Case Analysis of “The Road to Hell”
Kelly, Berger, McCants and Smith
MBA 633 Summer Semester
Description of the Case
“Road to hell” is a case study by Gareth Evans, about two characters from different cultural backgrounds. John Baker who is a successful chief engineer of the Caribbean Bauxite Company of Barracania in the West Indies. John Baker is also, an English expatriate and is 45-years-old with 23 years with Continental Ore in the Far East. We will assume that he is of Caucasian decent and very well educated with all his experience and years on the job. John Baker thinks he has a knack for working in foreign countries because of his experience with the regional staff.
Matt Rennalls, who is training to be John Bakers successor for the chief engineering position is also a ...view middle of the document...
As John read the letter he not only felt puzzled but he actually did not understand what he said that was so disrespectful. With Matt putting in his resignation in, it also has put any future relations with the company’s regional staff in jeopardy also.
This case is a misunderstanding between two people with different cultures and nationalities and how one of them (John Baker) does not take diversity into consideration. It’s very obvious that race is a problem by John Baker making the statement “Matt, let me congratulate you-and people like you-once again on having to successfully overcome this particular obstacle of overcoming the challenge of facing a revolutionary environment. It is for this very reason that I think the outlook for Barracania- and particularly Caribbean Bauxite-is so bright.” He also states how Matt’s people do not have as much experience in that field of work as much as Europeans and Americans do. Even though Baker knew of Matt Rennall’s views on race and politics he still made a conscious choice in the interview to talk about his perspective from his own European background. Another point Baker stressed that insulted Mr. Rennall’s was how he put his European culture on a higher hierarchy and left Barraccania at the bottom of the hierarchy.
In our opinion this case is about race, which comes from two factors: different cultures and misunderstandings. Even though John Baker does not see himself as one he is a racist. He may not intentionally enact as a racist, because his intention were good but they were not pure. By John Bakers racist attributes it has left him dealing with the consequences that will affect the entire company. “Hell is full of good meanings, but heaven is full of good works”, the meaning of the phrase is that individuals may have the intention to undertake good actions but nevertheless fail to take action.