The paper 'The Tylenol Poisoning of September 1982 " is a good example of a management case study. The TYLENOL poisoning of September 1982 cannot be understood well without having a look at two institutions: the McNeil Consumer Healthcare and its subsidiary known as Johnson & Johnson (J & J). McNeil Laboratories (the McNeil Consumer Healthcare) was the 1st one to be established by Robert McNeil in the year 1879 after acquiring a drugstore (Greyser, 1992). McNeil Consumer Healthcare is the producer of TYLENOL. Seven years afterwards, the year 1886, Johnson & Johnson was established.
Johnson & Johnson was founded by Robert Wood Johnson and his two siblings James Wood and Edward Mead Johnson with a view of coming up with germ-free dressings for clinics and hospitals (Greyser, 1992). With the advancement of TYLENOL Elixir for kids, the Tylenol brand was created in 1955. The sales team of the McNeil came up with the name TYLENOL by the use of letters in word ‘ acetaminophen’ which is the product’ s main ingredient (Hartley, 2005). The product, Tylenol, was then promoted as useful pain reliever devoid of aspirin side effects.
The marketing of the product was particularly carried out to physicians and pharmacists as a safer substitute to aspirin (Hartley, 2005). It was only until the year 1959, that Johnson & Johnson commonly known as J $ J acquired McNeil Laboratories (Greyser, 1992). The first over-the-counter TYLENOL bottle was sold in the year 1960 by McNeil Laboratories, under the leadership of Johnson & Johnson. It then took a short period of time for Tylenol to emerge as one of Johnson & Johnson’ s well-liked non-prescribed drugs. At the moment with the aid of Tylenol in conjunction with numerous other well-liked products, Johnson & Johnson has grown to be a global leader in the manufacture of healthcare brands (Greyser, 1992). Description of the business incident An incident is defined as an occurrence that could result in loss of, or interference of, business undertakings, operations or services (Austin, 2001).
If an incident is not managed, a crisis, a disaster or an emergency can escalate into an emergency, crisis or a tragedy. Business functions and operations such as IT systems, employees or customers safety can be disrupted by an incident if effective incident management is not put in place.
Incident management is thus defined as the process of preventing possible interference resulting from such an incident in order to enjoy the normal business operations (Austin, 2001). This article will address the business incident encountered by Johnson & Johnson in September 1982. The incident started when seven people in the Chicago region collapsed unexpectedly and passed on after using Extra-Strength Tylenol capsules that had been poisoned with cyanide (cyanide-laced Tylenol) (Institute for Crisis Management, 2005).
The Extra-Strength Tylenol capsules mentioned were scrutinized and results revealed that they had about sixty-five milligrams of cyanide (Foster, 1983). The details on the victims of this product tampering include two males and five females, all of them fairly young (Foster, 1983). The cyanide-laced capsules were placed on shelves in six separate stores by an individual who had the aim of taking the lives of innocent people haphazardly. One particular affected person was a twelve-year-old kid who was suffering from cold. Another victim was a young woman just coming back from the hospital after delivering a baby.
The disaster further hit hard on a family who lost three of its members. Two other members of a family died after being given Tylenol capsules from the same bottle, after being overpowered by sorrow at the unexpected mysterious death of a close family (Hartley, 2005). This was due to the fact that they were not aware that poison in the Tylenol was the cause of death (Hartley, 2005). A national panic mood was created as the news of the occurrence reached many rapidly.
Austin, E. W. (2001). Strategic Public Relations Management: Planning and Managing Effective Communications Programs. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Berge, T. (1990). The First 24-Hours. Cambridge, MA: Basil Blackwell, Inc
Broom, G., Center, A., & Cutlip, S. (1994). Effective Public Relations. 7th edn. Prentice-Hall Inc
Cohn, R. (2000). The PR Crisis Bible. New York: St. Martin’s Press.
Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, University of New Mexico. TYLENOL® Continues Its Battle for Success. Retrieved from: https://danielsethics.mgt.unm.edu/pdf/tylenol%20case.pdf
Foster, L. G. (1983) The Johnson & Johnson Credo and the Tylenol Crisis. The New Jersey Bell Journal. 6(1).
Greyser, S. A. (1992). Johnson & Johnson: The Tylenol Tragedy. Harvard Business School Case 583-043, October 1982.
Hartley, R. F. (2005). Business Ethics: Mistakes and Successes.
Hensley, S. (2010). FDA: Johnson & Johnson concealed Motrin recall. NPR
Institute for Crisis Management. (2005). Annual ICM crisis report: News coverage of business crises during 2004. 20(1)
Keyton, J. (2001). Communication Research: Asking Questions, Finding Answers. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield.
Tamara K. (n.d) The Tylenol Crisis: How Effective Public Relations Saved Johnson & Johnson. Retrieved from: http://www.aerobiologicalengineering.com/wxk116/TylenolMurders/crisis.html (On 11th December, 2015)