Case | HBS Case Collection | November 2011
Celeritas, Inc.: Leadership Challenges in a Fast-Growth Industry
by Michael Beer and Ingrid Vargas
In 2011, Celeritas is a leading data communications company in the crowded, highly competitive, and ever-evolving enterprise-network optimization market. Having experienced rapid growth since its founding in 2003, Celeritas has recently seen sales decline and has begun to lose market share along with its status as the top player. The CEO, concerned about several problems that may have contributed to this decline, engages an organizational development consultant who leads the firm's senior vice presidents through a two-day offsite exercise in team building. A followup meeting with a lower level of management raises questions about the effectiveness of those efforts.
Keywords: communication; leadership; technology; morale; conflict; Organizational change; Team building; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Technology; Leadership; Communication; Groups and Teams; Attitudes; Conflict and Resolution; Information Technology Industry; Communications Industry;
Analysis of “Celeritas, Inc.: Leadership Challenges in a Fast-Growth Industry” David Lloyd has been an employee of Celeritas since 2005, serving as Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Despite holding this position with over 20 years experience he is ultimately asked to resign due to dysfunction within the company result. Much of this dysfunction can be attributed to the CEO Philip Boyer. To evaluate the CEO’s leadership abilities, these criteria will be used: • Effective or Ineffective development of emotional intelligence • Effective or Ineffective ability to execute change • Effective establishment and use of power relations Emotional Intelligence The most effective leaders have one characteristic alike; they all have a high degree of emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is a collection of five skills that help to balance an individual into being a successful leader. The skills are self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy and social skills (Goleman, 1998). Self-awareness reflects knowing your strengths and weaknesses in an effort to show that you are human. Leaders with a high degree of self-awareness recognize how their feelings reflect in their job performance. Philip Boyer is a clear example of an individual that is lacking this quality. Boyer is self-involved; he looks at Celeritas as his company where he enjoys making the final decision. Based on evidence presented in the case, it seems that the opinions of others are not considered in his decision making process. Boyer also shows his weakness through the fact that he does not accept the responsibility of reinforcing the decisions he makes. It seems that Boyer does not take