Case Study 2 Business & Finance homework help

 

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Objectives 

Upon successful completion of the Unit 4 case study, students will be able to

  • explore the various roles, responsibilities, traits, skills, and situation handling abilities required of a project manager;
  • describe the importance of skills (soft and people) to get into a project management role;
  • demonstrate awareness and learning about how to deal with stakeholders in the project environment for successful end results; and
  • identify the potential pitfalls of a wrong decision in a transformational project.
Brief Description

This case focuses on understanding the relevance and impact of different project leadership style on project success.

Read the following case study. Provide a summary of the case and use examples from the case to:

  • Discuss the ways in which wrong decision making can impact the success of a project.
  • Highlight the various leadership styles that were utilized in the case. Give examples specifically from the case.
  • Identify instances in which soft/people skills were utilized. How effective were these? 

Case Study

Banerjee, A. (2017). A cased based comparative analysis of project management leadership styles. The Case Centre

Submission Instructions
  • Submission should be a maximum of 3 pages double-spaced (excluding title page and reference page) and should follow APA referencing style.
  • All submissions should be done through Turnitin with a similarity level no greater than 15%. 

Evaluation

Unit Case Study 2 will be marked in its entirety out of 100. The following rubric indicates the criteria students are to adhere to, and their relative weights to the assignment overall. Grades and/or feedback will be made available to students no later than one week after submission.

Activity/Competencies Demonstrated% of Final Grade1. Application of Case Analysis Methodology/Content  (60%) a. Identified and clearly/concisely stated the problem, including the decision to be made within the context of the case./10b. Summarized the pertinent facts in the case to describe the background/10c. Demonstrated a thorough analysis supported by evidence from the case. The analysis should be guided by the case questions and should apply course concepts./10d. Identified a viable set of alternatives to solve the stated problem and effectively evaluated the identified alternatives./10e. Recommended the most viable solution./10 f. Defined a clear action plan./102. Format and Writing (40%) a. Included all components of report (title page, all 6 case study analysis methodology steps with headings, references page)/20b. Spelling and grammar/10c. APA formatting (title, headings, references)/10 Total 

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OM-1-0043 | January 30th 2017

It was rainy and humid as Dr. Arnab Banerjee looked out of the window. Summer had arrived in
Germany and so had the good time. Dr. Arnab Banerjee told the team, “Looking back, this is the time
we have been waiting for.” The happy moment was well cherished by Dr. Banerjee as it was a month
since the German Driveshaft Manufacturing Plant of Dream Driveline Corporation had gone live and
things were going pretty well. ‘It is time to review and analyze the work my team has been doing since
last 12 months in Europe,’ he thought to himself. He recollected his onboarding to the project some
12-13 months ago when his company (Systems Group) won the project to transform the supply
chain of Dream Driveline Corporation’s three plants in Europe. Dr. Banerjee, as the program manager
for the transformation project in Europe, led a talented team of consultants. The transformational
project consisted of business process re-engineering (BPR) and enterprise resource planning (ERP)
implementation for the plants in France, Sweden and Germany. The overall outcome of the European
sojourn was a mixed bag: It was mediocre success in the beginning, disappointing in the middle and
successful towards the end. ’Although tough, working on the project has been a great learning experience
which needs to be shared with others,’ Dr. Banerjee thought and smiled, as he returned to France from
Germany.

While bidding adieu to his friends in Europe over a farewell dinner with some nice wines, baguettes
and cheese, everyone was eager to hear from Dr. Banerjee about his experience in Europe. Dr. Banerjee
said professionally there was one aspect he would reminisce most about. With the eager listeners
looking at him in anticipation, Dr. Banerjee continued while sipping a glass of wine, “I worked in
three plants for the transformation project. One plant based out of France, another in Sweden and the
third in Germany, each of which had its own plant manager responsible for the respective Information
Technology (IT) led process re-engineering transformation followed by ERP implementation in their
respective plants. I can definitely say the failure or success of the massive transformation project, to a great
extent, hinged on these three people. The results in the three plants were different in each case, and can
be attributed largely to the different project management styles of the three plant managers. Though

This Case Study was written by Dr. Arnab Banerjee, Principal Consultant, Enterprise Application Services – Oracle Supply Chain Competency,
Infosys Ltd. It is intended to be used as the basis for classroom discussion rather than to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a
management situation. The case study is based on generalized experiences.

© www.etcases.com

No part of this publication may be copied, stored, transmitted, reproduced or distributed in any form or medium whatsoever without the
permission of the copyright owner.

© www.etcases.com

A case based comparative analysis of project management
leadership styles

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Distributed by The Case Centre North America Rest of the world
www.thecasecentre.org t +1 781 239 5884 t +44 (0)1234 750903
All rights reserved e info.usa@thecasecentre.org e info@thecasecentre.orgcase centre

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people wanted to hear more about his experience, Dr. Banerjee said he would like to touch upon the
separate outcomes in the plants once he himself had analyzed them well enough. After bidding adieu
to everyone, while Dr. Banerjee was returning to his hotel room, something at the back of his mind
haunted him.

Sipping a cup of Espresso at the Charles De Gaulle Airport in France, while waiting for his flight Dr.
Banerjee pondered over the key factors in the project management style that made one plant’s IT
transformation and ERP implementation successful, even as another ended in disappointment. He
wanted to understand this well so that next time over he would be better equipped to identify any
lacunae at the very onset of the project, and the projects could be better controlled and improvised as
needed. He wondered how his experience of interacting with different project management managers,
their styles, leadership, challenges and situation handling could be accommodated in academics and be
made a part of learning in subjects of Information Technology and Project Management. To start the
process of putting his thoughts together, Dr. Banerjee decided to do a sneak-peek into each plant
manager’s way of working, who they were and what their strengths and weaknesses were; and then
compare among the three managers these attributes in order to identify what actually worked in
whose favor and why. With this methodology, Dr. Banerjee thought, he might come up with a
wishlist of project management leadership approach for such IT Transformation projects.

As the flight took off, Dr. Banerjee decided to put to good use the long flight to India by outlining
the attributes of all three plant managers separately, followed by drawing out a comparison among
them and doing a Strength-Weaknesses, analysis; and finally identifying the traits that may be the
recipe for success in such projects.

Dr. Banerjee started to do that for one plant at a time. He thought of penning down all factors which
he thought helped the transformation project succeed directly or indirectly. Dr. Banerjee was clear that
he would have to complete the stories of success (or failure) of the transformation projects individually
before drawing out comparisons among them.

The Manufacturing Plant in Nimes, France: Out of the three manufacturing plants in Europe, the
one in France was the smallest. Owing to the size of the plant, the manpower was limited. Although
the plant was manufacturing far more complex products compared to the Sweden and German plant
but due to its size and other circumstantial reasons the number of people serving the plant were less.
This was a big hurdle in executing IT projects which needed significant time and effort from almost
all key members. The plant manager Gerard was a young dynamic manager who had been at the helm
of affairs for four years now. He joined the company as apprentice and quickly moved up the ladder
to become the operations manager and then plant manager over 16 years. Due to shortage of staff
members, he received very little support for the project from the people at the plant, who were busy
with their daily routine work. The IT team in the organization was represented by just one person, a
challenge for which Gerard seemed to have no solution. As Dr. Banerjee highlighted these problems,
Gerard understood the problem and the serious consequences the project was headed towards. Gerard
quickly called for a staff meeting and identified each person’s role in the project as per their respective
areas of responsibility and skills. For IT tasks, he himself chipped in and was ready to learn with a
hands-on approach. There were few members who readily accepted the challenge and looked forward

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to meeting those, but there were some others who didn’t agree to accommodate with this extra work,
citing personal reasons.

But Gerard, who had maintained tremendous camaraderie with his team and was extremely easy
going, soon became successful in bringing the unwilling members together into the project. He hired
temporary employees, as subordinates to the already existing members who were unwilling to take on
additional work for the plant’s IT transformation and ERP implementation project. He asked the
previously reluctant employees to transfer all routine work, but decision making, to the temporary
employees to ease the extra burden on the former. He was empathetic towards his own people, but at
the same time he had an eye on the project timelines and its need. These steps did bring in some
success to the project.

Another major roadblock to success in the transformation project was data conversion where data
from an existing system was to be transferred to the new system. It was a critical task and there was no
one to do it. Neither did anyone from his team came forward to take it up nor did Mr Gerard have
the experienced of doing it. After discussing with Dr. Banerjee, Gerard decided to lead the data conversion
work, a massive task considering the scope of the project, but he was unfazed and pretty determined
make it a success. He spent long hours and had multiple discussions with Dr. Banerjee and his team
understanding what he needs to do and how he needs to do. Mr Gerard put in his best effort to
understand and execute the data conversion task. By taking the biggest challenge himself and leading
from front on most of the discussions, he was able to create an environment of cohesiveness and
compassion among his team mates.

With the help of Dr. Banerjee, Gerard was able to involve himself in the project with clearly defined
activities for himself and for his team members. Gerard would connect with his team on weekly basis
and take stock of the situation and follow up with them to monitor progress. During the solution
design process, he was an important cog in the wheel as he had complete understanding of the plant
process with all finer details. His capability to judge a situation, his skill to reinforce confidence
among his team, and the ability to bring everyone together helped him achieve the goal.

Cutover Process

Both the business team and IT team were involved in the cutover process. Together, they first discussed
about how to handle the cutover process. The IT team decided to split the cutover process into four
phases, and fixed the estimated time for all the phases. The first phase was the cutover data migration
process which was marked at around seven hours. The second phase was the preparation for smoke
test, a critical phase, was provided with five hours for the job. The third phase, the smoke test by lead
users, was allocated four hours. For the smoke test, the leads were involved in identifying the vital
areas to be tested (the ones that were feasible to be tested in the said time). The third phase was
considered a go/no-go check for entry into the fourth phase, which was dependent on the success of
the third phase. The fourth phase was when the transactional system was opened to all lead users to
use the new IT system for business process transactions, followed by all users.

Gerard made sure he set the expectations straight with his team, and told them to expect issues of all
kinds. He referred the plant’s transition as akin to a baby’s birth. He said, “It will be a happy moment,

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but expect issues. At the same time remember we have the best team of doctors available for us and we are
sure the baby will do well.” He reaffirmed that Dr. Banerjee and he had a very good team that had
spent a lot of time together to design a good system, which would turn out well. All users were asked
to report to their managers for any issues and managers were tasked to channelize issues to appropriate
members and resolve in the quickest possible time.

The cutover data migration process went fine. However, the second phase of preparation of smoke
test ran into rough weather. The allocated time of five hours didn’t work out and Dr. Banerjee informed
it was going to take more than 15 hours to catch up. But Gerard held his nerve. He gave time to Dr.
Banerjee’s team as well as to his own to recover. He asked his team to work late night and come back
early in the morning and provide every kind of possible support to the IT team in order to recover and
go live. He and his team rallied behind Dr. Banerjee’s IT team as a unified force and finally they went
live. It was a moment of joy for both teams as the ‘baby was born’!

Post Go Live Support Scenario

After the Go Live (Cutover to new system), Mr. Gerard threw a big party to celebrate it with his
team. He invited everyone directly involved with the project, and wholeheartedly appreciated their
efforts. He lauded the successful fulfillment of the function leads’ responsibilities, and asked the next
level reportees to step up and get involved in issue identification and resolution. Mr. Gerard then draw
out a strategy to share the learnings and ownerships of the IT system from Managers who were
directly involved in the transformation to their subordinates. He mandated the next level (like
supervisors, clerks, and operators) who were trained to get more learning (from their managers) and
become in charge of their area or department functions in the IT function. He started having a daily
follow-up meeting on issues with a clear mandate to his reportees that each of them would give an
update. Dr. Banerjee’s team was asked to provide update on issues with the IT team. Every issue had
a clear deadline and an action plan. There were times when everyone wanted to transfer to others issues
certain issues. Gerard made sure that every issue resolution bottom line rested with his team members
and they in turn had to follow up with IT team.

During the initial one month, logistics team got into major issues, and the logistics lead had a very
tough time managing customer deliverables. There were issues with the system, people’s learning as
well as process design to an extent. Dr. Banerjee had a long meeting with Gerard, discussed with him
the problems and providing a resolution timeframe and roadmap. As soon as Gerard understood the
situation as well as the roadmap, he met his own customers and apprised them of the situation: the
problems, how he is working around those to mitigate risks and the timeframe to come out of it. He
also held meetings with his own team members and asked them to be patient and work closely with
Dr. Banerjee’s team to come out of the problem. Gerard made sure there were no blame games or
passing around of responsibilities. As he was transparent with his customers, his team backed him and
worked with Dr. Banerjee along the path chosen.

During the Post Go Live stabilization phase, Gerard asked his team to identify business improvement
areas and priorities them. As there were quite a few of them he asked his team to prioritize based on
customer impact and monetary impact, and thus he was transparent and removed the chance of
undue favour to anyone.

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The Manufacturing plant in Gothenberg, Sweden

The plant in Gothenberg, Sweden was twice in size compared to the Nimes plant in France. The plant
produced both sub-assemblies (like joints) and driveshafts for its customer, and hence the business
process was much more complex. Some of the major customers of the plant were very demanding
due to their sheer dependence on the plant. The plant was led by Lucas Olsson. Lucas has joined the
company as its Plant Manager four years ago. He was hired from an auto manufacturing unit with a
massive 25 years of experience. He was very well qualified, with a management and engineering degree
but no IT transformation experience, and well regarded for his engineering skills in the plant. The
plant, due to its size and complexity, had more employees compared to Nimes plant.

Lucas Olsson, even as the the manager for the transformation project, decided to hire a part-time
project manager, Johan Popovic, to help him out. Lucas decided to adopt a hands-off way, vesting all
decision-making power on Johan. Lucas did this as he considered his other responsibilities (of that
being a plant manager) were of primary importance and had no bandwidth for this project. Johan
came to the project with some transformational experience, but how good it was for Dream Driveline
Corporations was yet to be seen.

The IT team in the organization was lean. When Dr. Banerjee pointed this out to Lucas Olsson, he
quickly passed on the issue to Johan to solve. Johan quickly jumped and offered himself as an additional
IT person. He was clear that this needs to be solved by him and not by others. Dr. Banerjee also
highlighted the problem of lack of people’s participation in the business process mapping and solution
consideration. Johan believed that this was due to the bandwidth of employees and offered himself to
help the project fill in gaps as and when required. As Johan was a part-time employee and a newcomer,
most of the employees didn’t even know him well. Slowly Lucas assured all function leads that Johan,
due to his transformational experience, can fill up as a project manager as well as a business function
lead. This led to a situation that rendered most of the business function leads uninterested in the
project.

Johan was new and lacked depth in understanding of the process, leading to desynchronized solutions.
Also, the process map being developed lacked future perspective, something that only function leads
could provide. Johan started lagging behind in all his activities as he couldn’t dedicate time and attention
to the many things as he was into. He was seeking clarification from function leads as and when
required, but the information was distorted as leads were not clear on the overall approach. This was
leading to a skewed and distorted solution development. Since Johan was not the function lead, to
him every requirement was of high importance and there was no prioritization. He believed data
conversion (enterprise data) was System Group’s (IT team) responsibility and he himself decided to
remain completely out of it. Not only did Johan lack camaraderie with the team, he also lacked a
rapport with the function leads, which is normally difficult to develop in a short span. These two
softer issues were going against Johan as well as against the project.

Dr. Banerjee understood these problems and the disastrous results it might lead to, for the transformation
project. He asked Lucas to setup a daily meeting to bring all stakeholders from the business function
onto the same page. Lucas did so, but the daily meetings were held among the factory members while
the IT Team (Systems Group) members were kept out and Mr. Lucas himself was not driving these

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meetings. The style of working of Johan was more authoritative than collaborative. He believed in
passing on requirements for a solution rather than working out a solution. When Dr. Banerjee
highlighted these problems, Lucas didn’t give a heed to these observations as he believed Johan was
doing the right thing in the interest of the team. With most of the function leads out of sync, with
solutions missing the critical links and data conversion completely out of synch with solution and
struggling, the transformation project was in trouble.

User Acceptance Testing: The user acceptance test was held, with Johan leading the testing. He
himself tested most of the function (while it should have been the function leads doing it) and he
invited the function leads to demonstrate the system. The demo was disastrous. The function leads
complained the process shown was far from being complete and lacked depth, and with many key
requirements were missing. The correctness of data used for testing was nowhere near to what the
leads expected. With the user testing, started the training. As only Johan was mostly involved in the
solution development, he started training the end users. The training became a requirement-gathering
session, as users started giving new requirements when they saw the system for first time. Thus, came
a situation where, at the end of User Acceptance Testing, there were new requirements which needed
to be mapped in the system, tested and made ready for Go Live. Though it was easy to pass the blame
on Johan, Dr. Banerjee decided to work out a solution for the situation.

Go Live Postponement: Dr.

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