Case Study 5
RAYMAR ENGINEERING COMPANY
Dr. Joe Kelly, head of new product development, was deep in thought when Dr. Jeff Rozell appeared at the door. Dr. Kelly had just returned from the president’s office, where he had been mildly taken to task for the lack of innovation of his group. The president had been distressed by the fact that the last five new products presented to the board of directors were all obviously imitations of competitors’ products. This company has always been a leader, not a follower,” the president had said. “When are we going to begin to see some innovation out of your group?”
Dr. Rozell was one of the senior project engineers who had been with Dr. Kelly for 15 years. Ten years ago they had done some of the pioneering work on the first microprocessors, which had thrust Raymar Engineering into the forefront of mini and microcomputer technology. Kelly was glad to see him just then, because they had always been close personal friends as well as professional colleagues.
Joe, I’ve got a real problem with your Mike Johnson. He’s only been here 3 months and already I’m having problems with him. I can’t get him to do anything. All he wants to do is work on that new simulation language.
I thought that was what you want him to do.
It is, but there are other things that have to get done. I can’t get him to write his weekly progress reports, or turn in his 5-years plan, or any other thing. He missed two staff meetings last week and still hasn’t turned in his travel report from the trip he took last month. I’m getting sick and tired of having to hound him every time I need something from him. Besides, he pays no attention to prescribed procedures and doesn’t even read the policy statement I put out.
What does he say when you ask him about these things?
Oh, he’s always very apologetic and promises to get right on it as soon as he finishes the subroutine he is working on, but nothing happens....
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