Re: The Learning Organization Structure

Andrew Moreno (
Fri, 18 Nov 94 21:14 EST


Stephen Wehrenberg, Ph.D. wrote:

>After a while, it hit me. Why not provide the skeleton up front, then
>let them hang the muscle on it as the program proceeds? The result,
>after three years, is a very different student, and I am impressed with
>the difference.

Do you think a management flight simulator would provide a good skeleton?
The Strategic Planning module is based around a simulation of a manufacturing
company. Here's some info from the prospectus.

Strategic Planning Module

"In business schools, strategic planning is usually taught using the
case approach in an interactive class environment. This course is i
s different in that it is designed around Stratplan, a computer simulation.
Stratplan was developed using the concepts of economics, marketing,
finance, accounting and quantitative methods. It provides you with an
opportunity to experience the problems of running a company, and to
identify the relevance of the concepts developed in the other
compulsory courses."

Stratplan software

"It poses isses relating to cash flow, investment apprisal, risk
assessment, choosing among competing courses of action, anticipating
exogenous shocks, controlling costs and competing effectively in
markets. It also focuses attention on the relationship between company
value and company performance, thus helping to demonstrate the relationship
between what managers do and the operation of the capital market. The
underlying issue facing management is to determine which of the company's
activities is creating value, and how this value creation can be measured.

As the company develops you are provided with an increasing battery of
decision making aids, including an investment appraisal analyser, a
resource planner for individual products and the company as a whole, and
an accountin ratio analyzer. This is supplemented by a highly flexible
graphics package which can be used to generate line graphs, bar charts
and time series regression lines."

The courses are really flexible. If I did take strategic planning and
developed a framework, then if I didn't think I was up to taking the
exam, I could just take the individual component courses, take their
exams and then take the strategic planning exams last. That way, I'd
get the benefit of having the framework and skeleton without having to
find out prematurely if I could pass the SP exam with only the SP
course materials.

I wonder if playing around with a management flight simulator and mac-in-
toy will give me enough understanding to do well on the exam.

I wonder if there is any difference between a front end simulation
with just a numeric table, graph and slider interface and a simulation
like the ones in ithink where the system maps are shown and can also be
broken down and rebuilt.

In the Stella manuals, they write something like anybody can just play
with a model, but to get the a-ha's, the person has to break down and
rebuild the model. I bet that I won't be able to rebuild this Stratplan
simulation and I'll lose a lot of the a-ha's that I'll need. What do
you think?

>I'm for taking the strategic planning course up front, but only if the
>prof understands that the course has to make FORWARD references, not
>BACKWARD references.

Can you please explain what you mean by forward and backward references?
I think I'm going to take the strategic planning course up front.