The 918th Bomber group is radically transformed from being a "hard luck" group under Colonel Davenport to a successful group with pride and self confidence under Brigadier. Savage. The reasons for the dramatic turn around lie clearly in the differences in the leader ship style between the two men.
The primary causes of the division's transformation under Savage include:
A leader with a vision who can see the bigger picture.
Focusing on critical tasks and not on relationships.
Addressing performance gaps.
Meaningful reward systems and punishments
Instilling a sense of pride and self confidence to the group .
The analysis presented in this paper has been done with an aim to answer one fundamental question: "Why did Brigadier Savage succeed in transforming the 918th while Colonel Davenport fails?". The differences in leadership style between the two men have been presented within the frame work of three main parameters: vision, organizational changes and human resource management. Vision
Colonel Davenport, while basically "a nice man", has a myopic view of the 918th. He is only able to see "mission to mission" and cannot foresee how the actions of his group play a role in the larger scheme of things, i.e., winning the war against Germany. As a result he is unable to notice the performance gaps of his group and how their dismal performance plays a role in the war against Germany at large. Even his body language is one of resignation and lacks the contagious confidence that a leader needs to posses . It is no surprise that the men in 918 under Davenport lack the pride and self esteem required for the job and give excuses to stay on the ground. Brigadier Savage on the other hand clearly sees the bigger picture. As he says to Lieutenant Jesee Bishop after a successful mission "Sure we're guinea pigs. But if we hang on now, one day soon somebody is going to see a solid overcast of American Bombers on...
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