American Financial Corporation;Case Summary: Betty Powell is the manger of human resources for American Financial Corporation, a large financial service company. She arrived back to her office after being out for a week and realized that her staff report was due the day before and still not finished. The report was for the vice president of the company brokerage division. Six weeks earlier Betty ask Don Adams, one of her subordinates to collect the information and to write the staffing report. When she assign the project to him she did tell him what to include in the report and the due date. It is not the first time Dan has missed a deadline. He is careful, meticulous yet compulsive about checking and rechaecking everything several times. Betty called Dan in her office and the following dialogue occurred. ? Don, I understand the staffing report for the brokerage division is not completed yet. The division vice president needs that report to prepare his annual budget, and he is putting a lot of pressure on me to get it to him immediately. When I gived this assignment, you assured me that six weeks was ample time to do it.? ? I am sorry the report wasn?t ready on schedule, responded Don, but it turned out to be more complex than expected. I had to spend extra time verifying the figuresfrom the branch office. I had to spend extra time verifying the figures from the branch office, because they just don?t look right? Look Don, this is not the first time you have decided you have been late on important projectys. You are supposed to be professional and professionals plan work and get it done on time. It will not be professional to do a report ful of mistakes, replied Don. It is important to me to do quality work that I can be proud of. It?s not my fault that the branch manager don?t keep accurate records. What mistakes did you find when you checked their records? Asked Betty W?I di not actually find any mistakes replied Don, looking embarrassed, but afer I entered the information into the computer and did the company analyisis, I discovered that the records were missing for one of the branch offices. I lost a week waiting to get missing information, but without it the report would not p[rovide an accurate picture of the divisions staffing needs. Betty interrupted impatiently, Don, we have clerical workersto do things like checking records and manking sure they are complete. It sounds to me your not efficient about managing your time. If you delegated some of these simple task to other people, you would?nt get so far behind in your work? Don protested? I don?t get enough clerical helpon any of my projects and that?s why they are sometimes late?. Why didn?t you inform me there there were problems that might dealy the report. I could have found you some clerical support. Don was not becoming more defensive ? I troed to let you know last week, but you were on he West Coast for managent training workshop. I left a message for you to call me.? Don you have an excuse for everything and nothing is ever you fault, ?Betyy said sarcastically. You seen incapable of planning the action steps needed to do a projct like this one. You should have checked the record before you begn data anaylis. S for the missing records, it would?nt urprise me if they are buried somewhere under the piles of stuff laying around the office. You have the messiest office in the company. Do looked sullen but did not reply. Betty continued her tirade. ?Don you career in this company is going to be very short unless you get your act together. I want this report in my hands my noon tomorrow, an not more excuses.?;American Financial Corporation;This case demonstrates the importance of careful planning and monitoring when making important assignment with a tight deadline. Students have an opportunity to identify typical mistakes made by managers in making assignments and evaluating subordinate performance. The case also encourages students to look at the relationship from the perspective of the follower and consider how subordinates can become more effective followers.;1. What did Betty do wrong prior to the meeting, and what could have been done to avoid missing the deadline?;2. What did Betty do wrong in the meeting itself, and what could have been done to make the meeting more effective?;3. What should Don have done to be more effective?
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