What would you rate as the strengths and weaknesses of the way Hewlett-Packard structured and supported the Kittyhawk team? Be explicit—and defend your position.
The following are the strengths of the way HP supported Kittyhawk: •
Moved project operations out of DMD’s main building. This move was both iconic and practical. It created the impression of a separate entity to everyone and gave Kittyhawk more autonomy. A hands-off approach to Kittyhawk created a start-up like environment. •
High rank executives including the CEO supported the project. This gave the project visibility and importance. It allowed top people to take a chance and work for Kittyhawk. It also ensured more cooperation from DMD and other departments. •
Autonomy to develop the drive, find new markets and cultivate a customer base. As Kittyhawk was treated like a startup, autonomy was necessary. The team was best suited for all the tasks it was set up for. •
Selected team members with right skills and dynamics. A well rounded team was required to meet the aggressive timelines. There was no room to build team dynamics from scratch. Those who coordinated with each other were seated close to each other.
The following are the weaknesses of the way HP supported Kittyhawk:
Indecisive leadership. Both Spenner and Seymour were very indecisive. They struggled in deciding whether to build a cheap drive or one with all the bell and whistles. They could not see ominous signs (no growth in segments) and missed upcoming trends (need for $50 drive) •
Marketing manager, Jeff White, did not have experience in doing market research for a new technology. He did not pay heed to what some customer segments were saying. He also hired the wrong market research firm. •
Kittyhawk cannibalized existing DMD resources – both people and money. Additional resources should have been allocated to the Kittyhawk project and not siphon from the DMD. This depleted the resources of DMD. People borrowed...
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