Individual Reflection Paper: Worst Team in History: Enron

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  • Topic: Enron, Enron scandal, Andrew Fastow
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Individual Reflection Paper: Worst Team in History: Enron
Sasha R. Chin

Proofer Denise Greene

Professor Haga

February 24th, 2011


Teams are used to serve a variety of functions for organizations. According to Levi (2007), teams are comprised of people working together on a common project for which they all are accountable. They are usually part of a larger organization and the members of the team have specific knowledge, skills, and abilities about the task at hand. A successful team from the team members’ point of view is one in which the team members focus on the internal operations, the contributions of the team members and how well they all work together. A successful team, from managements’ point of view, is the impact of the team on the organization; their focus is on the end result not the way the team interacts with one another. (Levi, 2007) This paper will discuss the Enron Scandal. The major players of the Enron Corporation made a successful team that through greed and arrogance bankrupted the entire company, making them one of the worst teams in history.

The Team
The key members of the Enron scandal team were: Kenneth Lay who was the chairman and Chief Executive Officer. He founded Enron in 1985 when Houston Natural Gas merged with InterNorth in Omaha, Nebraska. Jeffrey Skilling, who was the President, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Andrew Fastow, Chief Financial Officer, Richard A. Causey, Chief Accounting Officer. Michael Kopper, who was Andrew Fastow's top aide. Sherron Watkins, vice president. Rex T. Shelby, a former vice president of engineering operations for Enron Broadband Services. Ben Glisan, treasurer. Timothy Despain, assistant treasurer, David Delainey, head of Enron's trading and money-losing retail energy units. Paula Rieker, No. 2 executive in investor relations and later corporate secretary. Christopher Calger, an executive in Enron's trading business. Mark Koenig, head of investor relations. Kenneth Rice, broadband unit Chief Executive Officer. Kevin Hannon, Chief Operating Officer for the broadband unit. Lea Fastow, assistant treasurer and wife of Andrew Fastow. Larry Lawyer, finance executive. Timothy Belden, top trader. Jeffrey Richter, trader and John Forney, trader. (Greer, Lawton, & Tonge, 2003) These were almost all of the people involved in the Enron scandal that eventually led to the bankruptcy of Enron. Before the company came crashing down, it was a high-flying corporation, generating cash and new business at every turn. Originally a gas pipeline company, it metamorphosed into the world's largest trader in gas, electricity, water, and a variety of post-modern commodities such as paper and bandwidth. The company built power plants and operated gas lines. Enron also traded, the company bought and sold gas and electricity futures, weather futures, and Internet bandwidth. Enron annual revenues went from about $9 billion in 1995 to over $100 billion in 2000 (Li, 2010). The team that ran Enron and made it the Seventh largest company on the Fortune 500 list in the US in 2000 and it placed sixth in the largest energy company in the world in 2000, is also the team that caused the company to file a chapter 11 bankruptcy. (Yuhao, 2010)

The Scandal
Enron's fall can partially be attributed to its continued hunger for expansion into new areas. It strove to become the world's largest trading market for every sort of commodity, and it over extended itself. Many of the markets it established did not work, such as when Enron Broadband Services, a subsidiary of Enron, planned to partner with Blockbuster to sell movie-on-demand services, including 500 titles, on its broadband network. However, Enron could not get the technology right to do so, therefore the deal failed. (Holmes, 2001) Ultimately, the greatest contributors to the demise of Enron were its corrupt practices. Its massive cash flow came from false accounting. The...
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