Assignment: Becoming a Changemaker

Throughout this course, you will complete a series of assignments that align with the following scenario:

You are a college senior who has been selected to participate in a hybrid internship/onboarding program with an elite HR research and advisory firm. Your training consists of a combination of formal education—specifically, enrollment in this Human Resource Management course—and a rotation in support of the principals of the firm. In your rotations, you will synthesize what you’ve learned in the relevant modules to address firm or client issues, conducting additional research as necessary and developing draft deliverables as instructed by the principal consultant. The quality of your deliverables—that is, your ability to convert learning into practical insight—will largely determine whether, at the end of the internship period, you are offered a position with the firm or simply thanked for your participation.

Scenario

A quote from the Boston Consulting Group’s People & Organization website page summarizes Modules 1 and 2: “Human resources has long been evolving beyond its traditional—and outdated—role as a mere processor of administrative transactions. Today, HR is usually viewed as a strategic partner to the business. The intensity of competition and the pace of change demand that the HR function fulfill this mandate. HR leaders need a clear view of their current capabilities, a set of clear priorities linked to the business strategy, and a targeted approach to improve the most urgent problem areas.”[1]

Your Task

In your first rotation, you will be reporting to the Strategic Planning principal consultant. She is developing an interactive game for client HR teams to play to develop their adaptability; specifically, to be able to envision and implement the changes required in the HR organization in order to capitalize on emerging trends and technologies.

Your assignment is to reframe one of the following trends (discussed in Human Resources Today) as a business opportunity:

  • Changes in Workforce Composition
  • Increasing Workforce Diversity
  • Increased Employee Expectations of Employers
  • Changes in Societal Expectations
  • Infrastructural Obsolescence
  • Changes in the Nature of Work
  • Market and Industry 4.0
  • Changes in the Evaluation and Valuation of Talent
  • “A Reskilling Imperative”
  • Increasing Geopolitical Risks

For example, “changes in workforce composition” is a trend that represents both a challenge and an opportunity. How might an organization use that to their advantage? How would you express that as a Human Resource strategy? What policies and procedures would need to be in place to support that strategy and leverage a flexible workforce? How would you avoid the typical disconnect between planning and implementation? Be specific; your recommendations must be actionable. To take it from mets expectations to exceeds expectations, cite (summarize and link to) an example of a “best practice” organization. As a perspective point, she suggests you keep the following quote from the text in mind: “The essence of management and strategy is making sense of reality: human, organizational and situational. And, more critically, to be able to act on that insight.”

Grading Rubric

Criteria Inadequate (40%) Minimal (60%) Adequate (80%) Exemplary (100%) Total Points
Organization and format 2 pts
Writing lacks logical organization. It may show some coherence but ideas lack unity. Serious errors and generally is an unorganized format and information.
3 pts
Writing is coherent and logically organized, using a format suitable for the material presented. Some points may be contextually misplaced and/or stray from the topic. Transitions may be evident but not used throughout the essay. Organization and format used may detract from understanding the material presented.
4 pts
Writing is coherent and logically organized, using a format suitable for the material presented. Transitions between ideas and paragraphs create coherence. Overall unity of ideas is supported by the format and organization of the material presented.
5 pts
Writing shows high degree of attention to details and presentation of points. Format used enhances understanding of material presented. Unity clearly leads the reader to the writer’s conclusion and the format and information could be used independently.
5 pts
Content 8 pts
Some but not all required questions are addressed. Content and/or terminology is not properly used or referenced. Little or no original thought is present in the writing. Concepts presented are merely restated from the source, or ideas presented do not follow the logic and reasoning presented throughout the writing.
12 pts
All required questions are addressed but may not be addressed with thoughtful consideration and/or may not reflect proper use of content terminology or additional original thought. Additional concepts may not be present and/or may not be properly cited sources.
16 pts
All required questions are addressed with thoughtful consideration reflecting both proper use of content terminology and additional original thought. Some additional concepts may be presented from other properly cited sources, or originated by the author following logic and reasoning they’ve clearly presented throughout the writing.
20 pts
All required questions are addressed with thoughtful in-depth consideration reflecting both proper use of content terminology and additional original thought. Additional concepts are clearly presented from properly cited sources, or originated by the author following logic and reasoning they’ve clearly presented throughout the writing.
20 pts
Development—Critical Thinking 8 pts
Shows some thinking and reasoning but most ideas are underdeveloped, unoriginal, and/or do not address the questions asked. Conclusions drawn may be unsupported, illogical or merely the author’s opinion with no supporting evidence presented.
12 pts
Content indicates thinking and reasoning applied with original thought on a few ideas, but may repeat information provided and/ or does not address all of the questions asked. The author presents no original ideas, or ideas do not follow clear logic and reasoning. The evidence presented may not support conclusions drawn.
16 pts
Content indicates original thinking, cohesive conclusions, and developed ideas with sufficient and firm evidence. Clearly addresses all of the questions or requirements asked. The evidence presented supports conclusions drawn.
20 pts
Content indicates synthesis of ideas, in-depth analysis and evidence beyond the questions or requirements asked. Original thought supports the topic, and is clearly a well-constructed response to the questions asked. The evidence presented makes a compelling case for any conclusions drawn.
20 pts
Grammar, Mechanics, Style 2 pts
Writing contains many spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors, making it difficult for the reader to follow ideas clearly. There may be sentence fragments and run-ons. The style of writing, tone, and use of rhetorical devices disrupts the content. Additional information may be presented but in an unsuitable style, detracting from its understanding.
3 pts
Some spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors are present, interrupting the reader from following the ideas presented clearly. There may be sentence fragments and run-ons. The style of writing, tone, and use of rhetorical devices may detract from the content. Additional information may be presented, but in a style of writing that does not support understanding of the content.
4 pts
Writing is free of most spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors, allowing the reader to follow ideas clearly. There are no sentence fragments and run-ons. The style of writing, tone, and use of rhetorical devices enhance the content. Additional information is presented in a cohesive style that supports understanding of the content.
5 pts
Writing is free of all spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors and written in a style that enhances the reader’s ability to follow ideas clearly. There are no sentence fragments and run-ons. The style of writing, tone, and use of rhetorical devices enhance the content. Additional information is presented to encourage and enhance understanding of the content.
5 pts
Total: 50 pts

  1. Human Resources Strategy & Consulting.” Boston Consulting Group. Boston Consulting Group. Accessed November 30, 2019.