1. From the Finding the Leader in you highlight on page 272 in the text, we read about Nelson Mandela's use of power for the greater good. Using the books' discussion of power and influence as a backdrop, analyze Mandela's power from multiple perspectives and assess how his use of power changed the perspective of a nation.
Being the president, Mandela used position power or legitimate power to control the people. This refers to his hierarchical authority, which compelled his followers or his people to obey him. Because Mandela was well respected by his people, especially by the blacks, his example of supporting the rugby team, which was representative of the whites, influenced the blacks and the whites by showing them that unity was possible between the two races. This could be attributed to Mandela’s referent power, that is, because of the people’s respect for him and because of the influence he had over them, they were willing to follow his lead in their desire to be identified with him.
In addition, Mandela was able to use coalition power in that he was able to control the people’s behavior through the support of something that is of collective interest to the nation. In particular, he was able to show that his support of the rugby team was not in support only of the whites but was actually in support of the entire nation, which included both the whites and the blacks.
Finally, he was able to use his personal power in influencing his people. He possessed the three traits for building his personal power, which consisted of his expertise, political savvy, and likeability. By having been a politician for a long time, he obviously had the expertise necessary for running a country and his political savvy contributed to his likeability. In particular, he was able to demonstrate his political savvy by becoming aware of both the whites’ and the blacks’ concerns and by showing a willingness to understand their ways of doing things. By supporting the rugby team, he was able to establish friendly relationships with the whites from whom the most resistance came. His support of the rugby team also enabled him to network with different groups of people and this showed people that he genuinely cared about them, that is, about both the whites and the blacks alike.
2. Chapter 13 presents us with a wide array of leadership perspectives and theories. In order to synthesize the information, it is best to look at a real-life situation and compare and contrast two companies and their leadership styles. Case 14 on page W-123 in the OB Skills workbook at the back of our text is on Novo Nordisk. Please read the case and we'll begin the discussion with the first review question.
What leadership style dominates at Novo Nordisk? Cite examples from the case and specific information from the text to support your opinion. How doe Novo Nordisk's leadership influence its organizational design and shape its competitive strategy?
Transformational leadership is the type of leadership that dominates at Novo Nordisk. This type of leadership goes beyond the routine accomplishment of tasks but instead, aims to elevate and broaden the interests of their followers by promoting awareness and acceptance of the group’s purposes and mission. For example, Novo Nordisk’s vision goes beyond simply providing quality pharmaceutical products to their consumers. Instead, the company also envisions finding a cure for type 1 diabetes, improving the lives of diabetic patients, and preventing the onset of type 2 diabetes. The company also influences their followers to look beyond their own self-interests and to focus on the good of others as well. Aside from their vision of finding a cure for type 1 diabetes, the company is able to show its concern for the common good by promoting environment-friendly practices. For example, the company aims to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions and its water consumption. In line with this, the company rewards its employees for behaviors that support such initiatives in order to encourage these behaviors.
As well, Novo Nordisk exhibits the four dimensions of transformational leadership, which are charisma, inspiration, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration. In particular, it is able to show its charisma by providing its employees with a clear vision and a sense of mission, which instills pride, respect, and trust among its employees and consumers. It also holds strongly and advocates for its moral beliefs. In addition, they are able to inspire their followers through their high expectations of finding a cure for type 1 diabetes and through their aims of improving the lives of diabetic patients. In addition, they are able to stimulate their employees’ intellects as they encourage their employees to devise ways by which they can help protect the environment. In particular, the company rewards initiatives that promote environment friendliness (e.g. ways of reducing carbon dioxide emissions and water consumption).
Finally, the company is able to demonstrate personalized consideration through individual performance assessments and rewards.
Novo Nordisk’s leadership influences the organization’s design and competitive strategy in that the high value they accord on running an ethical business results in an organizational culture where ethical behaviors are properly rewarded so that such behaviors are encouraged and sustained. For example, they reward not only the achievement of financial targets but also the achievement of non-financial targets such as environment-friendly practices and resource efficiency.
Their ethos in running the business also makes the business sustainable, that is, it is able to operate and develop in the long term while remaining in harmony with society. This gives them a competitive edge, as their ethos in running their business enable the company to grow and remain profitable while still able to leave a positive economic impact on the community.