The Case Centre’s bestselling authors 2015/2016

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Bestselling author 2015/16

Mary CrossanMary Crossan
Distinguished University Professor and the Paul McPherson Chair in Strategic Leadership
Ivey Business School

The cases

Cases Sabena Belgian World Airlines: Weytjen’s First Assignment
The case introduces Erik Weytjens, a recent MBA graduate, and outlines his first assignment to solve a major logistics problem in the dishwashing department. The case, and the follow-on series of cases, provides the opportunity to make decisions under realistic constraints and reflect on how actions support or undermine strategy.

Sabena Belgian World Airlines Strike
On 25 October 1992, Sabena announced the first firings and lay-offs in its history. Weytjens learns that a crowd of militant workers from another part of the company had entered the catering building to join a strike. Weytjens had to make some fast judgements and quick decisions to deal with the situation.

Sabena Belgian World Airlines: A Delegation of Chefs
Weytjens demoted a sous-chef for having ignored several warnings not to eat in the kitchen – an ISO 9002 requirement – but returned from lunch to find three other sous-chefs waiting in his office. They complained about what they felt was unnecessarily harsh action and asked Weytjens to reconsider his decision.

Meet Mary

BiographyMary is a Distinguished University Professor – Ivey Business School’s highest honour, recognising excellence in teaching, research and service over a substantial career at Western University. She teaches in the undergraduate, MBA, PhD and executive programmes.

Her research on organisational learning, strategy, leadership character and improvisation has been widely published in such journals as the Strategic Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Organization Science, the Journal of Management Studies, Leadership Quarterly and Organization Dynamics. She has extended her research to management practice through a collection of over 50 cases, many of which have been published in a co–authored book, Strategic Management: A Casebook. She has worked with HSBC, Mattel Asia, Bank of Montreal, TD Bank Financial Group, CIBC, Sears Canada, Sun Life and Grand & Toy.
Key quote

I think of cases as if they were like plays in which the students end up taking on roles given their perspectives and experience. Great cases tend to have some drama or challenge that expose learning. The best compliment I have received on a case is from a colleague who said, ‘you can teach that case with a paper bag over your head’, meaning that the learning unfolds without much facilitation from the instructor. Of course, that isn’t often so, and it is how we utilise the case that brings it to life.

“There are several keys to success in the art of case writing involving motivation, expectations, patience, and process. I aim for a profound learning experience in the classroom and therefore I am motivated to write great cases that fill the gaps that I see. I have high expectations for how a case should perform, but also realise that it is very difficult to identify or construct great cases in advance. The process takes some patience and some ‘learning while doing’ to develop a case that really sings.”

~ Mary Crossan


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