Motorola case study essay sample

Motorola was at a major turning point in its history. Bob Galvin knew his legacy was in trouble and was in need of change and had a sense of urgency to carry out his vision before retiring. He was counting on strength and growth to compete and build the Motorola brand. In 1983, Motorola had just weather the recession in the semiconductor industry and Galvin was ready to revive the company. However, with growth comes, growing pains. Conflict between layers of management caused delays in development and production. There was little control and discipline. International competition was looming. Japanese technology was expanding. As a corporation overall they needed to become more flexible and efficient in production. Motorola was not customer focused, and it was necessary for them to become more responsive to what the customer’s wants and needs were.

Motorola had such a complex hierarchy of management employees had no idea who was in charge of what operation. The many layers of management were a downfall for the corporation. It was difficult to commit to making any kind of decisions and ultimately inefficient and ineffective for employees and production. Also, lurking was Japanese competition. Japan was creating and selling new technology faster and cheaper than that of Motorola. Bob Galvin was about leave his legacy in turmoil if nothing was done. Definitive decisions need to be made instead of reiterating the problems with no solution. Motorola had many internal and external factors contributing to their assets, and flaws. All leaving room for growth and expansion by focusing on where there were opportunities to learn from and what was threatening to the company.

* Employee Focus
* Strong managerial succession plans
* Commitment to education of management and employees
* Variety of products
* Brand recognition

* Fail in chain management
* Unrecognized potential of Asian Market
* Products lack customer focus
* Galvin’s urgency

* Asian markets
* Consumer Focused
* New technology

* Competitors
* Pricing
* Japanese technology

In the early 80’s Motorola employees were confused after the speech Bob Galvin gave. He had great vision and new ideas, but no one was prepared for what Galvin was asking of the employees. Galvin was looking for strong leadership and renewal of technology. The main purpose of Bob Galvin wanting to make these changes were the issues he was constantly hearing about employees stating there was too many issues with the management matrix and projects were not being seen through by a single point of contact. Deadline were delayed, decisions were not be made and goals not met. What can Motorola do, as a whole, to meet the concerns of the employees and the company? Is firing, layoffs, or retirement for employees an option? Would the answer be to eliminate division and invest more in those divisions doing well? Reorganization of the entire management system would be my suggestions. In the Asian market, cell phone technology was rapidly growing.

This was another strong opportunity for Motorola to re-enter the market and once again become the leading player. The growth of users opens many paths for Motorola to meet different consumer needs, creating niche markets with the potential to secure a large piece of the market. How was Bob Galvin going to get the upper hand on Japanese technology? In 1983, no one knew how popular the cell phone market would be. Investing in developing a cell phone division specializing in the needs of consumers makes for the best investment in my opinion. Changes in the markets, pressure from competition and new products can make change necessary if the business is to thrive. Nearly every company goes through some kind of reorganization during its lifetime. Bob Galvin’s vision of creating small businesses is different approach than that of what I see would work for Motorola. Firing, layoffs and early retirement is the tough part of being the CEO. In my vision of restructuring this is what has to happen.

To many layers means too many people trying to make decisions and employees have no direct contact. Doing away with several leaders with differentiated views, style and direction would be the first task. I would start with creating top level management. Currently under Galvin’s management, Galvin, Mitchell and Weisz were all doing the same job. I would create a CEO position to set the vision and goals of the company and direct the company to achieve the vision and goals. This position does not deal directly with day-to-day activities but sees the big picture of the corporation. This layer of management does a considerable amount of planning, creating, and organizing and keeps everything under control. Within the first layer I would also create the position of CFO. This position would be a lead person for overall budget decisions and allocation of funds.

The second layer of management would be titled Division Managers. I foresee this position responsibilities being to carry out the vision and goals of the company. This would be achieved by setting division goals. The Division Manager is able to motivate and assist the CEO in business objectives. DMs are the communicator between CEO and the employees. This person is involved in the day-to-day activities of the company. Finally the third layer of management would be titled Shift Managers. This layer of management is responsible for the employees and daily management. These managers are responsible for the product and service. SMs are the go to person for the employee and daily operations of the company. This level of management does the majority of leading being that they are closest to the employee. I feel this management hierarchy will allow employees know who is in charge. It will eliminate the many steps of communication and barriers of decision making resulting in increased production time. This elimination of positions may also result in saving in salary costs.

Japanese technology was another direct competitor for Motorola. At the time Japan’s trade practices were obsolete and Gavin felt this was a threat to his company. The new technologies that Japan was rolling out were being sold for less and increased the market quickly. I propose that to stay ahead of the growth of Japanese technology a research and development be set up, with a production plant here in the United States. The team of R&D consists of innovators and creators, along with consumers. I do not want to hire just anyone for this team. An extensive search would be done to find those inventors that have a passion for technology and vision for success and competition. This is where I want to spend money, time, and effort on education resources.

I feel without have creating that “ next best thing” we can’t stay ahead of Japan because Japan is creating technology for less just to grab and build the market. Japan is look at building quantity over quality, where I would like to Motorola build quality products that provide great value to the customer. With having a direct consumer on the team they will be able to tell the team exactly what they are looking for in next greatest and latest in technology specifically looking at cell phone technology and computers. Consumers needs and want have to be a factor when developing new products and technologies because they are the end buyer and the driving force for Motorola. With Research and Development teams working directly with plant operation and the consumer I think this will reduce delays in production and cut costs and make profits for Motorola in the long run.

Works Cited

O’Toole, J. (1985, Fall). Second Annual NM Vanguard Award. New Management , p. 5. Peiperl, T. D. (3rd edition). Managing Change. New York: McGraw-Hill.