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Steele Enterprises MJSmith

Steele Industries Case Study Analysis, Mary Jo Smith
I. Problems
A. Macro:
1.The confusion over role responsibilities, causing conflict between the branches, will
ultimately result in loss of customers and sales.
2. The lack of team cohesiveness and development.
B. Micro:
1. No adherence to lines of authority (Dick ignored the direction from his boss, Gene, that
Donna and her staff were to run the event).
2. The Public Relations Director, Gene, seems unsure about his role and the direction he
should take as a leader of the two branches.
II. Causes
1.There is no clear definition of roles in the organizational structure.
2. The company is not specific enough about which branch should work with which
companies, so the employees in each branch lack direction.
3. The two branches are working independently of each other, and not considering the big
III. Systems affected
1. Customer relations - customers will lose trust if the company cannot clearly define which
branch will work with which companies. This will result in decreasing sales.
2. Human Resources – without a system for individual and team development employees will
become disengaged. With internal conflict the morale will decrease, resulting in turnover.
3. Organizational structure – without clear lines of management influence and communication
the two divisions will not work together.
IV. Alternatives
Bringing in an organizational development consultant would be one solution. A neutral third
party may be of benefit to analyze the overall structure and bring alignment within the two
branches in order to achieve the company goals. Maybe the 2 branches should not have been
split – bringing them together again may be an option.
Another solution would be for the Public Relations Director to meet with the two branch
directors and reaffirm the management levels, lines of communication, and their responsibilities.
The two directors could be tasked with coming up with solutions on how to resolve their conflict,
and how their teams can work together. Team building activities and regular meetings with clear
objectives should be established.
The transfer of anyone out of their role in order to solve the problem would be disruptive and
may send a negative message to employees. The best message would be for the two to work out
their differences openly and get their teams involved.
V. Recommendations
My recommendation would be to first reevaluate the split of the two divisions. I would bring in
an organizational development professional to help with this assessment. It may be determined
this is still the best path for the company, but that clear lines of authority and work streams need
to be established between the two divisions. The two public relations directors should be part of
the process. With some facilitation, the two teams can work together to figure out how they will
work better together and align around their mutual goals in the best interest of the company. The
goals should be communicated clearly and on a regular basis by the Manager and Western Area
Public Relations Director. I would also recommend some management training for the leaders of
the compan