MBA Course Descriptions: Fall 2017


The Lean Launchpad: How to Build a Scalable Startup (3cr)
Frank Rimalovski & Lindsey Gray 

This course provides real world, hands-on learning on what it’s like to actually start a high-tech new venture. This class is not about how to write a business plan. It’s not an exercise on how smart you are in a classroom, or how well you use the research library to size markets. And the end result is not a PowerPoint slide deck for a VC presentation. And it is most definitely not an accelerator to build the “hot-idea” you have in mind. This is a practical class—essentially a lab, not a theory or “book” class. Our goal, within the constraints of a classroom and a limited amount of time, is to create an entrepreneurial experience for students with all the pressures and demands of the real world in an early stage startup.

This class is open to all NYU Graduate students. Additional information on registration is available here.


Leadership in Organizations
COR1-GB.1302 (3 cr)
Professors: Steve Blader, Elizabeth Boyle, Anat Lechner, Joe Porac, Frances Milliken & Molly Kern

This course is about managing and thriving in organizations. It is based on the premise that management success requires (a) understanding how to manage organizations and (b) understanding how to manage people.

In the first part of the course, we will focus on understanding the relationship between an organization and its environment. What are the demands that organizations face in seeking to grow and thrive? What happens when the external environment changes (i.e., due to changes in technology, governmental regulations, or customer tastes)? What are the implications of an organization’s strategy for how it is designed? How does growth affect an organization? In this part of the course, we will learn about the “hardware” of organizations: structure and design.

In the middle portion of the course, we will learn about the “software” of organizations: culture, leadership, power and politics. What is culture, and how do you affect it? What influences the power dynamics within an organization? What role do control systems play? How do you manage change?

The third section focuses on sharpening students’ interpersonal skills as managers. To do this, we will learn and apply frameworks on how to manage work groups, facilitate group decision-making, resolve conflict, evaluate performance and motivate effort. Our premise here is that day-to-day business success requires being able to understand and manage social interactions.

At the end of the course, students should have a deeper and more complex understanding of organizational dynamics and the essential elements of managing organizations and the people within them. Students will leave this course more knowledgeable about how organizations work and how to be an effective manager.

Strategy I
COR1-GB.2103 (1.5 cr)
Prof. Elizabeth Boyle
Langone students only

This course provides students with the concepts and tools required to devise strategies that enable the business to create superior value for chosen customers and to capture a sufficient share of that value in order to create an economic profit on its investment. The course focuses on the gaining of competitive advantages at the product/market level.

The course builds a model of competitive advantage, applies it to the competitive marketplace, and identifies the key sources by which firms can gain competitive advantage. It provides the basic set of tools that enable students to analyze and define the competitive situation at the product/market level, to delineate the strategic options open to the firm to create or retain competitive advantage. Students evaluate those options from several perspectives: strategic, financial, technological, legal and organizational, for business strategy is multi-dimensional.

Strategy II
COR1-GB.2104 (1.5 cr)
Prof. Elizabeth Boyle 
Prerequisite: B01.2103
Langone students only

This course focuses on the strategic management and understanding of multi-product, multi-location and multi-business firms, whereas Strategy I focused on strategically managing individual businesses. For instance, Strategy II issues include the evaluation of whether Disney should own theme parks, restaurants, television networks, and movie production and how the corporation can add value to the individual businesses. Strategy I issues include the assessment of strategies of the individual businesses relative to its competitors. For example, ABC’s (one of Disney’s television networks) strategies as a television network.

In this course, we adopt the perspective of top management who must be concerned with the overall viability of firms. General managers must be able to create a vision for the firm, developing and deploying corporate resources, capabilities and apply industry analysis and strategy analysis. They lead their team to create structures, systems and processes to implement corporate strategies. They must manage interpersonal dynamics of strategic decisions. Finally, managers must be able to communicate effectively their vision and strategies to internal and external stakeholders.

We consider both strategy formulation and implementation for the firm and the managers. We emphasize the close inter-relationships between what a firm wants to do and how it can go about doing it to achieve its objectives.


COR1-GB.2301 (3 cr)
Professors: Rob Seamans, Melissa Schilling & Sonia Marciano
Full-time students only

This course studies two related issues. The first is how to gain advantage against competitors in the complex and dynamic global marketplace. Core business strategy themes include how to analyze the business environment, assess resources and capabilities, and choose competitive strategies. The second issue is how to create corporate value through configuring and coordinating multibusiness activities. Core corporate strategy themes include analyzing scale and scope, evaluating corporate competencies, managing the multibusiness corporation, and choosing corporate strategies.



Advanced Topics in Negotiations
Prof. Seth Freeman
MGMT-GB.2160 (1.5 cr)
Prerequisite: MGMT-GB.2159
Advanced topics are presented to illustrate specialized concepts in managerial negotiations and decision making, such as negotiating cross-culturally, making effective group decisions, negotiating mergers and acquisitions, managing business integration teams. Topics vary from semester to semester; check registration packets and departmental bulletin boards for current offerings. Students may elect this course only once in their degree program.

Collaboration, Conflict and Negotiation
MGMT-GB.2159 (1.5 cr)
Professors: Seth Freeman, Steve Blader, Zur Shapira & Elizabeth Morrison 

Successful managers know how to collaborate with other people effectively, and to resolve conflicts constructively. The goal of this course is to teach students the fundamentals of managing collaboration and conflict in one-on-one and small group settings. Our objective is to enhance students’ interpersonal skills at their jobs. Drawing from the latest findings in managerial psychology, we cover the fundamentals of effective negotiation, communication and persuasion. Special topics include: getting buy-in, coping with resistance, and building coalitions.

Negotiating Complex Transactions with Executives and Lawyers
Prof. Seth Freeman
MGMT-GB.2161 (1.5 cr)
Prerequisite: MGMT-GB.2159 or LAW-LW.10687

In this innovative and practical course, students from the Law school and the Business school come together at Stern to learn what it takes to negotiate major transactions. Most key corporate deals- such as mergers, financings, international joint ventures and settlements- are legal/business problems. So it’s crucial for lawyers and business people to know how to work well together, and how to design wise agreements. To develop these skills, students negotiate a variety of simulated transactions and conflicts. They take one deal from concept to term sheet to contract and then see its effects months later. They grapple with whether to sue or settle. They even trade roles at least once. They also examine real agreements, perhaps meeting and questioning guest speakers who actually negotiated them. They also discover ways to design better transactions, with the help of economics and other important theoretical tools. Through their continuing work together, they overcome their natural feelings of professional culture shock and learn how to work as a team to create sound agreements- as their future employers expect them to do.

A basic course on negotiation, such as Collaboration, Conflict & Negotiation (B65.2159) or Lawyering (L06.2001) is a prerequisite for the course. The course is different from Stern’s Advanced Topics in Negotiation, which focuses mainly on negotiating in organizations. Neither is a pre-requisite for the other.

Managing Growing Companies
MGMT-GB.2327 (3 cr)
Prof. Glenn Okun
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

This course exposes students to the unique challenges of managing the growth of small businesses. It is designed for students who are interested in understanding the opportunities and problems involved in the start-up, management, or operation of their own business. In addition, the course is also designed for students who are considering employment in a smaller firm. The differences between small firms’ and large organizations’ management needs, practices, and financial resources are examined.


Managing Change
MGMT-GB.2353 (3 cr)
Prof. Anat Lechner
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

Contemporary business environments contain challenges that demand an increasing pace, volume, and complexity of organizational changes. Most organizations, whether they are entrepreneurial start-ups or long established Fortune 500 firms, find that they must change or wither. This course is geared toward deepening students’ understanding of the challenges, the techniques, and the burdens associated with initiating and implementing major change in an organization. The objective is to prepare managers, or their consultants and advisers, to meet the challenges of organizational change successfully. As such, the course is especially useful for students who plan careers in management consulting, general management (whether in line or staff positions), and entrepreneurship or corporate venturing.


Leadership Models
MGMT-GB.2363 (3 cr)
Prof. R. Kabaliswaran
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

This course is meant for those who wish to better understand and further develop their innate potential and propensity to lead others. As you rise in your career, you will need multiple and often conflicting constituencies on board to follow your vision. But if you don’t lead, others will not follow. This course will help you toward honing some of the essential self-reflective skills you need to give form and substance to such vision. It will also be of value to those who wish to have a broad intellectual understanding of the context of leading and the content of leadership.


Strategic Design
MGMT-GB.2370 (3 cr)
Prof. R. Kabaliswaran 
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302, COR1-GB.2301 (or COR1-GB.2103 and COR1-GB.2104)

This course develops student skills at diagnosing organizations and developing prescriptions to improve their effectiveness. It is appropriate for those interested in organizational performance from a managerial or external perspective (e.g., management consultants, investment bankers,, and financial analysts). It examines organizations’ attempts to adapt as open systems in competitive environment. We consider the major factors influencing organization design, e.g., strategy, environment, and technology. Then we analyze the major internal processes affecting organizational performance, e.g., control systems, politics, and conflict. Then we probe how organizations can improve their ability to adapt in increasingly dynamic environments. The course includes domestic and international examples. The main learning methods are case analyses and a study of the organizations of the central competitors in an industry or industries that the class chooses. Particular emphasis is placed on organizational-level problems facing senior management.


Advanced Strategy: Tools
MGMT-GB.2375 (3 cr)
Prof. Sonia Marciano
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.2301 (or COR1-GB.2103 and COR1-GB.2104)

Advanced Strategy – Tools is an elective course on strategy. We will recap many of the components covered in core strategy and apply this material to additional cases. In addition, we will spend more time on the relationship between strategy and organizational attributes of the firm. This course has an emphasis on applying the tools and concepts of strategy with precision and attention to nuance. The cases are chosen because they fulfill the following criteria: • The issues addressed are topical • They are more nuanced than typical core strategy cases • They generate an opportunity to explore related regulatory, technological, social or organizational content • They generate interesting follow up questions By thoroughly discussing each case and by following up with additional information relevant to the uncertainties faced by the case protagonists, we will generate insights into the challenges of implementing various options. In this course, we seek answers to the following questions: What could go wrong? How do we correct it through better design of structure? The course follows an interactive, discussion driven format. My expectation is that you come to class having thoroughly read the assignments for that class. Generally, 3-4 class sessions are led by guests who have many years of experience in the industry under consideration. In addition, some class sessions set aside for group presentations.


Managerial Decision Making
Prof. Zur Shapira 
MGMT-GB.3151 (1.5 cr)
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

This course attempts to help you become a better decision maker. When asked about their ability to make decisions, previous students expressed concerns and several said they lacked self-confidence in making decisions. Others indicated that the process of making decisions may be painful, especially if one has to make an important decision. This may stem from the deliberation process one goes through that may be stressful. Yet others added that at times they second-guess their decisions and some acknowledged that they suffer from regret when a decision they have made led to an undesired outcome. A few mentioned that having gone through such a process made them indecisive and unclear about how to go about making decisions. The above concerns are described with regard to personal as well as business decisions. Making decisions at work may be easier when one can solicit the help from colleagues but at the same time the consequences may loom even larger when making decisions at work. This course takes a systematic approach to improve your decision-making skills. Requirements include several exercises, knowledge of statistics is required but the course is not about quantitative calculation of alternatives but about the processes underlying the making of decisions.

Business Start-Up Practicum
Prof. Glenn Okun
MGMT-GB.3333 (3 cr)
Prerequisites: MGMT-GB.3335 OR MGMT-GB.3336 OR MGMT-GB.3337

This course seeks to provide an understanding of business planning techniques that transform ideas into viable commercial businesses. Students will conduct the market, organizational, operational, strategic and financial analyses that are required to produce a venture concept and an actionable business plan. Participants will study firms’ business planning efforts as well as create a business plan during the practicum. The course focuses on these principal themes: (1)How do entrepreneurs create business concepts and solve challenges? (2) How does one qualify ideas and strategies in order to effectively select a course of action? (3) How are action-oriented plans structured in order to capture opportunity and mitigate risks?


Foundations of Entrepreneurship
Prof. Glenn Okun
MGMT-GB.3335 (3 cr)

This course offers a framework for understanding the entrepreneurial process and exposes the student to most problems and issues faced by entrepreneurs who start new businesses. Case study is the principal teaching method, supplemented by lectures, a business planning exercise, and guest speakers. Major objectives are for students to learn how to identify and evaluate market opportunities; develop a business concept and marketing plan; assess and obtain the required resources; and manage the growth of a new venture.

Power and Politics in Organizations
Prof. R. Kabaliswaran
MGMT-GB.3366 (3 cr)
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

This course considers the way political processes and power structures influence decisions and choices made within and by organizations. It analyzes the sources, distribution, and. use of influence in relation to resource allocation, organizational change and performance, management succession, procedural justice, policy formulation, and social movements within organizations. It develops skills in diagnosing and using power and politics in organizational settings. A basic assumption underlying the course is that managers need well-developed skills in acquiring and exercising power to be effective. The course is designed to (1) improve students’ capacity to diagnose organizational issues in terms of their political dimensions and (2) enhance their effectiveness in their jobs and careers as a result of that improved capacity.

Past Courses

Advanced Strategic Analysis
MGMT-GB.3328 (3 cr)
Prof. JP Eggers
Prerequisites: COR1-GB.2301 (COR1-GB.2103 and COR1-GB.2104)

Advanced Strategy is an elective course on strategy that is designed to serve as a capstone course across the entire MBA program, using strategy to help pull together learning from marketing, finance, management, accounting, operations, and elsewhere in the curriculum. View this class as a “lab” in which to explore and understand how the different functional classes that you have been taking during your MBA fit together. We do this by exploring “big” strategic decisions that organizations encounter and shape organizational performance, specifically those that fall into three broad categories – decisions on dealing with other firms (partners, competitors, etc.), decisions on significant resource allocations, and decisions on dealing with success and failure of prior actions. Our discussions will use a variety of approaches to in-class interaction, including case discussions, small group work, simulations, experiential exercises, and more traditional readings and (minimal) lectures. In addition, the underlying backbone of the class is a semester-long project on one or more specific decisions taken in an organization.

Strategic Management, Global Risk
MGMT-GB.2140 (1.5 cr)
Prof. Rob Salomon
Specializations: Management, Strategy, Global Business.
The central objective of this course is to understand the strategic management of global firms and the institutional (political, cultural, and economic) features of global markets. It is designed to help students manage the complex and nuanced risks that global companies face. Students will not only learn about institutional risk, but they will also be required to quantify institutional risk in their various assignments and develop an original institutional risk pricing tool. The students will then learn how to use this tool to complement existing strategic and financial analyses. This course is pertinent for students who intend to pursue careers in management consulting, general management, investment banking, private equity, venture capital, and other careers in the global context where accurate and concise strategic risk assessments are critical.​
Corporate Governance 
MGMT-GB.2176 (1.5 credits)
Prerequisite: COR1-GB.1302

This course introduces the student to the basic concepts, tasks, and responsibilities of governing the corporation at the level of the board of directors, with particular emphasis on integrity, process, compliance, and strategy. Given the number and scale of recent board-related scandals, it also examines the factors in board form and function that lead to failures in corporate governance. Students learn primarily through the analysis of actual cases, and the class sessions are discussion-based with some lecture. Students prepare case analyses for class, some written, some oral, and perform an in-depth term project where one board of directors, or one particular board function, is analyzed in some depth. Several visitors from industry are brought to class to share their perspectives and experiences at appropriate times in the term. Modules of the course are designed to address specific governance issues, such as board composition and independence; the nomination process; audit and compensation committees and their functions; proxy processes and shareholder resolutions; tenders and takeovers; and legal compliance. As an integrative M.B.A. course, this course designed to be taken after the student has a fundamental understanding of issues in management, strategy, professional responsibility, and how firms interact in the marketplace. Prior coursework in these areas is strongly recommended.