Managing a Global Team: Greg James at Sun Microsystems, Inc.

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Question 3 - What role did the "Open Work" environment play in the case?

Open Work helped Sun to reduce the operating cost, increase employee satisfaction and maintain a strong productivity. The program utilized the tools, technologies and support to enable employees to work from anywhere, anytime. Despite these significant advantages there are a few limitations and disadvantages of this scheme.
Sun had a suitability assessment for employees willing to participate in the program. This expressed their need for a flexible work schedule and a balanced professional and private life. James having previously experienced the scheme and finding it beneficial submitted the application on behalf of the whole team. He hoped to use Open Work to
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This was a result of the method in which the meeting was planned i.e. they were reviewed last, had fewer items on the agenda and were consistently interrupted. In Open Work communication is really important, and in terms of James’ team it was not happening. This lack of proper communication resulted in them having a negative view of Open Work program.
Another problem present in the team was also related to the most important element of Open Work, Communication. One of the three components of Open Work is availability of technology for consistent mobile information access. During the HS Holdings server failure Nick’s mobile phone was switched off and Robert didn’t check his email until Monday. Also on Monday when Elisabeth Fournier called there was no reply from either Nick or James. This shows that the team being led by Greg James was not competent enough for implementing the Open Work system. Open Work can only be successful when all the three pillars – technology, access and workspace – work in synergy. In this case Open Work resulted in escalation of the crisis at HS Holdings because the customer demands were not suited to the Open Work environment.

→ Question 4 - What role did diversity play on this team?
The customer implementation team of 45 members headed by Greg James was spread across the United States, the United Arab Emirates, France and India.
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