Asked by: Jean K.
essay, goal, Jeanne, leadership, Lewis, motivation, my, path, theory, write, write my essay
Jack Decker on Mar 03, 2011
The path goal theory of leadership was put forth by Robert House. The theory hinges good leadership on the ability of the one in charge to motivate his troupe. It is up to the leader to define the path for those who look up to him and look for various avenues of ensuring all are satisfied, (Hersey et al, 2008). It is through leadership by good example. It is leadership through actions. The Jeanne Lewis case study is one of the biggest successes of the theory.
The case study
Lewis was hired by Staples in 1994. Despite her lack of experience, she was handed the Director of Operations division in the New England office and epitomized the maximization of the path goal theory. This was a new team opposed to her earlier one, “…that had been there and done that,” (Suesse 2005, p.81).
Her linchpins were the Supportive, Directive and Participative aspects of the path goal theory. Under these, she had to make tough decisions, which she did. She set up new training programmes for her employees, set new goals and targets for them. She introduced personal and group reports which she discussed directly with her employees. This helped employees to feel ownership and have a sense of belonging in the company which motivated them even further. To further instill control, she laid off more than 25 employees in 12 months.
Reward schemes, training, motivation, report analysis and direct contact with employees were the best exemplifications of the path goal theory in the Jeanne Lewis case study. This was a success story not hinged on success in a profession. But it was the personal will and drive to succeed. The ability to communicate directly with employees, understand and motivate them was the catalyst.
Hersey P., Blanchard K., Johnson D., (2008). Management of Organizational Behavior. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.
Suesse, J.M.(2000). Jeanne Lewis at Staples, Inc. Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing. Pp 1-14 (78-91).
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