Human Resource Management

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Analyzation of “The Case for Change at Modern Appliances”

James Bradshaw came to understand employee engagement as a way to ensure ongoing business effectiveness through a series of events. In the article, it states “Modern Appliances had been in business for almost 75 years and manufactured a wide range of appliances. With sales in excess of $2 billion, Modern was considered a quality manufacturer and a good marketer.” Further, it states that in recent years, the company began to face competitive pressure as North American companies began to outsource manufacturing to China and Vietnam as well as domestic Chinese manufacturers were learning to compete effectively outside their home markets and were importing into Modern’s
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They want to use their initiative, their ideas about how to do things better. They want to make products that please the customer, give good service, be appreciated. They hate useless bureaucracy and excessive controls just as management dislike the expense associated with those and the ways in which they slow down the business processes. They also want a clear sense of direction, a goal towards which they can strive. But they also want some input into deciding what these goals should be. Our challenge in management is to liberate these “wants” and turn them into outcomes that benefit both employees and shareholders. That way they will be sustainable.

In September the first ModernIsation workshop was held. 60 Modern employees from various functions in the company were brought together to “identify obstacles to Modern being among the very best companies for customer service as viewed by their customers.” Bradshaw asked the employees “what it was going to take to make Modern the best customer-service oriented company in this country, one that people talk about when you ask them for examples of great customer service companies. What is getting in the way of our being Number 1 and what do we need to change to make it happen?” Bradshaw’s vision of Modern’s future could only be accomplished by changing the traditional top-down management style. Bradshaw believed
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