The Fall of Arthur Andersen - Organizational Culture Issues

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : HROB024 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 300;
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Organizational Culture
Case Length : 12 Pages
Period : 1990 - 2002
Pub Date : 2002
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization : Arthur Anderson
Industry : Consulting
Countries : USA


Arthur Andersen's culture popularly known as the 'Andersen Way' made it one of the leading consulting firms in the world. The 'Andersen Way' represented a culture of integrity and ethics in business.

The case discusses the evolution of this culture and also its deterioration (over the decades) due to internal conflicts (between the audit and consulting groups) and changing business dynamics during the 1990s. It examines how and why one of the world's most respected auditing firms got entangled in a web of controversies and accounting scandals by the early 2000s, which eventually led to its demise.


Factors which have contributed to the creation a unique culture focused on innovation and creativity in the company


  Page No.
A Shamed Company 1
Background Note 2
Changing the Organizational Philosophy 5
The Auditing/Consulting Divisions Fight it out 6
A Change in Values - Why Andersen Began Compromising 8
Andersen - Ready to Fall 10

Key Words:

Arthur Andersen, culture, Andersen Way, leading, consulting, firms, world, integrity, ethics, business, evolution, deterioration, internal conflicts, changing, business, dynamics, 1990, world, auditing, firms, controversies, accounting scandals, 2000, demise

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