The Johnsonville Sausage Company

Essay by pastnieceUniversity, Master'sA, April 2008

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I. Overview (20 points)What has Stayer done to build the capability of Johnsonville Sausage Co. and is it working?Ralph has made an enormous effort to transform the company`s structure, values and attitudes. But he also had to put efforts to realize his failing leadership approach that he, not the employees, was the source of the problem by keeping people dependent upon for decision-making; he was creating a roadblock to companies’ growth. From the theory side this refers to sheared leadership,- one of the seven characteristics of effective team by Katzenbach and Smiths.

Language shapes the way of thinking and plays critical part in transforming organizations. In order to reinforce the changes JS change the language and the expressions. At Johnsonville Sausage to emphasize the shift in responsibility employees become members.

Ralph Stayer redesigned the philosophy of employee-employer relations from what people can give to Johnsonville to how company can help people to fulfill their desires for growth, development, security, satisfaction.

Stayer redesigned traditional human resources functions, such as hiring, reviewing, firing, training, career development, and program development. Now they are shifted to line coordinators and members.

Also responsibility allocation took place with the question “Who owns the problem?” Therefore complaints and praises go straight where they were initiated letting people in charge to deal with them without intermediates.

Companies structure was flattened, supervision positions at manufacturing area were eliminated. Responsibility was taken among team members.

Members of Johnsonville Sausage have the support of teams to ensure success. Members of teams were free to manage their task by fully keeping responsibility for the result. This approach increased member’s joy of their own jobs and improved performance.

In budgeting process were involved all levels of members. For example live workers developed their proposals for new capital equipment. Finance area was viewed...