NASA When One Does Tend Term Paper

Length: 10 pages Sources: 8 Subject: Business - Management Type: Term Paper Paper: #76855842 Related Topics: Challenger Disaster, Max Weber, Aerospace Engineering, Aeronautics
Excerpt from Term Paper :

" (Wong, Desai, Madsen, Ciavarelli, 2005) The notion regarding NASA from outside observers was that the culture within NASA was not reflective of the aforementioned, underlying fabric that governs relationships and unites a workforce toward achieving a common goal.

The practice of change leadership is important to the overall contiguous development and success of programs within NASA. As leadership within successful programs are able to transition to new programs within NASA, new methodologies and a more comprehensive framework that governs and directs the operations of a particular operation become inherent to the operations and administrative fabric of the organization. Management than only needs to ensure that those requiring further training are able to receive training and that process management techniques are adhered to and findings from the results are implemented.

Ostensibly, the human resources deficiency and the design failures that have led to the problems associated with events of disaster or delay for NASA can be addressed via the six sigma methodology. "As Larry Mulloy, one of the launch officials 'stated', "We were lucky-just dumb-ass lucky-that we hadn't had a disaster like this before" (personal communication, May 15, 1991). (Maier, 2002)

The ability to address precisely where the deficiencies inherently lay with the daily activity and integration of the NASA workforce with the internal and external environment subject to the continuous facilitation of project goals. For instance, a project may involve a workgroup with the job of ensuring the cabin pressure is properly regulated at all times and is properly integrated with all systems that enable its function and not interfering with concurrent operations.

Additionally, there are political processes from executive branch officials and within NASA that parlay into the operations of NASA. Contractors that establish a relationship with NASA are often investigated when a problem arises regarding the operations of the material. "NASA launch officials proceeded over the objections of a second prime contractor, Rockwell, that were expressed the morning of the launch itself, when the senior Rockwell aerospace manager, Rocco Petrone alarmed by reports of ice chunks covering the launch gantry-instructed his on-site representative, Bob Glaysher, "to make sure NASA understands that Rockwell feels it is not safe to launch" (Rogers, 1986, p. 1800).

Internal training programs within NASA should have been within the budget from an early period. The program does not adequately train its employees subject to the responsibility inherent in the operations of the administration. The appearance of NASA relying on the innate capability of its workforce upon arrival to NASA is insufficient to enable the future activity of the organization. This is due to the lack of improvement in the education of subsequent generations since the peak of NASA success at the time of Apollo 13. With less in the budget and increasing challenges facing NASA, the inability to address the issues of training a sustainable workforce to handle the technical workload will inevitably result in additional failure for NASA.

The hiring process is additionally a function of human resources management. The notion is to remove all non-fundamental aspects of recruitment, evaluation, and training such as searching social media websites for 'dirt' on the potential new hire or by monitoring communications and testing bodily samples to monitor outside work activities. The fundamental aspects are then in focus which are directly a function of the job design that is inherently facilitated by the role within process design and control.


NASA has seen a period of phenomenal success and subsequent accolades for the technical and scientific nature of the program. The benefit of NASA has been the development of technology that has trickled into the consumer markets, such as materials used in clothing and new operations and technologies now used in laptop computers. These advancements are attributable to NASA yet with drastic cuts to the funding of the program, the level of technology that is a derivative of the program may be eliminated.

The recommended managerial approaches which focus around human resources management all the way down into the safety must be reintegrated into the fabric of the organizational management. Without the reintegration of safety as the unifying force, there is likely to be continued failure as the motivation to remove variability in terms of the psychological component is absent and therefore fatigue and stress become larger components within the probability for human error and failure.

The budget may not allocate funding to finance all that NASA would like to undertake. However, investment into extensive training programs will assist to prepare employees to understand the very intricate nature of the mathematical modeling that is inherent to the proper functioning of the craft design. The critical errors and flaws in design that have enabled past disasters, and perhaps the ability for one to commit sabotage, if in fact true, is inherent to flaws in the overall process management and safety management of the NASA space program.

NASA must strategically identify the nature of the operations inherently responsible to facilitate the successful organization. Human Resources have been defined as a critical area of improvement. Weber has identified the paradoxical nature of the Organizational Management function within the framework of what Mintzberg had outlined as a politically influenced entity. NASA has to address political ideology as a function of what is not considered to be a core function within the operation of the organization.

It is essential that NASA integrate the internal innovation to its organizational mission. By linking innovation as a function to organizational objectives, NASA is enabling a complementary strategy that combines the proprietary nature of the ideas garnered from innovation to the extensive objectives, political and apolitical, that NASA seeks to address on its missions. Porter does not address the intimate relationship between an organization's human capital and the organization's access to its internal and external resources.

As Porter's strategy analysis is a function of the human dynamic as engaged to the organizational framework, Porter seeks to identify how the employee can be functionally situated to provide a competitive advantage to the organization. However, what Porter neglected was to identify how resources enable human capital to contribute to a safe and cost effective public sector operation.


Backes-Gellner, U. (2004). Personnel economics: An economic approach to human resource management.Germany, Mering: Rainer Hampp Verlag. Retrieved from

BROAD, W.J. (1990, Sep 09). Staff problems threaten NASA's goals, critics say. New York Times, pp. A.1-A.1. Retrieved from

Levine, A.L., Shafritz, J.M., McCurdy, H.E., Lambright, W.H., & Logsdon, J.M. (1992). The future of the U.S. space program: A public administration critique. Public Administration Review, 52(2), 183-183. Retrieved from

Maier, M. (2002). Ten years after A major malfunction...: Reflections on "the challenger syndrome." Journal of Management Inquiry, 11(3), 282-282-292. Retrieved from

Matheson, C. (2009). Understanding the policy process: The work of henry mintzberg. Public Administration Review, 69(6), 1148-1148-1161. Retrieved from

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Schwartz, J. (2005, Apr 04). Some at NASA say its culture is changing, but others say problems still run deep.New York Times, pp. A.19-A.19. Retrieved from

Shuit, D.P. (2003). Workforce problems imperil NASA. Workforce Management, 82(3), 15-15. Retrieved from

Swedberg, R. (1999). Max weber as an economist and as a sociologist: Towards a fuller understanding of weber's view of economics. The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 58(4), 561-561-582. Retrieved from

Wallman, J.P. (2010). Strategic transactions and managing the future: A druckerian perspective. Management Decision, 48(4), 485-485-499. doi:10.1108/00251741011041300

Warner, B.W., Richley, E.A., & DeAngelis, L. (1985). Changing leadership and planning processes at the lewis research center, national aeronautics and space administration. Human Resource Management (Pre-1986),24(1), 81-81. Retrieved from

Wong, D.S., Desai, V.M., Madsen, P., Roberts, K.H., & Ciavarelli, A. (2005). Measuring organizational safety and effectiveness at NASA. Engineering Management Journal, 17(4), 59-59-62. Retrieved from

Sources Used in Documents:


Backes-Gellner, U. (2004). Personnel economics: An economic approach to human resource management.Germany, Mering: Rainer Hampp Verlag. Retrieved from

BROAD, W.J. (1990, Sep 09). Staff problems threaten NASA's goals, critics say. New York Times, pp. A.1-A.1. Retrieved from

Levine, A.L., Shafritz, J.M., McCurdy, H.E., Lambright, W.H., & Logsdon, J.M. (1992). The future of the U.S. space program: A public administration critique. Public Administration Review, 52(2), 183-183. Retrieved from

Maier, M. (2002). Ten years after A major malfunction...: Reflections on "the challenger syndrome." Journal of Management Inquiry, 11(3), 282-282-292. Retrieved from

Cite this Document:

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