February 28, 2010
Professor Ryan A. Smith
1. Should Maxwell stick to his guns, or attempt to compromise by using the board meeting to re-involve Mike and downplay professional services?
Most of the problems John Maxwell is encountering appear to be from a lack of “transition planning”. Meetings should have occurred between himself and Reverend Mike, the staff, and the Board of Directors; collectively and separately. Reverend Mike’s charismatic style of leadership and history with Serenity House resulted in an “entrenched” organizational culture. Maxwell’s attempted sweeping changes, that resulted in the final confrontation with Reverend Mike was a recipe for disaster and failure. If Maxwell has a desire to continue his role as Serenity House ED, he should implement a more conciliatory approach as the beginning phase of a program of long term transition for Serenity House. He should downplay professionalizing and begin slow implementation to slowly crack the walls of “Reverend Mike’s Charismatic Legacy” He should get Reverend Mike on board primarily for support of the authority of the new Executive Director. A leader can’t accomplish anything if all his subordinates are sidestepping him. Reverend Mike appears to have great influence over the board in that most were Serenity House graduates and/or personally recruited by the reverend himself. It sounds like Reverend Mike wouldn’t be around much longer and his slow journey into historical abyss could coincide with Serenity House’s slow transition towards professionalism. One fact that can’t be overlooked nor dismissed is Reverend Mike’s value as a fundraiser. That continued role would take a lot of pressure off the new executive director. As an added bonus, he could personally familiarize himself with the donors and maybe find new ones.
2. Should Maxwell have confronted Rev. Mike regarding his feelings that the Reverend’s...