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Case Analysis: Henry Tam and the MGI Team

Case Analysis: Henry Tam and the MGI Team

For this case analysis, you will need to first read the case from Harvard Business Review Website www.hbr.org and search for the case “Henry Tam and the MGI Team” by Jeffrey T. Polzer, Ingrid Vargas, and Hillary Anger Elfenbein , 17 pages.  Publication date: Oct 20, 2003. Prod. #: 404068-PDF-blankYour task for this assignment is to assess the major issues in the case – both individual and organizational — and to support your ideas with relevant concepts from our discussions and course readings.  Please use the format with headers below to present your analysis and recommended actions.

Required Format

Section One: Issues and Analysis

Here you identify the key issues that underlie the problems in the case.  You should analyze each of the important issues you outline and incorporate insights from relevant organizational behavior concepts to help explain what happened/why the situation at hand came about.

Use short examples from the case to show why you consider the problems you have identified as the most basic issues that need to be resolved.   Remember you are building towards recommendations that will deal with the problems you have identified.  This section shows that you understand how theory applies to complex situations.

Section 2: Preventative Actions

In this section describe actions that could have prevented the current situation from developing to this point.  Use the concepts listed below from class to support your analysis. Explain your reasoning and ensure that your recommendations follow logically from your previous analysis.  Be specific not only about what to do but who will do it. blankSection Three: Actions to Remedy Going Forward from the Current Situation:

Looking at the current situation as it now exists in the case, what actions would you take from this point forward to help the team successfully meet is goals and achieve a positive outcome?  When a team has history there may be resistance or complications implementing the actions you recommend.  Be sure to acknowledge any challenges you anticipate and how you would handle them.

Sample questions to consider in formulating your paper:

  • What do you see as the 3-4 most significant problems/issues in the case?
  • What factors contributed to the problems? Using the concepts in the class how can you describe these issues and where they came from?
  • What effect did these problems have on the individuals involved, and what effect do they have on the effectiveness of the team/organization?
  • How do some of the individual differences the major characters brought with them into the MGI team help explain what happened? Using what you know about the MBTI or DISC dimensions, Hofstede cultural dimensions etc. what might help to explain the behavior of the members of the MGI team?  What behaviors led you to make those characterizations?
  • How would you assess the leadership style, approaches to handling conflict, and communication styles of the leader(s) of the MGI TEAM?  Any or all of the DiSC/MBTI, Situational Leadership, Thomas Killman, and Quinn Models can be helpful here.
  • What problems do you see with the way the team operated?  Kilman Conflict model is useful here. What did they need to do differently?   What did individual team members need to do differently?
  • What could have been done and by whom in the beginning which could have avoided the MGI reaching this point?
  • Given where the MGI team is NOW, what are the 3-4 key actions that could refocus the situation and achieve a positive outcome?  Be specific on the outcome.  You may want to differentiate between short-term goals (i.e. complete the business plan for the HBS and MIT contests) and longer term goals (develop the real business).   Be specific on what actions, who should take them.  Additional points can be derived from articulating potential problems/challenges that may crop up in taking these actions at this point with some history already set in the team

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Tools/Concepts that May Apply to Your Case Analysis

  • DISC
  • MBTI
  • Situational Leadership Model
  • Thomas Killman Conflict Model
  • Vroom Decision Making Matrix
  • Decision Making Traps Article
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