(10 pages of text)
In 2015, a professor of project-management leadership at an executive-education institute had to decide how to handle a poorly performing team of students. The course’s major project was an independent group report where students were asked to apply the frameworks and tools they had learned in class to assist an organization in need of project management consulting services. One team had failed to effectively manage itself and was therefore petitioning to exclude the name of one of its members from the project submission. The instructor had to decide how best to proceed, bearing in mind that the group’s request would result in a failing course grade for the student, along with jeopardizing that student’s certification status in the program.
This case was written for the organizational behaviour section of an introductory business course at the undergraduate university level and can be taught as a comprehensive case or used as a testing vehicle. The case has the following learning objectives:
- Practising critical thinking about complex organizational behaviour issues.
- Conducting analysis and presenting recommendations and action plans.
- Dealing with conflicts in group settings.
- Learning how the concepts of leadership, motivation, power and influence, and cognitive differences can explain dysfunction.
- Developing a detailed plan outlining a course of action for the immediate future and for the long term.
Canada, Small, 2015
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