Joy to the World...through Software Development at Menlo Innovations

by: Paul Clyde, Rich Sheridan

Publication Date: October 15, 2012
Length: 16 pages
Product ID#: 1-429-228

Core Disciplines: Communications, Economics, Information - Technology & Management, Leadership/Organizational Behavior

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Teaching Note

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Make mistakes faster. This slogan, and others like it, can be seen prominently displayed on posters throughout Menlo’s office, a software-development company known for its casual Mondays and extreme interviews. Menlo’s founders are considering opening a new branch to keep up with the demand for Menlo’s services, but wonder if they can preserve the culture they have so carefully cultivated within the walls of their Ann Arbor, Michigan office and transfer it to another location. This case studies the work culture of a highly unorthodox company that designs very usable, practical software.

Teaching Objectives

After reading and discussing the material, students should:

  • Describe how different information-sharing mechanisms are used within Menlo and how they relate to information-sharing mechanisms observed elsewhere (e.g., Azoulay’s pharmaceutical firm).
  • Recognize the organizational challenges of expanding.
  • Articulate a clear approach to address organizational challenges.