I don't know if these posts are doing any good (maybe people don't care what the courses are really about) but I'm going to finish what I started. What I didn't figure on was how many courses Stanford made you take which tells me these are short condensed courses. Oh, well, my mistake.
Business leaders must read, understand, and use corporate financial statements. The base-level options in this area orient you to using financial accounting data (rather than preparing such data) and emphasize the reconstruction and interpretation of economic events from published accounting reports. If you have the requisite background, advanced options allow you to pursue the nuances of global financial reporting.
A bit of a snob wrote this one..."the base level options in this area orient you to using financial accounting data (rather than preparing such data)" Us MBA's don't want to get our hands dirty. This is probably not a bad course and you should pay attention because figuring out financial statments is hard work and don't expect the guys in the contollers department to help you out. And that is because they don't know. These people are under tremoundous time pressure and they use GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) and if you question their numbers they will throw that in your face. Think of a major company--operations in 50 countries, 10 separate divisions, 50,000 employees and everything roles up into one balance sheet and income statement. Trying to figure out the business is near impossible. But if you dig into the numbers and learn the operations you will figure out how the company operates and you will become valuable and you will make lots of money. But you will, and you have to, get your hands dirty.
Now on to the course for "people who want to work with people"
Human Resources (HR)
We will provide you with a framework for understanding and thinking strategically about employment relations and the management of human resources in organizations. This area draws on insights from the social sciences to explore how employment relations are influenced by cultural, economic, legal, psychological, and social forces. The base-level option emphasizes four fundamental topics: (1) the selection of employees; (2) the development of their skills (human capital); (3) the use of pay to motivate workers, and other types of incentives; and (4) the organization of the workforce into teams, hierarchies, and so forth. Options allow you to specialize in HR practices for high-skill “knowledge” workers or how HR practices vary across the globe.
Sounds like fun. And it is, in the classroom. Readers of this blog will soon get the impression that I don't like HR people. That is not the case. I have been frustrated with HR people but mostly I feel sorry for them. Because they go into the job wanting to make life better for employees but they end up saying no. No to raises, health benefits, promotions. Then couple this with government regulations that never end and I'm surprised there isn't a HR manager jumping off the roof every morning. Have fun with the class but it ain't real life.
From touchy feelly to number crunching.
Information Technology (IT)
Knowledge of technology – computing, networks, software applications, etc. – is a prerequisite for a successful manager. In this area, you will learn the implications of technology for managers and organizations. A meaningful course that focuses on particular technologies is difficult because rapid changes in any technology quickly render today's lessons obsolete. Therefore, you will learn fundamentals and trends, rather than a snapshot of the current status of different technologies. The base-level course in IT offers you a broad survey of technology, while more specialized and advanced options include courses on the uses of IT in manufacturing supply chains, electronic exchanges, and electronic commerce.
It's time to bring that Indonesia guy out of the closet again. Watch out for this--"therefore you will learn fundamentals" If you get a really mean old crotchety professor that could mean writing code. My first experience with IT was the professor saying that behind all the bells and whistles, a computer system is really only a big adding machine. That's when I went looking for the man from Indonesia and so should you.