As this case portrays the problems faced by Lisa Benton in her company Houseworld it somehow also accented on certain characteristics of human behavior like possessiveness, fear of losing position, future concerns regarding progression & obstacles associated with that progression. Lisa Benton was frustrated and dissatisfied about her job in Houseworld where she started by a lack of responsibility, and poor relationships with her boss, Linton, a colleague Scoville and recently with the reveal of her negative performance review. Since she is not accepted by her team she felt that while having not enough responsibility and room for her execution she didn’t prosper in this company. She also not went through the marketing training which most attracted her to this company at the beginning. Benton was concern of her career in Houseworld and was thinking of calling her former supervisor Kingston, of Right-Away Stores, whom she had previously turned down an appealing offer.
There are three major relationships, with Linton, Scoville and Vernon, that shaped up Benton’s current circumstances. If Benton had deal with them with different ways, it may lead to some different result. Because of policy of the Home Care Division, the recruiting practice emphasized recruiting MBAs from top-notch schools for entry-level marketing positions. This decision makes it difficult for Linton, also Scoville to be promoted as they thought that they were not having an MBA degree which might be a drawback for them and hence nurtures their negative attitudes toward MBAs. Unfortunately, this had led to Benton’s difficulties in making good impression on Linton. Unlike the previous friendly and enthusiastic welcome in her interview, Benton received an opposite responses which did not fulfill her emotional needs and reduced her motivation in her department.
Because of her dislike to Benton, Linton seemed to ignore Benton’s ability on purpose and did not assign challenging tasks to Benton. Linton eventually failed Benton by assuming that Benton’s task maturity was low and blocked her development of her expert power. However, Benton did a great job when she was in her full-time internship at Right-Away; she had qualified job skills to develop her expertise. But she failed to do this due to her intimidating conversations with Linton and Scoville. Lisa problem is that she does not contribute enough due to some hindrances created by her workmates. Lisa chose to keep silent when she had opportunities to speak. But she have to stand up for herself und share her thoughts with the others so they can see she try everything to get involved. She really needs to contribute! It all comes down to teams, teamwork, individual and group decisions.
Linton uses traditional first line supervisory methods that block Lisa. Using Linton’s legitimate as well as her compelling power base is not appropriate for Lisa. Also, Linton’s behavior blocked Lisa’s development of her expert power. There are several times when Lisa had questions, but Linton refused to answer her right away. On the other hand, Scoville used his position to ask Lisa do some “gopher” tasks and didn’t care about whether Lisa was busy at her own job or not. Besides his negative attitude toward Lisa’s background, Scoville’s personality made him less acceptable to most of his colleagues.
Due to Lisa’s personality, she can develop her information power with her good peer relationships. But Lisa failed to transfer the information power that she gained from her peers to her relationship with Vernon. Vernon seemed to be a reasonable person to listen to Lisa’s problems between Linton and Scoville. He agreed that Lisa had enough job skills when Lisa did a good job on one important memo. Because he knew Lisa’s job ability, he didn’t think Lisa should do a secretary’s job since she was hired as an assistant product manager.
He was, unlike Linton and Scoville, willing to encourage Lisa to develop her expert power in the organization. She should tell Vernon the truth and the problem that she really experienced. As Vernon is a top manager, so he cannot understand every detail in organization. But this detail may be the reason that decreases productivity. He needs to access this information.
Since Lisa has strong information power & good relationship with other coworkers. Vernon opened a communication channel to Lisa instead of restricting her information power. However, Lisa did not take advantage of this chance which she should be. She has to express the problems with Scoville & Linton which were the main reason for Lisa’s dissatisfaction with the company. Lisa should also workout to emphasize her importance in this organization and decrease dependence on this organization.
Also Lisa thought she is in a learner process, she didn’t express her opinions when they had meetings. This behavior made her boss, Linton, think that Lisa lacked confidence, and she didn’t feel that Lisa really had strong job skills. Lisa should have expressed her intelligent opinions. By doing so, although Linton blocked her development Lisa still could have developed her expert power over Linton gradually.
On the other hand, Lisa should keep her good relationship with her peers and use this to her advantage. Scoville didn’t get along with other people well in this organization so he seldom got others’ help. Lisa could try to be a “buffer” between Scoville and other peers. If Lisa encouraged others to give him a hand, Scoville would realize that Lisa had a reward power which would give him some benefits. If Lisa can reflect on her problems, she can help Vernon deal with the morale problem, and she also can solve her own problems.
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