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(24) “Dare to Lead”: Brené Brown say vulnerability is the “only path to courage” – YouTube
Below you will find a short case study. What I’d like you to do is read through the case study, which asks you to rank people in the order that they should be laid off. Include with your ranking a brief rationale for each choice, AS WELL AS how you came to make that decision. Did you develop criteria to rank the employees? Did you go with your gut instinct? What information guided your decisions? Follow the directions below and submit responses for questions 2-5.
1. Read the following short case study carefully.
Ajax Electric Light is a nonunion manufacturing company that produces small light components including a type often used in automobiles. Two years ago the company was able to add a large automobile manufacturer to its list of customers, thus increasing production and personnel. At about the same time, the company was threatened with an equal employment opportunity suit that resulted in its instituting an affirmative action plan. Under this plan, the company has been recruiting additional women and minority members into its workforce.
Due to major economic shifts, the management at Ajax is anticipating a decrease in orders from the auto firm. In preparation for this, each department head has been asked to rank employees in the event that Ajax has to lay off personnel. Below you will find biographical data for seven people employed in one of the wiring department sections.
2. Assuming that you were in charge, how would you rank the seven? Rank them according to the order in which they should be laid off—that is, the person ranked number one is to be laid off first, etc. Include with each ranking, a brief rationale. Specifically: how did you come to make your decisions? Did you develop criteria to rank the employees? Did you go with your gut instinct? What information guided your decisions?
Nan Nushka. White female, age 26, married, no children, husband has steady job, 6 months with company, hired after affirmative action plan went into effect, average work record to date, saving to buy a house.
Joe Jefferson. White male, age 24, married, no children but wife is pregnant, 3 years with the company, going to college at night, erratic performance record attributed to work/study conflicts.
Johnny Jones. Black male, age 20, unmarried, 1 year with company, high performance ratings, reputed to be shy–a “loner,” wants to start his own business someday.
Livonia Long. Black female, age 49, widow, 3 grown children, 2 years with company, steady work record, but takes little initiative.
Ward Watt. White male, age 30, recently divorced, 1 child, 3 years with company, good worker.
Rosa Sanchez. Hispanic woman, age 45, 6 children, husband disabled 1 year ago, trying to help support family, 3 months with company, and no performance appraisal data available.
Burt Greene. White male, age 45, married, 4 children, 5 years with company, reputed to be an alcoholic, bad work record.
3. AFTER you have read the case study and ranked the choices, discuss what strategies you would use to communicate your decisions to the company broadly and the employees specifically. Specifically, review the strategies for communicating about change on page 181 of the book (see table 10.2). Which one would you use? What would you say? How would you say it? (Meeting, email, letter, press release, tweet?) How would you frame the changes as a leader? Specifically, review table 10.3 on page 190. What tools would you use and why? Would your choices vary by audience? Why or why not?
4. Considering all of the videos you watched about decision making, conflict negotiation, and leadership… how did they shape your process in this completing this activity? How do you think this activity would play out with feedback from others?
5. What were the most important, surprising, or insightful things you learned from the videos? Why?
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