Introduction to Engineering Management
W.L. Gore – Case Questions
1. What is it about the Gore organizational culture that keeps it a leader in innovation and creativity?
Since they are hiring the person and not to fill a specific job position, it keeps the people flexible and innovative.
2. What problems would a newly hired person have working for Gore?
A newly added employee is not given specific direction of where to go and what to do. Instead the Gore Company promotes creative thinking and the employee places himself where he thinks he needs to be. If you do not have imagination about your job then you might be sitting at a desk for a month wondering what in the world you should be doing. Sometimes employees cannot understand this and must leave the company.
3. What advantages does the Gore culture provide in a dynamic world?
When management and employees are flexible, they are quicker to respond to the external business changes than someone that is static. The world will always have new demands for specific products and Gore can deliver with their fast paced change system.
Gore is an organic management system with a flat hierarchy that incorporates a lattice structure. They have few written rules with their focus along the lines of a narrow competitive scope but unique in advantage. This gives them a focused differentiation according to Porter’s competitive strategies.
Identification of Issues
Gore does not have defined job titles besides President and Secretary/Treasurer and as they enlarge as a whole, this could create a problem with internal struggles of power between two or more people/departments.
Analysis and Evaluation
The external environ market is defined by Gore itself and has an unlimited scope. They have invented new items and define their own markets with the niche that they create.
Their main strength in the business is their flexibility to new markets that they create and the cohesion of employees. By developing new products they create a niche that only they can fulfill. Since they are not bureaucratic and overly powerful, they cannot muscle out the competition as much.
Weaknesses of the company could include the compensation sponsor. Having legitimate sponsors is key because the issue of bribery is raised. A sponsor could be “adjusting” the salary of the associate to his needs and not the associate.
Because Gore invents their products and creates markets for themselves their opportunities are only limited by their own ingenuity and creativeness. Their niche environment is strength of theirs.
Economies of scale producing cheaper products are a threat to them. Another worth mentioning is their patents. Most of them are running out and they have experienced new competition from low-end retailers.
We would recommend that Gore and associates continue their innovation and set the goal for high achieving companies. They should always be creative to keep coming up with new markets as that is their strength. The niche environment created is essential to their continued growth.
Take measures to monitor their new products that coincide their new markets created because the future success of the company depends not on their current holds on products that could be replaced by cheaper substituted good.