The role of leadership when it comes to an organization’s success
FE2417 Organization and Leadership FULLTIME Spring term 2010
Group 11 active members:
Nidhi Gupta (NIGA09),
Ivania Gutiérrez Merino (IVGU08) and
Dan Gunnarsson (DAGU08)
The assignment is structured after the five questions given.
1. What steps do you think CEO Murphy should take to enhance innovation at Gap?First of all when Glenn Murphy (we refer to him as Murphy here after) assumes the CEO position of GAP, he must assess the situation and decide what to do. We find the “Contingency and Situational approach to leadership” [1, ch.5] appropriate for this task. In this approach the leader must analyze the situation, and according to the results, be flexible enough to adapt his leadership style.
Wesummarize the current situation with the factors that we think can have negative influence on innovation at GAP:
a. High turn-over of employees in key positions
b. Slow decision making process due to the organization bureaucracy
c. Lack of clarity about what has to be produced next which leads to lack of creativity and innovation
To successfully adapt his leadership to the situationwe think that Murphy should do the following
* Be very clear and structured in his leadership as described in the “Path goal theory” [1, p. 139]. He should use the directive style, highlighting formal activities like planning, organizing and controlling. This will help to clearly define tasks (which help to relieve c) and to be functional when the morale is low (contributes to employeemotivation for a). He should be very clear and concise formulating concrete tasks and steps, as described by “Leadership during a crisis” [1, p 157], since GAP is more or less in a state of crisis.
* Adapt his leadership to the situation and tasks by using “Situational leadership” [1, p 142], and more specifically a coaching leadership style, to coach the relevant managers to more innovative workmethods. In this way he can influence the decision making process and thus improving factor b.
* Focus on giving more power to the employees as described in the Human assets CEO leadership approach of the “Contingency leadership in the executive suite” [1, p 152]. Using the human asset approach, the CEO would give more power decision to e.g., the business units solving the bureaucracy problem(factor b).
Top-level managers typically are working with problems such as organizational change and in order to enhance the innovation at GAP, Murphy needs to be a transformational leader [1, p. 246] to be able to successfully introduce change in the organization’s culture to promote innovation and creativity. One good step here would be to create an innovation roadmap which would aid to resolve thefactor stated in c above.
In [1, p 242-246] Leadership influence for organization change is discussed and several suggestions are made on how to successfully influence the culture of an organization. It is stated that is of utter most importance that the newly appointed CEO takes the time to fully understand the old culture before starting to introduce changes. This is an important step forMurphy towards organizational change. Some suggestions for Murphy as described in [1, p 244]:
* Introduce a reward system for innovative ideas as the CEO James McNerney did at Boeing.
* Promote risk taking in innovation and marketing of new innovative products.
* Appoint creative and innovative managers for key positions that have strong influence on innovation. Managers from otherorganizations could provide an extra innovation boost here.
* Sponsor trainings that are in line with the new culture.
* Serve as a role model and promote the more innovative culture.
2. Is Fisher thinking too narrowly by insisting that Gap should stick to being grounded in khaki and denim? Explain you reasoning.
From an economical point of view: In order to determine whether to stay in a market...