Management Analysis in Public Organizations: History, Concepts, and Techniques

By Ray C. Oman; Stephen L. Damours et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 7
Keys to Successful Management
Analysis Studies

Management analysts perform many roles in relation to studies. Individual analysts or management analysis (MA) officers are frequently asked to conduct studies by managers and policy makers. A more-junior analyst might participate in a study as a team member, concerned, for example, with gathering particular data. If a study is small, it might be conducted by one analyst. If the study is larger or more complex, a team of analysts might be involved in the effort. Analysts are frequently asked to lead interdisciplinary teams, task forces, or other work groups. An analyst who is an expert in some aspect of management or organizations may be asked to serve as a consultant to the study team. An analyst serving as an expert resource to a study group may serve as a substantive expert in some area, such as automation, work flow, or economic analysis, or as an expert in the process or interpersonal aspects of organization interventions, such as studies.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide the keys to conducting a successful MA study. There are no simple answers to the question of how to conduct successful studies. It is a complex question that has been wrestled with in one form or another since scientific management developed before the turn of the century. More recently, the question has been addressed by the field of program evaluation which is closely related to MA. It became evident more than a decade ago that program evaluation study findings were often not accepted or implemented by managers. The study of the usefulness, acceptance, and implementation of program evaluation findings became a popular avenue of inquiry for evaluators, many of whom were academicians associated with colleges and universities. Although no clear consensus developed among

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