Group simulation | Marketing homework help


Simulation scenario for Apr 3rd

The organization IS simulation is about using technology in performance management and issues regarding information security management. In a multinational trade company (IT-based solutions, network consultancy, and programming) with three branches in Asia (Hong Kong), Africa (Nigeria), and Europe (Sweden), the CEO and upper-level executives (in HQ and branches) have utilized an electronic tracking and monitoring system and software to ensure that employees (service providers, IT staff, programmers,…) are working when and how they should be and to block access to visiting certain websites. They intended to use this system to improve their employees’ productivity, measure work quality, beat deadlines, and make sure that their employees do not share sensitive data and codes with other competitors.

The technology for Performance and Security Management: The system includes hand and fingerprint recognition systems, global positioning systems (GPS) installed in the companies’ vehicles, surveillance cameras in each branch, and systems that can track employees using the company’s cell phones and handheld computers. The HQ of the company is located in Australia (Melbourne), and the CEO and the branch managers have access to the monitoring system.

The management team believed that they could improve the branches’ productivity using the monitoring system, which was very costly for the company to be implemented across the branches. The company deployed the monitoring system in all the branches in 2 months. In the first month of applying the system, everything was Ok!… After that, the problems have just begun as follows:

  1. The behavior of employees working in the African branch changed. Their absenteeism rate decreased, and their productivity declined too. They were in front of their computers all the time, but the results got worse eventually. They became very stressed and scared in the workplace. It seems something went wrong there!
  2. The monitoring system was hacked in the Asian branch. The virus, which was called “stare” was produced and destroyed the system. The HQ and top managers working in Hong Kong even couldn’t check the employees in the Hong Kong branch, and all they could see was: “Don’t stare at me like this!” that was displayed by the virus on their monitoring system’s screen … They also doubted whether the other branches could be monitored from Hong Kong. They were not entirely sure who hacked the system and why. The employees in Hong Kong didn’t take the blame for generating the virus.
  3. In Sweden’s branch, everything seemed all right! The employees of the European branch were still working as before. They were very relaxed, and they worked as if there was no monitoring system at all. Most of them were also very interested in watching live sports events, movies, and talk shows, even in the morning and evening times when they were in the workplace. Whenever possible, they watched live basketball, tennis, or other matches at work. The results showed that their absenteeism rate increased more than before, and they made use of corporate computers or vehicles, even for their personal purposes. Nevertheless, their productivity level didn’t decline, and it was still high.

What to do?

  • The CEO has invited some representatives (some managers and employees) from each branch to Australia to solve the problems. In the meeting, the management team should support the system adoption, explain the primary rationale behind the implementation, describe the benefits of using the system for the company and employees, and emphasize the monitoring system’s usage to manage security and improve productivity.
  • Each branch should thoroughly explain the issue and elaborate on the risks they experienced with the system in the meeting.
  • Each branch also needs to offer some possible solutions/suggestions on how to manage the system.
  • HQ managers should listen to each group’s explanations and feedback to analyze the overall situation.
  • After the meeting, the company should reach an agreement and decide if they want to continue the system as before or if they want to have some adjustments or modifications.
  • For instance, a further training program may be required. Or they may want to modify the system use-policy statement…
  • In the simulation, we have a group of observers that serve as a judge, and they can interrupt the discussions and give their comments on the things happening among the other groups whenever required.


Group 1 plays the role of the judge.

Group 3 plays the role of the employees from Africa.

Group 4 plays the role of employees from Hong Kong.

Group 6 plays the role of employees from Sweden.

Groups 2+5 play the role of HQ management in Australia.

Description and Deliverables in the live role-play:  

1. Team 2 is responsible for negotiating with Group 3. First, team 2 should listen to the problems, challenges, and struggles that Group 3 is experiencing with the monitoring system. Then, ask Group 3 to pose some recommendations, expectations, and solutions. (Time: 10 mins)

2. Team 5 is responsible for negotiating with Group 4. First, team 5 should listen to the problems, challenges, and struggles that Group 4 is experiencing with the monitoring system. Then, ask Group 4 to pose some recommendations, expectations, and solutions. (Time: 10 mins)

3. Both Team 2 and team 5 are responsible for negotiating with Group 6. First, team 2 should listen to the problems, challenges, and struggles that Group 6 is experiencing with the monitoring system. (Time: 5 mins) Then, Team 5 will ask Group 6 to pose some recommendations, expectations, and solutions. (Time: 5 mins)

Please take notes during the simulations because you will use them in your reports and decision-making. 

4. Next, members from team 2 will discuss with members from team 5 to put together all challenges, risks, benefits, and suggestions coming from other teams and make a final decision about the monitoring system (for example, they may decide to make some modifications or run some training,…). The final decision should be jointly made by team 2 and team 5. (Time: 5 mins)

5. In the end, each team should analyze this group activity from its own perspective and submit a report.

6. Team 1 will serve as judges or a consulting company that is recruited by the management team. They are present in the meeting to analyze the negotiation process (between the management team and branches) and may come up with some solutions. So, they can make suggestions or clarifications at any time during the simulation. Or they will have 5 mins after the simulation to give comments and offer solutions to the company and branches. 

Some notes:

  • This activity counts for 5% of your final grade.
  • Your level of participation, contributions, and making the right decisions can help you get full credits. 
  • Please ponder on this case before conducting the simulation in class and try to be a game-changer
  • Try not to be silent while the simulation is going on, have some solutions ready for your group.
  • The simulation can take about 45 min.
  • I will be a moderator in running this simulation; whenever required, I will be participating in the simulation by giving you some hints/directions.
  • In the end, HQ managers should make some decisions that all the branches would accept and be likely to apply.
  • Reports (at least three pages)

Deliverables after the live role-play: 

At the end of the simulation, the management team needs to turn in a report, including:

1. Your overall opinions, reflections, and thoughts on the simulation (as a whole): Summary 

2. Your complete analysis of all you have heard from other teams (benefits, problems, risks, and suggestions): Analysis 

3. Your final decision to solve the issue: Contribution

4. The key advantages and risks associated with your new decision.

  • At the end of the simulation, the branches and the judge need to turn in a report, including:

 1. Your overall opinions, reflections, and thoughts on the simulation (as a whole): Summary 

2. What your group has done to identify and solve the problems during discussions: Contributions

3. Your evaluations and reflections on the effectiveness of the final decision made to solve the problem. For example: is it enough? Do you agree with it? What changes are missing?  Any further suggestions for improvement? : Analysis 1

4. The performance of other groups (other branches and management team) in clarifying the issues and posing solutions: Analysis 2

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