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A Naive Sahib in India Case Study

Autor:   •  November 8, 2017  •  2,573 Words (11 Pages)  •  199 Views

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According to Frederick Herzberg‟s dual-hygiene factors, the extrinsic motivator of pay for performance program and compensation based on feedback may have been a key dissatisfaction item for employees. Furthermore, Brian‟s declared Rajan‟s excuse of visiting his „brother‟ as a lie when it could have been a language misunderstanding. Based on Table 1.0, being a transnational leader requires individuals to be able to adapt through collaboration, experience, and learning – Brian certainly needs to be more understanding of his colleagues.

Diagnosis: Emotional Power Exertion in Conflict Management

There are typical leadership styles that are deemed bad in many cultures. These include being dictatorial, ruthless, irritable (Table 2.0). When Brian was confronted with conflict, he got irritated and dismissed feedback from important stakeholders. Because he was upset, he began firing key employees of Bindi and their personal assistants. This not only decreased the talent

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pool at Bindi but also created a toxic working environment. According to many studies, the utilization of transformational leadership could go a long way. In particular to the Indian culture, “Dharma” (doing one‟s duty (McFarlin and Sweeney, 2013)) is a key component alongside being charismatic, staying inspirational, giving individual consideration, and stimulating intellectual ability. When Brian punished Bindi‟s top management in front of their subordinates and when Brian gave out ultimatums, it made others view him as an untrustworthy and ill- tempered individual.

Diagnosis: Misunderstandings Due to Lack of Communication

According to the Likert‟s System 4 Model, Brian was an exploitative and authoritative leader (McFarlin and Sweeney, 2013). There was clear evidence showing Rajan‟s discontent for Brian – which Rajan had not communicated with Brian about. With that in mind, it could have been because Brian had not set up a participative environment where he would be receptive to suggestions from others. To be a good leader, one must respect and be sensitive to opposing views. Although power distance is an evident aspect of the Indian culture, top management from both Aspan and Bindi should establish common grounds and agreements to communicate in a healthy habitat. Otherwise, like the GLOBE project study shows, self-protectiveness does not lead to effectiveness whereas value based and team orientation does (McFarlin and Sweeney, 2013).


Based on the diagnosis of occurrences, there are three possible alternatives to consider: the participative/collaborative approach, the compromising approach and the competitive approach.

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Participative/Collaborative Approach

Brian should employ the 360 degree feedback appraisal without the compensation aspect because an extrinsic motivator such as money is not sustainable. Furthermore, top management from Aspen should be approachable by having an open door policy, allowing employees to give input easily. Lastly, be receptive to innovation (e.g. with so much human capital and technological intelligence, Brian can aid in the creation of an internal online platform where employees can have an interactive approach to learning about each other with online profiles, question submission to the Board, etc.).

Compromising Approach

Many say that the best approach is a compromising approach where all parties take and give a little. First, to ensure that both Aspen and Bindi understand where cultural differences lie, Brian can begin by creating a “Culture 101 Training” program. This would initiate a familiarity for both cultures: Western and South Asian. The key to this is to convey that it is going to be a gradual learning environment where both parties need to: want to try new things, be receptive to feedback, and keep an open mind. This would be the only way to diminish the toxic environment that has arisen over the past several months.

Competitive Approach

Others will say that Bindi has reached the height of the roller coaster and anymore, will result in a drastic crash to the bottom. Thus, the only solution is to remove members who are not on board with futuristic plans and bring in a new catalyst for change. Brian can choose to introduce a completely new team where hiring criteria will be those who are well spoken, intelligent, and sees same vision.

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Vineet Nayar, CEO of HCL Technologies, employed a 360 degree management feedback appraisal amongst 1,500 individuals across the world from peers to bosses, subordinates to customers, himself to more. Nayar‟s overall vision was to eliminate the CEO office perception – and it worked spectacularly (McFarlin and Sweeney, 2013). In South Asian cultures, a completely participative approach may not always be taken as well as it was for the case of HCL Technologies. This could be due to the cultural dimensions discussed earlier from power distance to individualistic characteristics of the Indian culture. However, with Nayar‟s success in mind, it is worth a try to implement a strategy that actually takes into account what employees want meanwhile realizing a vision that coincides with all party‟s values.

It is recommended that Brian takes a mixture of all three approaches. It is most ideal for Brian to prioritize his plan of approach and to understand that in order to move forward he should not be held back by what occurred in the past. First off, Brian needs to ensure employees understand the steps he is taking to make this work so they can rebuild trust in him again. An apology could be very useful to solve conflicts. Next, Brian can aim to bring out the collectivist side in individuals by creating a team who will work on the new platform. Keeping in mind that this platform may or may not be successful; the team will aim to risk manage by testing with a small portion of employees before rolling it out to rest of the team. Not only is this giving Bindi employee autonomy and leadership to show their individualistic achievement characteristic but also tapping into the cultural view of uncertainty avoidance by attempting to try a completely new initiative. On another note, those who were unethically fired (e.g. personal assistants, Rajan, Prakash) should be spoken to as they may have accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience at Bindi


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