Ivey Publishing

Excellence in Business Communication

Thill, J.V., Bovee, C.L.,10/e (United States, Pearson, 2013)
Prepared By Eunika Sot,
Chapter and Title Chapter Matches: Case Information
Chapter 1:
Achieving Success Through Effective Business Communication

PAHALWAN'S: NEED FOR A NEW MARKETING STRATEGY
Jyoti Sharma, Subhadip Roy

Product Number: 9B14A055
Publication Date: 10/1/2014
Revision Date: 10/1/2014
Length: 7 pages

Pahalwan’s was a chain of four outlets that offered sweets, snack food and fast food in Jammu, India. It had a major presence in the state of Jammu and Kashmir and was delivering products to other parts of India, such as Delhi. However, local, national and international food retailers had entered the market, increasing the competition. Changing consumer preferences had also started affecting the company. Pahalwan’s did not believe in advertising its products and focused little energy on branding activities. Thus, there was a need to plan for an innovative and cost-effective communication strategy to boost its sales. Pahalwan’s also needed to think about new products and new markets to stay in business.

Teaching Note: 8B14A055 (8 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Growth strategy; branding; communication strategy; India
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate



SARS OUTBREAK IN TORONTO
Anne Snowdon, Alexander Smith, Mohammad Auais

Product Number: 9B13M101
Publication Date: 8/20/2014
Revision Date: 8/20/2014
Length: 11 pages

In the spring of 2003, the World Health Organization identified a worldwide epidemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) that had started in China and spread to the rest of the world, with early cases reported in Toronto and Vancouver. Little was known about the disease, which meant that symptoms were often misdiagnosed as simple flu, and the infection spread rapidly. After the third SARS-related death occurred in Ontario in mid-March, the provincial premier declared a state of emergency, which was finally lifted on May 17 when it appeared the outbreak had ended. A week later, on May 23, four new cases were reported at Toronto’s North York General Hospital. The lack of public health infrastructure in Ontario combined with its hospitals’ noncompliance with following existing policies concerning infection control and especially the lack of communication between hospitals, health organizations and levels of governments, with numerous spokespersons making uncoordinated and sometimes contradictory announcements, all led to the public perception that the government and health care authorities did not know what they were doing or were lying about the severity of the outbreak. Before the next provincial election, the premier must examine and address what could have been prevented, how public health interventions were managed and the differences between public health responses in Toronto and Vancouver.

Teaching Note: 8B13M101 (7 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Health; crisis; communication; SARS; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



GREENPEACE'S UNFRIEND COAL CAMPAIGN AND FACEBOOK
Michael Sider, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B12M011
Publication Date: 2/10/2012
Revision Date: 10/28/2013
Length: 10 pages

Facebook’s director of policy communications was faced with a situation caused by a YouTube video posted by the non-governmental organization (NGO) Greenpeace. This video publicly critiqued the environmental sustainability of Facebook’s decision to build a new data centre, its main objection being that the new facility would be connected to a local utility provider that supplied electricity mainly from the burning of coal, one of the largest sources of global warming. This video was only the latest of a series of actions, commenced by Greenpeace eight months earlier, immediately following Facebook’s decision to build the new facility. Greenpeace had dubbed these actions the “Unfriend Coal Campaign,” which now had 500,000 followers and had generated numerous media stories. Greenpeace’s goal was to pressure Facebook into adopting cleaner energy policies by leveraging Facebook’s own social media against the company. As Facebook had no plans to stop building the facility, its director needed to figure out the best course of action to take in response to the mounting pressure from Greenpeace, in order to alleviate the increasingly negative attention from media and consumers.

Teaching Note: 8B12M011 (7 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Ethical Issues; Social Media; Facilities Planning; Non-governmental Organizations; Communications; Corporate Responsibility; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 2:
Mastering Team Skills and Interpersonal Communication

DOVERCOURT RECREATION CENTRE - HEALING A RIFT
Mary Weil, Chen Rao

Product Number: 9B14C039
Publication Date: 8/12/2014
Revision Date: 8/11/2014
Length: 5 pages

In July 2001, the newly elected president of the board of directors at Dovercourt Recreation Centre in Ottawa, Ontario, faces a dilemma. The facility’s executive director has suggested that in light of a poor performance review, his only option might be to resign. He is revered by his staff and the community for his passionate advocacy of outreach to disadvantaged and marginalized populations and has a successful track record in running the organization and popularizing its programs throughout the city. However, he is under great stress because his informal management style does not fit well with the board’s need for specific monthly accounting. The new president was recruited to improve unproductive board meetings, but he has quickly realized the root issue is the escalating tension between the executive director and the board. Confident that he can use his consulting background to deliver a solution to the conflict that threatens to undermine the centre’s strong reputation, he needs a plan and must act on it decisively and immediately.

Teaching Note: 8B14C039 (7 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Corporate governance; negotiations; internal communications; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



THE COMMON FINAL EXAM (A)
Iris Berdrow

Product Number: 9B07C007
Publication Date: 5/15/2007
Length: 7 pages

The coordinator of an introductory, required freshman course is responsible for managing the final exam for 25 sections every semester. Approximately 500 students took the exam at the same time on a Saturday morning. The students were notified several times throughout the semester about the date and time of the exam. The rules stated that unless arranged prior to the exam, anyone late or absent on the day of the exam would receive a zero on their exam grade. The (A) case has three scenarios, each requiring a decision.

Teaching Note: 8B07C07 (9 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Decision Analysis; Communications; Role of Student in Learning; Interpersonal Skills; Negotiation; Stakeholder Analysis
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



CARELESS COLLABORATORS
Sara Keck, Anne Marie Francesco

Product Number: 9A99C036
Publication Date: 3/30/2000
Revision Date: 1/14/2010
Length: 9 pages

An American professor is delighted and proud to be asked to join a prestigious international group of academic researchers. A series of negative experiences - cultural, professional and personal - strain relationships within the group, and the professor's feelings turn to anger and self-doubt. She must decide whether to continue with the group.

Teaching Note: 8A99C36 (10 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Interpersonal Relations; Communications; Intercultural Relations; Group Behaviour
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 3:
Communicating in the World of Diversity

TEHELKA IN CRISIS
Shailja Agarwal

Product Number: 9B14M081
Publication Date: 7/31/2014
Revision Date: 7/31/2014
Length: 9 pages

A managing editor is attempting to navigate a communications and leadership disaster after receiving an email from one of her colleagues at Tehelka Magazine (Tehelka), alleging that the founder/proprietor/editor-in-chief of the magazine had sexually assaulted her. Although the managing editor felt that she handled the situation appropriately via her communications with the victim, the perpetrator and other Tehelka staff, the crisis worsened when those communications were leaked to the media and the general public. In addition, the victim resigned, asserting that the managing editor, a renowned crusader of women’s rights, had been dismissive and overly tolerant regarding the complaint. When both the victim’s resignation email and the editor’s acceptance of that email were also leaked to the media, it generated a fresh round of controversy and debate on the manner in which Tehelka had handled the entire issue and forced the managing editor to announce her decision to step down from her position with Tehelka as well. As she prepared to face the press regarding her resignation, the managing editor could not help but wonder what she could have done differently in handling this difficult situation.

Teaching Note: 8B14M081 (10 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Crisis communication; corporate communication; media; stakeholders; India
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate



ARLA FOODS AND THE CARTOON CRISIS (A)
Henry W. Lane, Mikael Sondergaard, David T.A. Wesley

Product Number: 9B08M005
Publication Date: 1/31/2008
Revision Date: 2/26/2010
Length: 12 pages

After a Danish newspaper publishes cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad, consumers across the Middle East decide to boycott Danish goods. Arla Foods (Arla) is one of Europe's largest dairy companies. Suddenly, it finds itself caught in the middle of a crisis that appears to be beyond its control. Prior to the boycott, the Middle East was Arla's fastest growing region and represented an important component of the company's long-term growth strategy. As the largest Danish company in the region, it stands to lose up to $550 million in annual revenues. Students are asked to take the role of the communication director for Arla, who, along with other members of the newly formed Crisis and Communication Group, must decide on a course of action to deal with the crisis. The case addresses a variety of topics, including culture and religion, international management, risk management, crisis communications, and managing in a boycott situation. It also creates an opportunity to discuss doing business in the Middle East and management in an Islamic context.

Teaching Note: 8B08M05 (16 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Intercultural Relations; Boycott; Crisis Management; Women in Management; Northeastern
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



INTEL IN CHINA
Kathleen E. Slaughter, Donna Everatt, Xiaojun Qian

Product Number: 9A99C007
Publication Date: 6/23/1999
Revision Date: 5/24/2017
Length: 8 pages

The newly appointed division head must examine organizational or communication problems within a division of a billion dollar semiconductor manufacturer. The manager made a decision, which an employee emotionally responded to, creating the potential for conflict within the department. Cross-cultural issues come into play given that the manager, although originally from China, was educated and gathered extensive experience in the West and was thus considered an expatriate by his employees. The manager must also examine the effect of organizational culture on an employee's behavior.

Teaching Note: 8A99C07 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: China; Interpersonal Relations; Intercultural Relations; Conflict Resolution; Management Communication
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 4:
Planning Business Messages

RESEARCH IN MOTION: BLACKBERRY BLACKOUT (A)
Jana Seijts, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B12M044
Publication Date: 4/24/2012
Revision Date: 4/24/2012
Length: 5 pages

Mike Lazaridis, co-CEO of Research in Motion (RIM), faced a situation of truly disastrous proportions. Earlier that week, service outages had started occurring on RIM’s popular BlackBerry smartphone devices, affecting over 30 million BlackBerry users globally. For a total of three days, RIM engineers worked around the clock to fix the widespread technical problems. However, with the company providing only brief comments to the public, many consumers and industry officials became increasingly frustrated. With the worldwide release of the new Apple iPhone 4S just days away, Lazaridis was presented with the additional challenge of how and if RIM should respond publicly to help restore consumer and market confidence.

Teaching Note: 8B12M044 (8 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Communications; Leadership; Consumer Behaviour; Service Recovery; Crisis Management; Smartphones; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



BUNNY BUTCHER: PETA PROTESTS DONNA KARAN NEW YORK
Michael Sider, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B11M095
Publication Date: 10/7/2011
Revision Date: 8/13/2012
Length: 8 pages

November 29, 2010, was “Cyber Monday,” one of the busiest online shopping days of the year, with the potential to approach $1 billion in online sales in North America. The chief designer of fashion company Donna Karan New York (DKNY) was facing a difficult situation. On this particular Cyber Monday, activists for the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) had posted simultaneous messages on DKNY’s Facebook page. Anyone viewing the page could not fail to discern the “DK Bunny Butcher” message. This action by PETA was the culmination of several years, beginning in 2005, of attempting to convince DKNY to stop using fur in its collections. This November 29 message was a sharp reminder to both DKNY and its Cyber Monday customers that, up to this point, the company had refused to stop using fur. It was available to be viewed by DKNY’s over 200,000 Facebook fans as well as millions of online Cyber Monday shoppers. The chief designer was unsure how to respond: on one hand was the desire to clearly explain the use of fur, but on the other was the desire to avoid escalating the publicity surrounding the matter. She needed an immediate strategy that would retain her brand’s image and protect future sales.

Teaching Note: 8B11M095 (8 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Ethical Issues; Social Media; Online Retail; Non-Profit Organizations; Management Communication; Fashion Industry
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 5:
Writing Business Messages

MARINELAND AND THE MAYOR
Michael Sider, Ahn Hoang

Product Number: 9B13M063
Publication Date: 5/23/2013
Revision Date: 5/23/2013
Length: 4 pages

The mayor of one of Canada’s largest tourist destination cities has to decide how to handle the media outcry that followed a major newspaper story in which eight former staffers at the local, popular aquatic zoo accused the zoo of treating its animals with severe cruelty. His initial response was perceived by many as being too glib and favouring the marine park, which is an important source of revenue for the city. Although he is no expert on animal welfare, it is his job to represent the interests of all of the city’s stakeholders, including those who are now angry about the alleged mistreatment of animals at the park. He does not want his constituents to see him as the park’s apologist.

Teaching Note: 8B13M063 (3 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Media Relations; Crisis Management; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



GREGORY SHINE DAYCARE
Matthew Thomson, Anthea Rowe

Product Number: 9B12A004
Publication Date: 2/24/2012
Revision Date: 2/24/2012
Length: 9 pages

The executive director of a daycare is trying to figure out how to address legal, financial, and safety issues stemming from an incident that occurred two months before, when a two-year-old boy broke his leg. Despite having no formal training in public relations or crisis management, the executive director felt she had handled the incident reasonably well: it seemed as though everything at the daycare had returned to normal. Still, the executive director couldn’t stop worrying that the daycare might experience further fallout from the incident.

Teaching Note: 8B12A004 (10 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Public Relations; Crisis Communication; Canada
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate



TOYOTA: ACCELERATOR PEDAL RECALL (A)
Jana Seijts, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B11M077
Publication Date: 8/29/2011
Revision Date: 12/8/2011
Length: 3 pages

In January 2010, global automotive manufacturer Toyota faced the task of notifying customers of a recall that involved a faulty accelerator pedal on 1.7 million vehicles. Toyota had already come under intense public scrutiny the previous year over a floor mat recall that affected 4.2 million vehicles. In an attempt to reach the masses for the current recall, Toyota created a letter to customers that was featured in major newspapers and on its website. The letter caused outrage as Toyota did not apologize to consumers. Instead, it talked about the company’s 50-year heritage and how Toyota was halting production to focus on fixing the vehicles that were on the road. The president of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. Inc. needed to identify the problems with the letter before drafting a new one.

Teaching Note: 8B11M077 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Crisis Management; Communications; Customer Relations; Letter Writing; Automotive; Japan; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 6:
Completing Business Messages

SUBPRIME TSUNAMI ON INDIAN SHORES: CRISIS HITS ICICI
Chetan Juneja, Gita Bajaj

Product Number: 9B12M008
Publication Date: 6/6/2012
Revision Date: 5/7/2013
Length: 21 pages

The collapse of Lehman Brothers, a major Wall Street investment bank, sent shockwaves through financial markets as global liquidity dried up and investor confidence reached an all-time low. Banks with exposure to complex financial instruments in high-debt environments were considered particularly vulnerable. ICICI Bank — India’s largest private-sector bank with maximum international exposure among Indian banks — was hit by rumours about its exposure to Lehman assets. Solvency fears drove its depositors to withdraw large sums of money and the bank’s stock value started to erode. ICICI’s management responded to the crisis by initiating an intense public relations effort: the bank released information on its exposure and supported its position through media appearances of its top executives and statements issued by rating agencies, regulators, and the government of India. The bank emphasized the strength of its balance sheet, the limited exposure to risky assets, adequate provisioning, and a healthy cash reserve ratio. It alleged malaise and rumour-mongering by market intermediaries as the reason behind the crisis and denied any threats to its solvency. The public relations effort had barely concluded when another episode of stock collapse and customer withdrawal started. The case gives students an opportunity to evaluate crisis communication efforts in the age of new media and its link with business reputation. The student, in the role of a PR consultant, must decide why the efforts failed. What else could have been done to restore trust?

Teaching Note: 8B12M008 (12 pages)
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Issues: New Media; Crisis Communication; Corporate Communication; Banking; India
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate



YOUPOSTIT! COMMUNICATING THE VALUE OF A NEW BUSINESS
Michael Sider, Daniel Samosh

Product Number: 9B12A002
Publication Date: 4/13/2012
Revision Date: 4/13/2012
Length: 8 pages

The director of new business development and strategy at Redmas Digital, an enterprising start-up, needs to write two sales e-mail templates for Redmas’s newest pet project, YouPostIt! One of the e-mails is for leads that the company has not done business with before (cold leads) and the other is for leads that the company has done business with before (warm leads). The director has to write concise e-mails with high “skim value.” He must distill a large amount of information regarding the company value proposition and company history in an engaging way.

YouPostIt! is an experimental marketing company owned by Redmas Digital. The concept is simple: consumers get a chance to send physical postcards for free. Consumers log in at YouPostIt.com, upload a photo and write a short note, and then choose a border to go around the picture on the postcard (the border is a corporate logo). The business that occupies the border of the postcard assumes the cost of the postcard. Businesses have the opportunity to include coupons on the physical postcard and via an e-mail notification message after sending. How can the director write these sales e-mails to businesses he believes will want to pay for consumers’ postcards?


Teaching Note: 8B12A002 (3 pages)
Industry: Other Services
Issues: Sales Pitch; E-mail; Technology; Advertising; Tourism; Entrepreneurship; Canada
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate



INVESTMENT FUNDS INSTITUTE OF CANADA
Robert J. Fisher, Christina A. Cavanagh, Stephen R. Foerster, Ramasastry Chandrasekhar

Product Number: 9B04A008
Publication Date: 11/23/2004
Revision Date: 10/7/2009
Length: 16 pages

The vice-president of regulation at the Investment Funds Institute of Canada is reviewing the monthly statistics. It shows the continuance of three trends, prevalent during the last 12 months in the Canadian mutual funds industry. Net sales of mutual funds were declining, fund redemptions were rising and the rate of growth in mutual fund assets had been marginal. The vice-president must determine how the Investment Funds Institute, as the industry trade association for mutual funds, can influence these trends. He must decide on the message, who he should target with the message and the media through which he should reach his target audience, and present his plan at the next executive committee meeting.

Teaching Note: 8B04A08 (5 pages)
Industry: Social Advocacy Organizations
Issues: Services; Marketing Management; Market Segmentation; Investment Funds
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 7:
Crafting Messages for Electronic Media

IBM'S DIGITAL INFLUENCE PROGRAM
Asha Kaul, Varun Thappa

Product Number: 9B13M025
Publication Date: 4/12/2013
Revision Date: 4/16/2013
Length: 17 pages

IBM India was experimenting with social media applications to extend its marketing mix. A social media campaign named Digital Influence was launched to gain market share for the company’s software products, influence groundswell and develop technical evangelists. Within a year, the share of voice and reach for the company’s five software brands increased significantly. However, the company’s marketing and communications director was hesitant to declare victory. Was the model sustainable? What challenges would the company face in the implementation process? Would the plan of operations continue to help the company gain market space and create technical evangelists?

Teaching Note: 8B13M025 (10 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Digital influence; blogs; social media; communication; India
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



EXPERIENCE CHINA: A NATIONAL IMAGE CAMPAIGN IN THE UNITED STATES
William Wei, Yuanfang Lin, Mei Qin Kok

Product Number: 9B11A033
Publication Date: 10/6/2011
Revision Date: 7/26/2017
Length: 8 pages

The China national image film “People Chapter” — officially a sub-series of the “Experience China” campaign — was launched by the Chinese government to coincide with President Hu Jintao’s visit to the United States in mid-January 2011. The one-minute promotional video was played on six giant electronic screens about 300 times per day, and had appeared approximately 8,400 times when the broadcast ended on February 14, 2011. The video showed a series of Chinese people, ranging from ordinary citizens to celebrities. It was a publicity effort aimed at promoting a truer image of China abroad, and signalling that China was opening to embrace the world. However, reactions from both Chinese and overseas audiences had been fairly mixed since the initial release of the promotional film. Experts from China and abroad were skeptical of the effectiveness of the campaign in promoting the national image of modern China to the world. This case presents the opportunity to examine the basic elements in the marketing communication process, analyze how decisions in marketing design affect outcomes, and understand the differences between nation and product promotion.

Teaching Note: 8B11A033 (6 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Advertising Strategy; Advertising Media; Cultural Sensitivity; Public Relations; Target Market; China and United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



NESTLÉ: A SOCIAL MEDIA NIGHTMARE (A)
Jana Seijts, Benjamin Bigio

Product Number: 9B10M103
Publication Date: 3/28/2011
Length: 12 pages

As the largest food and drink company in the world, Nestlé S.A. prided itself on a solid reputation built over the past 150 years. On March 17, 2010, the chairman of the board of directors was surprised by a YouTube video created by the environmental activist group Greenpeace. The graphic and provocative video criticized Nestlé for its use of palm oil in Nestlé products. It helped Greenpeace make a bold statement: Nestlé products were leading to deforestation and the extinction of orangutans. Within 24 hours, the video had more than 100,000 views and anti-Nestlé campaigns quickly emerged on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media networks around the world. At the same time, Greenpeace activists dressed up as orangutans and protested at Nestlé’s headquarters and factories in Europe. Activists urged the company to stop sourcing palm oil from companies that destroy forests in the process. Considering the popularity and force of social media, how should Nestlé react to the YouTube video?

Teaching Note: 8B10M103 (6 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Public Relations; Crisis Communication; Social Media; Food and Beverage
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



CHARLES FOSTER SENDS AN EMAIL (A)
Henry W. Lane

Product Number: 9B05C019
Publication Date: 8/12/2005
Revision Date: 9/28/2009
Length: 5 pages

After the U.S. sales manager of a large multinational company emails his supervisor regarding the supply of a new product, the message is forwarded to two others. The final recipient, the president of the Franco-Japanese joint venture partner that is manufacturing the new product, is offended by what he perceives as unfair criticism. The supplemental case, Charles Foster Sends an Email (B), product number 9B05C020, includes the sales manager's response to the president, and the ensuing correspondence from the joint venture. Together, the (A) and (B) cases present a setting for discussing three issues; the relationship between a communication situation and the medium chosen to deliver it, the effects on business relationships when an inappropriate communications medium is chosen and the processes needed to communicate effectively in multicultural business relationships.

Teaching Note: 8B05C19 (6 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Interpersonal Relations; International Business; Management Communication; Northeastern
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 8:
Writing Routine and Positive Messages

WINDERMERE MANOR: SUSTAINABILITY AND CHANGE
Chetan Joshi, Hari Bapuji, Ramasastry Chandrasekhar

Product Number: 9B13C044
Publication Date: 12/10/2013
Revision Date: 12/9/2013
Length: 7 pages

In the hotel industry, the reuse of towels is considered a main step toward reducing hotels’ high carbon footprint. Windermere Manor, a private, high-end hotel, has established a routine to encourage its guests to reuse towels; however, the hotel’s towel-replacement rate exceeds its towel-reuse rate. The intended routine for identifying towels for reuse is not being followed, even by the hotels’ own housekeeping staff. The hotel's general manager examines the reasons for the breakdown of routine and considers ways of correcting the situation.

Teaching Note: 8B13C044 (9 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Organization design; communication to stakeholders; sustainability; research methods; operations; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



GERM WARFARE: COMBATING HEALTH CARE-ASSOCIATED INFECTIONS THROUGH COMMUNICATION
Mary Weil, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B12M117
Publication Date: 12/18/2012
Revision Date: 12/18/2012
Length: 14 pages

The director of the Infection Prevention and Control Unit at the University Health Network (UHN), in Toronto, Canada, is working to reduce healthcare acquired infections (HAIs) by using a different way to communicate with hospital staff. Through positive deviance (PD), participants are gaining new perspectives to help identify the changes that are needed to reduce HAIs. The initiative has been successful at UHN. Now the director needs to figure out how to spread the success of positive deviance to more health care regions and facilities in Canada and the United States to improve patient lives and the quality of health care.

Teaching Note: 8B12M117 (8 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Communications; Employee Engagement; Organizational Culture; Sustainability; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 9:
Writing Negative Messages

GOLDIEBLOX TOY COMPANY AND COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT
Zahra Ladha Jiwani

Product Number: 9B14A050
Publication Date: 8/15/2014
Revision Date: 12/22/2014
Length: 3 pages

In November 2013, GoldieBlox was accused of copyright infringement. It used the Beastie Boys song “Girls” in one of its advertisements promoting new toys for girls without permission. The company’s reaction to file a lawsuit against the band was not well received and perhaps a little hasty.

In the wake of the crisis, the chief executive officer of GoldieBlox Toy Company and her team had some decisions to make regarding how to handle the lawsuit they filed against the Beastie Boys that then backfired. The hostile environment was not conducive to the image of the company and the negative media was of concern to GoldieBox and its employees.


Teaching Note: 8B14A050 (6 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Communications; conflict; copyright; United States
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate



DOMINO’S PIZZA
Jana Seijts, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B11C016
Publication Date: 9/9/2011
Length: 4 pages

The vice president of communications of Domino’s Pizza International faced a significant threat to his company’s reputation due to negative social media exposure. A video had been posted on YouTube two days earlier by a Domino’s employee that showed two Domino’s employees at a North Carolina franchise tampering with customers’ pizza and sandwich orders. The employee stuck cheese up his nose, sneezed on the food prior to boxing it up, and could be overheard in the video admitting that the orders would soon be delivered to unsuspecting customers. The video went viral; it had been reposted to Twitter and Facebook, and received almost a million views and many comments on YouTube. It was also receiving attention from both local and national media channels. The senior executive team of Domino’s was meeting with the vice president in a matter of hours, and Domino’s social media team would need to devise a plan to respond to the video to protect Domino’s strong brand image before it was too late.

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Teaching Note: 8B11C016 (5 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Social Media; Crisis Management; Brand Management; Management Communication; Fast Food; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



A BOMB IN YOUR POCKET? CRISIS LEADERSHIP AT NOKIA INDIA (A)
Charles Dhanaraj, Monidipa Mukherjee, Hima Bindu

Product Number: 9B10M064
Publication Date: 2/16/2011
Length: 11 pages

This case addresses the theme of crisis leadership in a multinational enterprise in order to help students internalize the critical challenges of a multinational company in an emerging market. In August 2007, a routine product feedback and defect analysis process identified a defective batch of batteries supplied by a Japanese vendor. India happened to be the recipient of the largest proportion of the defective batch. Nokia’s corporate communications team, based in Finland, in cooperation with the Indian team, responded with a customary global product advisory. Instructions were made available on the Internet for customers to diagnose a defective battery and get a free replacement. Nokia was shocked to see the antagonistic response from the Indian press to the product advisory and the ensuing mayhem that spread quickly through the country. The head of Nokia India and his team had to act swiftly to preserve the company’s hard-earned reputation and market share. Case (A) is set as a midnight strategy session at Nokia’s Indian headquarters to chart out the way forward. A Bomb in Your Pocket? Crisis Leadership at Nokia India (B) is a short version of what actually happened: how Nokia and the team responded to the crisis and and used the situation to create new organizational capabilities.

Teaching Note: 8B10M64 (15 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Multinational; Global Strategy; Crisis Leadership; Communications; Telecommunications; Finland; India; Ivey/ISB
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate


Chapter 10:
Writing Persuasive Messages

BARILLA PASTA: A COMPANY IN HOT WATER
Jana Seijts, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B13A039
Publication Date: 11/8/2013
Revision Date: 11/8/2013
Length: 6 pages

On September 26, 2013, the chief executive officer of the world-leading pasta manufacturer, the Barilla Group, was challenged with a precarious situation. A day earlier, during an interview on an Italian radio show, the company chairman made a series of anti-gay remarks when asked why the company did not feature advertisements with gay families. Social media exploded with negative comments and numerous equality themed pictures creatively featuring pasta. U.S. late night television shows mocked the company, and various equality rights organizations around the world called for a boycott of its products. Competitors also issued statements and ads extolling their respect for diversity. Everyone — customers, news media, competitors and organizations supporting diversity — were looking for an explanation. The company desperately needed to devise a strategy to publicly respond and avoid the negative long-term consequences of a damaged brand name, decreased market share and ultimately lost revenues.

Teaching Note: 8B13A039 (9 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Diversity; brand perception; communications; Italy
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



CCM HOCKEY: THE RE-LAUNCH OF THE U+ PRO SKATE
Christopher A. Ross

Product Number: 9B11A038
Publication Date: 11/18/2011
Length: 18 pages

CCM Hockey had been losing market share to competitors in the hockey skate business. In order to counter this trend, in March 2008 the most innovative pair of hockey skates ever developed by CCM was made available to customers. Soon after the launch, however, some quality issues developed. In 2009, new and improved skates were put on the market but they looked identical to the previous model. Buyers were skeptical and, as a result, sales were poor. Both the trade and individual consumers had lost confidence in the brand. CCM returned to the drawing board and redesigned the skates but also decided to launch them in fall 2010, instead of the normal industry cycle time of spring 2010. The decision was complicated by a stagnant market and indistinct consumer segments. The brand manager and his assistant were faced with developing a strong launch strategy because the future of the CCM skate brand depended on it.

Teaching Note: 8B11A038 (12 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Brand Management; Integrated Marketing Communications; Product Positioning; Competitor Analysis; Product Management; Customer Analysis; Ice Hockey
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



FIJI WATER AND CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY - GREEN MAKEOVER OR "GREENWASHING"?
James McMaster, Jan Nowak

Product Number: 9B09A008
Publication Date: 5/13/2009
Revision Date: 5/10/2017
Length: 21 pages

This case analysis traces the establishment and subsequent operation of FIJI Water LLC and its bottling subsidiary, Natural Waters of Viti Limited, the first company in Fiji extracting, bottling and marketing, both domestically and internationally, artesian water coming from a virgin ecosystem found on Fiji's main island of Viti Levu. The case reviews the growth and market expansion of this highly successful company with the brand name FIJI Natural Artesian Water (FIJI Water). The company has grown rapidly over the past decade and a half, and now exports bottled water into many countries in the world from its production plant located in the Fiji Islands. In 2008, FIJI Water was the leading imported bottled water brand in the United States. In the context of great marketing success of the FIJI brand, particularly in the U.S. market, the case focuses on how the company has responded to a number of corporate social responsibility (CSR) issues, including measuring and reducing its carbon footprint, responsibilities to key stakeholders, and concerns of the Fiji government with regard to taxation and transfer pricing issues. The case provides a compelling illustration of how CSR challenges may jeopardize the sustainability of a clever marketing strategy.

Teaching Note: 8B09A08 (11 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Environment; Corporate Responsibility; Marketing Communication; Transfer Pricing; International Marketing; Greenwashing; Green Marketing; Brand Positioning
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 11:
Planning Reports and Proposals

CANADIAN CANCER SOCIETY: FUNDRAISING CONTROVERSY
Jana Seijts, Paul Bigus

Product Number: 9B11M098
Publication Date: 10/17/2011
Revision Date: 3/30/2016
Length: 8 pages

On July 6, 2011, the communication director for the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) in Toronto, Ontario, was faced with a challenging situation. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) had just released an online article that focused on the 2011 CCS budget and how the CCS allocated millions of dollars each year. The article provided details on how the proportion of donation money that the CCS spent on cancer research each year had decreased from 40 per cent in 2000 to under 22 per cent in 2011. With the CBC report circulating in both television and online media, public speculation into the CCS’s financial management of public donations was starting to grow. It was clear that the CCS communication team would need to respond. A communication strategy would need to be developed for the CCS to follow, along with a press release to be posted the next day on the CCS website.

Teaching Note: 8B11M098 (8 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Non-profit Organization; Communications; Media Relations; Crisis Management; Fundraising; Research; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



PILLSBURY COOKIE CHALLENGE
Allison Johnson, Natalie Mauro

Product Number: 9B11A001
Publication Date: 2/3/2011
Revision Date: 5/10/2017
Length: 14 pages

The Canadian Pillsbury ready-baked goods cookie line is experiencing disappointing performance, and the marketing manager at General Mills Canada Corporation is under pressure to make strategic decisions that will help turn around the segment. The marketing manager has engaged the help of the consumer insight team to conduct market research studies that will shed light on consumers and their attitudes, behaviours, and preferences towards the product. The results from the market research studies have arrived, and the students, assuming the role of the marketing manager, must filter through them to determine how this information can be used to improve the performance of the cookie segment. More specifically, students will need to determine where the greatest opportunities lie, who the team should target, what brand messaging is the most relevant, and what type of communication plan would be most effective.

Teaching Note: 8B11A001 (11 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Cross-cultural Differences; Customer Segmentation; Brand Positioning; Value Proposition; Market Research
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 12:
Writing Reports and Proposals

DACIA DUSTER SUV
Marina Apaydin, Hantulie Oana Nicoleta

Product Number: 9B10A031
Publication Date: 2/10/2011
Length: 14 pages

Driven by the 2009 global economic crisis, Dacia Romania designed and built the Dacia Duster sport utility vehicle (SUV) to be the ideal SUV at an affordable price. After a successful introduction of the cheapest modern sedan on the international market in 2004, and one of the cheapest modern seven-seaters in 2006, Dacia planned to introduce what it hoped would become the cheapest modern SUV on the international market. The main challenge it was facing in 2009 was not only how to sell the car to existing customers, but also to conduct an extensive public communication campaign in order to convince other drivers to change their cars for the cheaper, more efficient Dacia SUV that was going to be available in spring 2010.

Teaching Note: 8B10A031 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Business Communication; Marketing; Operations Management; Slogans; Sport Utility Vehicles; Romania
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



COMMUNICATIONS CHALLENGES AT UWO
Michael Sider, Jenni Denniston

Product Number: 9B04C028
Publication Date: 9/20/2004
Revision Date: 10/9/2009
Length: 10 pages

The director of communications at a large university has reviewed results of a communication survey completed by employees. He is pleased that the overall results were favourable, but is concerned with comments in a recent employee newsletter that provided negative feedback of the survey. It is the director's responsibility to take the results of the research and develop a formal communications plan, but as he compares the study findings to the article is confused as to how he should tackle the problem.

Teaching Note: 8B04C28 (3 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Human Resources Management; Human Behaviour; Communications
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 13:
Completing Reports and Proposals

STRONGEST FAMILIES
Anne Snowdon, Alexander Smith, Heidi Cramm

Product Number: 9B13M133
Publication Date: 4/7/2014
Revision Date: 4/4/2014
Length: 16 pages

Strongest Families is a 12-week distance treatment program for children with various mental health disorders and their families. The program was started in Nova Scotia in 2001 to address issues of stigma, lack of access to primary care specialists and difficulty of obtaining care, especially in rural areas. To meet these needs, the program utilizes long-distance communication methods such as weekly telephone meetings with trained personnel who are available days, nights and weekends, so access to care is easy and convenient for families. The founder of the program has already proven its efficacy in a major outcome paper that disseminated the supporting evidence to the research community. As chief executive officer of the Strong Families Institute, a federally registered not-for-profit organization, he and his founding partner, now chief operating officer, want to scale up the program to other provinces and eventually other countries, but they must get government ministries and other stakeholders on side in the interests of making mental health care widely available to the children and families who need it.

Teaching Note: 8B13M133 (7 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Health; innovation adoption; commercialization; change management; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



ENBRIDGE MICHIGAN OIL SPILL: PATRICK DANIEL'S CHALLENGE (A)
Gerard Seijts, William T. Watson

Product Number: 9B12C039
Publication Date: 10/24/2012
Revision Date: 10/11/2013
Length: 10 pages

In 2010, approximately 20,000 barrels of oil being shipped south by Enbridge spilled into Michigan’s Talmadge Creek, contaminating wetlands around Battle Creek and the nearby county seat of Marshall, including a stretch of the Kalamazoo River. The timing of the incident could not have been worse. The pipeline had been carrying controversial tar sands oil at a time when Enbridge and its competitors were seeking to greatly expand their pipeline networks across North America. Moreover, the pipeline failure came on the heels of BP's much larger oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, amid a period of heightened public intolerance toward oil spills. As a result, Enbridge faced massive public relations (PR) and regulatory challenges. Enbridge's reputation was clearly at risk since the company had promoted itself as a true believer in corporate social responsibility, which had raised the stakes when dealing with the industrial accident. The CEO of Enbridge faced an almost impossible challenge. He needed to prove to American citizens — and to industry regulators, market watchers, company shareholders and Enbridge employees — that his company deserved to be judged on its own merits, not as a Canadian version of BP. To meet this challenge, he needed to demonstrate that Enbridge was run by people who not only wanted to make amends but could be trusted to do so.

Teaching Note: 8B12C039 (9 pages)
Industry: Utilities
Issues: Leadership; Crisis; Communication; Leadership Character; United States
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate



CANADIAN BLOOD SERVICES
Ron Mulholland

Product Number: 9B11A046
Publication Date: 11/25/2011
Length: 13 pages

The marketing manager for Canadian Blood Services (CBS) is concerned about a growing demand for blood — two per cent per year — driven by a number of factors, including the decrease of wait times in local hospitals, new operating procedures, and increased use or requirements of an aging population. Peak demand seasons coincide with low supply seasons, such as summer and winter holidays. Two issues require attention: the first involves increasing the absolute number of donors, currently in the 400,000 range. Indications are that the percentage of Canadians who donate blood (four per cent) is lower than other countries such as Sweden (five per cent). The second need is to retain more donors and increase the number of donations per donor each year. The CBS still faces issues stemming from the tainted blood scandal of the 1980s and the subsequent Krever inquiry. It is working to rebuild the trust of the public. The crux of the issue is understanding consumer behaviour toward blood donation. The manager needs to understand the consumer decision process, examine segments, determine a target segment, and develop communications to increase both the absolute number of donors and the repeat donations of identified donors.

Teaching Note: 8B11A046 (15 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Consumer Behaviour; Marketing Strategy; Marketing Communication; Blood Donations; Health Care; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 14:
Designing and Delivering Oral and Online Presentations

THE LAC-MÉGANTIC DISASTER
Michael Sider, Mary Weil, Brian Dunphy

Product Number: 9B14M040
Publication Date: 4/16/2014
Revision Date: 4/15/2014
Length: 8 pages

In July 2013, the chairman of Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway is facing a public outcry as well as possible bankruptcy and the revocation of his operating licence. When one of the company’s trains derailed in the town of Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, several of its cars carrying crude oil exploded. The explosions and subsequent fires destroyed the downtown core and killed several dozen people. The oil spill also contaminated the local lake and river, leading to an environmental disaster for the community. The company was slow in issuing a press release, which pointed the finger of blame on the train’s engineer and the fire department that had responded to an earlier engine fire on the train. Someone had powered down the train and that had released the brakes. Since the train was parked on an incline, without brakes it had rolled into town, gathering speed until it hit a crossroads and derailed. Five days after the derailment, the chairman finally visited the town where he spoke off the cuff and without French translation, further angering the grieving citizens. Now he faces the kind of public and professional censure that might end his career.

Teaching Note: 8B14M040 (4 pages)
Industry: Transportation and Warehousing
Issues: Communications; crisis communication; issues management; media relations; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



CRAIG PITCHELL - PRESIDENT
Mary Weil

Product Number: 9B13C031
Publication Date: 8/28/2013
Revision Date: 5/6/2014
Length: 5 pages

Craig Pitchell is a young executive who has become director of the board at a local childcare centre. He has discovered that other board members do not comply with the by-laws for the centre. He is presenting at a special meeting to oust the current board and replace them with an alternate slate of directors.

Teaching Note: 8B13C031 (7 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Communication; presentation skills; building trust; reputation; Canada
Difficulty: 2 - Intro/Undergraduate



KENEXA
Joerg Dietz, Chetan Joshi

Product Number: 9B07C004
Publication Date: 1/30/2007
Revision Date: 3/25/2008
Length: 15 pages

This case describes the measurement and evaluation of high performance principles of people management in a retail bank by a consulting company. This case serves as a platform for students to deliberate on what is involved in an organization's quest to achieve competitive success through its workforce. A unique strength of the case is that students are asked to quantitatively test their arguments with data provided in an Excel spreadsheet that accompanies the case (Ivey product #7B07C004). The case is intended as an integrated case across organizational behavior, management science and communication. The organizational behavior teaching approach is included to demonstrate that effective people management is associated with competitive advantages. For management science, the case serves to practice correlation and regression analyses. For communication, the case allows students to prepare a presentation that effectively communicates the complex and comprehensive results of their analyses.

Teaching Note: 8B07C04 (18 pages)
Industry: Administrative, Support, Waste Management and Remediation Services
Issues: Communications; Regression Analysis; Human Resources Management; Consulting
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 15:
Building Careers and Writing Résumés

PATRICIA COULTER'S DILEMMA (A)
John S. Haywood-Farmer, Samantha Winkler

Product Number: 9B13C020
Publication Date: 5/31/2013
Revision Date: 5/27/2013
Length: 8 pages

A graduating fourth-year HBA student faces an ethical dilemma as she struggles to decide which one of two job offers to accept. The situation is complicated by the fact that she has received an exploding offer from one firm and she must respond to it on the same day as she participates in a final-round interview with the other firm. The stakeholders in this case include the student, the two firms, the university and its career-management program, and the other graduating students in the HBA program. The (B) case 9B13C021 is set about two weeks later, when Patricia Coulter is wrestling with another decision.

Teaching Note: 8B13C020 (8 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Ethical Decisions; Personal Values; Recruiting; Career Planning; Professional Firms; Customer Services; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



ARTHUR MEDICAL SUPPLIES: THE UNHAPPY SALESMAN
June Cotte, Shawn Melito

Product Number: 9B04A009
Publication Date: 5/14/2004
Revision Date: 10/7/2009
Length: 3 pages

A recent MBA graduate has joined a small division of a medical equipment manufacturer as a regional sales manager. Sales are not going well, customer complaints are common, and he is unhappy with the amount of time he must spend away from home. The regional sales manager must analyse his options to determine the best way to balance the rigours of a sales career and personal life. He must consider the challenges of an undefined, boundary-spanning role; management's possible role in mitigating these challenges; and the expectations about the rigours of a sales career.

Teaching Note: 8B04A09 (2 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Career Planning; Sales Management; Family-Work Interaction
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



JACK HARRIS (A)
Mitch Rothstein

Product Number: 9B03C037
Publication Date: 11/5/2003
Revision Date: 10/17/2009
Length: 8 pages

A top student in an MBA program had been pursued by the top-tier consulting firms that were recruiting at his school. Impressed by the prestige of the industry, he decided to choose a career in management consulting. After less than a year in the profession, the recent graduate is disillusioned. He is offered a marketing position that pays much less, but may be a better fit for him in a number of ways. He considers whether he should leave his lucrative career, whether he should accept the offer for the lesser paying position and whether he could be making another faulty career decision. In the case supplement Jack Harris (B), product 9B03C038 the former consultant reflects on his career decision-making.

Teaching Note: 8B03C37 (5 pages)
Industry: Other Services
Issues: Career Planning; Career Development
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 16:
Applying and Interviewing for Employment

JOB OFFER NEGOTIATION EXERCISE (A): MAXIMUM MOTIVATION CANDIDATE INSTRUCTIONS
Eric Weinberg, Jean Phillips

Product Number: 9B12C036A
Publication Date: 9/27/2012
Revision Date: 4/29/2016
Length: 3 pages

This is one exercise in a 4-part series entitled Job Offer Negotiation Exercises. This exercise gives participants the opportunity to act as the Maximum Motivation candidate in a job offer negotiation.

The purpose of this role-play case series is to give participants the opportunity to experience a job offer negotiation as both the job candidate and the employer. The exercise involves two distinct negotiation scenarios, allowing participants the opportunity to play both roles and to practice and apply concepts and skills learned in the first negotiation session. If desired, only one of the two scenarios can be negotiated if only one hour is available for the activity. One negotiation occurs for a job with a company called Maximum Motivation (A and B cases) and the other is for a job with a company called People Power (C and D cases). Participants work in pairs, with one playing the role of the job candidate and the other playing the role of the company representative. In both scenarios, the company considers the candidate to be the top applicant and would like to finalize the hire. Also in both scenarios, the job candidate has an acceptable alternative — another job offer from a rival company called PerformanceMax — and needs to accept or decline the PerformanceMax offer the next day. Thus, it is important that both sides reach an acceptable employment arrangement during this negotiation, or the candidate will not be hired. When both sides have negotiated an acceptable agreement, or when either partner decides to end the negotiation, the negotiation is over. After group discussion, participants find a different partner who last played the opposite role, switch roles, and complete the second negotiation scenario.


Teaching Note: 8B12C036 (6 pages)
Industry: Other Services
Issues: Negotiation; Hiring; Compensation; Staffing
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



ANJALI KUMAR — NEGOTIATING A JOB OFFER (A)
Alison Konrad, Nundini Krishnan

Product Number: 9B11C045
Publication Date: 12/15/2011
Length: 4 pages

Anjali Kumar receives her first job offer after graduation at an organization she admires, with interesting work and good benefits, but the salary is low. Also, she is unsure whether the position offers any advancement opportunities. At the end of the (A) case, Anjali has to decide whether to accept the offer, decline it, or try to negotiate a better offer, even though she has received no other offers at the time.

Teaching Note: 8B11C045 (6 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Women in Management; Human Resources Management; Negotiations; Job Offer; Hiring; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA