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Case study on Clifford Chance.

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Case study on Clifford Chance Critically analyze the leadership Leadership has been a major topic in management and business literature over the last few years. The rapid changes in business, technology, political and social factors has required the development of effective leadership (why leadership..., [n.d.]). Leaders who have effective leadership, can truly inspire their people to release their personal and collective potential drive business performance (Cacioppe, 1998, p44). In contrast, ineffective leaders will bring negative effect to the enterprise. Clifford Chance is a good example for this. Due to the lack of leadership, the company is described as "nearly everything that can go wrong in a knowledge-base business." The following analysis is to critique the leadership at Clifford Chance. Before doing this, it is necessary to clear the definition of leadership. Leadership is different from management, it is just one of the many assets a successful manager must possess (Leadership is a facet..., 2000). The concept of leadership has almost universal approval as the projection of personality and character to inspire the team to achieve the desired outcome. There is no prescription for leadership and no prescribed style of leader. Leadership is a combination of example, persuasion and compulsion dependent on the situation. Leadership is a way of focusing and motivating a group to enable them to achieve their aims (Purpose of Leadership, 2002). Three profound problems of leadership are revealed in the case at Cifford Chance. The Autocrat style of leadership, losing the moral standards of their profession and do not keep the team together. ...read more.


Different from the manager, leaders are more concerned with establishing a direction, aligning, motivating and inspiring people (Senior 1997). They should have two main skills for managing people in the change process as follows, getting the right people in the right places in the change program which seems as an important approach to "refreezing" and will be analyzed in the later part, the other is having great leadership skills and goal commitment. Great leadership skills includes offering a vision of what is possible that mobilizes, energize and empower people to reach that vision, articulating accepted goals and expectations, and playing a role in gaining commitment to the goals in the change process (Jashapara, A.2004). Worth mentioning, leadership must be improved if Clifford Chance wants to achieve change management. The current situation of leadership the firm is terrible as it is said in memo, "nearly everything that can go wrong in a knowledge-based business." The change management process follows three phases, unfreezing, moving and refreezing (Lewin, 1951). The three phases form a cycle and an effective change management strategy should adopted follows this cycle and using a variety of interventions to reduce the resistance to change (Kotter and Schlesinger, 1979). Leadership and human resource interventions are the two approaches to affect the cycle and assist this process achieve successfully. The requirement of leadership in the change management process and how it intervenes to reduce the resistance to change have been analyzed in the previous part, so this part mainly explore the human resource interventions to the cycle. ...read more.


The role of a fair process becomes crucial as it affect attitudes and behaviours of individuals to achieve superior performance (Jashapara, A., 2004). Employees will commit to a manager's decision even though they may disagree with it as long as they feel that the process has been fair (Kim and Mauborgne, 2003). People need a fair working environment. Due to the fairness, employees can share their knowledge, knowledge sharing is a good way for knowledge workers to improve their skills, when they share their own knowledge, and they also can gain the knowledge from others. The consequence is, knowledge sharing let all the numbers in integer improve together and the integer becomes stronger at the same time. On the other hand, people like to contribute their ideas and have them taken seriously (Jashapara, A., 2004). However, though knowledge sharing exactly has a crucial useful effect on companies and people really like to share their knowledge, knowledge sharing still cannot be carried out in some knowledge-based companies. The reason should be that employees feel that there is something deceitful in a manager's actions or a general lack of respect (Jashapara, A., 2004). Clifford Chance is a good example. 2,420 billable hours let employees think the firm encourages "padding" which is a deceitful behaviour for customers. Partners never greet their juniors and the associate lawyers expresses lack of respect. The relation between partners and juniors, the associate lawyers is terrible. From the above phenomenon, it can be sure that knowledge sharing cannot exist in Clifford Chance. Strong Knowledge sharing is more likely to occur in a fair and trustful process. Employees choose to trust fair leaders and commit to their decisions. ...read more.

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