Ellen Moore working in Korea

Topics: Project management, Culture, Cross-cultural communication Pages: 10 (3365 words) Published: October 7, 2013


I - Executive Summary
The management team at Joint Venture Inc. (JVI) is faced with a serious dilemma. The Systems Implementation (SI) team has fallen behind schedule on a major consulting project for a government agency in Korea. There are four main causes of the schedule delay: Unclear definition of roles and responsibilities

Poor communication
Scope creep
Lack of experience of the Korean team
Beneath the surface, there are lingering problems revolving around culture and conflicting personalities which contribute to the above mentioned problems, and threaten to delay the project even further. After careful analysis, the following recommendations have been made to address the current problems and put the project back on track: Bring in additional expertise in the form of Mr. Kilpatrick, who will assume the project lead role on a full-time basis Work on communication strategies to elucidate on roles and responsibilities Appeal to Korean cultural virtues to address scope creep and training issues Establish a forum to assist with Q&A portion of training

It is the sentiment of this consulting body that the proposed recommendations and associated plan of action will result in a swift turnaround of the project, a more synergistic team, and ultimately a quality implementation completed in a timely manner. II - Statement of the Problem

The focus of this report is to provide recommendations to mitigate the risk of further schedule delays by addressing the underlying short and long term problems which have led to the delays. Short term problems

Unclear Roles and Responsibilities: Although Mr. Kim and Ms. Moore are assigned as co-managers of the SI project, it is evident that there is no clear delineation of their specific roles and responsibilities. This has led to confusion among team members, especially when they receive conflicting instructions from the co-managers. As a result, team members have wasted effort on activities that were either not required or not in the best interests of the project, whichin turn has negatively impacted the project schedule. Poor Communication: Initially, the miscommunication of the Korean team’s experience led to the development of an overly optimistic schedule. Secondly, once it was identified that the experience of the Korean team was overstated, this information was not communicated to management immediately – which further delayed the schedule because corrective action was not taken. For example, Ms. Moore realized earlier on that Mr. Kim had never worked on a systems implementation project or a consulting project, however there was nothing to suggest that Ms. Moore took action to address or communicate this risk. Scope Creep: This is a result of the Korean consultants accepting work from the clients that was not within the original project scope. As well, the market research study identified by Mr. Kim is not within the project scope and will also impact the project schedule. Long term problem

Korean Team’s Lack of Experience in SI and Learning Challenges: The experienced SCG team will only be involved on the project for the first seven months to support the development of the system design. Afterwards, the Korean consulting team will complete the actual implementation that will take seven to ten years. The lack of SI knowledge within the Korean team is a significant risk going forward, especially after the SCG team leaves. Effective training and knowledge transfer is a critical success factor that will influence the long-term success of the project. However, due to the learning style of the Korean team, it is difficult to gauge if the training material is understood.

III - Causes of the Problems
Unclear Roles and Responsibilities
The root cause of unclear roles and responsibilities can be traced back to communications issues. In the business environment, there are three types of communication; downward, upward, and horizontal (Johns & Saks, 2011)....

Bibliography: [1] Hofstede, G. (2011). Dimensionalizing Cultures: The Hofstede Model in Context. Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, Unit 2. Retrieved from http://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/orpc/vol2/iss1/8 (May 2012)
[2] Hofstede, G. & Bond, M. H. (1988). The Confucius connection: from cultural roots to economic growth. Organizational Dynamics, 16, 5-21
[3] Jeanne D. Maes, Teresa G. Weldy, Marjorie L. Icenogle; A Managerial Perspective: Oral Communication Competency Is Most Important for Business Students in the Workplace.The Journal of Business Communication, Vol. 34, 1997
[4] Gary Johns & Alan M. Saks. Organization Behaviour – Understanding & Managing Life At Work. Pearson Canada. 2011 – 8th edition.
[5] Johns, G. & Saks, A. M. (1996). Organizational Behaviour: understanding and managing life at work. (8th ed.).Pearson Canada Inc., Toronto, Ontario
[6] Michael O’Connor and J. Richard Hackman (2005). What makes a great Analytic team, Individual versus team approaches to intelligence analysis
[7] D. L. Nelson and J.C. Quick, (2011). ORGB2 2010-2011 Edition. South-Western., Cultural Differences, p19,20
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