Quacker Steel

1355 Words Jun 6th, 2013 6 Pages
I. Context

Quaker Steel and Alloy Corporation (“Quaker”) is a US based producer of specialized metal alloys. It predominantly addresses the high margin, high quality segment of the market, with little exposure to low margin, high volume segments. Quaker is known for providing high quality sales, post-sales and technical service. This niche position has allowed it to maintain an ROE almost twice as high as its nearest competitor.

Maureen Frye is an assistant product manager within Quaker’s Titanium Alloys division. Based on her analysis of this division’s sales data she concluded that revenues could be increased if sales staff allocated more time to winning larger accounts (and less to smaller accounts). Having received management
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She did not express correctly the need for change to the concerned person
Frye has not communicated in details and with transparency why the change as set in the plan action was needed. Indeed, as Quaker’s return on equity was twice as high as that of its nearest competitor, since the 20 years, the need of change could not been interpreted as being obvious for everyone. Therefore, this explains why regarding her memo addressing briefly the need of change the DSM received “(…) several complaints from his salespeople about its arbitrary nature.”

d. She did not grasp the need to compensate being an ‘outsider’
Most of Quaker’s managerial positions were filled from within the company and its high rankings managers had to spend a year working in the Head Quarter office to better understand the company's culture, facilities, organization, and its practices. This policy has been introduced because most transactions across organizational lines were conducted through personal contacts and relationships. Frye was aware of this policy and the existence of use of informal communication channels. However, she did not perceive that using phone calls, emails or memo where not suffisant to build assistance and communication on her project.

e. She failed to get visible top-management support
Frye only communication with the titanium extrusion sales representatives was to send them a memo instructing them to change their practice. The latter having not

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