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Delivery Problems at Arrow Electronics, Inc. (A)

by Andrew Mcafee Kerry Herman Frances X. Frei

Describes a dramatic decrease in service levels (on-time shipments) from the warehouse network of a large electronics distributor. Students need to analyze the root cause of the problem and propose actions. A rewritten version of an earlier case.

Differences at Work: Will (B)

by Sandra J. Sucher Rachel Gordon

In Differences at Work: Will (B), HBS Case No. 9-408-045, Will describes how decided to respond to the question so that his colleague could tell from his answer that Will was a gay man.

Dow's Bid for Rohm and Haas

by David Lane Benjamin C. Esty

This case analyzes Dow Chemical Company's proposed acquisition of Rohm and Haas in 2008. The $18.8 billion acquisition was part of Dow's strategic transformation from a slow-growth, low-margin, and cyclical producer of basic chemicals into a higher-growth, higher-margin, and more stable producer of performance chemicals. Simultaneously, Dow had signed a joint venture agreement with Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC) of Kuwait, a deal that would generate $7 billion in cash that could be used to finance the all-cash offer to buy Rohm and Haas. Dow and Rohm announced the Rohm merger on July 10, 2008, just before the financial crisis in September 2008. The focus of the case is on what happened after the financial crisis turned into a global economic crisis. Dow, like all chemical producers, suffered as the global economy fell into recession during the second half of 2008, and as financial markets froze. To make matters worse, PIC cancelled the joint venture with Dow in December 2008. As a result, Dow was hurt on three fronts: first, it lost an important funding source for the proposed acquisition; second, Dow's financial condition and internal cash flow deteriorated dramatically (its stock price was down more than 70% during 2008); and third, Rohm's forecast sales, earnings, and value declined precipitously thereby reducing its attractiveness as an acquisition target. Given this confluence of events, Dow sued to cancel the merger agreement with Rohm in January 2009. Rohm responded with its own lawsuit to force consummation of the deal. As of February 2009, Dow's board of directors and its CEO Andrew Liveris have to decide what to do first and foremost about the Rohm acquisition and the pending lawsuits, but also about the firm's declining financial performance and the PIC joint venture.

Corning, Inc.: Technology Strategy in 2003

by Rebecca Henderson

Corning, Inc. has a 150-year history of building a strategy around innovation. Founded as a glass manufacturer in 1851, the company quickly established itself as a maker of specialty glass products and over the next 100 years diversified into light bulbs, television, cookware, silicones, medical products, and, finally, optical fiber. As the telecommunications industry boomed in the late 1990s, the optical fiber business boomed with it, and Corning's stock hit record highs. The firm made more than $9 billion worth of acquisitions in fiber and photonics (acquiring more than $6 billion worth of goodwill in the process) before the crash hit. Corning's stock collapsed, and in 2002 the company faced serious operating challenges. Designed to be used as an opening case in a course on technology strategy. Outlines the history of innovation at Corning, stressing the company's history of "patient money" and long-term commitment to technology. Briefly summarizes the firm's recent history and then the challenge that faces the firm's chief technology officer in seeking to justify spending on research and development.

Dan Stewart (A)

by Mark Rhodes Vijay V. Sathe

A subordinate who Dan Stewart has recently placed on warning for unsatisfactory performance is suddenly appointed Dan's boss. Involves such issues as the management of disappointment, understanding organizational irrationality, lateral transfer within the same company, and dealing with organizational politics.

Corning, Inc.: A Network of Alliances

by Ashish Nanda Christopher A. Bartlett

Describes James Houghton's actions in assuming the role of CEO at Corning in the midst of a recession. Not only must he turn around operating performance, he must also revitalize a demoralized organization and set a new, clear strategic direction. In doing so, the case focuses on the changing role of alliances and partnerships in Corning operations. Increasingly, they are moving from a peripheral role in providing market access interchange for technology, to a more central role at the core of Corning's business. The strategic and organizational challenges this presents are highlighted through some specific decision issues facing Houghton.

Creating Frameworks for Possibility: Being a Visionary Leader and Practicing the Art of Possibility

by Rosamund Stone Zander Benjamin Zander

As a species, we are well-suited to thrive in an environment of threat where resources are scarce, but are not always ready to reap the benefits of harmony, peace, and plenty. Yet we do have the capacity to override the hidden assumptions of peril that create the world we see. The foremost challenge for leaders today, the authors suggest, is to maintain the clarity to stand confidently in the universe of possibility, and to bring the hope of possibility to others. This "leader of possibility" rejects the fear of scarcity that promotes divisions between people. Frameworks that bring forth possibility, restructure meanings, create visions, and establish environments where anything is possible is the work of this new leader and this chapter outlines the steps for inventing and sustaining these frameworks. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 11 of "The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life."

Dan Gordon

by Michael J. Roberts

Describes Dan Gordon's first month on the job as Chief Operating Officer of Club Sports International (CSI), a chain of 7 health and fitness clubs. Describes the company's strategy and organization. The company needs Dan to tighten up its operations and create a base that will permit CSI to grow to 30 clubs. Describes virtually no systems, controls, or mechanisms that are in place to actually manage the business. Thus students must paint this blank canvas with their view of the systems needed to manage the business, and what Dan must do to make it work.

Delivering Strategic Human Resource Management

by Boris Groysberg Andrew N. Mclean Cate Reavis

This note reviews the history of the human resources (HR) function and the strategic human resources management (SHRM) movement, wherein HR managers' aspired to be strategic partners with line managers. Reviews practices for implementing a strategic-business-partner model for HR with a focus on the strategy, structures, and systems companies need to implement, and the skills that aspiring SHRM leaders need to develop in order to successfully play a strategic role. Also explores line managers' perceptions of new HR roles, and what capabilities they most want HR leaders to have in those roles.

Dow Chemical's Bid for the Privatization of PBB in Argentina

by Mihir A. Desai Alexandra De Royere

What price should Dow Chemical bid for PBB, a petrochemical complex that is being privatized by the Argentine government? To answer this question, students are forced to consider the role of country risk, the underlying currency exposure of the business, and how to value an investment opportunity that has several stages. Given that it is a privatization, students are also forced to consider the political dynamics involved, the incentives of local managers, and the bidding process of a privatization. The case provides detailed cash flows and discount rate information, allowing students to conduct a thorough valuation for an emerging markets project. To obtain executable spreadsheets (courseware), please contact our customer service department at

Corning Glass Works: The Z-Glass Project

by Kim B. Clark

Considers decisions facing the leader of a manufacturing staff project team assigned to a plant where yields have deteriorated sharply. The process is complex: the plant organization is not cooperative and there are deep disagreements about what is wrong and how to fix it. Provides an opportunity to analyze yields and productivity, as well as the organizational and personal challenges inherent in line-staff interaction.

Creating Customer Advantage

by Erich Joachimsthaler

Brands are the principal means of connecting the strategy for innovation of growth of the firm with the ecosystem of consumer demand. The trick is harnessing the power of brands without allowing their power to limit a company's perspective. This chapter looks at the case of BMW to explore how companies can use the power of the brand to connect with customers, and to engage them and build a profitable business on the back of a strong portfolio and a precise understanding of demand and opportunities for the future.

Damage: Dealing with the After-Effects of a Security Crisis in IT

by Robert D. Austin Richard L. Nolan Shannon O'Donnell

"The Adventures of an IT Leader" invites readers to "walk in the shoes" of Jim Barton, the new CIO of the fictional IVK Corporation, as he spends a difficult year learning effective information technology leadership, sidestepping the pitfalls that make the CIO job the most volatile, high-turnover job in the business. In this chapter, Barton and his team assess the damage of a systems security crisis and formulate a recommendation for an immediate response--to the crisis and the public--and for future measures to improve security. This chapter is excerpted from "The Adventures of an IT Leader."

Corning Glass Works International (A)

by Michael Y. Yoshino Christopher A. Bartlett

Follows the impact of a change in global strategy on a diversified company's global organization structure. Traces two failed attempts at bringing a business perspective to a geographic organization, and poses the problem of what the international division president can do.

Creating Competitive Advantage

by Pankaj Ghemawat Jan W. Rivkin

A firm such as Schering-Plough that earns superior, long-run financial returns within its industry is said to enjoy a competitive advantage over its rivals. This note examines the logic of how firms create competitive advantage. It emphasizes two themes: First, to create an advantage, a firm must configure itself to do something unique and valuable. The firm must ensure that, were it to disappear, someone in its network of suppliers, customers, and complementors would miss it and no one could replace it perfectly. The first section uses the concept of "added value" to make this point more precisely. Second, competitive advantage usually comes from the full range of a firm's activities--from production to finance, from marketing to logistics--acting in harmony. The essence of creating advantage is finding an integrated set of choices that distinguishes a firm from its rivals. The second section shows how managers can analyze the full range of activities to understand the sources of added value.

Delivering Groundswell Customer Service: Using Social Technologies to Harness the Marketing Power of Your Frontline Employees

by Josh Bernoff Ted Schadler

Because customers talk, customer service is marketing. Even one negative customer experience, broadcast on Twitter, retweeted, commented on, and forwarded to countless other customers or potential customers, can destroy your company's reputation. According to authors Josh Bernoff-coauthor of "Groundswell"-and Ted Schadler, this means employees must treat each customer as a potential influencer, reaching out though channels like Twitter, Facebook, and instant messaging, and turning your customers into broadcasters of positive messages. Drawing from real-life customer service disasters and success stories from Comcast, Intuit, and Zappos, this chapter will teach you how to maintain a service team that inspires and delivers positive messages. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 4 of Empowered: Unleash Your Employees, Energize Your Customers, and Transform Your Business

Deliver--Building an Organization That Creates Promoters: Winning Over Customers Day After Day

by Fred Reichheld Rohit Deshpande

The battle to convert customers into promoters for the organization can be won only if frontline employees are promoters themselves. This chapter looks at the strategies implemented by companies to win over customers on a daily basis. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 8 of "The Ultimate Question: Driving Good Profits and True Growth."

Corning Glass Works: The Electronic Products Division (A)

by Michael Beer

Describes a division of Corning Glass Works that finds itself with deep financial and organizational problems. Severe conflict and lack of coordination exist between functional groups. Employees do not have a sense of direction and morale is low. Provides sufficient data to determine that the cause of these problems is a change in business environment that had been followed by change in organization and management. Can be used for analysis of organization-environment relationships and action planning for change and environment.

Creating Business Unit Synergy

by Robert S. Kaplan David P. Norton

Corporations consist of a collection of divisions and business units that may compete in different industries, have different customers, and employ different strategies. Executives must determine how they add value to their collection of business units so that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Using case studies, this chapter illustrates a broad spectrum of approaches used by organizations to achieve synergy across their units.

Dalian Wanda Group: The AMC Entertainment Acquisition (B)

by Willy Shih

When Dalian Wanda Group of China announced its plan to acquire the AMC Entertainment theatrical exhibition chain in the United States, many people in the U.S were mystified. Unlike China where theatrical exhibition was experiencing rapid growth, the U.S. market was viewed as mature, and rapidly changing technology was giving consumers a widening range of choices for movie viewing. AMC was owned by a group of private equity firms, and their pessimistic view of the industry influenced their strategies and investment decisions. AMC's management team had yet a different view on the prospects of the industry. Thus three present or potential stakeholders, all looking at the same data, had distinctly different views of future prospects. How could this be? The (B) case looks at AMC's performance in the year after the acquisition.

Corning: 156 Years of Innovation

by H. Kent Bowen Courtney Purrington

The executive team at Corning has committed to double the rate of new business creation per decade, while at the same time growing the company's current businesses, including glass substrates for LCD displays. Their strategy, built on more than 150 years of successful innovation, is to invent "keystone components" which uniquely enable other companies' products and earn high margins from its proprietary technology. As part of the company's mission to be around for another 150 years, the executive team is also committed to devote considerable resources to basic research "in faith" that it will create new, high-margin businesses that will drive corporate growth in 10-20 years and enable the company to "reinvent" itself, even though they will not be around to reap the benefits of this investment. The executive team must choose how to allocate finite RD&E resources between (1) "pushing" one, or more, of four brand new businesses with considerable potential in the development pipeline to the market sooner; (2) allocating more resources to six new products being launched from existing businesses; or (3) spending more on exploratory research. In making these decisions, the executive team must consider the impact of their decision on not only near-term earnings, but on how it will enable Corning to diversify over the medium to long term in terms of the quality and quantity of its portfolio of new technologies in the development pipeline and new businesses being launched, especially so that it is not overly dependent on sales of a particular business like LCD glass.

Dalian Wanda Group: The AMC Entertainment Acquisition (A)

by Willy Shih

When Dalian Wanda Group of China announced its plan to acquire the AMC Entertainment theatrical exhibition chain in the United States, many people in the U.S were mystified. Unlike China where theatrical exhibition was experiencing rapid growth, the U.S. market was viewed as mature, and rapidly changing technology was giving consumers a widening range of choices for movie viewing. AMC was owned by a group of private equity firms, and their pessimistic view of the industry influenced their strategies and investment decisions. AMC's management team had yet a different view on the prospects of the industry. Thus three present or potential stakeholders, all looking at the same data, had distinctly different views of future prospects. How could this be? The (B) case looks at AMC's performance in the year after the acquisition.

Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor: India's Road to Prosperity?

by Vidhya Muthuram John D. Macomber

The Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) was an ambitious $90 billion infrastructure project covering the 1483-km distance between Delhi and Mumbai. The project would create new industrial townships, high speed freight lines, six-lane expressways, airports, ports and power plants. It would also give the country a unique opportunity to plan, develop and build new cities that were economically, socially and environmentally sustainable. The DMIC could boost India's flailing manufacturing sector, increase foreign investments, augment exports, generate jobs and situate the country on a higher growth trajectory. While the project held many promises for India, there were many risks involved. Its success would depend on land acquisition and unprecedented levels of coordination across various government agencies. This case examines whether Amitabh Kant, CEO, Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation (DMICDC), the nodal agency for planning and implementing the project, would be able to deliver on the project's promises.

Dakota Office Products

by Robert S. Kaplan

The senior management team of Dakota, an office products distributor, is concerned about the company's first loss in history. Explores the role for activity based costing and customer profitability measurement in a distribution company. Dakota's customers are increasingly demanding more specialized services, such as desktop delivery. Also, whereas some customers have switched to electronic ordering, others continue to place their orders manually. Pricing is based on a fixed markup of the cost of the purchased item. The managers feel that the fixed markup may not be compensating them for the higher costs of manual order processing and desktop delivery. The financial manager initiates an effort to estimate the costs of handling the different types of orders so that she can estimate the profitability of individual customers based on their actual order pattern.

Showing 11,651 through 11,675 of 15,635 results


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