Perception and Mr. Bird

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Jim Donovan Case Study (Question #2)

Part A:
Immediately, Jim has been put in front of the executive team at Famous Foods, including the out-going President, in a very awkward and uncomfortable position. First of all, he is not the stereotypical Famous Foods executive who has been with the company for a long tenure, is not in his sixties, unsmiling, and wearing dark suits. Therefore, right away it may seem that he does not fit in. Secondly, based on the comments that Mr. Bird has made to the executive team about Mr. Donovan not being qualified to do the job and that he will not support him, also puts Mr. Donovan in an uncomfortable position. Based on Mr. Bird’s comments, the executive team now perceives Mr. Donovan as unqualified to do the job as President of Famous Foods. I believe now that Mr. Donovan is on the spot, he could do the following to change the executive’s perception of him. He could take the moment to introduce himself to the team and give them information on his educational history and career experiences. This could include how he “grew up on the wrong side of the tracks” and worked his way through college and earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, worked as a management consultant, and served as president of a successful company. Hopefully, this may sway the executive team’s perception of Mr. Donovan to where they may feel that he has the qualifications to successfully lead Famous Foods into the future.

Part B:
After the meeting is over, Mr. Donovan should approach Mr. Bird to let him know that he did not appreciate what Mr. Bird had done to him in front of the executive team. It was not right of Mr. Bird to try to under-mine Mr. Donovan the way he did. With Mr. Bird now moving on to the position of Chairman of the Board, he has vested interest in the success of Mr. Donovan and the team at Famous Foods. Therefore, he should provide Mr. Donovan with all the support he needs in his transition to the role of president. Mr....
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