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Analysis Of Hbs Case On Charlotte Beers At Ogilvy & Mathers (Organisational Behaviour).

1111 words - 4 pages

1. Unfreezing a fragmented Ogilvy & Mather out of the Ice Age.Charlotte Beers tries to turn around Ogilvy by implementing a strategy based on differentiation. However, Ogilvy's organisation and culture are obstacles to this process. She has therefore to unfreeze the situation first to allow change to be implemented through a communal culture and a collaborative organisation.Evidence of a crisis are numerous:Major accounts have been lost (Amex);Revenues and earnings are in decline;Agencies services are increasingly commodities;Staff morale is low;O&M culture is fragmented. It is low on both sociability and solidarity as defined by Goffee and Jones. Individual offices are run independently (low solidarity) and the historical congeniality ("gentlemen with brains") has been reversed: a customer reported to Beers his direct witness of O&M political infighting over an account and creativity has declined.The changes in the industry make a compelling case for a communal culture: creativity still need to be fostered through high sociability and the globalisation trend require some higher level of discipline and coordination achieved through high solidarity.O&M organisation, described as "light center, strong regions" has reached a "delegation" evolution phase and its size has triggered a control crisis, as modelled by Greiner. Top executives have lost control of Ogilvy's decentralized and diversified operations.Beers seems aware that re-centralizing management would likely fail. Interestingly, she tries to bypass the "coordination" evolution phase and go directly to the collaboration phase. Thus, she advocates:üProblem solving through cross-functional teams;üA consultative approach through conferences of key managers;üExperiments in new practices like the empowerment of the WCS supervisors (who are "dual citizens" in "virtual organisations" and not headquarter staff);Such a transformation in style and culture seems like an mammoth task. Charlotte Beers only needed two words to achieve it: "brand stewardship".2. "You ask for collaboration but occasionally you act autocratically"Like for David Simon at BP, Charlotte Beers' predecessor correctly diagnosed the strategic issues but failed the execution reportedly because of an uninspirational leadership. Beers rose to the leadership challenge and deployed a wealth of persuasion skills.Beers is definitely matching most leadership criteria suggested by Bennis:üShe innovates ("brand stewardship");üShe develops (by stimulating customers' desires);üShe focuses on people (instead of finance or organisation);üShe challenges the status quo (the commoditisation of advertising);üShe is her own person (her passion in brands);üShe inspires trust (through her energy and passion);üShe has her eye on the horizon (not the bottom line);Like Kennedy (as described by Zaleznik), she forces people to act beyond immediate concerns and identify with her.However, a...

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