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BoldFlash Cross Functional Challenges in the Mobile Division Case Solution
The case illustrates the challenges of the Bold Flash Mobile division where Roger Cahill is appointed as a new Vice president. The division took bold steps by adapting to dynamic challenging business; however, the mobile division is struggling to sustain its position in the market. The four functional departments of the Mobile division refused to cooperate which leads to missing a golden opportunity in new product development. The newly appointed president tried to make significant changes at the organizational and personnel levels to address the issue.
However, the pressure is evident to counter the next challenge which links to the reformation of the product development process to increase employee morale and profitability. The changes made by Cahill were essential but they created more conflict within division due to ethnic differences. Cahill who is a scientist in the profession is more open and friendly to take interest in matters but this new role as a leader is not so appreciable for employees as they failed to understand the leading style of Cahill. The overall case concludes on this page that cultural change is important within the organization as it will provide new direction to employees and they will be able to understand the significance of communication which is necessary to achieve the company’s vision.
Following questions are answered in this case study solution
- What are the main problems that the Mobile division is experiencing?
- How do the conflicting performance metrics of each group contribute to the problems?
- What is it about the current organization design and product development process that fosters the problems of coordination we see in the case?
- How does the division’s culture play a role in the discord? What has shaped this culture?
- What is the role of the business head, Cahill, in leading change?
- Should one particular group (marketing, manufacturing, etc.) or individual bear more of the responsibility than any other for fostering cross-functional coordination? Why or why not?
- To what extent is Cahill the cause of the problems? What about his predecessor, Jim Harrison?
- Were all of Cahill’s changes necessary?
- Did he do too much all at once? Or, Not enough?
- Is Cahill’s self-assessment accurate – that he is a researcher, not a leader?
- If you believe that the changes Cahill made are insufficient, what additional changes would you make?
- How would you improve the organization’s design to enable better coordination and collaboration between functions? Are people changes needed to enable the new design to be effective?
- How would you improve the product development process?
Case Analysis for BoldFlash Cross Functional Challenges in the Mobile Division
1. What are the main problems that the Mobile division is experiencing?
How do the conflicting performance metrics of each group contribute to the problems?
What is it about the current organization design and product development process that fosters the problems of coordination we see in the case?
There were several problems that the Bold Flash Mobile division was experiencing. Firstly, the Mobile segment is suffering due to low margins, high-pressure costs, and strong competitors Cahill, the newly appointed Vice President identified futile conflicts that happened to occur between functional departments, especially the product development process. However, when closely analysed, it was revealed that the root cause of the problems was poor management and the lack of communication between employees and department functions. The manufacturing department was not performing well and was struggling with teamwork. Also, the process of product development was dysfunctional according to Cahill. The department did not interact with each other divisions, resultantly, the sales, production, and marketing divisions never consulted.
The marketing division was also struggling due to undefined and vague roles and duties that created issues to understand the environment. Additionally, the absence of experienced specialists in the marketing department also created serious trouble to understand the environment. The marketing department also struggles in findings clients which leads to sluggish growth in sales. It is also observed that the corporate culture of the company was equally a culprit as it was not aligned with corporate goals and distracted the divisions from the outcomes. Cahill also observed issues in the predecessor’s leadership style which might happen to be the reason for these conflicts. Also, it is observed that lack of communication is due to the low morale of employees.
How does the division’s culture play a role in the discord? What has shaped this culture?
What is the role of the business head, Cahill, in leading change?
The company’s inability to understand the needs of the market and customers aroused many challenges within departments. The missing opportunity in the tablet market caused distress among employees. Although Bold Flash tried to maintain it through the development of chips for the tablet market due to communication gaps and internal conflicts, the company had missed the critical market in storage devices. The failed corporate culture and internal competition among functional departments made the situation more complex. Cahill, when sensed the issue, tried to combat the problems but was unable to manage the situation as he was a scientist, not a leader. He indeed had remarkable analytical skills but the dilemma was out of his hand. He tried to bring change by shuffling employees to create bonds however, it created rivalry instead. He also made organizational as well as personnel adjustments to address the issue.
2. Should one particular group (marketing, manufacturing, etc.) or individual bear more of the responsibility than any other for fostering cross-functional coordination? Why or why not?
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