Ibm Case Study from Gerstner

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IBM – In what ways, and to what extent, has IBM become more marketing orientated during the period 1993 to 2008 Companies are about people not just products and processes. Before, think IBM and hardware comes to mind. But what of the people behind the company that create change? That’s where the leadership styles of two great but different people can be seen. To better answer the question, we need to understand the leaders of IBM in key eras and the culture they advocate, which forms the base of how the transformation took place in marketing, and the company in general. Avlonitis and Gournaris (1999) refer to the Top Management Team (TMT) as an important influencing factor. The reason why the TMT are important is that they are the ones that must ensure that the structure is in place so that the organisation can effectively implement the new strategies to gain market effectiveness Lou Gerstner headed IBM from 1992 to 2002. With an MBA from Harvard and past experience varied at Nabisco and American Express, hence he bought tough business turnaround skills to the company. His tenure saw radical “rightsizing” of the workforce and $7 billion in cuts for a more nimble company, and he set in place a vision for IBM’s future as a complete provider of resources to the business world. Initially it was Gerstner who saw a more customer driven business than the antiquated past IBM business model. But people (in the TMT) again were the transformation factor, for example when Gerstner asked Ned Lautenbach, SVP, Worldwide Sales & Services, to reorganize IBM’s sales operations into a worldwide customer-centric organization focused on vertical industries and a group dedicated to the fastest-growing market segment, small- and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). He recommended basing the solution on the Routes-to-Market (RTM) methodology which saw a fresh approach to markets. 10 years later Sam Palmisamo is IBM’s present CEO and Chairman - who having been with IBM since 1973 therefore...
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