Sturdivant Electric Corporation Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Introduction 

Stardivant is a large manufacturer of electrical equipment for industry, the armed services, and the consumer. The industrial electronics division specialized in radar and all types of communications equipment. One of the subdivisions of this operation was engaged in the development of missile guidance equipment. This group had a field test facility at the U.S. government’s Special Weapons Test Center in Florida.

Eden, Bill (Computer project engineer), Al Abrams (Chief programmer), and Fred Smith were assigned to the project at this facility whereby the computer has been subcontracted to supply it to the armed forces. The task of the team was to install and develop the software for the computer system.

This project was facing problems due to the clash of Eden, Bill and AL Abram. Eden was pressurizing Abram to complete the project as soon as possible by asking him about the progress of the project continuously which frustrated Abram. Moreover, Eden objected to the specifications of the operating which Abram as they did not match the specifications given by the government. This made him furious to the extent that he threatened to leave the organization at the crucial stage of the project.

The main problem was created for Harris, Jordan, who did not have any direct authority over them as he was a supervisor but he was charged with the responsibility to ensure the completion of the project on time. Therefore, he was trying his best to cool both the parties and get the work done.

Identify the behaviors of the 3 main actors in the case, Eden, Abrams, Johnson that contributed to the conflicts and problems described in the case?

Bill Eden

He wants to meet the target to supply the computer to the armed forces with the required specifications. Therefore, he wants to achieve the target on time.As a supervisor of the Alabram, he used to ask about the progress of the development of the operating system with detailed analysis about the progress on the work. He seems not to believe Al Abram about the progress at work as Alabram was unable to provide him any detailed report about the world.

Sturdivant Electric Corporation Case Solution

He also seems to be suspiciousabout the efforts of Alabram. For instance, he once asked
Him to submit the details of the progress. Al Abram informed him that the work performed were not in the form that would help him to evaluate it. In spite of giving time to Abram to make a meaningful report, he insisted to provide the report. Due to the tight deadlines, he wanted Abram to work faster, morethan the capacity he has.

He seems to care only about his job and is not concerned about its effects on subordinates He does not seem to understand the problems faced by Abram when he was interrupted while he is doing his work on the  computer because the contractor’s personnel wants to work on it. He should have negotiated with the contractor’s personnel about the schedule of time Abram should work on it every day and the time contractor’s personnel should work.

As Abram is the only person who had taken the entire training program at the computer manufacturer school, he should respect his knowledge and allow him leverage in handling his part himself. Moreover,he does not seem to involve his subordinates in the process. For instance, he does not take Abram in confidence when he scheduled on Saturday

Al Abram

He is unable to handle the pressure at work and the way it was conducted. He does not like to get interrupted while he is doing his work. He likes to work at his own pace. He does not consider Eden as his boss. It may be because he has more knowledge than him regarding the work on the operating system.  Therefore, he rejectedthe proposal of Eden that the operating system would not meet the specificationsrequired by the government.

He is also annoyed with the leadership skills of Eden. As a Chief programmer, he wants to be involved in decisions which affect this computer’s project, therefore he gets angry at times when Eden used to ask about the progress of the report.

He also seems not to listen to anyone when he has made up his mind on any issue. For instance, when Eden asked about the name of the programmer once, he got angry because he thought that the management wanted to replace him.........................

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