Review the two case studies and complete an analysis of each study.



The Notorious Business Professor


Steve is one of eight professors in the business school at a large, public university. His job responsibilities include teaching two classes per semester, developing a management research program, and advising and developing PhD candidates. He has been at the school for five years and has worked extremely hard to get tenure. Student ratings of his undergraduate classes are fairly solid; most students rated Steve as being an above average teacher in terms of their enjoyment, his level of knowledge, and his ability to stimulate critical thinking in class. Steve has already published several articles in some of the top management journals and has won several prestigious awards for outstanding research. Because of his research, Steve is on the fast track to becoming one of the top researchers in his field and already has a national reputation for his work. However, Steve has had a woeful track record with respect to developing and graduating PhD candidates. Steve has yet to be on a PhD dissertation committee or be an advisor to any PhD candidate in the program.


As the dean of the business school, you believe Steve’s problems with attracting and graduating PhD candidates may stem from a number of factors. First, Steve does not believe the business school nor the PhD candidates are very good, despite the fact that the school has a national reputation for excellence. Steve graduated with honors from another nationally renowned business school, and often openly comments about how difficult his program was compared to your program. Steve also believes few of the PhD candidates are worthy of his attention, and although he had hired more than 12 of them over the past three years to work as research assistants in his management research program, none lasted more than two years. Virtually all of the research assistants believed Steve wanted too much of their time and effort and that he was insensitive to their plight as graduate students. Perhaps Steve’s attitude towards his research assistants was best summed up when he fired his most senior research assistant for not being able to help with a series of laboratory studies being conducted over a particular weekend. You later found out the research assistant asked Steve to delay the laboratory studies so that he could attend his uncle’s funeral. Steve said the experiments were crucial and could not be delayed any longer. The research assistant said nothing could deter him from attending his uncle’s funeral, and Steve fired the assistant immediately after he returned from the funeral. Along these lines, when PhD candidates were giving seminar presentations to the other students and professors in the business school, Steve would take every opportunity to ask questions designed solely to make himself look brilliant and the presenter look incompetent and foolish. You have received numerous complaints from both the graduate students and several of the professors in your school about Steve’s behavior.


Second, Steve’s work schedule is designed to minimize his contact with others; he works from 2:00 PM until 6:00 AM every day of the week (including Saturdays and Sundays). Moreover, if for some reason students do want to see him, then they had to schedule an appointment. Steve would usually schedule his meetings with students for 8:00 PM on Friday or Saturday nights. Because of his unusual work hours, one of Steve’s biggest claims to fame among graduate students was his role in preventing a computer theft from taking place at school at 3:00 AM on a Saturday morning, which just so happened to also be Christmas morning.


            Third, Steve’s difficulties in attracting and developing PhD candidates may be related to his age and his previous experience in dealing with others. Steve is a relatively young PhD   he went to graduate school immediately after college and some of the PhD candidates in the business school are older than he is. Steve also went through a very competitive graduate program in which individual, rather than cooperative and collaborative efforts were encouraged. Similarly, Steve has never had a “real” job, and his current position is the first ever giving him authority over others.


As the dean of the business school, you are well aware of the fact that Steve has managed to bring in over $600,000 in corporate and government grants in support of his management research program, and this program has made a considerable contribution to the prestige of the business school and accounts for over 50 percent of the school’s research budget. You are also aware that Steve’s reputation among graduate students is becoming so notorious that it is beginning to affect the applicant pool for the graduate school. Many of the graduate students are beginning to tell applicants to go somewhere else for their degree if at all possible, and the six applicants accepted into the school last year opted to go to other programs. Although the department has never been particularly cohesive and you have never had close relationships with most of the other professors in the business school, you feel Steve’s behavior has caused these relationships to be more strained than ever before.


            A year from now you will make a decision concerning Steve’s tenure. Three of the school’s professors have been direct recipients of Steve’s research (in terms of money and publications) and think he should be given tenure. The other four professors believe Steve’s behavior is inexcusable, and granting Steve tenure will reward his condescending attitude towards students and will make his dismissal in the future virtually impossible. Steve has scheduled a meeting with you this afternoon, and wants to know what he can do to improve his chances for getting tenure. What will you tell him?



Unforeseen Opportunity in an Election

You are in charge of the advertising staff for Cindy Smith’s election campaign. Cindy is trying to prevent the eight term incumbent, Jesse Jones, from getting another term in the U.S. House of Representatives. Cindy decided to run against Jesse because he wrote 150 bad checks in the House banking scandal, voted to not disclose the names of the people involved in the scandal, and voted to give himself a substantial pay raise at taxpayers’ expense. Furthermore, Jesse seems unconcerned with the debt crisis and has been criticized by the national press for funding questionable projects in his district at the expense of more worthy projects elsewhere in the nation. Moreover, Jesse has worked behind the scenes to prevent the Equal Rights Amendment from passing in your state, and as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, has consistently voted against allowing women to fight in combat. Jesse is also a pro¬life candidate who supported Clarence Thomas as a Supreme Court nominee.


Cindy has never run for political office before, and is running a grassroots campaign with only unpaid volunteers. She believes it is time for a change in Washington, and Jesse Jones is a prime example of why the people in your district have become cynical about politicians. Because she has not accepted any political action committee money, Cindy has only been able to afford a few television ads and has instead concentrated her efforts on radio and newspaper advertising. These ads have not provided Cindy’s specific views on what she plans to do about taxes, education, unemployment, social security, the debt, or defense spending, but instead have focused on her prochoice and pro women views and her beliefs about the need for a change in Washington. She has so far avoided even mentioning her opponent in these ads. Up until last week, Cindy was riding the wave of disenchantment with incumbents and was leading Jesse Jones by 10 percentage points. However, in last week’s debates Jesse Jones did a good job of pointing out Cindy’s lack of political savvy and came across as a patronizing father figure who understood Cindy’s frustrations with government but subtly stated Cindy did not possess the knowledge to make things happen in the federal government. These debates helped to pull the race to a dead heat, and the election is one month away.


Jesse Jones has accepted a number of contributions from political action committees and has a sizable campaign chest. His initial television ads depicted him as a family man of strong moral character and an experienced incumbent who could get the job done. These ads had proven to be fairly ineffective, and Jones has now switched to negative campaigning. Jesse’s ads now state he is a pillar of family values and Cindy is a single mother of two who has been unable to form or maintain a cohesive family unit. These ads also focus on Cindy’s views of unrestricted abortions, implying that electing Cindy will effectively murder 2,000 people a year in the district. These ads conclude by stating if Cindy can not get her own house in order, how will she ever be able to straighten out the House of Representatives? Unfortunately, these ads have been very effective. Cindy’s negative ratings are at an all time high, and you believe Cindy’s campaign has lost the momentum and will lose the race unless she does something to counter these negative ads.


            Including yourself, there are four full time volunteers on Cindy’s advertising staff. Megan is a journalism major in college and became involved with the campaign because of Jesse’s views on the Clarence Thomas appointment. Megan has never worked on a political campaign before, and has taken this quarter off from school to lend a hand. Megan is enthusiastic, hard working, and idealistic, but she has little campaign experience. Nancy is a good friend of Cindy’s and worked on the last campaign to oust Jesse Jones. She has also lent a hand in several school board and state representative campaigns. Nancy is very committed to Cindy’s campaign, although you suspect this devotion is due as much to ousting Jesse Jones as it is to her friendship with Cindy. Jack is the president of the student body of the local college. He has been politically active for the past three years, and two years ago he worked on a U.S. Senator’s reelection campaign. Everyone on the advertising staff was enthusiastic and energetic after Cindy’s success in the primary, but this enthusiasm has dampened considerably with the post debate poll results and with Jesse Jones’ relentless attacks on Cindy’s character. Everyone has said the election is slipping away, and Megan and Jack have threatened to quit and go back to school unless Cindy does something to turn the situation around. The cohesiveness of the group and your relationships with Megan, Nancy, and Jack are currently at an all time low.


The campaign manager, Jenny O’Connor, called you into her office today. Apparently an anonymous tipster told someone on the campaign staff that Jesse Jones was having an affair and had fathered a child out of wedlock. Someone on the staff followed up on the tip and has uncovered evidence lending support to this allegation. Jenny believes a negative ad depicting Jesse Jones as a corrupt father and politician would be enough to get Cindy elected. Although Cindy has publicly stated she will not run negative ads in her campaign, Jenny has asked you to take a day to think about running one on Jesse Jones. Jenny has also asked you not to discuss this matter with Cindy. What will you do?


Reference: Hughes (2015)

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Include executive summary, statement of the problem, causes of the problem, decision criteria and potential solutions, recommend solution, external sourcing and use APA format.

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introduction paragraph
main casestudy 

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