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Case Summary 3

Context 3

Problem identification 4

List of factors affecting the case 5

Concepts involved 5

Possible outcomes 6

Key factors affecting the case 7

Recommended action plan 7


o Jensen shoes, a trendsetter and a market leader in production and sales of high
quality athletic and casual footwear for children and adults, was established in
1953 in the United States, by Kenneth Jensen.
o The organization was both customer oriented and employees centric, driving
business worldwide with its 4500 strong and happy workforces.
o The organization boasted of high employees’ satisfaction and a happy work place.
However gradually several issues pertaining to employees’ sensitivity started
cropping up.
o This case revolves around a series of conversation and events between Jane
Kravitz, strategic product manager and Lyndon Brooks, one of the team members
of Jane, that brought out the conflicts and subsequent possible scenarios.


o However, with passage of time, the company identified that the sales in casual
wear segment had started to flatten, thus making it necessary for product
diversification, new segment exploration and devising plans for long term
business viability.
o Thus, Sally Briggs, VP of marketing, asked Chuck Taylor, director of strategic
marketing, to develop a comprehensive plan for long term business feasibility.
o Taylor in turn assigned the responsibility to three Strategic Product managers
namely Kyle Hudson for athletic shoes, Robert Murphy for children’s shoes and
finally Jane Kravitz for marketing of casual wear in vertical markets like Latino,
African American, mature, college, pre-teens, men and women.
o Jane Kravitz further distributed and assigned the responsibility among her team
that mainly comprised of Lyndon Brooks, Larry Bunton and Cheryl Abbot.
o Lyndon Brooks was assigned Latino and African American markets, Larry
Bunton for college and men’s market and Cheryl Abbot for pre-teen and women’s


o Being skeptical and concerned about Brook’s readiness and willingness to work
and complete the plans for Latino and African American markets before the
deadline, Jane approached Patty Russel, an HR professional, to discuss the matter.


o Worried about his own career opportunities and possible career growth in the
company along with deteriorating trust and relationship with Chuck and Jane,
Brooks approached Mitch Lawson, VP of operations, to discuss the matter.

Q1. Identification of issue / objective / problem in the case as relevant to topic.

 Attitude
After restructuring of the Organization, Brooks attitude towards his Job changed. He
always had leadership roles and in his new role he had to report to Jane which he did
not like. He was an African-American and when he was assigned to the African-
American market, he thought was being stereotyped, resulted in a negative impact on

 Job Satisfaction
Brooks never got recognition for his work and according to Chuck, he also had issues
working with his team. Brooks also had a complain regarding the budget allocation,
he thought his team got the budget cut. When the restructuring of the organization
happened he was assigned with a new project where he was supposed to report to Jane
and was also not allowed to bring his team along with him. He worked on a special
project named as Environmental Consumer Buying trends which was of top quality
according to Jane but was side-lined by others. This further demotivated him and lead
to his dissatisfaction with his job and his company.

 Perception

o Chuck’s perception of Brooks

Chuck believed that Brooks is inefficient since he could not meet his deadlines. He
was less enthusiastic while introducing Brooks to Jane. He considered that Brooks did
not have team spirit.

o Jane’s perception of Brooks

Jane considered Brooks to be very Professional but after meeting with Chuck her
perception changed. Since, Brooks was not happy with his new role and showed
discontent she thought that he was not interested in the new work assigned to him.
She considered that he needed a little motivation to drive him towards his goal.

o Brooks’ perception of Company

He found that he was overburdened in his new work. After getting the project on
African-American market he thought that he was being stereotyped. He believed that
Jane was more focused on getting her work done rather than listening to his point of
view and so he felt he could not trust anyone in his company and also started doubting
his capabilities.

Q2. Identification of external and internal factors which affect the problem.

Internal Factors:
Lyndon Brooks’ point of view:

o Perception that he had be demoted. Being a Ph.D. holder, he was tasked to work
under the leadership of Jane.
o He wanted to have good profile and work on projects of his choice. He was not a
good team player and wanted to have a leadership role.
o Lack of motivation due to unfavourable situation.

Jane Kravitz’ point of view:

o Overburdening herself with the view that being a woman, she had to prove her
worth as a supervisor.
o Fear that she would not be able to meet the deadline for completion the strategic
performance objectives within the stipulated time.

External Factors:
o Distribution of work across team did not involve all the stakeholders.
o Diligent process was not followed while restructuring the organization. Brooks’
team was divided amongst other managers without his prior knowledge.
o Chuck Taylor breathing down Jane Kravitz’s neck for completion of strategic
performance objectives within time which led to Kravitz go overboard with Brooks.
o Misconceptions and misunderstanding resulting in lack of trust.
o Chuck Taylor was being judgemental.

Q3. Using concepts primarily related to the topic to reach at a solution or decision in the

The following concepts will result in effective streamlining the work culture and will
result in all team members work in an efficient manner to reach collective targets and

Proper Communication:
o There should be proper communication between Brooks, Kravitz and Chuck
without hurting sentiments. Brooks should be communicated properly regarding the
priority of the s.o.’s, keeping the special project on hold.
o Involvement of Patty Russell (HR) to solve personal conflicts and provide unbiased
solution so that the s.o’s are not affected.

Leadership and Management Style:

o Prior to assignment of tasks, Kravitz should hold a meeting with all her team mates
and allocate tasks as per their strengths.
o Brooks should be consulted before assigning him African American market, which
he did not have expertise in.

Expectations and perspectives:

o Expectations from the employees should be clearly meted out. In this way Jane and
Chuck could motivate Brooks to achieve his priority targets s.o’s successfully.
o Brooks’ expectations from Chuck and Jane should be in sync with each other.

Proper Feedback and Motivation:

o Kravitz should give a timely feedback to Brooks rather than micromanaging his day
to day activities.

o She should ask Chuck to appreciate Brooks’ achievements on the environmental
o Team should be motivated so that they have a sense of responsibility towards the
tasks at hand and their self-worth is not compromised.

Positive reinforcement:
o Negative feedback is necessary, but care should be taken to give it in such manner
that it turns out to be positive and not personal.
o Positive reinforcement like suitable team along with a comprehensive plan should
be given to Brooks to further boost his confidence and self-trust.

Q4. Exhaustive list of possible options with justification to why they should or should
not be adopted?

 One to one talk between Jane Kravitz and Lyndon Brooks:

This will help them to reduce any kind of miscommunication caused due to the
difference of opinion between them. It will automatically build trust and provide them
with harmony at the workplace. A better work culture will enable free flow of ideas
and help to address the grievances in an effective manner thus driving them towards
the attainment of common goal. This will also provide Brooks’ an opportunity to
improve his work performance.

 Opportunity to Brooks:
A platform to Lyndon Brooks to showcase his abilities and his previous achievements
which will boost his morale at the workplace. In this way he will be self-motivated to
improve and achieve his targets which in turn will result in job satisfaction.

 Include Patty Russel in the meetings:

It is very important to inform the HR professional about the current situation as
Russel will have an unbiased opinion about it. Russel will also act as a bridge
between Chuck Taylor and Lyndon Brooks and help them build a healthy professional

 A revised plan for Brooks:

A new plan will allow Brooks to complete his strategic performance objective (s.o.’s)
on time. This achievement will provide him with substantial evidence to prove his
worth in the company and also reduce the work load on Jane.

Q5. Action plan recommended to implement the solution/decision. Identifying key

elements making or breaking this plan.

 Factors that may Break the Action Plan:

o Internal Conflict may still exist between Jane and Brooks even after the meeting.
o Present perception of Chuck and Brooks may still persists.
o Lack of Communication about the individual ideas and goals between Jane and
Brooks may still be prevalent.

 Factors that may Make the Action Plan:
o Proper Communication between both the parties
o Formal meeting between Jane Kravitz, Lyndon Brooks and the HR Patty
Russell successfully resolves the conflicts.
o Jane should refrain from Micro-Management.

Recommended Action Plan

Meeting between Patty Russel and Lyndon Brooks

Objective: Patty Russel should know the Brooks’ side of the story as well before making any

One on one conversation between Lyndon Brooks and Jane Kravitz

Objective: The meeting will result in clearing the misconceptions and misunderstandings and
aligning of their ideas towards a common goal.

A formal meeting between Patty Russel, Jane Kravitz, Lyndon Brooks and Chuck Taylor
Objective: This will further lead to build mutual trust and team spirit and will also help Brooks get a
positive environment to prove his capabilities.