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Becton Dickinson Worldwide Blood Collection Team Case Solution
BDVS faced multiple issues at the start. There was a lack of communication and where communication did exist, different departments failed to implement those strategies as they were coming from managers that were located in different countries. This was harmful to BDVS and they faced a loss as well due to this. However, they managed to come up with the WBCT which aimed to encourage idea sharing and communication within the firm. Although it was not successful at first, Kozy was able to reform the firm and team to ensure that everything was in line. All in all, employees and managers need to be aligned with what the organization aims to achieve and they should all be aware of their roles. This is what led to their success and what improved their operations.
Following questions are answered in this case study solution:
Why was the Worldwide Blood Collection Team (WBCT) necessary? What problems existed in Becton Dickinson Vacutainer Systems (BDVS) division that could not be solved by more traditional means?
Why did the team struggle for so long? What was the key to its eventually becoming effective?
What was your evaluation of the WBCT in 1990/91 after the launch of the Hemogard and Plus Tube and the Worldwide Profiling Tour? Is the team structured appropriately (membership, responsibilities, process, etc.)? Is it managing its task effectively (new product intros, strategy, best practice, etc.)?
What recommendations would you give to Kozy on the issues he raises at the end of the case?
In case study of "Becton Dickinson: Worldwide Blood Collection Team" based on your assumptions, please suggest:
A. Weather the firm implements a global or mutli-domestic strategy?
B. What type of competitive strategies does the firm implemented?
C. What type of collaborative strategies does the firm implemented?
Case Study Questions Answers
1. Why was the Worldwide Blood Collection Team (WBCT) necessary? What problems existed in Becton Dickinson Vacutainer Systems (BDVS) division that could not be solved by more traditional means?
In 1980, the market in Europe began to grow and senior executives at BD deemed it an attractive opportunity. However, this also meant that competitors became more invested in Europe. So, competition increased which meant that BDVS had to achieve uniform costs and set quality standards. To carry this out effectively, they worked on the concept of SBU and applied it to Europe as well, creating European SBUs. The leader of each European SBU was titled president and this position was higher than the country manager. Executives tried to train European managers, but they did not see progress because European managers were constantly adapting to new models.
Country managers felt like their roles had diminished and their voice wasn’t heard in multiple departments where they previously used to contribute. This led to differences arising between the plans that US managers had developed vs the ones that non-US manager had developed. During FY 1983-1984, BD Europe reported a loss and senior managers felt that the reason was used to the conflicts that were developing during different organizational units and they would have to identify some way to end this conflict.
So, they met a Harvard professor who suggested 3 core findings. First was that companies need to be efficient globally, be responsive, innovative, and can learn. The second was that they needed multi-layered strategic capability and the third was to focus on management culture and values and relationships within the organization. The conferences in 1986 and 1987 were based on transnational concepts. Managers were exposed to this idea, and they analysed how it impacted their businesses they also realized that they would have to come up with multiple sources of multiple advantages which would require strong management capabilities. They would have discussions over how to run their processes and this required a forum. So, this led to the development of worldwide teams.
Soon, the managers of the HEMOGARD and PLUS TUBE projects were facing confusion. This confusion was due to the lack of action from US R&D. The European division would put ideas forward, however, the US R&D would not put them into action due to multiple reasons. The Japanese also felt the same way and they struggled with uncertain supplies and poor quality. So, to deal with this, BD came up with the Worldwide Blood collection team in 1986.
2. Why did the team struggle for so long? What was the key to its eventually becoming effective?
The team was limited by two factors. Firstly, worldwide plans came under US divisions’ processes. This meant that people belonging to other countries were not involved. Moreover, only a limited number of non-US managers had been trained in the strategic planning system. This meant that members of the team would only discuss ideas and not work on them. Non-US managers had very little say and both HEMOGARD and PLUS TUBE’s success was dependent on how well they could convince the US managers.
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