Jim Casey and Leadership

Essay by SkinnerCDUniversity, Master'sB, November 2008

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In 1907 a nineteen year old boy took a one hundred dollar loan and created a company that we know today as United parcel Service, Inc. That boys name was Jim Casey. Jim made it possible for the company he created to be so successful by his democratic leadership style. From day one Jim referred to the company he founded as our company when speaking with his colleagues. He established a democratic atmosphere with his demeanor and outlook on the company he had created by giving everyone a sense of ownership.

Richard Daft describes a democratic leader as, “a leader who delegates authority to others, encourages participation, relies on subordinates’ knowledge for completion of tasks, and depends on subordinate respect for influence.” (Daft, 2008) Jim Casey believed that the form of leadership the company would use could be considered up-side down management. He once said, “The way I put it is the way it will work if we manage from the bottom up and not from the top down.

That kind of arrangement would make people managers own their own account, and not just order-takers from the people above.” (United Parcel Service, 2003) He gave his managers the flexibility to make decisions and run the business as they saw fit. He did not rule with an iron fist or micro-manage their decisions.

Employees of a company are the most valuable assets. The people who run the day to day operations can be a very reliable source of information when it comes to doing the job and getting it done better. “Managers, once they have defined task boundaries, give employees freedom to operate and make changes on their own commensurate with their knowledge and experience.” (Meltzer, 2006) Jim Casey and his senior leadership set goals for the mangers of the...