Project #77035 - MGT assignment

You are an OB consultant and have been hired by X Corporation to help the firm understand what is happening in X Corporation’s sales department.  The Sales Director, Mrs. Jones, has noticed that sales increased dramatically in the last quarter but customer satisfaction is declining at an alarming rate.  She has been receiving many angry calls from customers and fears that if customer satisfaction continues to decline, sales will also start a downward trend.  Mrs. Jones has asked you to visit X Corporation and collect information through observation and interviews with the sales manager and members of the sales team.  She has given you one week and then expects an analysis of the problem(s) and recommendations for how to solve the problem(s). 

In your fact-finding mission, you observe the sales team engaging in the following unethical practices: misrepresenting products to close deals with new customers, hiding contract commitment disclosures when closing deals with new customers, and not informing current customers of price increases.  In your interviews with the sales team, the salespeople tell you they do these things because their manager, Mr. Smith, has made it clear that if they want to keep their jobs then they must meet their sales quotas.  Last year, the five-person team was expected to reach the goal of $1M in sales per quarter.  This year, the goal was changed and now each individual is expected to hit $300,000 per quarter.  The sales team members talk about how they used to work well together, but now the sales team members are hiding information from one another, stealing customers and sabotaging deals.

You interview Mr. Smith, the manager of the sales department.  You discover he is taking classes in an evening MBA program.  Mr. Smith tells you that he read about the value of stretch goals in his Management course and he decided to implement the new sales targets as a way to motivate his sales team.  He told you he also believes in teamwork and wants the salespeople to share information and help each other achieve the sales targets.  He says his own personal career goal is to be promoted to Sales Director when Mrs. Jones announces her retirement next year, and a member of the Board told him a dramatic increase in sales would help his chances of promotion.  You tell him you have seen his sales force engaging in unethical behavior and he argues that is not possible because the sales team is required to attend ten hours of ethics training each year.

Using your expert analytical skills, write a summary of the problem(s) facing the sales department at X Corporation.  Then, provide five recommendations for how to resolve the problem(s).  Use support from OB research and theory to support your analysis and recommendations, particularly utilizing the articles “On the Folly of Rewarding A, While Hoping for B”, “Goals Gone Wild: The Systematic Side Effects of Overprescribing Goal Setting”, and “Managing to Be Ethical: Debunking Five Business Ethics Myths”. (Exact quotes are not necessary.)

Subject Business
Due By (Pacific Time) 07/22/2015 12:00 am
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