NORTHWEST SECURITY SERVICES Harvard Case Solution & Analysis



The case study reveals the issues and challenges that the owners and management of the Northwest Security Services are facing in terms of the future strategy and options of the business. Northwest Security Services is a security products provider to the customers in the markets where it operates and the product portfolio of the organization ranges from intrusion, access control, fire and video surveillance equipment.

It was founded in the early 1940 s by Ernest Wilson and the business has progressed with great leaps since then along with the transition in the management among the preceding generations of the owner of the company. The business today faces some critical questions regarding the future strategy and policies by the current family owners and management of the business. There are numerous issues and questions for the management of the organization regarding the under performance of some family members, asset diversification; bring new family members in the company, adopting an external advisory board of non-family members and many other issues and questions likewise.

Question 1: Evaluate Bob’s process for establishing the NSS advisory board.  What could be improved?


The establishment and introduction of advisory board among the business structure by the present chairman of the company, Bob, is an exceptional and positive move which will likely supplement the strategies and operations of the business positively. The inclusion of the roles among the advisory board like the marketing, finance and distinguishing/segregation of roles and responsibilities will likely improve the performance and the efficiency of the operations of the organization.

The inclusion of a female member in the advisory board of the organization is also an exceptional decision of Bob as it will likely assist the management of the organization in understanding the female side of concerns regarding the products that the company offers in the markets to the customers.

The female member of the board will also be helpful in assisting and motivating female members of the organization in joining and understanding the operations and work environment of the company considerably well.


The evaluation of the advisory board simply illustrates that it is an effective platform and will likely contribute towards the operations of the company positively however, there is still some confusion with in the business culture to some extent due to the absence of a comprehensive code of conduct and regulations that may guide the advisory team and the employees of the company as a whole.

Another issue for the management of the business is the absence of legal advisor or department for the management of the company, which is critical for the company because as the company physically expands and diversifies its operations into other markets and regions, it will likely need legal assistance frequently.

 Question 2: Who should set dividends in order to avoid conflicts of interest?


The board of directors of an organization comprises of the responsible individuals for setting the dividends policy in an organization and therefore it is their responsibility to negate the possibility and chances of conflict of interests while developing and adopting such policy with in the organizational culture and operations...................

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