How the Solution Becomes the Problem: The Performance Solution That Backfired at Microsoft


With increase in competition and the threat of other companies taking a share of the market in which Microsoft has dominated for decades, Microsoft applied a performance review solution in order to boost performance, improve innovation, and to enhance success. However, its solution eventually became a liability. This case provides students and professionals an opportunity to explore the brief strategic approach, which is a lesser known problem resolution process. This process is brief and based on the idea that the problem lies in the solution and it is, therefore, the solution that needs to be analyzed rather than the problem itself.

This case was prepared for inclusion in SAGE Business Cases primarily as a basis for classroom discussion or self-study, and is not meant to illustrate either effective or ineffective management styles. Nothing herein shall be deemed to be an endorsement of any kind. This case is for scholarly, educational, or personal use only within your university, and cannot be forwarded outside the university or used for other commercial purposes.

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