Roberta Bradley as a top executive at Seattle City Light wanted to bring certain transformations that would ensure the place operates like a business. She was head of PG&E's Silverado Division, a large investor-owned utility in the United States. As such, it was expected that her experience would be quite efficient to Seattle City Light whose performance was not too impressive. For instance, it was observed that City Light rated ninth out of fifteen on meter reading costs per client. Also, the same benchmark study depicted that they made ten errors per one thousand meters read, which was the worst performance among all the utilities that had been surveyed. It was thus necessary for City Light to have some transformation especially concerning the way they responded to clients and how employees conducted their duties. The case study will assess Roberta's actions as general manager of Seattle City Light and identify her actions that were helpful or unhelpful and her effectiveness in the actions she took as well. Besides, the case study analysis will also entail some recommendations that could be undertaken by Roberta to be successful in the new job at Seattle City Light.
Roberta had great insights for City Light as she sought to construct a customer service ethic and advance employees and managers among other issues such as enhance decision making and measurement and develop a technology strategy as well as simplify operations. For this to be undertaken effectively, she formed an executive team who would then be the primary driver of change at City Light. As such, Roberta took the right action since she initially defined the results required from the culture change she was trying to bring to City Light. It may thus be depicted that she led the change which she wanted to observe at City Light. On the other hand, Roberta enabled a particular communication style at City Light. In this case, she asked for feedback from the executive team and further created an organizational experience that nurtured constant communication and collaboration. In this way, she empowered the team to conduct their research and also ensure everyone is involved in being responsible for bringing the desired positive changes.
Nonetheless, specific actions undertaken by Roberta were not right after completion of the strategic plan by the executive team. She decided to personally take over rectifying some of the faults in the strategic plan such as upon realizing that the budget was more by $45 million. Instead of advancing with teamwork as she had done from the beginning, she, for instance, went ahead and asked every department to fire some employees. Also, she demeaned the executive team which she had personally selected since the strategic plan was not according to her expectations. It may thus be demonstrated that the communication style chosen by Roberta when the executive team was conducting their research at City Light was not efficient. She seemed to have failed to note specific errors that were later reflected in the final plan. Moreover, she may not have been attentive when she was being briefed during the various meetings they had before the presentation of the final plan by the executive team.
Roberta lacked emotional intelligence. She threw tantrums accompanied with vulgar language and directly expressed her disappointment to the executive team as reported by one of the managers at City Light. All this was because the strategic plan was not according to her expectations. As such, this raised tension among employees who began to raise complains to the unions and the civil service. The decision to cut two hundred jobs was mostly criticized by the union and some of Bradley's subordinates. Furthermore, complaints got to the mayor whom Roberta did not have any contact with or communication. Lack of proper communication with the other authorities who also had a view of City Light's affairs was one of the primary reasons that led to her failure and finally removal from the position of general manager. Additionally, lack of cooperation with employees and rapport with the overall management further created tension and resulted in other actions taken which were not within her awareness or even authority. Once employees began airing their problems with other parties and not Roberta, it meant she would face opposition from external and internal parties. Roberta did not take criticism well and failed to listen to complaints properly.
Specific actions would have been taken by Roberta to ensure she is thriving as the general manager at Seattle City Light. Teamwork would have been, but it would be crucial to employ some form of transactional leadership especially because she wanted to operate City Light like a business. Roberta should have conducted an assessment of employees and offer incentives for good performance. As such, this would have helped develop a proper form of rapport with them, and they would feel significant as part of the organization.
Furthermore, Roberta should ensure she regularly communicates with other authorities who have an impact on the operation of City Light. For instance, a mayor is a crucial person in the affairs of City Light, and it would be fundamental for Roberta to form a rapport with him and continuously communicate on actions taken to ensure the success and attainment of her goals. Besides, such crucial people would help whenever issues came up such as employees complaining. She would be notified early enough and necessary measures undertaken.
On the other hand, when seeking to appoint an executive team, it would be vital to focus on the composition. In this case, workers should be involved in selecting an executive team as they will be a representation of issues facing them and present them effectively for change. Furthermore, working with experienced people should be another critical aspect for Roberta to consider. In this way, they will know how to present issues affecting the organization, and further communicate with her in case of any problems that she may not have noticed.
It is crucial to note that the presence of happy employees means that they will offer the right services to customers as well. Besides, it implies that they will effectively work towards the attainment of the established goals by the management. Additionally, it would be fundamental for Roberta to learn how to control her emotions when faced with tough decisions to make or when disappointed by workers. In this way, the spirit of cooperation within the organization would be maintained. It would also be easy for employees to work with her in finding solutions that would have a positive impact on all stakeholders in the firm. The most crucial aspect would thus be to be in good relations with all parties in the organization but at the same time ensure that as a leader, one remains in authority and there is also respect rendered.
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