Primary File, Inc.: Big Ideas in a Bruising Workplace

Choi, S., Li, H., O’Rourke, J. S. (editor)
January 22, 2018
North America
Strategy & General Management, Marketing & Sales, Human Resources & Organizational Behavior
20 pages
2008, corporate culture, employee relations, Technology, workplace culture
Student Price: 
$4.00 (€3.75)
Average rating: 

On August 15, 2015, The New York Times published the results of an investigation, entitled “Inside Amazon: Wrestling Big Ideas in a Bruising Workplace.” The article denounced a brutal working culture at Having consistently outperformed its competitors, Amazon is now recognized as the most valuable retailer in the United States, enjoying the biggest market capitalization in its industry. Against the background of Amazon’s impressive business expansion, this case examines the relationship between a growing social discontent toward Amazon and an aggressive corporate culture long favored by the company.

Learning Outcomes: 
  1. To study the dichotomy of conflict and cooperation in a workplace. Competition among employees is a source of growth, but so is cooperation. How much of each is appropriate?
  2. To encourage readers to think about the relationship between a company’s culture and its longterm growth model.
  3. To craft the best response to a negative news article about a company’s work culture.
  4. To think about the most appropriate method of communication in the event of a corporate crisis accelerated by negative media coverage.