Business Report Writing The business report for organizational behavior is to identify an organizational behavior problem, provide the background for the issue, analyze facts and relevant survey data, recommend a solution for the problem, and recommend an action program to implement the recommended solution. Examples of similar solutions should be used to reinforce the proposed solution. Planning the Report The first step is to clarify the purpose of the report as to the nature of the problem with a purpose statement. The writer should jot down any relevant factors that will pertain to the report’s goals and function. The reader of this report is a top executive who will have to provide the funds to implement the solution to the problem. Devise a Work Schedule 1. Do we know enough about our topic? Consult with others or follow the specific information-gathering methods discussed later in these notes. 2. Divide the work up among the group. Set-up a meeting schedule and work deadlines for each member. Who is to do the background research?? Analyzing the results? Developing solutions? Implementing the solution? Finding case histories that support the solution? Prepare a Written Plan 1. Title 2. Purpose Statement 3. Information gathering sources (company files, records, field interviews, library research, questionnaires, etc.) 4. Possible limitations 5. Outline of topic- High Turnover at Nordstrun among sales personnel. 1. Do primary research based on personal knowledge, observations, and expertise; conduct interviews, use questionnaires, and/or use secondary research which is planned and uses a library. Specialized business references can be found at http://gallieo.usg.edu, password short, go to ProQuest advanced and go to database hoover to look up Nordstrum. 2. To define the existing problem, ask these questions: What is going wrong? Who or what is being affected by the problem? Why is the problem occurring? How can it be corrected? 3. List the possible solutions to the problem. To analyze the practicality of the solution, ask these questions: Will the solution require a reasonable amount of time, money, or manpower? Can it be easily implemented? Is it legal? Is it operative immediately? Will the problem be resolved temporarily or permanently? Will there be resistance on the part of management or labor? Note each solution’s advantages and disadvantages. Organize the Information Executive Summary Background Statement of Problem Analysis of Problem (Survey data should be in an appendix). Description of Possible Solutions.
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6. Advantages and Disadvantages of Solutions 7. Conclusions and Recommendations 8. Payback and Description of Similar Solutions. Outline the information using first a series of simple informal notes and then formally arranging a series of subject headings and sub-headings. When composing an outline the writer should 1. State the reports purpose, thrust, scope, or main idea. 2. List relevant facts and ideas, including thoughts and perceptions, data gathered from research, facts, and opinions. 3. Eliminate irrelevant items. 4. Group related ideas, facts, solutions, etc. 5. Balance these groups in a logical order according to importance. 6. Write consistent topic headings. Standard Report Format is: 1. Title Page (Report Title, Group Members, Course No., Bauder College, Professor’s name and tile. 2. Table of Contents with page numbers identifying headings, sub-headings, etc. 3. List of Illustrations and/or appendices (which would contain data). 4. Summary or abstract. 5. Introduction 6. Body or discussion of findings – all discussion should support your thesis and should be based on the thoughts of others. They should be cited using parenthetical citation using APA, Chicago, or MLA styles. ( Jones 1992) or (Jones p.34, 1991) or (Jones pp.34-56, 1991). 7. Conclusions 8. Recommendations 9. Payback and supporting case studies. 10. References – this section contains the references used in the citation. A bibliography should be used if other references were used that were not directly quoted. Write the first draft, prepare a table of contents, additional material, select illustrations, review and revise the first draft, proofread for content and structure, compose an abstract or summary, review and submit final draft due the last day of class. Oral Report When presenting the oral version of the above report: 1. Each group member must participate and be prepared. 2. Rehearse the presentation in front of others. 3. Dress neatly and appropriately. 4. Be aware of body language. 5. Speak clearly. 6. Establish eye contact. 7. Don’t read the report. 8. The presentation is limited to 60 minutes. Present it in an executive summary format. Offer interesting facts, use overheads or other presentation aids, involve the listeners, and provide only brief background information.