Carlos Ghosn – Change Leadership
Carlos Ghosn implemented highly effective change leadership when transforming Nissan from a company that was experiencing several years of negative growth to one of the best managed and most profitable corporations in its industry. He accomplished this by executing management techniques that can be categorized within the “core tasks of change leadership.” The evaluation of Ghosn’s execution of each task is covered in the following paragraphs below. The case suggests that early in Ghosn’s career he realized the importance of developing and communicating a purpose, which enables separate cultural or functional units to collaborate and work toward a common goal. At Michelin, Renault and Nissan he followed a similar pattern of establishing cross-functional teams to diagnose company problems, communicate results and develop a strategy to solve those problems. At Nissan, Ghosn used input from his cross-functional teams to develop and communicate an aggressive Nissan Revival Plan (NRP) in October of 1999. Ghosn communicated the plan to company employees, the press and the general public outlining specific measurable goals that would be met to revitalize the failing company. NRP essentially became the company’s purpose from 1999 until 2001, filling a gap where no purpose previously existed. Ghosn provided his reasons for developing and communicating a purpose saying, “focusing on specific business objectives, people don’t have time to worry about cultural differences or politicking.” After the NRP achieved its results a year ahead of schedule, Ghosn initiated a new plan called NISSAN 180 that was designed to “transform a good company into a great company.” Much like NRP, NISSAN 180 became the company’s new purpose and established its new sense of direction. From 2001 to 2004 all efforts for the company would be focused on NISSAN 180. Within the first few pages of the case, Ghosn is described as a manager who demanded a high level...
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