Activities and Simulations


This site contains a variety of materials intended to support instructors using Reframing Organizations.   Many of these materials are copyrighted, but instructors in college and university courses are granted automatic permission to use the materials and to make copies for their students, on condition that all copies carry the copyright notice and author credits.   For questions about permission for other uses, write to Lee Bolman.   Use the same address to submit questions, comments, or suggestions. 

  • Do-it-Themselves Powerpoint.  Professor Carole Barnett, Whittemore School of Business, University of New Hampshire, has had considerable success with an activity that asks students to develop and teach from their own Powerpoint slides.
  • Power Simulation.  A brief but engaging and usually powerful simulation that creates a three-tier society stratified by status and wealth.
  • The Organization Simulation.  A highly-involving simulation activity with a focus on issues of structure, power, politics, and leadership.  It descends from the Power Simulation, but is different in that the organization has a product to produce, and there is a client to whom the organization might sell the product.  It is usually a pretty good demonstration of how tough it can be to get close to the customer while trying to keep your organization running at the same time. 
  • Monarchs, Lords and Serfs.   A short reading that describes many of the system dynamics that are likely to occur in the Power Simulation or the Organization Simulation.  We normally assign it in advance -- it doesn't seem to alter the play of the simulation very much, but it often helps people see parallels between their simulation experience and ideas in the reading.
  • Quality Housing.  A relatively short and simple, but involving team exercise.  Teams design and produce housing (using cards, tape and markers) in a competitive context.
  • Walking Mediation.  Bo Tep, of Saint Mary's College and Santa Clara University, contributed this short paper describing his teaching approach to the four-frames.  It includes a "walking meditation" activity using a lift-move-place-pause rhythm aligned with the four frames.