W. Earl Sasser

Baker Foundation Professor

Earl Sasser is a Baker Foundation Professor at Harvard Business School and has been a member of the faculty there since 1969. He received a B.A. in Mathematics from Duke University in 1965, an MBA from the University of North Carolina in 1967, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Duke University in 1969.

Sasser developed the School's first course on the management of service operations in 1972. Professor Sasser has taught a variety of courses in the MBA program including Production and Operations Management, Decision Making and Ethical Values, The Operating Manager, and Service Management. In 1982, Sasser's excellence in the classroom was recognized in an article in Fortune profiling eight professors from business schools throughout the country. Professor Sasser was Chairman of the MBA Program from 1988 to 1991. He was also faculty chair of the Advanced Management Program executive education program from 1992-1995. From 1995-2000 Professor Sasser served as Senior Associate Dean of Executive Education. He served as Chairman of the Board of Harvard Business School Interactive, a not-for-profit corporation, from 2000 to 2003. Sasser is the past faculty chair of executive education's Program for Leadership Development [PLD] -- a program for which he served as the principal architect in 2004. He presently teaches in the Owner/President Management Program and serves as faculty chair of several week-long leadership programs.

In 1990 he co-authored (with HBS Professor James L. Heskett and former HBS assistant professor Christopher W.L. Hart) Service Breakthroughs: Changing the Rules of the Game. Based upon five years of extensive research in fourteen service industries, it explains how one or two firms in each industry are constantly able to set new standards for quality and value that force competitors to adapt or fail. Sasser has co-authored several other books in the field of service management including Management of Service Operations and The Service Management Course, The Service Profit Chain and The Value Profit Chain (with Professor James L. Heskett and Leonard A. Schlesinger) The Free Press: 2003. Professor Sasser's new book, Ownership Quotient: Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage (with Professor James L. Hesket and Joe Wheeler), was published by the Harvard Business School Press, 2008.

Sasser has written or co-written ten articles for Harvard Business Review, including "Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work," "The Profitable Art of Service Recovery," "Zero Defections: Quality Comes to Services," "Match Supply and Demand in Service Industries," and "Why Satisfied Customer Defect."

Professor Sasser serves as a consultant to a number of companies in North America, Asia and Europe.

Books

  1. Ownership Quotient: Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage

    Hundreds of large organizations worldwide have used the groundbreaking Service Profit Chain to improve business performance. Now The Ownership Quotient reveals the next generation of the chain: customer and employee "owners" of your business. Employee-owners exhibit such enthusiasm for their organization that they infect countless customers with similar satisfaction, loyalty, and dedication. Customer-owners are in turn so satisfied with their experience that they relate their stories to others, persuade them to try your product, and provide constructive criticism and new product ideas. As a new generation of managers has been changing the way that products and services are designed and delivered, authors Heskett, Sasser, and Wheeler have followed the evolution of this new ownership model. Case studies from companies as diverse as Harrah's Entertainment, ING Direct, Build-a-Bear Workshop, and Wegmans Food Markets bring home the central principle of engagement—and showcase ways to raise the ownership quotient among both your employees and your customers. With the authors' decades of consulting and research paving the way, you'll learn to identify your customer-owners; consistently exceed their expectations in ways they truly appreciate; and foster, measure, and grow the Ownership Quotient throughout your company. An organization that learns how to cultivate an ownership attitude creates a self-reinforcing relationship between customers and front-line employees. The lifetime value of a customer-owner can be equivalent to that of more than a hundred typical customers. And that makes the lifetime value of an employee who can promote customer ownership priceless. This powerful and practical book shows you how to add that value to your company and delight your employees, customers, and investors. Is your organization ready to make the transition to an ownership state of mind?

    Keywords: Customer Satisfaction; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Customer Ownership; Employee Ownership; Competitive Advantage; Value Creation;

    Citation:

    Heskett, James L., W. Earl Sasser Jr., and Joe Wheeler. Ownership Quotient: Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage. Harvard Business Press, 2008.
  2. The Value Profit Chain: Treat Employees Like Customers and Customers Like Employees

    Keywords: Value; Profit; Employees; Customers;

    Citation:

    Heskett, James L., W. Earl Sasser Jr., and Leonard A. Schlesinger. The Value Profit Chain: Treat Employees Like Customers and Customers Like Employees. New York: Free Press, 2003.
  3. The Service Profit Chain: How Leading Companies Link Profit and Growth to Loyalty, Satisfaction, and Value

    Keywords: Profit; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Heskett, J., W. E. Sasser Jr., and L. Schlesinger. The Service Profit Chain: How Leading Companies Link Profit and Growth to Loyalty, Satisfaction, and Value. New York: Free Press, 1997.
  4. The Service Management Course

    Keywords: Management; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Hart, C., J. Heskett, and W. E. Sasser Jr. The Service Management Course. NY: Free Press, 1990.
  5. Service Breakthroughs: Changing the Rules of the Game

    Keywords: Change; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Heskett, J., C. Hart, and W. E. Sasser Jr. Service Breakthroughs: Changing the Rules of the Game. NY: Free Press, 1990.
  6. Cases in Operations Management: Strategy and Structure

    Keywords: Cases; Operations; Management; Strategy; Organizational Structure;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Kim B. Clark, David A. Garvin, Margaret B.W. Graham, Ramchandran Jaikumar, and David H. Maister. Cases in Operations Management: Strategy and Structure. Richard D. Irwin, 1982.
  7. Cases in Operations Management: Analysis and Action

    Keywords: Cases; Operations; Management; Theory;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Kim B. Clark, David A. Garvin, Margaret B.W. Graham, Ramchandran Jaikumar, and David H. Maister. Cases in Operations Management: Analysis and Action. Richard D. Irwin, 1982.
  8. The U.S. Lodging Industry

    Keywords: Accommodations Industry; United States;

    Citation:

    Wyckoff, Daryl, and W. Earl Sasser, eds. The U.S. Lodging Industry. Lexington Books, 1981.

Journal Articles

  1. Challenge the Boss or Stand Down

    This HBR Case Study includes both the case and the commentary. For teaching purposes, this reprint is also available in two other versions: case study-only, reprint R1105X, and commentary-only, R1105Z. Tom Green, an aggressive young sales executive at self-service kiosk company D7 Displays, has been promoted to senior marketing specialist by Shannon McDonald, his division VP. Shannon had warned Tom that she was taking a chance with him and that he'd have to learn fast and work well with his new boss, Frank Davis, who wouldn't have chosen Tom for the position. On the job, Tom finds himself at odds with Frank and challenges him openly at a well-attended meeting. Frank begins to formally document deficiencies in Tom's performance, and McDonald falls in line with Frank. With his back against the wall, Tom must carefully consider his next move. Harvard Business School professor W. Earl Sasser presents the fictional case. Jeffrey Pfeffer, of Stanford University, and Paul Falcone, of Time Warner Cable, offer their expert commentary.

    Keywords: Problems and Challenges; Personal Development and Career; Jobs and Positions; Conferences; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Challenge the Boss or Stand Down." R1105M. Harvard Business Review 89, no. 5 (May 2011).
  2. Why Satisfied Customers Defect

    Keywords: Customers;

    Citation:

    Jones, T. O., and W. E. Sasser Jr. "Why Satisfied Customers Defect." Harvard Business Review 73, no. 6 (November–December 1995).
  3. Putting the Service-Profit Chain to Work

    Keywords: Profit;

    Citation:

    Heskett, J. L., T. O. Jones, G. W. Loveman, W. Earl Sasser, and L. A. Schlesinger. "Putting the Service-Profit Chain to Work." Harvard Business Review 72, no. 2 (March–April 1994): 164–174.
  4. Zero Defections: Quality Comes to Services

    Keywords: Quality;

    Citation:

    Reichheld, F., and W. E. Sasser Jr. "Zero Defections: Quality Comes to Services." Harvard Business Review 68, no. 5 (September–October 1990): 105–111.
  5. The Profitable Art of Service Recovery

    Keywords: Profit;

    Citation:

    Hart, C., J. Heskett, and W. Earl Sasser. "The Profitable Art of Service Recovery." Harvard Business Review 68, no. 4 (July–August 1990): 148–156.

Cases and Teaching Materials

  1. WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan

    A restaurant chain based in California offers made-to-order sandwich wraps using fresh, healthy ingredients. The founders of the company take a very active role in day-to-day business and tightly control every aspect of the restaurant operation from hiring store managers to planning the menu. Management is concerned that employee turnover is high, customer satisfaction is decreasing, and revenue growth is flat. The newly hired human resources leader believes addressing employee turnover can help solve the other problems. She develops a profit-sharing program as a pilot at two restaurants. The managers in the pilot program have their compensation tied directly to restaurant profits. The program also allows managers to customize menus, work with local suppliers, and try different promotion ideas. After six months, profits at the pilot locations improve while customer reviews are mixed. The HR manager must review the complete results and decide whether to roll out the pilot program to more locations, modify the program, or abandon it altogether. Students consider the operational challenges of running a service business and the issues related to compensation, change management, and employee autonomy.

    Keywords: Empowerment; Middle management; human resource management; compensation; incentives; motivation; Motivation and Incentives; Change Management; Business Growth and Maturation; Service Delivery; Entrepreneurship; Employees; Compensation and Benefits; Service Industry; Retail Industry; Food and Beverage Industry; California;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr., and Rachel Shelton. "WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan." Harvard Business School Brief Case 114-362, November 2011.
  2. WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan (Brief Case)

    Teaching Note for Product #4362

    Keywords: Empowerment; Middle management; human resource management; compensation; incentives; motivation;

    Citation:

    Sasser,, W. Earl, Jr., and Rachel Shelton. "WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 114-364, November 2011.
  3. WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan, Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)

    Keywords: incentives; motivation;

    Citation:

    Sasser,, W. Earl, Jr., and Rachel Shelton. "WrapItUp: Developing a New Compensation Plan, Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Spreadsheet Supplement 114-365, November 2011.
  4. Wrapitup

    A restaurant chain based in California offers made-to-order sandwich wraps using fresh, healthy ingredients. The founders of the company take a very active role in day-to-day business and tightly control every aspect of the restaurant operation from hiring store managers to planning the menu. Management is concerned that employee turnover is high, customer satisfaction is decreasing, and revenue growth is flat. The newly hired human resources leader believes addressing employee turnover can help solve the other problems. She develops a profit-sharing program as a pilot at two restaurants. The managers in the pilot program have their compensation tied directly to restaurant profits. The program also allows managers to customize menus, work with local suppliers, and try different promotion ideas. After six months, profits at the pilot locations improve while customer reviews are mixed. The HR manager must review the complete results and decide whether to roll out the pilot program to more locations, modify the program, or abandon it altogether. Students consider the operational challenges of running a service business and the issues related to compensation, change management, and employee autonomy.

    Keywords: Service Operations; Governance Controls; Revenue; Employee Relationship Management; Planning; Customer Satisfaction; Problems and Challenges; Profit; Change Management; Compensation and Benefits; Leadership Style; Service Industry; California;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Wrapitup." Harvard Business Publishing Case, 2011. (Brief Case.)
  5. Rackspace Hosting (2000)

    The leadership team of Rackspace, faced with accommodation of its service offering and dwindling financial reserves, decides to make customer focus the rallying cry of its new strategy.

    Keywords: Customer Focus and Relationships; Planning; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Service Delivery; Strategy; Finance; Information Technology Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, James L. Heskett, and Tom Ryder. "Rackspace Hosting (2000)." Harvard Business School Video Supplement 811-701, December 2010.
  6. Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy

    Playa Dorada Beach & Resort in Boca Raton, Florida, faces a growing seasonal demand for tennis services. The number of guests is expected to double in the next few years, and while the tennis facilities are a popular and well-promoted amenity at the resort, court space is limited. The director of tennis operations analyzes court capacity, usage history, pricing, and other factors as he assembles a plan for expansion. He must also consider how his strategy affects other divisions of the Playa Dorada Corporation, including finance, operations, marketing, and sales. Can he transform the resort's tennis operations into a profit center? To prepare for case discussion, students complete a quantitative analysis of past and expected future usage of the tennis facilities and formulate a growth strategy.

    Keywords: Service Operations; Planning; Price; Expansion; Tourism Industry; Accommodations Industry; Travel Industry; Florida;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr., and Brent Kazan. "Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy." Harvard Business School Brief Case 104-221, June 2010.
  7. Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy (Brief Case)

    Teaching Note for 4221.

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr., and Brent Kazan. "Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 104-222, June 2010.
  8. Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy, Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)

    Citation:

    Sasser,, W. Earl, Jr., and Brent Kazan. "Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy, Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Spreadsheet Supplement 104-224, June 2010.
  9. Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy, Faculty Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)

    Citation:

    Sasser,, W. Earl, Jr., and Brent Kazan. "Playa Dorada Tennis Club: Expansion Strategy, Faculty Spreadsheet Supplement (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Spreadsheet Supplement 104-225, June 2010.
  10. Southwest Airlines: In a Different World

    This is the fourth in a 35-year series of HBS cases on an organization that has changed the rules of the game globally for an entire industry by offering both differentiated and low-price service. The focus of the case is on whether Southwest Airlines should buy gates and slots to initiate service to New York's LaGuardia airport, which does not fit the airline's profile for cost, ease of service, and other factors. The bigger issue is how the organization should deal with competition that has successfully emulated more and more of what it does in an operating environment that has changed significantly. Hence the subtitle, which was suggested by Herb Kelleher, Southwest's Chairman and CEO, Emeritus.

    Keywords: Decision Choices and Conditions; Service Delivery; Service Operations; Organizational Culture; Competitive Strategy; Air Transportation Industry; New York (city, NY);

    Citation:

    Heskett, James L., and W. Earl Sasser Jr. "Southwest Airlines: In a Different World." Harvard Business School Case 910-419, April 2010. (Revised January 2013.)
  11. Southwest Airlines: In a Different World (TN)

    Teaching Note for 910419.

    Keywords: Competition; Price; Service Operations; Globalization; Cost vs Benefits; Air Transportation Industry; New York (state, US);

    Citation:

    Heskett, James L., and W. Earl Sasser. "Southwest Airlines: In a Different World (TN)." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 910-426, June 2010.
  12. Playa Dorado

    Playa Dorada Beach & Resort in Boca Raton, Florida, faces a growing seasonal demand for tennis services. The number of guests is expected to double in the next few years, and while the tennis facilities are a popular and well-promoted amenity at the resort, court space is limited. The director of tennis operations analyzes court capacity, usage history, pricing, and other factors as he assembles a plan for expansion. He must also consider how his strategy affects other divisions of the Playa Dorada Corporation, including finance, operations, marketing, and sales. Can he transform the resort's tennis operations into a profit center? To prepare for case discussion, students complete a quantitative analysis of past and expected future usage of the tennis facilities and formulate a growth strategy.

    Keywords: Demand and Consumers; Management Analysis, Tools, and Techniques; Expansion; Planning; Mathematical Methods; Price; Profit; Sales; Operations; Growth and Development Strategy; Marketing; Performance Capacity; Accommodations Industry; Florida;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Playa Dorado." Watertown, MA: Harvard Business Publishing Case, 2010. (Brief Case.)
  13. Rackspace Hosting in Late 2000

    The leadership team of Rackspace, faced with accommodation of its service offering and dwindling financial reserves, decides to make customer focus the rallying cry of its new strategy. This short case was designed as the discussion igniter for a series of short video clips describing the shift to a more customer-focused approach.

    Keywords: Customer Focus and Relationships; Finance; Management Teams; Service Operations; Customer Ownership; Strategy;

    Citation:

    Heskett, James L., and W. Earl Sasser. "Rackspace Hosting in Late 2000." Harvard Business School Case 808-166, June 2008.
  14. Thomas Green: Power, Office Politics and a Career in Crisis

    The case describes the dilemma of a marketing manager, Thomas Green, who, after being rapidly promoted, is harshly criticized by his boss, Frank Davis. Green and Davis disagree on work styles and market projections. Green believes the sales goals set by Davis are based on "creative accounting" and grossly overstate the current market environment. A mood of silent conflict develops quickly between the two men, and Green is concerned that Davis is building a case to fire him. Green's situation is one in which his failure to adapt his work style and fully understand the demands and boundaries of his new position may lead to his discharge. A factor in the background is Green's relationship with his boss's boss.

    Keywords: communication; Superior & subordinate; performance management; power and influence; Personal strategy & style; conflict management; Management Style; Conflict Management; Communication; Rank and Position; Personal Characteristics; Power and Influence;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr., and Heather Beckham. "Thomas Green: Power, Office Politics and a Career in Crisis." Harvard Business School Brief Case 082-095, May 2008.
  15. Thomas Green: Power, Office Politics, and a Career in Crisis (Brief Case)

    Teaching Note for 2095.

    Keywords: communication; Superior & subordinate; performance management; power and influence; Personal strategy & style; conflict management;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr., and Heather Beckham. "Thomas Green: Power, Office Politics, and a Career in Crisis (Brief Case)." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 082-096, May 2008.
  16. Thomas Green:Power, Office Politics and a Career in Crisis

    The case describes the dilemma of a marketing manager, Thomas Green, who, after being rapidly promoted, is harshly criticized by his boss, Frank Davis. Green and Davis disagree on work styles and market projections. Green believes the sales goals set by Davis are based on "creative accounting" and grossly overstate the current market environment. A mood of silent conflict develops quickly between the two men, and Green is concerned that Davis is building a case to fire him. Green's situation is one in which his failure to adapt his work style and fully understand the demands and boundaries of his new position may lead to his discharge. A factor in the background is Green's relationship with his boss's boss.

    Keywords: Relationships; Personal Development and Career; Conflict and Resolution; Failure; Accounting; Creativity;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Thomas Green:Power, Office Politics and a Career in Crisis." Watertown, MA: Harvard Business Publishing Case, 2008. (Brief Case.)
  17. Benihana of Tokyo

    Discusses the development of a chain of "theme" restaurants. The student is asked to evaluate the current operating strategy and suggest a long-term expansion strategy.

    Keywords: Expansion; Business Strategy; Brands and Branding; Food and Beverage Industry; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Benihana of Tokyo." Harvard Business School Case 673-057, November 1972. (Revised January 2004.)
  18. Why Customers Matter

    Keywords: Customer Value and Value Chain;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Jr. "Why Customers Matter." Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing Class Lecture, 2003. Electronic. (Faculty Lecture: HBSP Product Number 1490C.)
  19. Overview of E-Business Pricing Models

    Supplements National Logistics Management.

    Keywords: Internet; Price; Business Model; Information Technology Industry;

    Citation:

    Applegate, Lynda M., W. Earl Sasser, and Kristin Kohler. "Overview of E-Business Pricing Models." Harvard Business School Supplement 801-182, September 2000. (Revised June 2002.)
  20. Credit Suisse (A) (Abridged)

    Credit Suisse is looking for ways to differentiate itself from current and likely competitors. After two years of restructuring, the bank's leadership wants profitable growth. It has decided to emphasize customer service.

    Keywords: Restructuring; Competitive Advantage; Customer Satisfaction; Banks and Banking; Growth and Development Strategy; Banking Industry; Retail Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and William E. Fulmer. "Credit Suisse (A) (Abridged)." Harvard Business School Case 800-154, September 1999. (Revised April 2001.)
  21. World Bank and Knowledge Management, The: The Case of the Urban Services Thematic Group

    The World Bank has implemented a knowledge management initiative. One of its communities of practice is to take the lead in a $50 billion commitment to address urban slums. The community of practice is struggling with its mission and how knowledge management can help.

    Keywords: Urban Development; Knowledge Management; Problems and Challenges; Financial Services Industry;

    Citation:

    Fulmer, William E., and W. Earl Sasser. "World Bank and Knowledge Management, The: The Case of the Urban Services Thematic Group." Harvard Business School Case 801-157, January 2001.
  22. Credit Suisse (D)

    Supplements either Credit Suisse (A) or Credit Suisse (A) (Abridged).

    Keywords: Banking Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and William E. Fulmer. "Credit Suisse (D)." Harvard Business School Case 800-169, October 1999.
  23. Credit Suisse (C)

    Supplements either Credit Suisse (A) or Credit Suisse (A) (Abridged).

    Keywords: Banking Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and William E. Fulmer. "Credit Suisse (C)." Harvard Business School Case 800-168, October 1999.
  24. Credit Suisse (B)

    Supplements either Credit Suisse (A) or Credit Suisse (A) (Abridged).

    Keywords: Banking Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and William E. Fulmer. "Credit Suisse (B)." Harvard Business School Case 800-167, October 1999.
  25. Australia's Telstra Corporation (A), (B), and (C) TN

    Teaching Note for (9-899-209), (9-899-210), and (9-899-211).

    Keywords: Telecommunications Industry; Australia;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Carin-Isabel Knoop, and Cate Reavis. "Australia's Telstra Corporation (A), (B), and (C) TN." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 800-130, September 1999.
  26. Australia's Telstra Corporation (A): Going Public

    Frank Blount is named CEO of Telstra, Australia's state-owned telecommunications giant. In preparation for its 1997 IPO, he must reorganize the company from an inefficient public entity into a lean, customer-driven organization.

    Keywords: Change Management; Initial Public Offering; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Customer Focus and Relationships; State Ownership; Performance Effectiveness; Privatization; Telecommunications Industry; Australia;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Carin-Isabel Knoop, and Cate Reavis. "Australia's Telstra Corporation (A): Going Public." Harvard Business School Case 899-209, March 1999.
  27. Australia's Telstra Corporation (B): The Countdown

    Supplements the (A) case.

    Keywords: Telecommunications Industry; Australia;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Carin-Isabel Knoop, and Cate Reavis. "Australia's Telstra Corporation (B): The Countdown." Harvard Business School Case 899-210, March 1999.
  28. Australia's Telstra Corporation (C): Operating in Never-Never Land

    Supplements the (A) case.

    Keywords: Business Ventures; Service Operations; Telecommunications Industry; Australia;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Carin-Isabel Knoop, and Carlos A. A Gonzalez. "Australia's Telstra Corporation (C): Operating in Never-Never Land." Harvard Business School Case 899-211, March 1999.
  29. Ritz-Carlton: Using Information Systems to Better Serve the Customer

    Explores the interface of an information system that keeps track of guests and their preferences, and the people systems that deliver multiple services at Ritz-Carlton hotels. The luxury hotel chain's unique service credo and commitment to quality principles are discussed as well as the attention to hiring and training. At the heart of the case is the Ritz-Carlton commitment to serving the customer.

    Keywords: Competency and Skills; Customer Satisfaction; Training; Recruitment; Service Delivery; Supply Chain Management; Luxury; Balance and Stability; Information Technology;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Thomas O. Jones, and Norman Klein. "Ritz-Carlton: Using Information Systems to Better Serve the Customer." Harvard Business School Case 395-064, October 1994. (Revised March 1999.)
  30. McDonald's Corp. (Condensed)

    Describes the operating system of McDonald's, the world's most successful fast food chain. The case does not have a decision focus; it is designed for use with Burger King Corp. Students are asked to compare the operating systems of these two fast food hamburger chains. Careful analysis will detect the subtle and not so subtle differences between the two operating systems selected by these two firms.

    Keywords: Service Operations; Competition; Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and David C. Rikert. "McDonald's Corp. (Condensed)." Harvard Business School Case 681-044, December 1980. (Revised February 1998.)
  31. Burger King Corp.

    Describes the operating system of a Burger King unit. The case does not have a decision focus; it is designed for use with McDonald's Corp. Students are asked to compare the operating systems of these two fast food hamburger chains. Careful analysis will detect the subtle and not so subtle differences between the two operating systems selected by these two firms.

    Keywords: Food; System; Operations; Retail Industry; Food and Beverage Industry; United States;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and David C. Rikert. "Burger King Corp." Harvard Business School Case 681-045, December 1980. (Revised February 1998.)
  32. Information at the World Bank: In Search of a Technology Solution (B)

    Acting on his vision to make the World Bank a knowledge institution, bank President Wolfensohn announces the creation of an Information and Knowledge Management Council and an Information Solutions Group, headed by a newly nominated CEO, Mohamed Muhsin. This case describes Muhsin's intentions as well as those of the head of the bank's knowledge-management initiative.

    Keywords: Organizational Change and Adaptation; Information Technology; Knowledge Management; Management Teams; Information Management; Banks and Banking; Banking Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Josep Valor. "Information at the World Bank: In Search of a Technology Solution (B)." Harvard Business School Case 898-054, September 1997. (Revised October 1997.)
  33. Information at the World Bank: In Search of a Technology Solution (A)

    Information Technology Services Director Mohamed Muhsin planned to restructure the World Bank's information technology in response to President Jim Wolfensohn's call to build a knowledge bank. Several reorganization efforts taken by the bank in the 1980s led to a decentralized system, which hindered the access to and sharing of information within the bank. By the early 1990s, the organization's values had shifted, calling for more collaboration among all bank sectors. The creation and implementation of a standardized, user-friendly information technology system was needed. Describes how Muhsin planned to restructure and the challenges he would face.

    Keywords: Restructuring; Information; Knowledge Management; Mission and Purpose; Technology; Public Administration Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Josep Valor, and Carin-Isabel Knoop. "Information at the World Bank: In Search of a Technology Solution (A)." Harvard Business School Case 898-053, September 1997.
  34. Royal Automobile Club Rescue Services Division: Transformation Through Technology

    The Royal Automobile Club uses a new computer and telephone system to improve its service standards and profitability. After the initial impact of changes from technology, the organization faces a need to choose between future technological development or organizational change.

    Keywords: Technological Innovation; Decision Choices and Conditions; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Information Technology; Corporate Strategy; Service Industry; Auto Industry; United Kingdom;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Roger H. Hallowell. "Royal Automobile Club Rescue Services Division: Transformation Through Technology." Harvard Business School Case 693-029, September 1992. (Revised November 1996.)
  35. British Airways: Using Information Systems to Better Serve the Customer

    Explores the uses of scanning technology, interactive software, and powerful data bases to assist customer relations representatives in resolving customer complaints. Competitive alliances in international markets are noted, but the focus is on the evolving commitment to customer service and the measures, technology, and economics that come into play to recover customers who have complained.

    Keywords: Debates; Customer Focus and Relationships; Globalized Markets and Industries; Service Delivery; Alliances; Information Technology; Aerospace Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Norman Klein. "British Airways: Using Information Systems to Better Serve the Customer." Harvard Business School Case 395-065, October 1994. (Revised November 1994.)
  36. Au Bon Pain: The French Bakery Cafe, The Partner/Manager Program

    In recent years, Au Bon Pain (ABP), a chain of upscale French bakeries/sandwich cafes based in Boston, confronted a set of human resource problems endemic to the fast food industry (i.e., a labor shortage which made it difficult to attract and maintain quality crew personnel and management candidates, an inadequately trained management staff, and high turnover). To deal with the resulting "cycle of failure" while increasing individual initiative and performance at the unit level, ABP devised a new compensation-incentive system for its store managers--the Partner/Manager Program. Under this program, store managers would be paid a standard base salary plus a share of the incremental profits. The case asks students to evaluate the program by comparing it to ABP's existing compensation system, determining the different ways in which managers from two stores operating under an experimental run of the program achieved their results, and by considering the strategic implications of implementing the program in all of the company's stores.

    Keywords: Motivation and Incentives; Managerial Roles; Retention; Employees; Performance Improvement; Recruitment; Problems and Challenges; Compensation and Benefits; Food and Beverage Industry; Service Industry; Boston;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Au Bon Pain: The French Bakery Cafe, The Partner/Manager Program." Harvard Business School Case 687-063, March 1987. (Revised October 1993.)
  37. Hank Kolb, Director, Quality Assurance

    Designed to introduce the systemic nature of product quality and the complexity of quality problems. Uses a new director, quality assurance, and the discovery of a quality problem. The new director has to decide if it is a real problem, what to do about it, and how to go about orienting an organization toward a better quality attitude.

    Keywords: Leadership; Product; Organizational Culture; Problems and Challenges; Quality; Attitudes; Complexity;

    Citation:

    Leonard, Frank S., and W. Earl Sasser. "Hank Kolb, Director, Quality Assurance." Harvard Business School Case 681-083, March 1981. (Revised February 1993.)
  38. Hanrahan Motor Co.

    Keywords: Manufacturing Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Wickham C. Skinner, and Kathleen Curley. "Hanrahan Motor Co." Harvard Business School Case 677-134, December 1976. (Revised June 1991.)
  39. Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co.

    Keywords: Insurance Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Robert L. Banks. "Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co." Harvard Business School Case 675-088, December 1974. (Revised May 1990.)
  40. Citicorp Diners Club

    Keywords: Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Lucy N. Lytle. "Citicorp Diners Club." Harvard Business School Case 688-078, February 1988. (Revised May 1989.)
  41. Andreas Stihl Machinenfabrik

    Keywords: Machinery and Machining; Manufacturing Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Andreas Stihl Machinenfabrik." Harvard Business School Case 684-061, April 1984. (Revised October 1988.)
  42. THE Investment Corp.

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and John R. Klug. "THE Investment Corp." Harvard Business School Case 673-065, January 1973. (Revised July 1988.)
  43. Boston Ballet

    Keywords: Arts; Boston;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Lucy N. Lytle. "Boston Ballet." Harvard Business School Case 688-114, July 1988.
  44. Lorin Communications Corp.

    Keywords: Communications Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Lucy N. Lytle. "Lorin Communications Corp." Harvard Business School Case 688-001, September 1987. (Revised June 1988.)
  45. Medibus, Inc.

    Keywords: Transportation Industry; Health Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Medibus, Inc." Harvard Business School Case 675-177, April 1975. (Revised November 1987.)
  46. Flair, Inc.

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and R. P. Olsen. "Flair, Inc." Harvard Business School Case 676-094, December 1975. (Revised November 1987.)
  47. Au Bon Pain: Interviews with Ron Shaich and Len Schlesinger, Video

    To be used with Au Bon Pain: The French Bakery Cafe, the Partner/Manager Program.

    Keywords: Employee Relationship Management; Human Resources; Management Systems; Selection and Staffing; Programs; Partners and Partnerships; Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Christopher Hart, and Lucy N. Lytle. "Au Bon Pain: Interviews with Ron Shaich and Len Schlesinger, Video." Harvard Business School Video Supplement 887-548, June 1987.
  48. Great Lakes Diversified Corp.: The Detroit Plant

    Keywords: Buildings and Facilities; Planning; Production; Strategy; Michigan;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and David C. Rikert. "Great Lakes Diversified Corp.: The Detroit Plant." Harvard Business School Case 679-121, May 1979. (Revised April 1987.)
  49. Ace Welding Equipment, Inc.

    Keywords: Construction Industry;

    Citation:

    Davis, Edward W., and W. Earl Sasser. "Ace Welding Equipment, Inc." Harvard Business School Case 670-012, January 1970. (Revised March 1987.)
  50. Roger Clarke (A)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Roger Clarke (A)." Harvard Business School Case 676-185, June 1976. (Revised September 1986.)
  51. Comtec Electronics, Inc. (A)

    Keywords: Electronics Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Comtec Electronics, Inc. (A)." Harvard Business School Case 686-112, February 1986. (Revised September 1986.)
  52. Boise Cascade: Manufactured Housing Division, Lafayette Region (A)

    Keywords: Operations; Performance Capacity; Planning;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Boise Cascade: Manufactured Housing Division, Lafayette Region (A)." Harvard Business School Case 680-079, November 1979. (Revised July 1986.)
  53. Allied Corp. (A) and (B), TN

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Allied Corp. (A) and (B), TN." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 386-105, June 1986.
  54. General Electric: Strategic Position--1981, Teaching Note

    Teaching Note for (9-381-174).

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "General Electric: Strategic Position--1981, Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 386-117, June 1986.
  55. British Steel Corporation: The Korf Contract TN

    Teaching Note for (9-481-110).

    Keywords: Steel Industry; United Kingdom;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "British Steel Corporation: The Korf Contract TN." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 486-124, June 1986.
  56. Hanrahan Motor Co., Teaching Note

    Keywords: Industrial Products Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Hanrahan Motor Co., Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 683-042, September 1982. (Revised March 1986.)
  57. Great Lakes Diversified Corp.: The Detroit Plant (TN)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Great Lakes Diversified Corp.: The Detroit Plant (TN)." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 683-044, September 1982. (Revised March 1986.)
  58. Comtec Electronics, Inc. (B)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Comtec Electronics, Inc. (B)." Harvard Business School Supplement 686-113, February 1986.
  59. Barilla G. & R.F.lli, S.p.A.

    Keywords: Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Barilla G. & R.F.lli, S.p.A." Harvard Business School Case 685-032, December 1984. (Revised January 1985.)
  60. Capacity

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Capacity." Harvard Business School Background Note 685-057, January 1985.
  61. Western Electric at Merrimack Valley

    Keywords: Utilities Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and Dorothy Leonard-Barton. "Western Electric at Merrimack Valley." Harvard Business School Case 684-072, May 1984. (Revised December 1984.)
  62. Gentle Electric Co.

    Designed to illustrate various levels of complexity in determining optimum order sizes for a single item inventory policy. Students are asked to evaluate the impact of recent operational changes on the firm's ordering policy. Intended to follow the students' initial exposure to economic order quantities, this case widens the students' scope of tradeoff models.

    Keywords: Change; Policy; Supply Chain; Complexity; Electronics Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Gentle Electric Co." Harvard Business School Case 672-038, September 1971. (Revised September 1983.)
  63. Hank Kolb, Director, Quality Assurance, Teaching Note

    Teaching Note for (9-681-083).

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Hank Kolb, Director, Quality Assurance, Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 683-030, September 1982.
  64. Mattson Foods, Inc.: The Bardolini Division, Teaching Note

    Keywords: Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Mattson Foods, Inc.: The Bardolini Division, Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 683-041, September 1982.
  65. Mason Household Products

    Keywords: Consumer Products Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Mason Household Products." Harvard Business School Case 681-078, February 1981. (Revised November 1981.)
  66. Roger Clarke (B)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Roger Clarke (B)." Harvard Business School Supplement 676-186, June 1976. (Revised November 1980.)
  67. Sea Pines Racquet Club

    The student is required to develop a strategy for a tennis club of a large resort area. The tennis director must decide how many courts he needs to build within the next three years, what surface they should have, and how much he should charge for their use. Illustrates the problems of capacity planning in a service organization.

    Keywords: Price; Service Operations; Organizations; Performance Capacity; Planning; Strategy; Accommodations Industry; Sports Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Sea Pines Racquet Club." Harvard Business School Case 674-011, September 1973. (Revised October 1980.)
  68. Sea Pines Racquet Club, Teaching Note

    Teaching Note for (9-674-011).

    Keywords: Sports Industry; Entertainment and Recreation Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Sea Pines Racquet Club, Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 677-038, September 1976. (Revised October 1980.)
  69. Chalet Susse International

    Keywords: Accommodations Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Chalet Susse International." Harvard Business School Case 673-090, March 1973. (Revised September 1980.)
  70. Lodging Industry

    Keywords: Accommodations Industry;

    Citation:

    Wyckoff, Daryl D., and W. Earl Sasser. "Lodging Industry." Harvard Business School Background Note 680-116, February 1980. (Revised August 1980.)
  71. Bay Area Test Instruments, Inc. (Abridged)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Bay Area Test Instruments, Inc. (Abridged)." Harvard Business School Case 680-145, April 1980. (Revised May 1980.)
  72. Sinden Motor Products Corp.

    Keywords: Industrial Products Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Sinden Motor Products Corp." Harvard Business School Case 677-248, August 1977. (Revised February 1980.)
  73. Roger Clarke (C)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Roger Clarke (C)." Harvard Business School Supplement 676-187, June 1976. (Revised September 1979.)
  74. Roger Clarke (D)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Roger Clarke (D)." Harvard Business School Supplement 676-188, June 1976. (Revised September 1979.)
  75. Aerospace Maintenance, Inc., Teaching Note

    Keywords: Aerospace Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and R. Paul Olsen. "Aerospace Maintenance, Inc., Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 680-040, September 1979.
  76. Dobbs House (A)

    Keywords: Leadership Development;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, Daryl D Wyckoff, and John Klug. "Dobbs House (A)." Harvard Business School Case 673-058, November 1972. (Revised December 1978.)
  77. Waffle House, Inc. (J)

    Keywords: Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Waffle House, Inc. (J)." Harvard Business School Case 672-101, February 1972. (Revised August 1977.)
  78. Benihana of Tokyo, Teaching Note

    Keywords: Food and Beverage Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Benihana of Tokyo, Teaching Note." Harvard Business School Teaching Note 677-037, September 1976.
  79. American Home Shield Corp.

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "American Home Shield Corp." Harvard Business School Case 673-110, May 1973. (Revised June 1976.)
  80. Capacity Planning for Service Firms

    Keywords: Planning; Service Industry;

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl. "Capacity Planning for Service Firms." Harvard Business School Background Note 676-165, April 1976.
  81. Dobbs House (B)

    Citation:

    Sasser, W. Earl, and John Klug. "Dobbs House (B)." Harvard Business School Case 673-059, November 1972. (Revised November 1975.)