Flexibility at Genentech Harvard Case Solution & Analysis


Genentech is an acquired firm by Roche in 2009. It is a biotechnology firm which discovers, manufactures and commercialize medicines in order to treat patients with serious problems. It operates in five medical areas which includes oncology, immunology, metabolism, neuroscience and infectious diseases. As the company was lacking in cardiovascular diseases and won’t creating any benefit for customers, therefore, a decision was made to introduce a new medical unit in order to provide right treatment for the patients.

The program of inventing anew medical unit results in terminating old programs which were being developed at Genentech. As there were many scientific experienced and professionals were working, however, with advanced training, these scientists had become expert in their fields. Consequently, the termination of program had resulted in shrinkage of medical unit much as some employees were left and some were trying to get adjusted in new place.

A new model is being designed in order to deal with program terminations and make other changes in the organization in a better and flexible way. The company kept its main aim, which is to develop medicines for medicines for patients like for their own families and own selves. Moreover, risks such as uncertainty was also concerned with the new model therefore, it was advised to the people to be ready and aware of it.

Flexibility at Genentech Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

The unique values that were being used at new medical unit would be ASPIRE with flexibility, which stands for agility, spirited, partnership, innovative thinking, resilience and partnership. Moreover, a collaborative approach was used by the company in order to achieve the team goal. It was also observed that new medical unit team that despite of one leader in a team, therewere many leaders’and was considered as a team of leaders.

The challenges that were being faced by the company, mainly the leader of new medical unit consists of maintaining the flexibility culture, as it would be very difficult to continue it in a long term. Moreover, it would be very difficult for the leader to demonstrate the benefits of flexibility in front of highly experienced scientists

SWOT analysis


The strengths that has been possessed by the company are as follows:

  • The skills and experience of the new team is a basic and most important strength of the team.
  • The training of the team in all specifications woud be highly beneficial a t would increase the flexibility of the employee’s skills.


  • The training for all employees would be very expensive for the company as they are not highly financial strong


  • The flexibility model andteam would be highly opportunistic for creating different medicines. Moreover, the termination would not cause demotivation
  • External collaboration would help the company to achieve growth and success. Moreover, it would increase the company’s exposure.


  • The continuity of flexible model would be very difficult for the company in the long term, when new employees would be hired.
  • The model is highly risky and contain uncertainties


Porter’s five forces

Implementation of porter’s five forces on the medical industry is as follows

  • The industry possesslow bargaining power for buyers as they have no choice in order to make medical purchase. The prescribed treatment has to be purchased by the buyer, which is the patient
  • On the other hand, it possess high bargaining power for suppliers as the suppliers such as pharmaceutical firms are limited
  • Low threat of substitute as this industry is limited n every patient is prescribed to take specific medicine, therefore, substitute could not be used by the user.
  • Low threat of new entrants as the medicine is given to patient according to their need. Increase in medicine firms would be beneficial to all over the industry
  • Industry rivals would be higher as the competition among companies for making better medicine is increasing.


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