This case takes a “horizontal” slice through a number of coexistent issues  As a result, the challenge is “knowing where to start” – just as it is in real organizations – and this requires detective work. Patton takes a page out of the Donald Trump repertoire with his dramatic “you’re fired!”


The key point in  posing these questions is to help set the scene for Patton’s next steps. The questions listed below are for you to ponder, as you are reading the case. It is not necessary for you to submit answers to the questions. They are strictly for you to see the relevance and the logic to these questions, as you read the case. Here are some questions to ponder,as you reflect upon the case…

  1. What do you  think about Patton’s firing of the DIOs?
  2. There are two parts to this discussion that need to be explored.First, was there no possible way of getting the DIOs onside?  Second, was it appropriate to fire the DIOs publically as opposed to privately?
  3. Also, examine the DIO firings from the point of view of the four divisional presidents.See organization chart (see attached Appendix B) which shows Patton’s office and the DIOs in green to highlight these reporting relationships.
  4. Do you think the DIOs have a dotted line relationship with their divisional presidents and a dotted line to Patton; or is it the other way round?
  5. How do you  think the divisional Presidents will feel about Patton’s firings?
  6. Would they feel as if Patton just fired “their” employee? It doesn’t appear that they were made aware of these impending firings by Patton.
  7.  How would they feel about that?