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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Steven Rathgeb Smith
PB AF 512
Seattle Campus

Managing Organizational Performance

Addresses questions of organizational design, personnel, and operations management to equip students with skills to perform effectively in mission-driven organizations. Core topics include organizational design, inter-organizational networks, human resources and staff management, improving service delivery and production flows, measuring and managing for performance, and ethical leadership.

Class description

This course focuses on improving organizational operations and capacity, building on PBAF 511, which explored organizational structures and strategies and on PBAF 522 which addressed the role that financial management and measurement play in organizational capacity.

During the quarter, the class will:

Consider how performance measurement and management can improve service delivery. Sharpen skills for hiring, managing, and holding staff and contractors accountable. Analyze and redesign services and delivery systems in order to serve customers better. Explore the challenges of inter-agency collaboration and contracting for public services with private nonprofit organizations.

The class is divided into three modules. In the first module, students learn the value of mission in public and nonprofit organizations in motivating staff and volunteers, crafting strategy, and providing a standard for evaluation and performance. Students will also address the differences among public, nonprofit, and for-profit organizations in their approach to strategy and mission. In the second module, students address the challenges of managing people within a public or nonprofit organizations. Specific topics to be covered included: team management, personnel relations, and managing a diverse workforce. The third module focuses on operations management and design including: the design of workflow processes inside organizations, contracting for public services, and change management strategies.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Blake N Cooper
Date: 10/13/2008