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Chapter 9. Review Case: Serving the Cust... > Process for Managing Disagreement

Process for Managing Disagreement

Phase I:. Explore

Clarify Critical Issues

Customers are dissatisfied, business is being lost, and employees are disgruntled.

Identify Stakeholders

In addition to marketing and shipping personnel, others who may be involved in the problem include managers and staff in manufacturing, quality assurance, inventory control, and training. Executive management, financial supporters, major customers and suppliers also have a stake in the issues.

Assess Likely Sources of Conflict

When a problem develops in a sequential process, it’s often useful to follow the flow. In this case, the process starts when a sale is made.

Sales-related concerns that deserve exploration include:

  • Have sales personnel quoted realistic delivery dates?

  • Is there an adequate system for special handling of high-priority orders?

  • Can sales demand be predicted more accurately so that adequate inventory levels will not create shipping delays?

    Inventory-related concerns that may be part of the problem:

    • Is Transitex’s inventory-control system adequate?

    • Are purchased components being delivered on schedule?

    • Are quality assurance standards—internally and for suppliers— adequate?

    Shipping concerns include:

    • Are shipping personnel being selected, trained and motivated appropriately?

    • Are proper shippers (truckers, rail, UPS, postal service) being used?

Exploration of these general questions is also helpful:

  • What follow-up should be provided, to assure customer satisfaction?

  • What organization, production or shipping changes, if any, were recently made that may be related to the current problems?

  • What, if anything, is the competition doing differently?



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