Rob Parson Case Study
Management of People at Work

Rob Parson Case Study

1 Case Overview
The internal environment at Morgan Stanley was one of teamwork, employee development, dignity and respect. Morgan Stanley had developed a way of building consensus rather that individualism. Rob Parson was thrust into this environment – not sure of what was expected of him and with only one objective in mind – improving the performance of the Capital Markets division. He went about doing this ruthlessly without much care about the organization and its existing practices. While his performance was stellar, he developed a hostile environment around him. On joining there was a tacit agreement with him and his boss that he would be given the position of Managing Director, something that didn’t happen because of his poor inter – personal skills. After two years, he demands the position of Managing Director in return for his stellar performance. It is now up to Gary Stuart, his boss to decide whether to promote him or not. In the pages that follow we take up the role of Gary Stuart and suggest possible solutions to help put an end to this dilemma.
2 Strategy Or Culture?
The decision, whether to promote Rob Parson to the position of Managing Director or not, ultimately boils down to a single question: What is more important to Morgan Stanley: the firm’s culture or the performance of its divisions?
Morgan Stanley’s mission statement clearly states that they “aim to be the world’s best investment bank” and that “they have a commitment to add maximum value which will be characterized by extraordinary effort and innovation”. They aim to “distinguish themselves by creating an environment that fosters teamwork and innovation”. Our interpretation of this statement is that, the focus/s ...
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