LiftOFF Leadership Response to Harvard Business Review Daily Blog
“Time to Take A Stand”
Trish Gorman Clifford and Jay Barney
Betty Shotton /LiftOFF
As is often the case in strategic decision making, it eventually comes down to the human element.
The real challenge in this situation is Carl’s ability to bring together the divergent interests of his key players into a collaborative whole. As the CEO, it is his responsibility to recognize individual contribution but ultimately deliver on what is in the best long term interest of the organization.
As to Shirley specifically, the case starts out with:
“This time it involved an increasingly heated internal debate that Carl wanted her to help moderate”.
Shirley deliberates whether or not she should express an opinion beyond numbers and financial models. She fears her job if she does. The CEO has asked her to step into the fray. In her capacity as a high ranking executive at HGS that is part of her responsibility and she has been given the green light. Her reticence most likely stems from her own insecurities about venturing into the murky and uncertain world of dealing with the human side of decision making; she seems more comfortable behind a spreadsheet.
Carl has stated his wish for Shirley’s involvement as a mediator. She has done a great job at gathering information. It seems that most of the facts are on the table and the key players are aware and apprised of them.
Now is time for her to step up, share her perspectives and encourage others to come together in seeking the best solution.
It is also time for the CEO to bring the team together in such a way that individual perspectives are acknowledged while being held to a higher standard that supports the Vision & Mission of HGS.
It is time for all of the key players to mediate and collaborate; to rise above self interest and preservation and act on behalf of the common good.