Case Study

Customer Trust or Business Realities: Trying to Keep a Small, Family Firm Alive in

Neil Tocher, Idaho State University, Pedro Mena, Idaho State University, Tyler Burch, Idaho State University
December 1, 2022
North America
Entrepreneurship, Human Resources & Organizational Behavior, Strategy & General Management
3 pages
strategic decision-making, family business, customer loyalty, Economic Turmoil, Labor Shortage
Student Price: 
$4.00 (€3.75)
Average rating: 

This decision-based critical incident describes Jorge’s concern about how to deal with the double bind of customer backlash caused by charging large deposits for propane tanks while facing a severe labor shortage. The double bind of customer backlash and a labor shortage threatened the viability of Gutierrez Gas, which Jorge had operated since graduating from university. Jorge needed a miracle solution to help prevent the loss of propane tanks, retain his customer base, and keep his firm appropriately staffed.

Learning Outcomes: 

After completing this assignment, students will be able to:

1. Explain how economic turbulence is a catalyst for disastrous disruption to previously successful small, family-owned businesses

2. Develop mutually beneficial creative solutions to managerial problems

3. Analyze and debate the positives and negatives to strategic business decisions