This week’s assignment is a case analysis. This assignment should only be completed AFTER you have thoroughly read and reviewed this week’s assigned readings AND you have thoroughly read and reviewed the assignment instructions and criteria in the assignment grading rubric. As you develop your response throughout the week, be sure to continually review the instructions and grading rubric to ensure that your response takes ALL the included criteria into consideration.
Your assignment response should be submitted in a single document with the response for each case clearly and separately delineated within the same document. Your responses to each question within the case should also be clearly numbered. The minimum word count for this assignment is 750.
Please keep the following in mind about your assignment response:
- Before you submit your assignment response, ensure that it includes the appropriate number and types of citations and references, presented in the appropriate format.
- Your submission will receive a Turnitin similarity score which must meet the required less than 20% threshold. This may take minutes, several hours and possibly up to 24 hours depending on Turnitin’s queue length so please ensure that you complete your submission within enough time to edit it and received a revised score prior to the due date.
- If your score is greater than the 20% threshold, please redo your response and resubmit it here again. You will be able to edit and resubmit your response as many times as necessary until the deadline. Submissions that exceed the 20% threshold after the deadline on Sunday night at 11.55pm CST will not receive credit.
- If you opt to reference the course text, this does NOT count as an external reference but is a reference that is internal to the course. It should be cited appropriately.
- Within this course, Wikipedia and other open source sites are NOT considered reputable sources. Webster’s dictionary and other online dictionaries WILL NOT be counted as a valid external reference.
- Be sure to place a header “References” above your list of references to reduce the likelihood that Turnitin will include those items in your similarity score.
- More detail is better than less. Be thorough in your responses and ensure that your submission reflects sufficient depth, analysis, and critical thinking consistent with a graduate-level business course. Look beyond the words provided in the case to assess what may have led to the situation presented and possible unidentified consequences.
To fully address this case assignment, please read and analyze each assigned case. Your response should be numbered and provide the following:
1. Define and summarize the key OB issues in the case relative to this week’s material (at least 2 key issues MUST be identified). Be sure to speak in OB language, using appropriate terminology to identify the concepts and issues you identify. OB issues MUST reflect concepts covered in this week’s chapters.
2. Clearly link the key issues in the case back to relevant and specific course material covered. Be specific by identifying specific instances and scenarios in the case which demonstrate the OB issues and concepts identified. Explain how they are reflective of those specific OB issues.
3. Make at least one recommendation(s) of how each of the key issues you identified should be handled at the organizational level of the case’s main character. Justify the merit of each of your recommendations and be sure to include your rationale for why you expect them to be effective in addressing the issues.
4. Propose at least one executive or corporate level intervention for any one of your key issues to recommend how upper management can also play a part in addressing that issue. This response should be different from any of the recommendations offered in #3. Be sure to clearly identify which OB issue your organization level/executive level intervention is meant to address and how the intervention would be of benefit.
After graduating with honors with a management major from State University, Ashley James accepted an entry-level position in the Human Resources Department of Hospital Equipment Inc. (HEI), a medium-sized manufacturer of hospital beds and metal furniture (bed-stands, tables, cabinets, etc.). This hospital room product line has been a “cash cow” for HEI since the founding of the firm 35 years ago by James Robinson, Sr. In recent years, however, HEI’s market share has become eroded by some of the big office furniture firms, both in the United States and abroad, who are starting to diversify into the health institution market.
Mr. Robinson has been easing into retirement the last couple of years. His only child, Rob, was made CEO three months ago. Rob came up through product engineering for two years and then headed up operations for the past four years. Rob had been a three-sport star athlete and student body president in high school. He then went on to State University where he graduated near the top of his class in mechanical engineering.
In his new leadership role at HEI, Rob’s vision is to take the firm from being a low-tech bed and metal furniture manufacturer that is going downhill to become a high-tech medical equipment manufacturer. Rob is convinced that even though this would be a dramatic change for HEI, there is enough of a foundation and culture in place to at least start a new division focused initially on operating room equipment.
Rob’s marketing manager had commissioned a study with a marketing research firm that concluded operating room equipment supply was not keeping up with demand and was way behind the rest of the health care supply industry in terms of innovative technology for patient comfort and care. The marketing manager, armed with this information, enthusiastically supported Rob’s vision for the future of HEI. The finance and operations people are another story.
The finance manager is very pessimistic. HEI is already under a cash flow strain because of decreasing revenues from their existing product line and, although they currently have very little long-term debt, with Robinson Senior retiring, his contacts and long-term friends in the local lending community were gone. Only the big corporate banks with decision makers in other cities are left. The new head of operations, who has been very close to Robinson Senior over the years and had basically run the show for Rob the past four years, is also very pessimistic. In a recent executive committee meeting where Rob had asked for input on his vision for HEI, this operations head angrily blurted out, “I know we have to do something! But medical equipment? I have absolutely no hope that our engineers or operating people have the capacity to move in this direction. As you know, almost all of our people have been with us at least 15 to 20 years. They are too set in their ways, and the only way we could start a new medical equipment division would be from scratch, and I certainly don’t see the funding for that!”
After weighing his senior management team’s advice, consulting with his dad, doing some research on his own, and tapping his network of friends in and outside the industry, Rob decided to go ahead with the planning of a new medical equipment division. He also decided that this new division would have to be run by present people and he would seek no outside funding. At this point, he called in the young Ashley James from the HR department and gave her the following assignment:
Ashley, I know you haven’t been around here very long, but I think you can handle the challenge that I am going to give you. As you probably know by now, HEI is having some difficulties, and I have decided we need to move in a new direction with a medical equipment division. As I see it, we have some real people problems to overcome before this will be a success. Having worked in operations the past several years, I am convinced we have enough raw talent in both engineering and at the operating level to make the transition and pull this off successfully. But I need your help. Did you come across anything in your program at State U. that had to do with getting people to be more positive, more optimistic, and confident? I really think this is the problem, starting with management and going right down the line. I want you to take a week to think about this, talk to everyone involved, do some research, and come back with a specific proposal of what HR can do to help me out on this. The very survival of HEI may depend on what you come up with.