Lisa Benton is a Harvard MBA who had completed an effective internship with Right-Away stores, a convenience store chain in Chicago, IL. Benton was offered a position at Right Away, but chose to accept a lower-paying, more junior position at Houseworld because of the company’s reputation for offering excellent classical marketing training, which will benefit her in the long run.
Benton’s first day of work, as an assistant product manager, was met with a less than enthusiastic reception from her boss, Deborah Linton. Linton confronted Benton with the statement that she did not like Harvard MBAs and her demeanor implied that she had no time to orient new employees. Within the first few weeks at Houseworld, Benton became frustrated with Ron Scoville, an associate product manager, who was condescending and held negative views of MBAs as well. In addition, she was troubled by her boss’ lack of communication and interest in her development.
Eager to have her three-month performance review, Benton was surprised when she was described as lacking assertiveness and initiative. Benton was hurt and confused because it had been emphasized that her role was that of a learner. Concerned for future career at Houseworld, Benton questioned whether she should request a transfer to another department or admit that the job at Houseworld was a mistake and try to return to Right Away.
Assess Linton’s leadership approach, applying concepts from across the course.
Deborah Linton has been with Houseworld for several years, but has only had the Product Manager position for 8 months prior to Lisa Benton arrival as the first assistant product manager assigned to the brand, Pure & Fresh. Although Linton has been given a leadership role, she is behaving as a manager, and a subpar one at that. “Management is about coping with complexity… controlling and problem solving” (Kotter, 2001). Linton wasn’t able to inspire and motivate Benton, which is one of the...