Barbara and Electra Case Study

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Question(1):How might top management have done a better job changing Elektra Products into a new kind of organization? What might they do now to get the empowerment process back on track? Analysis of the case study

Main issues –
1. Declining of Market shares
2. Few new product ideas or far between
3.Poor staff relationship
4. Low staff morale
Weaknesses-
1. approach in change management
2. Organizational culture
3. creating problem solving team
4. the process of employee involvement and empowerment
5. the facilitation by Martin Griffin

The attempt to do staff empowerment is a nice try but it alone is not the complete solution for the root cause of the problems. In order to reach to the solution of all these issues, they have to find out what are the underlying causes of these issues. The newly hired Martin Griffin mentioned in the opening speech that “As we face increasing competition, we need new ideas, new energy and new spirit to make this company great. And the source for this change is you—each one of you.” Though he mentioned that each of the staff is important, he failed to allow everyone actively participates and play important role in the program. He neglected the importance of each and everyone’s contribution and effort to the program. He should have made understand what does it means by employee involvement and empowerment; how it will help the company solves the issues and, the ways to do and requirements for the staff involvement and empowerment program. It was worsen when the main facilitator, Martin Griffin, had excused from the session at the time Barbara and team enthusiastically presented their innovative ideas to department heads. The facilitator also fails to aim what kind of outputs he expects at the end of the session. For the successful empowerment program, the organization structure and its enabling environment is very critical. Trust building is very important part of the program especially in this situation where staff relationship and morale is poor. It is not only important for the top management level but also the department heads or managers from all other departments are important to accept the concept of staff involvement and empowerment. As the company is on its way of changing to a new era, every staff will have different perspective of interest on how it will affect their current roles, responsibilities and job security. All of which are worth to take in consideration in managing the change process. The managers are not so sure why they require these changes as they have been doing well in the past and they believe they can do it again. On the other hand, every staff has a different management theory and surely they are not on the same page with other management staff or with the company’s current management. It is quite critical to ensure that every management staff equipped with relevant knowledge and skills that will contribute the company’s strategic goals. The staff must have a common understanding of the organizational value, culture, strategic goals and how the empowerment process will add on the success of the organization. Instead of creating problem solving team with managers selected by top management, allow all managers to voluntarily work as cross-functional teams and come up with innovative ideas and opinions. By doing so, each team will have a representative from each specialized departments who has his or her own perspective and issue on the ideas. Contribution from different expertise and background will provide the ideas reach wider scope and reality. Then, each team should discuss the ideas with other teams which may require some modification and negotiation process. If everyone satisfies with the ideas, the staff involvement will be improved and the ideas will become action. It is natural that someone could resist the ideas or changes made by others. But if they are put in a position to be part of a cross-functional team that...
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