Chairman Zhang and Broad Group: Growth Dilemmas

Posted: 25 Mar 2012

See all articles by Christopher Marquis

Christopher Marquis

Cornell University; Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Nancy Dai

Harvard Business School, Asia Pacific Research Center

Lynn Yin

University of International Business and Economics (UIBE)

Date Written: December 15, 2011

Abstract

Zhang Yue, founder and chairman of Broad Group, had developed a series of innovative products aimed at solving China's environmental problems. Broad Group's products, services, and management were guided by values that prioritized morals, responsibility, environmental protection, and energy conservation over company growth and profit. Zhang's current focus was Broad Sustainable Building (BSB), a unique prefabricated building technology that was significantly more environmentally friendly than traditional building methods, as well as much less expensive. In order to obtain the capital and talent that BSB's development required, Zhang realized he may need to publicly list the company, despite publicly saying he never would do so. Would scaling the new businesses result in compromises to the mission and values that guided the company? If so, was the overall environmental impact from the new building technology worth the cost?

Learning Objective: To examine an entrepreneurial company's challenge in balancing the growing business with environmental and social responsibility.

Suggested Citation

Marquis, Christopher and Dai, Nancy and Yin, Lynn, Chairman Zhang and Broad Group: Growth Dilemmas (December 15, 2011). Harvard Business School Organizational Behavior Unit Case No. 412-095. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2027947

Christopher Marquis (Contact Author)

Cornell University ( email )

363 Sage Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.chrismarquis.com

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Nancy Dai

Harvard Business School, Asia Pacific Research Center ( email )

Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States

Lynn Yin

University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) ( email )

10, Huixin Dongjie
Changyang District
Beijing, Beijing 100029
China

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