Week 03 Application Assignment – Case Study #3 Leadership

Bill Thompson is the new manager of a retailsporting goods store in Vermont that is partof a national chain. Bill, who is 25 years old,has been working for the company for fouryears.Before his promotion he was the assis-tant manager for two years at a companystore in Delaware. Last week he was brieflyintroduced to the employees by his boss, theregional manager.The profit performance of this store isbelow average for its location and Bill is look-ing forward to the challenge of improvingprofits. When he was an assistant manager,he was given mostly minor administrativeduties and paperwork, so this assignment will be his first opportunity to show he canbe an effective manager.The base salaries ofthe 20 employees who work in Bill’s storeare set by the company, but appraisal ratingsby the store manager influence the size ofan employee’s annual merit raise.These rec-ommendations must be justified to the re-gional manager, especially if they are notconsistent with individual and departmentsales.Bill can suspend or fire employees withthe approval of his boss, but in practice it isdifficult to do so unless the recommendationis supported by a strong case.The store layout and most prices are setby the headquarters office. However, storeBill Thompson is the new manager of a retailsporting goods store in Vermont that is partof a national chain. Bill, who is 25 years old,has been working for the company for fouryears.Before his promotion he was the assis-tant manager for two years at a companystore in Delaware. Last week he was brieflyintroduced to the employees by his boss, theregional manager.The profit performance of this store isbelow average for its location and Bill is look-ing forward to the challenge of improvingprofits. When he was an assistant manager,he was given mostly minor administrativeduties and paperwork, so this assignment will be his first opportunity to show he canbe an effective manager.The base salaries ofthe 20 employees who work in Bill’s storeare set by the company, but appraisal ratingsby the store manager influence the size ofan employee’s annual merit raise.These rec-ommendations must be justified to the re-gional manager, especially if they are notconsistent with individual and departmentsales.Bill can suspend or fire employees withthe approval of his boss, but in practice it isdifficult to do so unless the recommendationis supported by a strong case.The store layout and most prices are setby the headquarters office. However, store performance can be affected to a limited ex-tent by the store manager.One way is to keepthe cost of employees low by making surethey are working efficiently and not takingexcessive sick days.Another way is to ensurethat employees are providing a high level ofcustomer service so that customers will returnto make other purchases rather than going toa different store next time. Customer servicedepends on knowing the products well,beingpolite, providing prompt service, and makingsure that inventories of popular goods aremaintained so that customers can find whatthey want. Pay is low for this type of retailselling job,turnover is high,and it takes a fewmonths for a new employee to learn the mer-chandise well enough to be helpful to cus-tomers. Thus, it is also desirable to keepcompetent employees satisfied enough tostay with the company.Although it is only his first week onthe job, Bill believes that he has alreadydiscovered some of the problems at thisstore.Among the various departments in thestore, the ski department has the highestpotential profits during the winter, because skiing and snowboarding are popular wintersports in Vermont. At the current time thedepartment’s sales are about average for com-pany stores in the Northeast region, withpotential for considerable improvement. Onseveral occasions Bill noticed a line of cus-tomers waiting to be served in the ski de-partment, and he overheard some of themgrumbling about how long it takes to getserved. One customer said he was leaving togo to another store that didn’t make him “waitall day to have the privilege of spending hun-dreds of dollars on ski equipment.” Bill ob-served that Sally Jorgenson, the departmentmanager, spends a lot of time socializing withher salespeople and with customers,includingfriends who drop in to visit and talk about skiconditions, resorts, fashions, equipment, rac-ing, and so forth. Bill, who doesn’t ski, cannotunderstand what they find so interesting totalk about. He wonders why anybody in theirright mind would want to spend a small for-tune and risk permanent injury to hurtle downa mountain in blizzard conditions, and thenstand in long lines and ride up a freezing chair-lift just to do it all over again! ■SOURCE: Copyright © 1987 By Gary Yukl.QUESTIONS1. How much of each type of power does Bill have at this time?2. What influence tactics could be used in this situation to influence Sally? Explain whatyou would actually say to Sally in the process of using each tactic.3. What should Bill do to improve store performance?

 
"Looking for a Similar Assignment? Order now and Get 15% Discount! Use Code "FIRST15"
[promo3]