Boston Fiduciary Consultant’s work requires constant and effective communication between employees as the process of work requires contribution at each level. Carmen and Richmond’s reports were based on the work received form Anderson and Baxter. It was assumed that, with these four very competent employees at the Boston office, there would be considerable improvement in performance. However, the environment at the office was tense as the colleagues did not get along, especially Baxter who was impatient and rude to his peers. He also displayed irresponsibility and delay in his work, which further aggravated the situation. His peers were of the view that such behavior was unprofessional and was only being tolerated by the senior management because of Baxter’s work experience and competence.
There are four types of conflicts that can occur in a team, interpersonal, intrapersonal, intergroup, and intergroup. In the case of Fiduciary Consulting, an interpersonal conflict has emerged due to varying personalities of Baxter and Carmen. Carmen had lost interest in his work since his daughter died. However, Carmen had a strong work ethics as he came on time and religiously did his job. On the other hand, Baxter, who had excellent credentials was hired without a proper interview had poor work ethics. He came late in the office and left early. However, this was not the main reason due to which the interpersonal skill emerged. The underlying reason was hatred that was being nurtured by Carmen and Baxter. Carmen hated Baxter because he was demoted due to him. On the other hand, Baxter hated Carmen because he was whiny and according to Baxter, a deadweight burden.
The four key employees had taken differing stance to the situation. However, it is safe to assert that Carmen, Anderson, and Richmond joined forces against Baxter. Clearly, Baxter and Carmen had a competitive conflict in nature. On the other hand, Anderson had taken a conditional strategy i.e. in an extreme case he would take an extreme action. Richmond had taken avoidance strategy i.e. he completed ignored the conflict among the two supervisors. There are various steps that can be taken in order to resolve the conflict, but some bitter pills have to be taken in order to solve the problem. Smith needs to ensure that key employees are retained, and welfare of the company is given top priority.
The senior management should approach Baxter and inform him about the complaints received against his behavior. He should be strictly warned that his competence and experience is valuable, but he must not misuse that to belittle his peers and colleagues and that such behavior will not be tolerated in the future. The management must make him realize that his behavior is intolerable and is adversely effecting not only the work environment but also the company’s business. In this way, the company will be able to retain all of its key employees and Baxter would continue bringing in business and enriching the firm with his credentials and experience. Lack of knowledge regarding American markets is vital for the company as the competition is severe. Smith can ensure a routine in which work of Baxter and Carmen are not intertwined. However, that would act as a temporary solution because, at some point in time, they both will need to work together.
The management may also fire Baxter and can be replaced by Charlie Anderson. He may prove to be a successful CEO as he has been with the company for a long time and is familiar with the culture and relationships. He is focused towards customer satisfaction as his first priority and is not interested in office politics He is, therefore, likely to make a good leader who will provide Boston Consultants with a clear and focused direction. However, he must be encouraged to be more open in communication with his peers and subordinates in order to carry the work process smoothly. The company will have to forgo one of its key employees, Baxter, but this bitter pill should be taken in order to resolve the conflict for once and all. However, Anderson might face some problems in the initial phase as he lacks the experience that makes a person an executive.
Smith can fire Baxter as he has been spreading negativity around the company, which clearly has been hindering company’s performance as effective communication is very important at Fiduciary Consulting. Clearly, Carmen cannot be promoted again, and he has already lost interest in his job. Smith can hire another person who is competent as Baxter, but with a pleasant attitude and personality. Smith and his colleagues made the mistake of not interviewing Baxter properly. They should have checked his viability in the organizational culture. The new CEO will bring in a new vision for the company, and it will help the company to tackle its clientele in a new manner.
Given the pros and cons of alternatives, it is prudent to implement the third alternative. For the short run, first alternative might better, whereas for the long run solution with low cost, second alternative is viable. Given the magnitude of the problem, it is important to hire a new CEO, who is well-liked by other employees; especially by key employees like Anderson, Richmond, and Carmen. Smith should make Carmen the acting CEO till he finds a new CEO for the company. Smith should hire a head hunter to find him a new CEO as the head hunter would be able to get Smith a person with the type of pleasant personality that is needed. Once the new CEO is found, he/she should be rigorously interviewed and it must be ensure than he/she fits within the organizational culture, and then Carmen can give him an orientation. Anderson should be given an additional duty to report monthly reports of conflicts that occur in the office so that Smith can take a proactive approach in case anything else happens next time.