Capstone Project: Feedback Loops

Pages: 5 (1504 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Engineering  ·  Buy This Paper

Loop below is in regards to technology and updated within the Palm Corporation. This particular loop is a reinforcing loop. New Technology is the constant and therefore does not carry a plus or minus sign. New technology is constantly being feed directly into the loop, adding to the technology and applications for Palm, Inc. being updated. These updates to technology and applications create new software and usable applications. Palm, Inc. has been in a race to develop new technology and software that would allow them to stay on the cutting edge in relationship to phones and other handheld devices. In 2009, Burrows explained that Palm was a force to be dealt with in relation to handheld devices. However in 2009 it was unclear if the corporation would be able to make a significant comeback with even the most advanced technology. Pandora Networks' Chief Technology Officer Tom Conrad still had big doubts about the prospects for smart phone maker Palm. In November, Conrad was among a coterie of software developers invited to Palm (PALM) headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif., to take an early, up-close look at an operating system for use in the company's phones. At this point there still didn't appear to be too much hope for Palm, however there was still curiosity regarding the possible new technology the corporation could obtain, and would it in face be enough to turn things around.

Wildstrom (2008) further affirmed through his article that Palm fell short even with innovative technology. In 2008 there were problems that still had not been addressed the company was struggling to stay relevant in the smart phone market it largely invented; this would be and currently is a problem that had to be addressed. A way must be made for cohesion between the new available technology and the ways that this technology is applied to Palm products. In addition there is a need to make the products more applicable to current market trends i.e. The lack of a partnership with a U.S. wireless carrier, phones being sold unlocked and unsubsidized etc. Tofel (2010) recanted that the problem isn't merely a weak ad campaign, but poor timing, an ill-chosen launch partner in Sprint Nextel, and a lack of support from software developers. Palm's experience proves that a carrier can still make or break a brand in the smart phone market.

REINFORCING LOOP

BALANCING LOOP

UPDATED APPLICATIONS (DESIRED STATE)

CURRENT TECHNOLOGY & APPS

Organizational learning allows decision makers an opportunity to see how the organization is functioning, where they can grow, as well as what areas need to be replaced, renovated, or ratified. Cangelosi (1965) reports in his research that development of a firm included recording the meetings they held with the board of directors, observing at least one of their major decision-making sessions each week, and analyzing the player programs which the firm wrote and used. Recordings from the board meetings furnished information about major changes in the organization's characteristics, interests, goals, and problem-solving strategies. Observations of decision meetings gave a more continuous picture of how the organization was developing at least to the extent those decisions and decision premises were made explicit. The player programs were computer programs written by members of the team. They allowed the team to adjust decisions for the second or third months of a multiple move. Such decisions could be revised through player programs written to control responses to interim competitive results, even though management would not know what these results had been until the three-month period had ended. The tangible developments in player programs provided a check against the subjectivity of observers in the decision meetings.

A facet of organizational learning is the implementation of change. To facilitate organizational change, barriers that prevent individuals from learning from their mistakes (that is, problems with single loop learning) and barriers that prevent individuals from adapting organizational practices that are no longer effective (that is, problems with double loop learning) should be eliminated. Since these barriers are responsible for the discrepancy between individual learning and organizational learning (or even organizational growth), they have special relevance for human resources management. Eliminating these barriers may be necessary when there is a need for large-scale organizational changes, such as mergers, enterprise systems implementations, the introduction of supply chain management principles, and the introduction of new management accounting principles (Schimmel & Muntslag, 2009).

Palm is constantly in search of new technology as well as ways to apply this technology. Researchers have also indicated that in conjunction with the search for technology Palm continues to look for feedback and working relationships to improve their products. In accordance with what Cangelosi (1965) stated some of the learning activities that Palm were conducting include: In the area of production -- analysis of what materials are needed, as well as maintenance. Marketing -- analyzing wholesale prices and retail allowances, dropping, changing, or adding products. Research -- product research and development, market tests to determine consumer acceptance of products and general market research into the nature of consumer preferences, patterns of retail sales, and performance of current and future competition.

By utilizing the tools associated with organizational learning, Palm has been afforded an opportunity to see areas of improvement, weakness and strengths. Now Palm is trying to stay in the game by engaging customers at the point of sale with "brand ambassadors" stationed in Verizon and Sprint stores. Enabling sales staff to understand the benefits of Palm's web operating system is a step towards recovery, but the road will be long. One problem is that many consumers enter a phone shop already knowing which device they want; based on marketing they've already seen (Tofel, 2010).

History has shown that the methods utilized by Palm have not been successful, they have lacked enough supporting research, and resources utilized for updated to technology have also not been significant enough to give Palm the much needed boost that the company is looking for. Though as evidenced through the loops research is being conducted and applied, it has come time for the corporation to acknowledge it is time for new resources in search of more innovation. In actually by changing these loops Palm may under certain circumstances be able to find significant gains associated with some losses in other areas. For example, instead of investing as much time and resources into new technology, efforts should be made in an attempt to utilize current knowledge and resources. It is evident through research into the company that a significant issue is the application software being utilized by the company with their handheld devises. Therefore, it is evident that instead of looking for another application that could end up being a loss of even more time and resources, Palm should begin to research ways to make their application software more user friendly.

Palm needs to move past some learning hurdles as expressed by Weigelt & Sarkar (2019) this can be done first by acknowledging the areas of weakness within the loop. Though an account has been made for research and their current status, more should be done to introduce the need for a revamping of current resources and ideas. Certain innovations that affect an adopting firm's customer interface and necessitate integration into its value chain activities require overcoming certain learning-related obstacles as a precondition to adoption. These learning obstacles, or knowledge hurdles, are particularly vexing because adoption-enabling knowledge is experiential and based on learning by doing. Potential adopters thus face an intriguing conundrum: the knowledge required to adopt is endogenous to the act of adoption itself. In this context, technology solution providers help clients overcome adoption challenges with technological, implementation, and training know-how. A client firm's innovation adoption reflects the extent to which it offers new technology services, and by implication, the degree to which it has been able to overcome… [END OF PREVIEW]

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