Gore Case Study

Better Essays
IFSM 302
W. L. Gore Case Study
Summer 2009 DE Session
UMUC Europe Distance Education
24 August 2009

Since its humble beginning in 1958, W. L. Gore and Associates (Gore) fostered a strong working environment by encouraging its staff to become creative thinkers while implementing an employee empowerment approach to management. Gore’s self developing teams have proven to be leaders in creativity, design, and productivity. The company’s “Superteam” has been the key to their successful growth in electronics, medical, fabrics, and industrial products. Their highly efficient flat corporate structure creates an atmosphere of leadership within a lattice organization that has proven to be one of the most effective approaches to business success. Effective market performance driven by four operating principles of fairness, freedom, commitment, and waterline, dictate the company’s promise that is “Committed to the fitness-for-use of our products where culture drives innovation to create a broad range of high performance products that make a difference in peoples’ lives.” The corporate philosophy of having a flat and lattice organization translates into leaders, associates and sponsors. Each Gore employee is considered to be an associate. By having associates and no titles, the company eliminates the need for managers and cultivates leaders. To further stimulate leadership, each associate becomes a sponsor to new employees. Gore believes that each of us needs a guide to act as a mentor, an advocate of corporate philosophy, and a voice of experience. Sponsors encourage new employees to be creative thinkers and communicators while providing feedback and discussion of contributions and areas for growth. Although sponsors work closely with associates, they never give assignments or act as gatekeepers to new assignments and approvers of projects. With this philosophy in place, Gore’s team orientations



Cited: Alperovitz, G., Dubb, S. and Howard, T. (2007). The Best Alternatives to Corporate Power http://yesmagazine.org/issues/stand-up-to-corporate-power/7-cool-companies Findlay, J., (2009). The Culture of W.L. Gore & Associates: How we believe it helps us to succeed http://www.gore.com Lyman, A., (2009). Gore-Success with Simplicity. http://www.greatplacetowork.com Solutions at Work. Executive Spotlight: Terri Kelly, CEO, W.L. Gore and Associates. (2005). http://www.brighthorizons.com/SolutionsAtWork/article.aspx?section=employersolutions&str=On-Site%20Child%20Care%20Solutions&topicid=16&articleid=1 Workplace Democracy at W. L. Gore and Associates http://workplacedemocracy.com/2009/07/14/workplace-democracy-at-w-l-gore-associates/

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