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What does it mean to be a manager? Being a manager is a complex and challenging activity. This free course, Management: perspective and practice, introduces you to the role of the manager. In this OpenLearn course you’ll look at an array of activities including leadership, human resources, finance, project management, change management, operations management and stakeholder management.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- appreciate how organisational structure and culture contribute to management control in organisations
- think about how to analyse an organisation in this respect
- understand an organisation’s characteristics and how they might impact on management practices.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Exploring ideas
- 2 Understanding organisations
- 2.1 Organisational context
- 2.2 What is an organisation?
- 2.3 Some common features of organisations
- 3 Organisational culture
- 3.1 Artefacts
- 3.2 Values
- 3.3 Basic assumptions
- 3.4 Culture as symbols
- 3.5 Types of organisational culture
- 3.6 National cultures and organisational culture
- 3.7 Managing cultural differences
- 4 Creative problem solving
- 4.1 Creative problem solving
- 4.2 Introduction to creative problem solving
- 4.3 What is a problem?
- 4.4 Solving a problem
- 4.5 Creativity for messy problems
- 4.6 What makes problem solving ‘creative’?
- 4.7 Choosing a technique or approach to problem solving
- 4.8 The Verdasys rich picture
- 4.9 Is creative problem solving useful?
- 4.10 Using case studies
- 5 Making connections
- Keep on learning
- Further reading
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Management: perspective and practice
In this free course, Management: perspective and practice, you will be studying different ways to think about understanding organisations and approaches to managing the people who work within them.
The theories and models in this course look at the organisational context (the ‘organisation’, the ‘context’ and the ‘wider environment’ of) and helps you to begin to answer the question:
How does my organisation context and environment affect my management practice?
This course is comprised of:
- discussing ways that organisational theorists have characterised organisational structures and cultures, and the impact of different national cultures on organisational practice and ways in which managers might make sense of these
- a short pre-reading activity asking you to think about a problem/opportunity situation in your own context, to see how these theories and models are both relevant and irrelevant to your own management practice.
Creative problem solving
- developing your skills in creative problem solving by learning some techniques based on systems theory
- learning how to use case studies and their analysis to better understand and apply the ideas you are studying.
- thinking more closely about your organisation’s culture and how you can use metaphors to better understand the way organisations work.
This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Thursday, 16th June 2011
Last updated on: Wednesday, 10th August 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
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