Strategic Alliance Answers

Strategic Alliance Answers - Case Discussion: Best Practice...

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This edition is intended for use outside of the U.S. only, with content that may be different from the U.S. Edition. This may not be resold, copied, or distributed without the prior consent of the publisher. 1 Case Discussion: Best Practice - Whirlpool Corporation and Inland Steel This case provides students with a process map to illustrate exactly what it takes to create a true strategic alliance. Although strategic alliances are often presented as ideal situations in the popular business press, in reality, they require a lot of effort, hard work, patience, and dedication to make them successful. The press also never reports on key strategic alliances that fail, as many do. This case is based on presentations made by two executives from the two companies, and has been used in class to aid students in understanding the mechanics of strategic alliance development. Assignment The following questions relate to ideas and concepts presented throughout this book. Answer some, or all, of the questions depending on the student's progress in covering the following chapters. 1. Discuss what the following statement means: “It can take years for a buyer/seller partnership to begin delivering results.” This statement refers to the fact that alliances take time to develop, and that parties that expect short-term returns are unlikely to have a successful strategic alliance experience. Moreover, alliance development is really a series of steps that have to be followed. This can be illustrated by creating a process map with students, which shows what the companies did at each stage of the process. One possible process map is shown on the following page. The process map may look slightly different, depending on the points that students make in analyzing the process. However, the key point to bring out is that supplier alliances do not just happen, they require a series of steps that in some cases take many months or even years to carry out. 2. Discuss the advantages of having point-to-point contact (Figure 1) between functional groups at different companies. Are there any disadvantages to this approach? Point-to-point contact can create both advantages and disadvantages. One big advantage is that individuals work more closely together to share information, which promotes improvements in the supply chain. For instance, engineers speaking to one another may be able to discuss a technical issue without having to relay it through a sales and purchasing person (where the message may not be communicated clearly, due to a lack of
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This edition is intended for use outside of the U.S. only, with content that may be different from the U.S. Edition. This may not be resold, copied, or distributed without the prior consent of the publisher. 2
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Strategic Alliance Answers - Case Discussion: Best Practice...

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