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Case Study (10 Marks)The president of Simplex Mills sat at his desk in the hushed atmosphere, so typical of businessoffices, after the close of working hours. He was thinking about Rehman, the manager in-chargeof purchasing, and his ability to work with George, the production manager, and Vipulabh, themarketing and sales manager in the firm. When the purchasing department was established two years ago, both George and Vipulabhagreed with the need to centralise this function and place a specialist in charge. George was ofthe view that this would free his supervisors from detailed ordering activities. Vipulabh opinedthat the flow of materials into the firm was important enough to warrant a specialisedmanagement assignment. Yet since the purchasing department began operating it has beenprecisely these two managers who have had a number of confrontations with the new purchasemanager, and occasionally with one another, in regard to the way the purchasing function inbeing carried out. From George`s point of view, instead of simplifying his job as production manager by takingcare of purchasing for him, the purchasing department has developed a formal set of proceduresthat has resulted in as much time commitment on his part as he had previously spent in placinghis orders directly with vendors. Further, he is specially irritated by the fact that his need forparticular items or particular specification is constantly being questioned by the purchasingdepartment. When the department was established, George assumed that the purchasing managerwas there to fill his needs, not to question them. As Vipulabh sees it, the purchasing function is an integral part of marketing function, and thetwo therefore need to be jointly managed as a unified process. Purchasing function cannot beseparated from a firm`s overall marketing strategy. However, Rehman has attempted to carry outthe purchasing function without regard for this obvious relationship between his responsibilitiesand those of Vipulabh, thus making a unified marketing strategy impossible. In his previous position, Rehman had worked in the purchasing department of a firmconsiderably larger than Simplex. Before being hired, he was interviewed by all the topmanagers, including George and Vipulabh, but it was the president himself who negotiated thedetails of the job offer. As Rehman sees it, he was hired as a professional to do a professionaljob. Both George and Vipulabh have been distracting him from this goal by presuming that he issomehow subordinate to them, which he believes is not the case. The people in the productiondepartment, who use the purchasing function most, have complained about the detail that herequires on their requisitions. But he has documented proof that materials are now beingpurchased much more economically than they were under the former decentralised system. Hefinds Vipulabh`s interests more difficult to understand, since he sees no particular relationshipbetween his responsibilities for efficient procurement, and Vipulabh`s responsibilities to marketthe firm`s products. The president has been aware of the continuing conflict among three managers for some time,but on the theory that a little rivalry is healthy and stimulating, he has felt that it was nothing tobe unduly concerned about. But now that much of his time is being taken up by much of what heconsiders to be petty bickering, the time has come to take some positive action. Questions:1. What can be a suitable title for this case study? 2. What is the central idea of this study? 3. Is George`s view of the situation realistic? 5. How do you evaluate Vipulabh`s position? 6. How might this conflict be associated with factors in the formal organisation? 7. What should the president of Simplex Mills do now?8. What can be your advice to the president about overcoming the problem?

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