This is a case analysis paper. Times New Roman 12 point font. The following sections should be included in the written analysis:
• Identification and discussion of significance of problem/opportunity for the company
• Identification and evaluation (pros/cons) of alternative solutions the company could take
• Selection and justification of your team´s chosen solution. It should be justified using case information, course readings or outside research.
• Detailed, step-by-step action plan of how the solution will be implemented
Case Study: Henry Tam and the MGI Team
Music Games International (MGI) is a start-up company that targets to sell interactive music products in the United States. Despite having a creative idea, MGI faces a multitude of issues, including the lack of a business plan to help the three co-founders steer the venture into commercial success. In response to the problem, MGI contacted two HBS students, Henry and Dana, to assist with the development of a business plan, as partial fulfillment of the latter’s participation in the business plan contest, and a vehicle to future entrepreneurship opportunities. Also, the venture included, Dav and Alex in the MGI team to assist with the technical and business aspects of the idea, respectively. Despite having a diverse pool of individuals that are committed to ensuring the success of the entity, MGI’s team faces communication issues and lack of coordination among members. The challenges can be solved through reducing the number of members, establishing clear goals, and proper delegation of responsibilities to enhance the success of creating a coherent business plan.
Identification and Significance of the problem
Although MGI has a creative business idea, it faces communication issues and lack of proper coordination among its members. Notably, some members fail to seek their colleague’s opinion before making critical decisions that have a significant effect on the team. For example, Sasha did not consult the rest of the group before recruiting Dav into the team. As a result, some members developed some negative perceptions about the real intentions of Dav’s entry. This entry may have affected their performance in some ways and created a lag in designing of the business plan.
Furthermore, the company appears to be facing an issue of coordination among its members. For example, since the MGI team began meeting, the firm has not made significant steps to achieve the initially established goals. As noted by Henry, less than three weeks to the contest deadline, the company had not put together a coherent business plan (Polzer et al 13). Lack of proper coordination among the members is seemingly a major problem affecting MGI.
Lack of proper coordination and communication among members of MGI is of significance since it has a considerable adverse impact on the venture’s success. Notably, failure to correct the two aspects may lead to further delays in the creation of the company’s business plan. Besides, the highlighted issues may primarily affect the firm’s long-term success as it may not have a clear business plan to present to investors to obtain resources to finance production and marketing activities.
Pros and Cons of Alternative Solutions MGI Could Take
There are several solutions that MGI could take to solve the identified problem, among them, reducing its capacity of members. As revealed in the case scenario, the team constitutes several participants with differing views, which makes it difficult for the company to arrive at a consensus on the approach of the business plan. While this solution could help fasten the decision making process, it could inhibit the firm’s ability to establish a realistic, and broad business plan, as a few people with limited skills and knowledge would be involved in the activity.
The second alternative could be scrapping off the existing structure and establishing a clear goal and delegating duties among members. This solution could help the MGI members understand the objective of the meetings to avoid deviations that could lead to time wastage and ensure that each person is aware of their responsibilities in the sessions to prevent overwhelming specific individuals. However, while this solution could help reduce time wastage, it would create interpersonal conflicts, as some members are only viewed as interns rather than leaders and facilitators in the company.
The ideal solution would be the establishment of clear organizational goals and delegation of responsibilities based on the nature of the problem facing the MGI company. As noted, the most significant issue facing the venture is the lack of consensus and organization among members, leading to an increase in the period required to develop a coherent business plan (Polzer et al 13). Furthermore, there lacks clarity on the roles of each participant, which appears to affect the progress of the project, as very few individuals are burdened with several activities required to foster the creation of the business plan. As such, it would be essential to develop a clear goal and delegate duties and responsibilities to ensure that each member adheres to the primary objectives of the meetings, and every individual undertakes a role in the current project.
The proposed solution will only succeed if it is implemented strategically. The first step to ensure the success of the solution is to hold pre-meetings before the actual team meetings to highlight specific plans that will be addressed by the group. This step will help ensure that members do not deviate from the main objective of the meeting, and consequently save time that may have been consumed by brainstorming several agendas. The second step will entail seeking stakeholder buy-in. This step will involve consulting and evaluating each MGI member’s opinion about the individuals that should assume various roles in the company. Stakeholder buy-in will help ensure that there exists a consensus on major issues that may otherwise delay the process of business planning.
Polzer, Jeffrey, et al. “Henry Tam and the MGI Team.” Harvard Business School Case 404-068, October 2003.