Sample Business Case Studies Paper on The Shipping Industry Accounting Team

  1. What type of team was formed here? Was it necessary, in your opinion?

The type of team formed here is known as virtual team. This is because the team members are geographically apart. The three partners in the newly formed accounting firm, Goldberg, Choo, and McKay Associates, have to heavily rely on communication tools to discuss key issues. More specifically, the four team members must leverage on video conferencing, emails and fax as the main channels of communication. The virtual team has the responsibility of working together in order to provide the new firm with a strategy for attracting more shipping clients across the region. In my view, virtual team was very crucial and necessary reason being that the newly formed company comprises of workmates from different work stations in dispersed locations. As firms expand to different geographical regions, virtual teams are inevitable (Duarte and Nancy 51). The team mates are free to manage their time and work in a more flexible manner. Furthermore, the newly formed company saves significant amount of money that would have been spent centralizing operations in one locations. So long as the team mates are provided with the right communication devices, interacting and making decisions is made easier.

  • Use the team effectiveness model and related information in chapter 8, to identify the strengths and weaknesses of this team’s environment, design and processes.

The strengths of this team include the experience from the four team mates since they have been drawn from the previous shipping firms prior to the merger.  The newly formed company stands to benefit highly from the synergies of collective knowledge from the four team mates. In addition to that, the virtual team cuts the overhead cost of acquiring the infrastructure for a new office including land, erecting buildings and acquiring equipment.

However, this virtual team has been faced with some weaknesses that are contributing to the reduction of their effectiveness. These includes communication breakdown as one of team mates seems not to know how to communicate with the rest of the team (Pauleen 26). Poor leadership is another weakness of this team as the management of the newly formed merger fails to provide the team with a clear vision.

Another challenge facing the virtual team is incompetency. For instance, Brad is a weak team mate who adversely affects the effectiveness of this team. To have a workable virtual team, the members need to be conversant with communication tools such as video conferencing and emails as they are the main channels of communication.

  • Assuming that these four people must continue to work as a team, recommend ways to improve the team’s effectiveness.

In order to become effective, the four team members must leverage on collaborative communication technology that gets everyone connected. The team must also establish a clear agreement on issues such as language, protocols and time (Gibson and Susan 34). Due to different time zones, it is crucial to establish rotational and a regular start and finish time. Furthermore, the management has the responsibility of clarifying the processes and responsibilities to the virtual team. At least one physical meeting is also ideal to get the team members know each other. This will help them interact personally and professionally. To further help the team become more effective, the management need to have a well written communication charter that all team mates must be committed to. The charter helps in clarifying as well as tracking commitment from the team members.

Works Cited

Duarte, Deborah L, and Nancy T. Snyder. Mastering Virtual Teams: Strategies, Tools, and Techniques That Succeed. San Francisco, Calif: Jossey-Bass, 1999. Print

Gibson, Cristina B, and Susan G. Cohen. Virtual Teams That Work: Creating Conditions for Virtual Team Effectiveness. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003.Internet resource.

Pauleen, David J. Virtual Teams: Projects, Protocols and Processes. Hershey, Pa: Idea Group Pub, 2004. Internet resource.


  KEY IDENTIFICATION OF ISSUE(S) (2 MARK)  0 No relevant issues addressed1 Captured basic problems or symptoms in the case2 Articulated the key problems and symptoms very well
  SOLUTIONS & RECOMMENDATIONS (2 MARK)  0 Not relevant and /or little effort1 Some effort and thought with relevant solutions2 Good effort with well thought-out, relevant solutions
  DEPTH / SPECIFICITY OF ANALYSIS   (2 MARKS)  0 Poor application, few specifics1 Simple analysis; limited application; some specifics2 In-depth analysis; solid application; several specifics
  WRITING (2 MARKS)  0 Substantial style / clarity, grammar, flow, and/or spelling issues.  1 Issues with style / clarity, grammar, flow, and/or spelling2 Flawless writing with no issues
  DEDUCTIONS  -1 Over 500 words