case study exam

Writing task: Memo format for a briefing report to the client (chapter 4).
20 marks for content, structure and style”applying the principles of intercultural communication (week 11 & 12 lectures & chapter 15).
5 marks for format, grammar, spelling and punctuation.
Based on scenario provided in the week 12 lecture (today!).

Aim: To report to Mr. Banks on intercultural (mis)communication within his organisation so that he understands it and can take appropriate action.
Identify the problem(s) and key details.
Analyse and explain them in terms of the concepts discussed in chapter 15.
Sum up the significance and set up your recommendations.
Recommend and justify action(s) to resolve or manage intercultural (mis)communication

Michael Banks, an ambitious young executive, has been sent to take over the Sales branch of his Australia company in Sao paulo, Brazil. Most of the employees have worked with the company for more than 20 years. He spend a few weeks learning routines with the departing manager and was somewhat disturbed by the informality and lack of discipline that seemed to characterise the office . employees seemed to indulge in excessive socialising, conversations seemed to deal more with personal matters(especially family ) than business matters, and no one seemed to keep to their set timetable. Although his employees imply that their work is ‘going well ‘ , he is frustrated to find that they regularly do not complete tasks properly, which leads Michael to feel deceived

Michael’s Strategy
Once he formally took over, Michael devised strategies to address what he felt was general ‘slackness’ within the company .
Michael did the following :

– Created a ‘more businesslike atmosphere ‘ by holding regularly scheduled, formal meetings
– Enforced a more rigid timetable.
– Interviewed each employees, taking a straightforward, direct approach.
– Introduced staff sales ‘can-do’ competitions.
– Offered higher bonuses and incentives to those who performed well.
– Issued warnings to those who do not perform well.
– Re-configured the open- plan office to make room for cubicles, providing employees with more privacy.
– Organised compulsory time management workshops.

By the end of the first quarter, Michael felt he had considerably improved the situation. However, when the most recent sales figures were released, he was surprised to find that they had decreased significantly since his takeover.

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