Chapter 7

Group Conflict

As noontime approached, Frank knew that he and his fellow SymLine Inc. board members still had one very important strategic issue to discuss before they could break for lunch. He was looking forward to a breather and a tour of the new company headquarters, but he tried to remain focused. Roy, the separate chairman of the board, had introduced this section of the board agenda, emphasizing that this discussion would involve an explicit decision point for the directors. The issue under consideration was a joint venture in a new but promising direction. It required a significant, up-front investment and careful negotiation with the potential partner organization.

As the CFO presented management’s proposal, Jeff, the director ...

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