Case Study No. 1
Spanning the Globe – Tex-Mark
I. Problem identification
Tex-Mark is a computer input-output manufacturer and supplier; which had started out as a ‘spin off' of Dell Computers in the 1970s. The company is considered a "major force in the printer and optical scanner industry" according to Allen Engle. Tex-Mark inherited a production facility in San Antonio from Dell, and also has international production facilities in Monterrey, Mexico, Leith, Scotland and Jaipur, India. They are opening a new facility in Wuhu, China. Research and new product development activities are split between San Antonio, a location in Durham, North Carolina, and research in Edinburgh, Scotland. Major sales, distribution and customer service are located in Asia, France, United States, Australia, Brazil, Hong Kong, and Israel.
Eric Christopher, an Associate Director for Global HR Development at Tex-Mark, is an individual who graduated from college with a major in History and minor in Spanish. He was born and grew up in Edinburgh, Scotland and spent several summers backpacking around Europe. He has an excellent working use of Spanish, French, Italian and German. After graduating from college, he backpacked around Europe and South American until his money ran out.
Fred Banks, is a Dell engineer that had stayed on with Tex-Mark after the spin-off in 1978. Considered a bright and promising young engineer then, he was one of the first people chosen to go to Scotland. He was later made lead engineer of a team that went to Mexico. Apparently the Mexico operation did not go as smoothly as planned and after reviewing Fred's file, Eric felt the problem was that Fred's team did not relate well to their Mexican counterparts. As a quick replacement in 1999, Fred was sent to India in what turned from an 18-month assignment into a 3-year assignment due to Fred's unwillingness to train and turn over responsibilities to local engineers....