Teaching Tips for Case
This case is designed to illustrate the problem of sub-optimization. The case can also be used to demonstrate how individual components of a system interact and/or the roles played by various functional departments. In addition, the case can be referred to when the topic of strategy is discussed in the next chapter. For example, the case can be discussed in conjunction with the strategy formulation process to demonstrate how a vision and mission statement might help align the decisions being made in different functional areas. In addition, appropriate core competencies for Taracare can be identified and discussed.
1. On the surface, it might appear as though outdoor furniture and replacement windows have very little in common. Therefore, it might be argued that Jorge made a mistake in hiring a new manufacturing manager without the proper qualifications. Thus, some students may argue that Alfredo be given some period of time to familiarize himself with the operations of the new production facility. However, the evidence in the case suggests that Jorge is not overly concerned with the plant’s performance and that the pressure for improvement is coming from Alfredo himself. On the other hand, it should be noted that in actuality both products do have much in common. For example, both products are assembled from extruded aluminum. Second, aluminum and glass are key raw materials of both products. Finally, both products are sold to similar customers. Thus, to the contrary, it would appear that Alfredo’s previous experience does qualify him for the position at Taracare (assuming he performed well in his previous position).
2. Given Alfredo’s responsibility and concern for meeting delivery commitments and product quality he would likely make recommendations such as the following: Ø Have the purchasing agent consult with someone in production before switching suppliers to determine the impact...