Friday, September 23, 2016

Successful Team Working Experience

The successful team which I work with is actually the team that I am working with right now. I have a part time job at the APlus VIP Lounge at downtown Urbana. My position is shift leader and I think the team structure at APlus VIP Lounge confirm to the Simple Hierarchy team configurations.

APlus VIP Lounge is a café/bar/KTV, people usually come and reserve their own private room (which can host around 10-15 people) and sing karaoke. The rate is calculated by hours. Aplus also provides alcohol services and café drink. On a busy night like Friday night and Saturday night, we will usually have 8 people on site. 1 manager, 1 shift leader (me), 1 bar tender, 4 waiters/waitress, 1 bus boy. In the textbook, simple hierarchy team configuration is described as the model that with a middle manager who reports to the boss and in turn supervises and communicates with others. In this case, the Aplus manager is the boss, and I am the “manager” in the middle. Before opening, I will ask the waiters and waitress to check each room with a complete checklist. After that, I will have to make a short brief to the manager about the overall situation (whether there are broken speakers/microphones/chairs etc.). The manager will then decide if the business needs new equipment or new supply. After the simple briefing, I will communicate with all the waiters and waitress to do the work assigned by the manager. During the business time, the manager and I are more like free men, we will help whichever positions are in short. For example, if there are too many people ordering cocktails, the bartender can’t handle it, the manager and I will help him mix cocktails. However, most of the time, the manager will sit at the front desk in charge of money and be the cashier. The 4 waiters/waitress are responsible for any services requests from customers, including making cafe drinks and delivering beers and liquors. The bus boy will be responsible for room cleaning right after customers are gone.

I think the team configuration frees the manager to focus on mission and external relations while leaving operational details to the shift leaders to staff. Moreover, it shows multiple characteristics of high quality-teams highlighted by Katzenbach and Smith’s research. First, our team is in manageable size. Second, we are good at translating common purpose into specific, measurable performance goals. For example, we want our customers to have better atmosphere, we will do very detailing room cleaning and microphone sanitizing every day. Third, all of our team members are accountable. One for all and all for one is our principle. Last but not least, our team develops the right mix of expertise as everyone in the team has their specific roles and works, which are decided by their own specialties.

Overall, I think I enjoy working with the team and l look forward to the future.     

Friday, September 9, 2016

Experience with Organizations and Transaction Costs

I am a personal trainer at the Campus Recreation. My job is providing professional guidance and suggestions to clients based on their specific needs. Before joining the team, I need to get certificates from NASM to become a qualified trainer. Moreover, CPA certification is also required.
Clients are randomly assigned to me by the system after clients signing up on the website. Usually I will have an initial meeting with my clients before our first training session. During the initial meeting, I will gain a deeper understanding of my clients’ life behaviors and exercise preference. After knowing the exercising goals of my clients, I will come up with specific plans. I will also set up a fixed schedule with my clients during the initial meeting.

Normally, a training session will last for an hour. The first 10-15 minutes I will ask my clients to warm up and do some active stretches. Then, I will spend around 35-40 minutes to do strength training. The rest of the session will contain cool down and stretching out.
The organization structure of our team is simple. The Campus Recreation has about 20 personal trainers, and 2 senior coordinators. The 2 senior coordinators are responsible for clients’ distribution and equipment renew. There is a full time supervisor who is in charge of the policy and costumer complaints.

In economics and business, transaction costs are the costs we incur when we make economic exchanges during the purchase of goods and services. The theory of transaction cost economics is a concept developed by Ronald Coase and refined by Oliver Williamson. The theory states that organizations like firms may distribute resources more efficiently than an imperfect or limited bargaining system, like a market.  As far as I am concerned, the higher efficiency in organizations is due to the low transaction cost. Take my job as an example, when clients come to our facility and sign up for a session. All he needs to do is show up and follow my guidance. If he tries to work out by himself as a beginner, he may spend lots of time digging exercise information online, and maybe waste a bunch of time making the move in a wrong form. These are the transaction cost.  

Thursday, September 8, 2016

“Paul Milgrom”的图片搜索结果

Paul Robert Milgrom was born in April 20, 1948 in Detroit, Michigan. Milgrom is the Shirley and Leonard Ely professor of Humanities and Sciences in the Department of Economics at Stanford University and professor, by courtesy, at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He is a member of both the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a winner of the 2008 Nemmers Prize in Economics and the 2012 BBVA Frontiers of Knowledge award.

Milgrom was born to Abraham Isaac Milgrom (born in Toronto, Canada) and Anne Lillian Finkelstein (born in Detroit). He was the second of four sons. At the age of six, his family moved to Oak Park, Michigan and Milgrom attended the Dewey School and then Oak Park High School (Michigan). In high school, Milgrom learned to play and analyze chess. He soon shifted his interests in strategic games to bridge. Milgrom showed an early interest in mathematics and attended summer programs at Ohio State University and entered the Michigan Mathematics Prize Competition while in high school. Milgrom graduated with high honors from the University of Michigan in 1970 with an A.B. in mathematics. He was also actively involved in the Vietnam War protest movement. He worked as an actuary for several years in San Francisco at the Metropolitan Insurance Company and then at the Nelson and Warren consultancy in Columbus, Ohio. Milgrom became a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries in 1974. In 1975, Milgrom enrolled for graduate studies at Stanford University in the MBA program. After his first year, he was invited to the Ph.D. program, earning an M.S. in statistics in 1978 and a Ph.D. in business in 1979. His dissertation on the theory of auctions (Milgrom, 1979a) won the Leonard Savage prize. This also led to the first of his several seminal articles on auction theory (Milgrom, 1979b). His thesis advisor, Robert B. Wilson, would later become his collaborator in designing the spectrum auction used by the Federal Communications Commission.

Milgrom's primary research is directed to designing auctions for multiple unique but related items. Along with Robert Wilson, he introduced the initial design for sales of radio spectrum licenses in the United States. He has designed new auctions for Internet advertising and for procuring complex services. Research on incentives and complexity are combined to create auctions that are simple and straightforward for bidders, yet which dramatically improve resource allocation compared to traditional auction designs. According to his BBVA Award citation: “Paul Milgrom has made seminal contributions to an unusually wide range of fields of economics including auctions, market design, contracts and incentives, industrial economics, economics of organizations, finance, and game theory.” According to a count by Google Scholar, Milgrom’s books and articles have received more than 70,000 citations.
The following link is an 88 minutes' lecture, which Milgrom made on FCC in 2003:

In this 88 minutes’ lecture, Milgrom looks at several recent successful auction designs. These include the FCC simultaneous multiple-round auction which allocates spectrum, the National Resident Matching Program which matches doctors to hospital residency programs, and the EDF auction of power generation capacity. He also discusses recent academic research in market design, including empirical, theoretical, and experimental work.