Herman Miller

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Section 1: Problem Statement

When Mike Volkema, CEO of Herman Miller, abruptly attempted to appoint Gary Van Spronsen to executive vice president of offer development and marketing, Volkema was hesitant to get involved. Since 1992, Van Spronsen had worked feverishly to build a leader in the office furniture industry in the Herman Miller subsidiary SQA. Not only did Van Spronsen create the traction that prompted better customer service, a tailored product line and design process, but he also transformed the faltering subsidiary from a refurbishing company, into a position leader that develops their own products. Now, Van Spronsen was suddenly being called on to make the same impact on the second largest producer of office furniture in the United States at the corporate headquarters of Herman Miller. The major question presented is should Van Spronsen take the leap to Herman Miller corporate and put the future of the SQA subsidiary in jeopardy? Section 2: Issues

Over the years, Herman Miller has adapted and changed to meet workplace demands. In the early years, Herman Miller successful implemented a plan to enrich their employee’s workplace experiences. The company recognized and embraced diversity, built a strong corporate culture, and developed a strong reputation of corporate social responsibility. These core ideals implemented by the DePree brothers made employees want to work for Herman Miller and allowed the company to grow to power. As the company continued to grow, other subsidiaries were acquired and developed. The most successful of these subsidiaries was Van Spronsen’s Simple, Quick, Affordable (SQA) subsidiary. Originally designed to take advantage of the furniture refurbishing segment, the Herman Miller subsidiary continued to evolve. With the leadership of Van Spronsen, innovative process ideas, an emphasis on impeccable and rapid customer service, and cutting edge sales technology, SGA evolved into a powerful unit. Now however, with the success...
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