with “what” or “how” (which are descriptive approach). Remember learning management is to learn how to synthesize, analyze and recommend solutions to management issues / problems.

Word allocation

  • Introduction (e.g. 300/2000 words) - This should include your thesis statement which summarize the purpose of your paper, followed by why you pick this topic and a brief explanation of your approach for this analysis
  • Body (e.g. 1250/2000 words) - This is the bulk of your analysis. Determine the priority (logical sequence) and allocate word-limit accordingly.
  • Conclusion (450/2000 words) - This should include discussion of the managerial implication – potential course of actions, consequences – as well as a conclusion for your analysis
  • Appendix and reference list are not counted towards the 5-page limit

Writing the paper

  • This paper is not a summary of the articles. You need to apply management framework / concepts, reflect your originality and recommendation.
  • Types of analyses : Choose your analysis carefully and don't attempt to cover everything at the same time.
  • Graphs and tables : You may include them as appendix and not in the “body” of the 5-pages
  • Headings : Use headings wisely. Too many headings make your essay very “choppy” (chopped into pieces)
  • You should not use “headings” as a means to connect your paragraphs. You need to have a transition paragraph or sentence to link your sections. “Headings”

just make it easier to read.

  • Remember this is an essay. You should not use bullet points.

Effective team work


  • Agree on the theme and develop subthemes - Discuss what should go to each of the subtheme. E.g. the theme is to discuss the success factors of Amazon’s Kindle (e-book) – you talk about PETS (very briefly), SWOTS, growth strategy, challenges and recommendations. Then assign one subtheme to each member.
  • Appoint one member as the “editor”. Allow the editor a few days to edit the whole piece to ensure the logic flow, and good English writing.

Do not

  • Do not ask each of the five members to each write 5 pages then pick the “winner”
  • Do not merely combine the various sections together as your “final product”
  • Do not treat each section as “mini” “standalone” analysis, because your paper will become disconnected
  • Do not submit your first draft as your final version

Examples for good titles with interesting management issues

(Do not simply copy these, be creative)

  • Restoring the broken wings of Kingfisher
  • Nissan’s diversification strategy in the electric vehicle industry: a success or failure?
  • A review of Starbucks in China: The way forward
  • Takeover of Cadbury: Is it really such a sweet deal?
  • Can Alibaba open the sesame door for sustainable wealth and glory?

A temporary archive with all the PDFs of the articles below can be found on the MGMT1110 LMES course system. Still, if you want to look those up or download these articles yourself, here are the links.






Facebook versus Google

Intel smartphones






Q: How to explain accountants cheating for accounting firms where they have all the risk but no personal benefit?

Watch Dan Ariely talking about cheating on Ted.COM (10:10):

Dan Ariely explains (link) :

Take what happened in Enron. There was partly a social norm that was emerging there. Somebody started cheating a little bit, and then it became more and more a part of the social norm. You see somebody behaving in a bit more extreme way, and you adopt that way. If you stopped and thought about [what you were doing] it would be clear it was crazy, but at the moment you just accept that social standard. The second thing that happened at Enron is that it wasn’t clear what was the right social norm to apply to this particular emerging energy market. They could basically define it anyway they wanted. And, finally, they were dealing with stuff that was really very removed from money, which allowed them to [cheat]


  • Everybody cheats a little.
  • The norms of the industry matter, if you know others are cheating you’re more likely to cheat.
  • Accountants are closer to money and have specialized skills regarding money.
  • Accounting is cognitively distanced from money. They come to think that it’s not really cheating.
  • Perhaps it’s a challenge - they feel they can get away with it.

Q: I wonder that in the class you mention to make specific goal one step at the time. However, I am a big believer to dream big and having a big dream for my selves. I always refers to this motivational quotes “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.” - Brian Littrell that means that I always need a big goals to drive me giving more in every things I do so even i'll miss my goals I still land not to far from that goal. Therefore, is it right if I manage to put it this way. I make specific goal for my work and big goals (dream) for my final achievement in my life?

When we talk about motivation and building motivation things get tricky. I'm not always sure that I understand what all those slogans about “aiming for the moon” and “landing in the stars” mean but I'm assuming that you're talking about setting an extremely difficult goal as a motivator and just going for it in hope that this will push you to do your best and then you eventually get somewhere that's better than where you are.

Research shows that for most people general impossible goals may back-fire. The problem with “aiming for the moon” is that if you don't have a strong persistent personality you're very likely to become frustrated and disappointed with your performance even if you do “reach the stars”. In a sense, if you're aiming for the moon and you know it's unachievable you're lying to yourself or cheating yourself to believe this is possible when it's not, and that's not advisable when you're looking to motivate and improve.

Moreover, SMART goals help you understand how you'll get where you want to go. When you don't have those smaller steps, you might be exerting effort in the wrong direction without knowing whether you're really making progress in getting closer to “the moon” or whether you're actually digging yourself in deeper and further away from your goal. Once you find you're in the wrong direction it might be too late.

I think the main point those motivational speakers are trying to tell you is to think big and go boldly towards realizing your dreams. Generally, this doesn't need to contradict with SMART goals. The dream is the vision, the goals are the plan. SMART goals emphasizes difficult (yet attainable goals) in the pursuit of an overall (personal/team/organizational) vision.

Q: I want to know the difference between the Ease of Recall Bias and the Retrievability Bias because they seem to be similar when i read through the wiki.

Yes, the retrievability and ease of recall biases are very similar to one another and they are both specific versions of the Availability heuristic. Ease of Recall is a bias that's referred to as a bias based on “vividness and recency”, so the extent to which an occurrence is vivid or recent in your mind, while the retrievability biased is more based on “memory structures”. Vividness means it's easier for us to think of a case where someone dies from guns than it is to think of a case where someone has died from tobacco. Memory structures is that our mind works quicker to detect certain patterns, like “ing” than is is to detect patterns like “_n_”. So, Ease of Recall is more about memories, and retrievability is more about how our mind works.

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  • Last modified: 2013/06/10 20:33
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