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INITIATING CHANGE IN THE MANUFACTURING DIVISION OF POLYPROD CASE By: Martin Pirgiotis Leading Organizational Improvement Professor Thad Barnowe Introduction: Roberta Jackson, the concerned, experienced first-level project manager who works for the headquarters site of the manufacturing and distribution division of Polyprod is trying to improve the current information management practices. She realizes that it will not be an easy job. Failing to do so would in the future cost Polyprod millions of dollars in direct expenses and could contribute to long-term market share declines in Polyprod products. The task is to change the documentation processes and procedures. The obstacles are the company’s resistance to change, trust issues and culture issues. This will be clarified further in the following paragraphs. Problem statement/Diagnosis: As with every organization, creating change in the procedures of a business is always a hard task. Due to the size of the company, the number of people, different believes and personalities, creating change can be a difficult task. The main problem with Polyprod is that it is a big organization that has existed for 11 years. The organization has experienced a fast growth during its 11 years and the main focus lies with increased speed, intricacy, and expense of the unique high-volume automated manufacturing processes that produce the products. With exponential increase in locations, sales, capital equipment, product lines and personnel support systems such as the information and
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knowledge management system, the system has struggled to keep up with the growth. Furthermore, the company has also hired temporary and inexperienced personnel which has also contributed to the problem. It has created an issue where its hard to maintain the culture of the organization. Another problem is that over the last several years, friction between headquarters and the different locations has begun to increase. The locations are saying that their HQ have demanding attitudes and are patronizing them, while HQ dislikes the fierce and sometimes unnecessary individualism of those locations. This is due to HQ having a subtle but strong resistance to change. This is especially true when people are trying to change something that includes synchronizing all the locations when it comes to a single process or technology. In the past, attempts to create change have been doomed to failure. They (HQ) simply believe that it is too risky.
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This note was uploaded on 02/12/2012 for the course MBA 551 taught by Professor Smith during the Spring '11 term at Indiana Wesleyan.

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