MOR 472 – Professor Turrill
November 17, 2010
Case Notes: Heidi Roizen
1. Describe Roizen's network (including her reasons for developing her network) and how she developed it.
Roizen’s young adult life shaped the reasons as to why she was going to become independent and self-sufficient. After suffering the tragic loss of her fiancé she set out to build a career and learned very early on that building connections with high-level people was something she had a talent for and something she ought not to miss out on when given the opportunity. Roizen knew she wanted to be in the technology industry, but with a creative writing degree she had limited options of jobs to choose from. At Tandem computers she wrote the internal newspaper serving as a link between the executives (including the CEO) and the rest of the employees. Roizen immediately realized how to leverage this aspect of her job description and thus began a decade long career of networking. After Tandem Roizen went to get her MBA and then partnered with her brother to launch a company that sold spreadsheet software he developed. T-Maker did not have excessive amounts of capital like some of its competitors, but Roizen knew that with her outgoing personality and her desire to meet (interesting and smart) people she could make the company successful. While marketing T/Maker she made important relationships with people that would end up shaping her career as well as dominating the Silicon Valley technology scene. Roizen was taking a gamble spending so much of her time and energy in developing rapport with these people, but thus far it had proven to be an integral factor in her career development.
2. What are Roizen's principles of networking and relationships? How would you analyze the strengths and weaknesses of her network as we see it at the end of the case?
Because of the amount of time and energy Roizen devotes to networking over time she developed guiding principles to maintain stability. Firstly Heidi claims you must have access to people, which is accomplished over a period of time. Also held at high regard is maintaining “performance and consistency during and after each interaction.” Performance involves responsiveness and follow-through in doing what you offered or agreed upon doing. By focusing on performance and consistency Roizen believes that efficiency in maintaining relationships is achieved because interactions of high levels of substance can occur with less frequency. During Roizen’s time at Apple she adopted her next principle, which stressed neutrality and confidentiality in her relationships with competitors. While she did not explicitly state that trust was necessary most people cited in the case seemed to truly trust Roizen and her intentions, which brings us to her last and perhaps most important principle of reciprocity. Roizen values reciprocity in the sense that before calling in a favor she must evaluate if it is a win-win situation for both parties. Heidi has been referred to as a catalyst, market maker, and door opener so before she can do something for someone else she wants to make sure there are mutual benefits to be realized. Heidi is a high-profile industry captain who frankly does not have the time to perform acts of goodwill all day. Her networking is the bulk of her business and her resume. The strengths of her network are that throughout her career and specifically at Softbank her networking landed her the position of partner. Before evaluating the strengths of Roizen’s network one must take the time to recognize that it takes a certain ebullient, patient, conscientious, amicable human being to be able to achieve a network with the wide spectrum of powerful individuals that Roizen began amalgamating at a very young age. The strengths of her network include penetrating the Technology sector and becoming a celebrity of Silicon Valley. Through her network she was able to leverage these...
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