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The Micromanager - Harvard Business Review

George Latour is attempting to lead and coach a new employee, Shelly Stern. The relationship quickly goes downhill as George's leadership style runs afoul of Shelly's sense of professionalism.

Fryer, B., Goodnight, J., Goulston, M., Lawrie, J. M. & Chappelow, C. (2004). The Micromanager. Harvard Business Review, 82(9), 31-39.

Chambers, H. (2005, Summer). Surviving the Micromanager. How to succeed with a my way boss. Canadian Manager, 30(2), 24-25. Retrieved from Business Source Complete database.

How would you characterize George's leadership style?
Is it the appropriate style? Why or why not? (Hint: consider the characteristics of the environment, the employee, the task, leader discretion, etc.)
What strategies can Shelley employ to better manage her boss? (To answer this question, you may want to read this short piece by Harry E. Chambers: (You can find it through the EBSCO database in Business Source Complete).

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The MicroManager

* George Latour is attempting to lead and coach a new employee, Shelley Stern. The relationship quickly goes downhill as George's leadership style runs afoul of Shelley's sense of professionalism. How would you characterize George's leadership style?

George Latour's leadership style may be characterized as task-oriented. According to the University of Michigan, "task-oriented behaviors [is that] in which the leader helps subordinates figure out what is expected of them and manages the daily activities of a group toward accomplishing a task. In some style theories, this is referred to as transactional leadership, or management (as a contrast to leadership)." This is not to say that the boss' leadership style will remain the same after the new hire training period, but in reference to his behaviors at home, this style may be his overall form of action coupled with others.

Reference: http://www.chsbs.cmich.edu/leader_model/Development/media/Targeted%20Lessons/leadership_style.htm

* Is it the appropriate style? Why or why not? (Hint: consider the characteristics of the environment, the employee, the task, leader discretion, etc.)

George Latour's style is appropriate for a number of industries and organizations, but perhaps not this one. Craig Chappelow says the boss' behaviors in terms of his, "hands-on, detail-oriented management style served him well as an engineer. As a Senior Executive, however, the rules have changed. Executives are expected to be less hands-on with the day-to-day details and more focused on the big picture while motivating team members to perform...(page 40)." Yet, on the other hand, put yourself in Shelley Stern's shoes. Have you ever been in such a position at the workplace or elsewhere? Maybe you've heard of the famous parable, "When the student is ready the teacher will appear." The concept is such that when the student has learned their lesson (or whatever the information), the teacher will disappear. Usually, life presents us with lessons, teachers, mentors, friends/so-called adversaries, and the like to help us grow. As a new employee, ...

Solution Summary

Solution examines the Harvard Business Review (HBR) case study. George Latour is attempting to lead and coach new employee, Shelly Stern. The relationship quickly goes downhill as the boss' leadership style runs afoul of the employee's sense of professionalism. The following questions are discussed:

* How would you characterize George's leadership style?
* Is it the appropriate style? Why or why not? (Hint: consider the characteristics of the environment, the employee, the task, leader discretion, etc.)
* What strategies can Shelley employ to better manage her boss?
* What strategies can George employ?

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