Parachute paper (25%, 10-12 pages)
Premise: You show up for work in a new organization or “parachute” into the organization (often knowing little about the organization). This analytical paper describes how you observe and orient in this new environment to more fully understand the organization’s behavior.
In addition to the grading guidelines above… You should address the deeper currents of culture as well as how processes and mission drive behavior. You should address your place in this organization (from which perspective are you writing), not merely from a “job description” perspective, but from at the individual and group levels of analysis. While not limited to these topics, your paper should also address leadership, motivation, communications, and ethics. In addition to incorporating a wide variety of specific OB distinctions from the course, the paper must analyze (not merely describe) the organization’s behavior from each zoom level: individual, group, organization, and inter-organizational.
Other than the format guidelines in this syllabus, how you clearly format this paper is up to you. You might be effective in first-person or third-person. The paper requires you to think deeply about OB in a specific organization. There is no required formula to accomplish this assignment.
This is a final paper and should draw upon and synthesize concepts, distinctions, and major themes from the entire course. You may use an organization you have experience with or research one where you would like to work. Ideally, from reading this paper, I should have the experience of being there with you and gain a valuable understanding of this organization. Another way to look at this paper is as the document which uncovers the currents of organizational behavior in a methodical way. The exercise of writing this paper provides you with a template for analyzing your next organization’s behavior, to avoid organizational pitfalls, and more quickly make a valuable contribution.
The paper outline should be:
Your perspective: as a new employee