Let’s talk about the classroom. One reason students blog is to give readers insight to our experiences here at college, and the courses we take. Today I’ll be divulging a bit about BUS 326 Organizational Behavior! This is most likely one of the most unique business classes I’ve ever taken, as it weaves together the unique studies of business and psychology.
Take management, the task of making the most of your resources (including people), and psychology, the study of the human mind and its thought processes, and put them together. The result? Learning about different personalities, attitudes, behaviors, and motivation in your current and future workplaces! You develop a deeper understanding of what people do and why, learn about different theories like Maslow’s hierarchy and moral cognitive development, and understand how to judge and attribute a person’s behavior to both internal and external causes instead of using bias.
You also learn about your personality traits, and how they relate to your work in an organization. For instance, I discovered that my work style recently leans slightly toward “introverted.” In a social setting, this is usually considered taboo; but in an organization, it means you are more contemplative, think thoroughly before responding, and work well independently.
This became apparent soon after in a different class when we were divided into groups and asked to work on a task. I instantly began delegating the assignment among myself and the other two students before the professor added, “By the way, don’t do this individually–work together as a group.” My initial reactions: No! Ugh. Still, it’s important to be versatile, so I eventually threw all of my support behind the team’s efforts. Success!
Studying Organizational Behavior from the textbook is nice, but the class really becomes interesting during group exercises and conversations. Between self-assessment tests, experiential exercises, students talking about their experiences on the job, and chapter discussions led by a professor who consults and studies organizational behavior as a second occupation–well, boredom is a rarity.
If you’re going into business with a focus on management, or even if you want to learn how to better understand the bitter misanthrope in the adjacent cubicle, take Organizational Behavior! Oh, and avoid the temptation to change your major to Psychology.