Read “Kenworth Motors” beginning on p. 212 of Cummings & Worley (2009) and answer the four questions at the end of the case.
1. How well the OD consultant did prepares for the meeting with Denton? I do not believe that the OS consultant was quite prepared for the meeting. He stated that he was about to talk to a man and go to a firm that he knew nothing much about. He did have a little bit of facts about his title and his job tenure. But one thing is that he knew that it was Kenworth Motors’ Seattle truck manufacturing operations.
He did not have agenda of what the business was all about and he was not focused about the agenda. Would you have done anything differently? Yes I would. If I knew that I was going on an appointment and I did not know anything about the firm or the person that I was going to see. I would have prepared myself a little better than that. I would have tried to find out more information about Mr. Denton, and I would have done a research about Kenworth Motors’ Seattle truck manufacturing operations.
2. In the discussion between the OD consultant and Denton, what was effective and ineffective about the consultant’s behavior? One thing about the OD consultant is that when he had the interview with Mr. Denton he had a change to ask Mr. Denton question first about the plant and products. Denton was able to talk about 10 or 12 minutes on different topic—daily production rate of 23 trucks, the cost of the truck, the sales order backlog, some equipment updating just finished, his coming to this job from a plant in the Midwest, his spending a lot of time lately with the next year’s budget.
This was effective because OD consultant was able to learn some things about Mr. Denton and the firm that he did not knew. They were able to communicate effectively with one another. Bob and the OD consultant both had a positive attitude. The ineffective about the consultant’s behavior is that he was trying to find out everything about Mr. Denton and the firm as much as he can. The OD consultant caught himself going on with more question. He was looking for Mr. Denton to tell him something were wrong about the company, but he really did not have much to say what was wrong.
3. How effective was the contracting process described in the last part of the case? The contracting was very effective; Bob seemed to be very open with the OD consultant. Bob was able to agree with the OD consultant about staying on a retreat for the weekend, once a month. This would give the department managers a change to get acquainted with each other. Also, the OD consultant stated that going on this retreat would not cause them to lose time off from work and it would not cost a lot of money.
They still will be working all day on Saturday with appropriate breaks, and conclude by noon on Sunday. What is the scope and clarity of the agreement? The scope and clarity of the agreement is that the OD consultant must make sure that he agreed to have a retreat weekend a month-and-a-half. Also they agreed to use the phrase “a communications workshop” when he informed the participants.
4. How would you design the upcoming retreat? I would continue to have a weekend and-a-half day retreat. I would recommend that we developed some kind of strategies to help manager to become more effective.
On my agenda, I would include communicating, problem solving, time management, stress management and decision making. I would like to make it a fun retreat even though it is work related. I would not want to work at all of the retreat; I would like to go to a hotel where they served breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also at the end of the retreat, I would like to have someone teach us the importance of getting proper rest and exercise prior to going to work and after that have an exercise workout. This can help relieved some work related stress.