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General Appliance Management Control System Case Study

For his course on Implementing Strategy: Management Control Systems, Vijay Govindarajan uses mini-cases to illustrate how the design and implementation of ongoing management systems are used to plan and control a company's performance.

3M Corporation

Vijay Govindarajan; Julie Lang
Length: 4 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0002

3M's strategy was rooted in innovation. 3M's 30 Percent Rule, where 30 percent of revenues must come from products introduced in the last four years, clarifies and drives its innovation mentality. Selected policies and philosophies helped to institutionalize a corporate culture of entrepreneurship and innovation.

Dell Computer Corporation

Vijay Govindarajan; Julie Lang
Length: 4 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0014

The world's largest direct-selling computer company grew from its philosophy that customers know what they want and Dell can deliver it through custom assembly of outsourced components. Through a combination of financial and non-financial measures, Dell turned itself from a product business into a service industry.

Southwest Airlines

Vijay Govindarajan; Julie Lang
Length: 4 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0012

Southwest used its short-haul and point-to-point strategy to achieve the lowest operating cost structure in the domestic airline industry. Flexible contracts and a rigorous peer recruiting process aligned its 35,000 employees with this strategy.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Vijay Govindarajan; Julie Lang
Length: 4 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0013

Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart in 1962, had the vision for his store to sell low cost, branded products. By setting up its own distribution system and truck fleet, and evaluating retail stores as separate investment centers, Wal-Mart's control systems helped to build and entrench its competitive advantage.

Management Control Systems: Teaching Cases

In his course on Implementing Strategy: Management Control Systems, Vijay Govindarajan uses his textbook entitled Management Control Systems, (with Robert N. Anthony), Eleventh edition, 2003, in addition to the following cases.

Analog Devices (A)

The first Analog Devices case can be found in VG's book, Management Control Systems

Analog Devices, a leading semiconductor manufacturer designed performance measurement systems that provided far more than just a financial view. As their system evolved, it incorporated more measures designed to reflect growth, rather than just operational efficiency. A similar approach later was popularized as the "Balanced Scorecard."

Analog Devices (B)

Chris Trimble; Vijay Govindarajan; Jesse Johnson
Length: 9 pages
Publication date: 2001
Case No. 2-0003

In 2000, ADI posted an unprecedented 78 percent growth rate. Their participation was growing in new consumer markets (electronics and communications) with shorter life cycles and high volatility. ADI had to rethink their scorecard for more dynamic environments.

Crown Point Cabinetry

David VanderSchee; Vijay Govindarajan; Julie Lang
Length: 8 pages
Publication date: 2001
Case No. 2-0010

In 1993, Brian Stowell, CEO of a family-owned cabinet manufacturing business, created a vision for his 85 employees that focused on high quality products with less rework and wasted material. Eliminating production line managers and adopting a team-based management approach was a risky proposition, but one that paid off in increased sales and margins.

Nucor Corporation (A)

Vijay Govindarajan
Length: 15 pages
Publication date: 1998
Case No. 2-0015

Under the leadership of CEO Ken Iverson, Nucor thrived. Nucor's structure was decentralized, with only four management layers. Only 22 employees worked at the corporate headquarters; plants were located in rural areas across the US and the general manager of each plant was granted considerable autonomy and encouraged to take reasonable risks. Employee relations stressed pay for productivity and took an egalitarian approach toward employee benefits. Under Iverson's leadership, Nucor pioneered the mini-mill concept, built new plants from scratch, promoted from within, and remained a domestic company.

Nucor Corporation (B)

Vijay Govindarajan
Length: 3 pages
Publication date: 1999
Case No. 2-0016

In January, 1999, Ken Iverson, the thirty-year leader of Nucor Corporation, was forced into retirement. Five months later, his successor, John Correnti, was asked to leave. The board of directors wanted fundamental shifts in Nucor's strategy and organization that Iverson and Correnti resisted. The board's considerations included pursuing acquisitions, expanding into global markets and adding new organizational layers.

The Trustees of Dartmouth College hold the copyright to all the cases listed above. Please download a single copy for evaluation. For permission to reproduce multiple copies; i.e. for classroom use, please contact Annette Lepine n by e-mail at annette.m.lepine@tuck.dartmouth.edu. Ms. Lepine can also provide teaching notes for many of these cases, including an instructor's guide for teaching with the book Ten Rules for Strategic Innovators-from Idea to Execution (2005, Harvard Business School Press).

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