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The Difference in Leadership Styles of Evelyn Gustafson and Erik Rasmussen

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    The leadership styles of Evelyn Gustafson and Erik Rasmussen are different from each other. Evelyn Gustafson had several desirable personal characters that endeared her to the employees in the customer service department. She was warm and sincerely concerned about her subordinates. Most employees might have taken this virtue as weakness and engaged in other activities besides the work provided. For instance, they expected to be given several breaks, which is counter productive in the end. They could also keep subscribers on hold for a long time.

    Evelyn Gustafson provided plenty training opportunities, which is good because benefits obtained results into increase of efficiency, but on the other hand requires many resources. Erik Rasmussen is hardworking and serious about every aspect of the business. The first change that he makes when he begins work at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc. is to increase the number of calls every hour that a representative is expected to handle. He develops a mechanism that measures performance of each representative. This he achieves by developing software that produces automatic work schedule.

    This increases efficiency and speed which is the goal of any business. This shows that the young man is creative and result oriented. He not only plans for changes that are consistent with the organizational goals but also implements the same. The other area that was eating into the resources of the Mountain West Health Plans, Inc is the frequent training programs. When Erik Rasmussen comes in, he immediately cuts down on the number of training programs. His main aim of doing this is to cut down on the financial burden associated with such programs. The changes that Mr. Erik Rasmussen introduced yielded immediate results.

    There was a higher performance standard and the number of calls made every hour increased tremendously. This had the effect of reducing the number of hours spent by subscribers on hold. The leadership style that Erik Rasmussen employed also resulted in significant reduction in the financial resources spent at the customer service department. The strengths of Evelyn Gustafson’s leadership style are that they endear employees to her hence making them loyal to the organization. Her concern and understanding of each employees situation ensures that employees are retained at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc.

    Her weakness is her inability to reduce cost, increase efficiency and limit the number of subscribers being put on hold. The strengths of Erik Rasmussen’s leadership style are that they are result oriented. When he found chance at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, he analyzed the prevailing situation and designed solutions tailored to solve the existing problems. The measures he established reduced cost, increased efficiency and limited the number of subscribers on hold. Developing software that generates automatic work schedule assisted in ensuring that each employee is performing according to the required standard.

    His weakness is lack of experience. He is in a leadership position, which is relatively new since all along he has been a student. Unlike Evelyn Gustafson who began working at the lowest level and rose through the ranks, he begins from the top. The lack of experience makes him to require employees to work like machines. Rigid working conditions increase the number of employees exiting any organization (Weiss, 2007). In order to resolve the current situation at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, several changes should be made. If I were the manager at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc, I would propose the following changes.

    Since many employees are leaving and creating several vacancies, we would recruit qualified and aggressive employees. If we recruit the best, we know that we are going to reap the benefits of our efforts since our employees will carry outstanding performances. They will be involved in the maintenance of efficiency in their operations thus develop a culture of excellence. This creates confidence in every employee since each one is exceptional. The aspect that I can look into is the compensation of employees. Compensation refers to remuneration in forms of wage or salaries.

    Apart from the other significant activities, that the Human Resource department at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc is involved in, it should also analyze compensation of its employees. Compensation is the payment that an employee receives because of his or her contributions within the organization. They include the monetary and the non-monetary benefits. Compensation motivates employees and improves their effectiveness in the organization. Mountain West Health Plans, Inc should develop the compensation systems such that it is consistent with the objectives of the organization.

    The factors that should be considered include job work and responsibilities. The three systematic components of the compensation system are Job analysis, Pay structure and salary surveys (Canas, & Harris, 2010). Job analysis is a systematic analysis of jobs, which leads to the development of job description. Some of the techniques used involve interviews, observation and questionnaire. Pay structure includes the use of grades in rewarding employees. Each grade has a minimum wage or salary. The third component is the salary survey, which is collection of salary market information.

    These maybe be the average salaries or cost of living indicators. Since it is clear that a good compensation system should not be focused on only attracting or retaining employees, all employees at Mountain West Health Plans, Inc should be compensated appropriately. After recruiting talented employees, they should be rewarded in relation to their performance and capabilities. The companies employees who are described in the case only are:  Martin Quinn He is a vice present for service and operations. Evelyn Gustafson She is a tall, unflappable woman, onsistently showed warmth and concern toward her mostly female, Her motto was: “Always put your-self in the subscriber’s shoes”

    Totally she has an immense concern for peoples She did her best to offset the low pay by: accommodating the women’s needs with flexible scheduling, giving them frequent breaks, And offering plenty of training opportunities that kept them up-to-date. Adored by her subordinates, as demonstrated by the 10 percent turnover rate, compared to the typical 25 to 45 percent rate for customer service representatives. She had firmly resisted all attempts to increase efficiency and lower costs in a department.

    At this juncture, Evelyn Gustafson had given up her job due to retirement. In place of her, Eric Rasmussen had positioned. Martin Quinn had seen it as the perfect opportunity to bring someone in to control the ever-increasing costs of the labor-intensive department.

    Erik Rasmussen is a hard working young man in his late twenties with a shiny new bachelor’s degree in business administration. He was charged by upper level management to bring the cost under control. He made increasing the number of calls per hour each representative handled a priority.

    For the first time ever,  he enabled the company to: easure the representatives’ performance, record the customer service calls, And use software that generated automated work schedules based on historical information and projected need. He made increasing the number of calls per hour due to this subscribers spent far less time on hold. The department’s costs were finally heading downwards, but department morale was spiraling/increase/ downwards as well, with the turnover rate currently at 30 percent and climbing. Quinn was beginning to hear more complaints from subscribers who’d received inaccurate information. Then Quinn wants to verify the truth by asking Erik Rasmussen.

    But, he was ready to proudly recite the facts and figures that documented the department’s increased efficiency. It was time for Rasmussen’s first performance review Sub-question

    How would you describe Evelyn Gustafson’s leadership style?

    She had followed Servant leadership style because; we found her leader ship style matched with Servant leadership definitely. Let us compromise her leadership style with servant leadership by the following points: Like Servant leaders she operated on two levels: To fulfill her subordinates’ goals and needs To realize the mission of the organization.

    Like Servant leaders, she had truly value other people/her subordinates/. she was trustworthy and  trust her subordinates She encouraged participation, share power, enhance others’ self-worth, full commitment, and natural impulse to learn and contribute. Like Servant leaders she can bring her followers’ higher motives to the work and connect their hearts to the organizational mission and goals. Like servant leaders, she insisted that people always come before profits.

    What were its strengths and weaknesses?

    The Strengths were: Workers get motivated, Effectiveness was boosted up Customer satisfaction gained Turnover rate diminished Good alliance was created Workers can cope with the changing environment The Weaknesses were: Efficiency was let skipped, Cost of the company increased. Less attention for task.

    What were the sources of her influence?

    Legitimate Power: as all managers have, she had also this power. Reward Power: she gave incentives just by providing; break time, flexible work schedule, and training. Referent Power: Refers personality characteristics that command subordinates’ identification, respect, and admiration so they wish to emulate/follow/ the leader She is by nature unflappable woman, consistently showed warmth and   concern toward her mostly female because of her personality she loved by her subordinates.

    This shows that as she had referent power. In addition to this her sources of influence were also elicited from using of interpersonal influence tactics. As you know there are around seven influencing tactics leaders use to influence their followers rather than relying solely on position power. She used also four of Interpersonal Influence tactics to influence her subordinates. These are: She rationally persuaded her subordinates. Definitely she made her subordinates to adore her.

    She used the rule of reciprocity to influence her subordinates. Rule of reciprocity means influence others through the exchange of benefits and favors. Leaders share what they have whether it can be time, resources, services, or emotional support. She also made her subordinates to like her by accommodating the subordinates needs with flexible scheduling, giving them frequen breaks, and offering plenty of training opportunities that kept them up-to-date She developed  allies with her subordinates

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