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WHAT BUSINESS IS THIS OF OURS?

The following case describes a problem at quality engineering, a medium-sized company located in Denver, Colorado. The case is based on a real situation at quality, although the name of the supplier in question has been changed. You will use this case to think about the human communication process and to begin to understand the concept of organizational communication. John and Mary were the only two buyers in the purchasing department of quality engineering. Both had been with the company for several years and were experienced in handling purchases for the manufacturing, research, finance, and marketing areas of quality. Mary typically handled purchases for the manufacturing and research areas, and john was the principal buyer for the rest of the organization. At times their individual workloads required that they cross departments and help each other. Their boss, Mike Anderson, the accountant for quality, believed they were the best purchasing team with whom he had ever worked. He was proud of their efforts and willingness to cooperate with each other. He frequently commented to quality management that John and Mary made money for the company by getting the best possible prices for goods and services.
Mike was surprised and concerned to overhear John and Mary in a heated discussion.
John: I can’t believe you are still using Anderson printing as one of our suppliers. I told you last month that their last two orders for my groups were late and part of the printing had to be sent back because of errors. I told them then that I would not accept any more of their bids on our jobs. It makes me look like a fool when I hear from them that you are still ordering their products for manufacturing and research. How can we enforce good quality from our suppliers if we do not present a united front?
Mary: just a minute. Anderson...

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