Case | HBS Case Collection | September 2008

Adobe Systems: Working Towards a "Suite" Release (A)

by David A. Thomas and Lauren Barley


The case examines the tools a manager can use to keep her project on track and manage conflict and tension as Adobe prepares to launch Creative Suite 3, the biggest software release in the company's 25-year history. The protagonist, Yvonne Murray, is a group program manager at Adobe and responsible for coordinating the integration of her business unit's product—Device Central—in Creative Suite 3. Murray is copied on an email that warns the Device Central product team that Device Central may be pulled from the Creative Suite 3 marketing materials and from the launch entirely because it was in danger of missing a deadline. Murray wonders if and how to respond to the email that was addressed to her Device Central colleague, group product manager Carol Linburn.

Keywords: Management Analysis, Tools, and Techniques; Product Launch; Projects; Groups and Teams; Conflict Management; Power and Influence;


Thomas, David A., and Lauren Barley. Adobe Systems: Working Towards a "Suite" Release (A). Harvard Business School Case 409-014, September 2008.