October 02, 2015, BY Heather Johns

What class? Introduction to Organizations and Management (aka Management 101)
Who teaches it? Professors Jamie Hendry, Neil Boyd, Tammy Hiller and Eric Martin, management

"Students create their own organization in the class. The entire class has 120 students broken into four companies. Each of the four must then decide on a service project to do for the semester. Once they have made that decision they identify through market research a product they think they could sell, with the proceeds paying for the service project. The service project typically costs around $1,000 or $2,000 to complete.

"As initial research and development teams of four, they research all of their ideas, ultimately entering a more political phase where they build coalitions around several service and business ideas. Once they make their decisions, they elect leadership.

"Most companies opt for a CEO, though they don't have to, and they typically have five vice presidents — three divisional VPs (service, business and reports) accountable to the board, which is made up of professors and TAs, to describe and capture all the work they do, as well as VPs of two departments: human resource (HR) and account and financial management (AFM).

"After elections, the students have several weeks to develop their operating plans — essentially two very thorough business plans: one for the service, one for the business. They also detail their reporting, HR and AFM activities as well. At that point the board determines whether they have developed a plan sufficient for a loan. Companies typically borrow several hundred dollars and up to several thousand dollars, depending on the nature of the project and terms of payment they negotiated with any vendors. This loan allows them to work simultaneously on both business and service. They pay back the loan, and the rest of the proceeds go to company operations and their service project.

"Past 101 companies have sold hats, scarves, posters, cell phone chargers, blankets, etc. They are permitted to use Bucknell logos, provided they secure the proper legal approvals from University General Counsel, as well as athletics if they choose one of their logos. These products have generated up to $4–5,000 for their service clients.

"Recent service projects include building a fence around the community garden in Lewisburg, helping flood victims in Bloomsburg, building a secure pen for wolves at T&D's Cats of the World, some fencing at the Buffalo Valley Recreation Authority dog park, and so many others.

"The course gives students a firm understanding of organizations and management, with a special focus on interpersonal and group dynamics. Students are often surprised to learn that this course is not about entrepreneurship, it is about managing large systems — and thus about people."

See what else Bucknell offers in the School of Management.

Are we missing out on a cool class? Send suggestions to heather.johns@bucknell.edu.

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