The case about Lincoln electronic company is an anatomy case which describes management success in operating high efficient company. Over the years, Lincoln could record a steady growth, satisfied thousands of customers, and financed with internally generated funds.
1. How would you describe Lincoln’s approach to the organization and motivation of their employee?
Lincoln had a lot of results control in the company. The first thing to mention is that the company created a piecework system where the employees were paid for producing more and more. Therefore, there were some workers on the factory floor who had earned more than 45,000 in a single year. Other employees had the chance to own their own houses and cars and they didn’t have any debt. The company didn’t reward only for productivity, but they also rewarded for high quality, cost reduction, and new ideas. The workers guaranteed their work and every one of them felt like a boss for him/herself. Moreover, the promotion and hiring for a new job give the current employees the opportunity to get advanced and usually they train the employee for a new job to be qualified. They only hire new people if the job needs special skills. Furthermore, the company used the open door policy where the employee problems can be heard and solved. The managers were sharing the workers the same parking and dining room. The company top executive Gorge E. Willis knew at least 500 employees personally which satisfied the workers need to be recognized.
2. What role do you think this approach has played in Lincoln’s performance over the last 25 years? Have any other factors been more important? In fact, satisfying the workers had played a big role in Lincoln success. No matter of how good the managers are, the work is completed by the workers, it was essential to motivate them to produce more products. As the company succeed in satisfying the employees, as they willing to stay in the company and be more productive. That helped the company to apply their strategy perfectly; produce more for lower cost.
3. What factors will be critical to Lincoln’s continued success? It is important to Lincoln Company to guarantee the employee loyalty instead of counting on the paying system and giving bounces to them. In anytime that the company couldn’t satisfy the financial needs for the workers, it will be the end for them. They should focus more on other types of rewarding. For example, the most productive employees can have special parking, or quicker promotions. Also the company needs to hire supervisor for the employees. The company had a worker who was able to manipulate the system and use the lunch break to finish some work with on hand while eating the lunch with the other one! Furthermore, there should be some delegation of authorities in the company. the top executive managers are making even the smallest decisions in the company which may cause some obstacles for middle managers to take a quick necessary decision.
4. What recommendations would you make to Mr. Willis?
I believe Mr. Willis should continue using the open doors policy and maintain the good relations with employees. In the same time he needs to give some authorities to middle managers to make the decisions they need to keep the work stream flows. He should also focus more on making the products delivered in the right time and fix the delay in delivery. The company strategy hasn’t changed for a while, and it is important to make some critical changes in the company environment to attract more employees instead of making the company place the employee go to in order to have high wage only. Implementing new technologies that assure reducing the number of workers will be more efficient. Finally, he can’t depend on the employees self observation only, but also needs to have closer eye on them to determine how efficient they are.
CASE-8 DIAGNOSTIC PRODUCTS CORPORATION:
1. Evaluate both the design of the DPC Performance Bonus Program for US-based field service engineers (FSEs) as it currently exists and the way in which the program is being implemented. What changes would you suggest, if any? Explain
The program were based on the FSEs performance in six areas: 1- cross training 2- PM completion 3- teamwork factor for PMs 4- complete first visit 5- call back rate and 6- administrative functions. The current system is not affective in evaluating the employees because of many reasons. First, the employees have no complete control in some areas. For example, complete service events in the first day are not always possible no matter of how hard the employee tries because of many factors that are not related to the employee abilities. Second, there were some problems raised after implementing the program such as some subsequent visits were not a call back. Therefore, the program readjusted to include some areas as exceptions. Finally, the evaluation is based on subjectively judgment which can be varying depending on the manager’s perspectives. Some improvement may be implemented to improve the whole program. For instance, as the managers realized that completing services in the first visit is not always possible, they need to count points for every employee who finished his part of the service in the first day. Regardless of the delay was caused by other factors. Another essential improvement is making the evaluation based on objectively judgment rather than the manager’s opinions. It is important for the employees to know how they exactly evaluated. In that way they can guarantee that the personal problems will not affected their evaluations. Finally, as the system was applied to assure the customers satisfaction, the company should focus more on their opinions of the customers services by hiring an employee to provide them an evaluation form and take it back from them. For the customers who seek assistance via phone, the company can take their opinion after the service was provided by making the customer bush a number to evaluate the employee.
2. Instead of using a results-control system like the Performance Bonus Program could DPC control its US-based FSEs effectively using only action and/or personnel/cultural controls? If so, what would such a system look like? If not, why not? Explain.
I believe that there were plenty of choices the company can use in order to achieve their goal. They can use action control to prevent employee from hiding the customer’s bad evaluation by hiring an employee who’s responsible for giving customers the evaluation forms and take it back from them. With closer supervision on the employee they will tend to perform better. Furthermore, in the case there was nothing about the company’s effort to create a good work environment for the employee! There were not closer relation between the employees and their managers. Even the rewarding program was not big enough to attract the employee’s attentions. There was not anything about giving them promotions or higher salaries for good work.
3. In answering the question posed below, assume the following hypothetical facts: In February, Joe, a DPC FSE, was called to a large laboratory in a small Midwestern US city to perform a repair job on an Immulite 2000 instrument. Soon after he arrived, he told the laboratory client personnel that he thought he could complete the job in 2 hours. However, he encountered some significant difficulties and the job took 2 days. Harvey, the laboratory manager, was quite upset because the laboratory could not afford to have the instrument down for that long in such a heavy workload period. After the job was completed, Joe invited Harvey out for a “conciliatory dinner.” After a few rounds of drinks, Joe explained why the repair job had taken longer than expected. Then he handed Harvey the DPC customer satisfaction survey form and asked him “to be kind” in completing it. The restaurant bill for the two of them for the evening was $179.80. Question: How would you analyze the ethics of Joe’s behavior? Joe has no ethics at all! ( I know you will say I am going so far here ) He did not finish his job in the right time. The job needed about 2 hours to be done and he took 2 days! He did not only cost the company money and time, but he also fail in satisfy the customer who was upset because of the work delay. Moreover, he invited the customer to “conciliatory dinner “and tried to manipulate the customer to get positive evaluation for his lousy work. The company should cover the expenses for this dinner to as a part of travel expense which mean they will pay 179.80 for unnecessary dinner!