Running Head: Affecting Change Paper
Affecting Change Paper
Leadership is best defined as the ability to influence a group to toward the achievement of a vision or set of goals (Robbins & Judge, 2007). Smith and Falmouth is a mid-size tele-order and mail order company with operations in Canada and the United States (Apollo Group Inc., 2010). The company is seeking to improve itself and have strong financial showing over the next several years. In order to achieve the goals of CEO Irene Seagraves, the company has hired a COO, in hopes of streamlining the organization and communication between managers and groups. The COO has the task of achieving trust and infiltrating the unofficial cliques that have formed in the company. By gaining the trust of informal leaders, the COO affectively will be able to have more influence within the organization and the ability to guide the company to its desired goals.
Options for Affecting Change
In order for the COO to gain, the trust and influence needed to perform the details of the job description; he or she must first learn the teams and members (Apollo Group Inc., 2010). The COO will need to research the groups and their interactions before choosing an ally to help as he or she attempts to become and influential leader in the organization. The COO also must realize that due to the creation of this new position the people he or she is wishing to influence will be shifted down in the chain of command (Apollo Group Inc., 2010). The COO must be prepared to combat animosity from team members and managers. One possible weapon in this battle could include accepting a salary based on the performance of the teams for a given time period.
It is important that the COO is stern (Apollo Group Inc., 2010) in the position while not becoming a dictator. The COO must be able to earn respect and be careful as to not buy compliance from the employees. The COO may consider performance-based awards for employees, or purchasing updated equipment for departments as rewards. A good COO wants frequent feedback from his or her followers to help develop leadership skills and provide grounds for self-improvement (Cassano, 2007). The COO needs to understand that the only way he or she will be able to influence any change in the organization, is to allow the organization to affect a change with his or her leadership style.
The COO is only effective if the right allies are made within the cliques. James Argyle has the most knowledge of the division and is credited with most of the logistics involved in its creation. He may have some animosity, but if the COO could secure him as an ally, it may be beneficial in achieving goals ahead of schedule (Apollo Group Inc., 2010). Brian Kervor seems to be the most popular with the teams. Brian is very loyal and close to James (Apollo Group Inc., 2010)s. If the COO was persuasive enough to make James an ally he could quickly gain the influence needed to gain the trust of the teams. However, if the COO is not careful, James and Brain could align and over power the COO. Adam Searle is a charismatic leader but does not seem to have enough influence to be a huge asset at this point to the COO (Apollo Group Inc., 2010).
In order to be the most affective to the company in the quickest manner, it appears the COO should attempt to seek Brian Kervor out as an ally. Although this is the most risky strategy, it is also the most beneficial to the COO. Once the COO has aligned with Brian he would have strong a strong link to James and then on both teams. Once this is achieved, all of the other members involved will be within the influence of COO and the company goals and objectives should be obtainable. Without this support the COO is likely to fail.
The COO must be a charming and charismatic leader that is able to achieve results within a given period. The COO must be able to motivate the employees, satisfy the managers, and still achieve the bottom line set by the CEO. He or she must take time to learn the company and its unofficial leaders and seek to win their trust. The company will only succeed if all of the members of the division are able to work together and follow the guidance of the COO.
Apollo Group Inc. (2010). Leadership in Action Simulation. Retrieved August 30, 2010, from Ecampus University of Phoniex: https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/secure/aapd/vendors/tata/sims/hrob/change_management/hrob_change_management_frame.html
Cassano, E. (2007, August). Daring to be Great. Retrieved August 30, 2010, from Small Business on Line: http://www.sbnonline.com/National/Article/12774/0/Daring_to_be_great.aspxCategory=87
Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. A. (2007). Organizational Behavior. In S. P. Robbins, & T. A. Judge, Organizational Behavior (p. 402). Upper Saddlel River, New Jersey: Pearson.