Orion Shield Project Case Study
Scientific Engineering Corporation (SEC) is competing for the contract of the Orion Shield Project, funded by Space Technology Industries (STI). Henry Larsen, the director of engineering at SEC has insisted on having Gary, an engineer with no previous managerial skills, be the program manager. Over the last 14 years Gary had established a reputation as a respected and talented project engineer; he has never managed a project before. Henry Larsen chose Gary to be the project manager, because he thought Gary could be easily manipulated and would not challenge Larsen’s unethical ways. This case study explores the ethical, technical, ...view middle of the document...
” For Larsen, holding information would not have been a big deal as long as they had the contract, any problems could have been fixed later.
2.) Should Gary have followed up on his ethical concerns? If so, how?
Yes, Gary should have followed up on his ethical concerns. If later was to come and Gary still could not get the project to its desired specifications the SEC would have a big complaint on their hands from the customer. This lie could cost the SEC its credibility and cost many of those involved their jobs. Furthermore, if Gary was to concede his morals this time, he would be nudged to do it again, as he would be viewed as the unethical guy that does what you need him to do. That might not be a problem for some, but when consequences arise, the fall and penalty will be harsh. Gary should voice his concern in an attempt to sway Larsen’s suggestion. If Larsen pushed harder, Gary should go above Larsen and voice his concerns to the next person in the hierarchy. If Gary doesn’t want to go to that extreme, he should just remove himself from the project entirely, and request that one of his peers take his spot.
3.) Should Gary accept the position of project manager? Explain.
No. Gary should not accept the position of project manager. If Gary is unable to achieve the desired specifications, then his reputation and job are put in jeopardy. It is unethical for Gary to lie about the outcome of his test runs, and he should voice his disapproval of the situation. Also, accepting the project manager position would result in a high risk/high reward situation. If everything goes smoothly, Gary can rocket up the “ladder of success,” not thinking twice about how he got wherever he reaches. But, if Gary is unable to achieve the desired specifications, then Gary would fall very hard. Larsen tells Gary, “I don’t know of an engineer who failed in program management and returned to his job.” Gary has a lot to think about, does he want to go from being a top talent who feels good about what he is doing, to being a failed disgrace without a contingency plan. Gary has no previous experience as a project manager! Is what he is giving up worth it??
4.) Why might a company not allow a project manager to return to his functional department?
A company might not allow a project manager to return to his functional department because it is very difficult to go backwards in a career path and be satisfied. Plus in his absence, someone new would have been hired in his functional department to take over his job. This would cause confusion in the work environment, as we all know that it is easier to promote rather than demote. When a person is hired for a job, they are expected to be there long term. If a person cannot “step up” when needed, then they are deemed as stagnate with no potential. If you can’t move up, you get moved out!
5.) What mistakes did Gary make? What did he do right?
The first mistake that Gary made was allowing himself to be...