Gene One Problem Solution
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Problem Solution: Gene One
Wall Street was showing a growing interest in the biotech industry. Gene One had entered the industry just eight years earlier and had succeeded from a $2 million entrepreneurial start-up to a $400 million operation. With favorable changes in leadership of the Food and Drug Administration and investor confidence in the industry, Gene Ones CEO Don Ruiz and the Board of Directors saw an opportunity to becoming the leader in biotechnology and saw growth potential at an annual rate of 40%.
To achieve the growth pace set forth by the board it was felt that Gene One should enter the public market within the next three years. This will not be an easy undertaking. While the senior leadership team has brought Gene One to success as a corporation, the team does not have the skills or knowledge necessary for filing the IPO. The good news is that the senior leadership team knows how to be successful and they will require bringing in professionals to help with the filing.
What this paper offers is a look at all sides of the issues and a better understanding of the stakeholders and their respective positions on the future direction of Gene One.
Issue and Opportunity Identification
Gene One has gone from an entrepreneurial concept to over a $400 million dollar company today. This was done in the time span of eight years. With breakthrough gene technology it has given Gene One and the researches name recognition. To capitalize on the success Gene One has enjoyed and to continue to have potential growth in the marketplace, the Board of Directors have charged the senior leadership team with presenting an IPO offering within 36 months.
Stakeholder Perspectives/Ethical Dilemmas
Working with table 2, three stakeholder groups were identified. The first group identified was the senior leadership team. The senior leadership team was made up of original start-up staff and has over the years added others. To take Gene One public meant that the team was delving into areas that were unfamiliar and realized that expert help would be needed to succeed. Don is excited about the companys IPO opportunity, and has engaged his leadership team as well as an external consulting firm, to develop a sound strategy to ensure that Gene One not only serves the public but leaves a legacy of his work. (Scenario: Gene One, 2006) Also, on the senior leadership team are members who may have second thoughts about what going public would mean to the overall day-to-day business. The leadership challenges faced by Don Ruiz in this situation must be met if Gene One is to succeed with the bid to go public.
Second of the identified stakeholders would be the board members. Concern from the board members came because they did not feel that certain members of the senior leadership team had the necessary background to perform at the necessary level to become a public traded company. What is clear is that none of the senior leadership team had any experience with taking a company public. While meeting with Don Ruiz it was made clear that he should consider making some changes. The success that Gene One had enjoyed prior to beginning the IPO offering was done with this senior leadership team. Through constructive conflict the team was able to solve issues and create new technology. “Constructive conflict occurs when team members debate their different perceptions about an issue in a way that keeps the conflict focused on the task rather than people.” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2004)
Group three of the stakeholders would be the employees of Gene One. Many have been with Gene One since the day of inception. The comfort level of many of the researchers at this time would be characterized as apprehensive. Research is a science and one who many do not wish to have a schedule to deliver new technology to please Wall Street. Consideration of future growth needs to include the employees along with the attitudes and behavioral intentions of the employees? “Attitudes represent the cluster of beliefs, assessed feelings, and behavioral intentions toward a person, object, or event.” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2004)
Gene One aspires to be a leader in the field of biotechnology with conservative growth target of 40% annually.
Looking down the road Gene One will continue to have growth for the future. Development of new technology will again put Gene One in the forefront of the biotechnology market. This has not come without a price to the employees of Gene One. The vision for Gene Ones future can differ from the desire of the employee. Finding a happy medium between what is good for Gene One and for the employees can be the sign of a good leader.
Gene One was faced with a question of how to successfully continue growth and stay successful in the biotech industry. Gene Ones board of directors along with Don Ruiz, CEO felt that with the timing of a new Food and Drug Administrator and Wall Streets growing interest in the biotech industry that the time to move towards an IPO was now. In benchmarking other industries Gene One realized there were other ways to approach the issues.
One alternative Gene One could have considered was the possibility of merging with another company. As proven by the initial merger of AOL and Time Warner this is not always successful. American Online co-founder Steve Case acknowledged that he failed to provide the strong leadership necessary to have the $112 billion merger between AOL and Time Warner successful. (Vise, 2005) Organizational cultural and subculture if not in alignment with the other corporation can lead to a dysfunctional corporation. Don Ruiz as a strong leader of Gene One should understand that unless both companies were aligned in the overall beliefs the transition would be very difficult. “Culture is one of the most precious things a company has, so you must work harder on it than anything else.” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2004)
Should the two board members who met with Don Ruiz have their way some of the senior team members would be replaced. Citing lack of experience in the arena of establishing an IPO John Kirby and Susan Wells the marketing officer, Charles Jones was not equip to lead the marketing strategy. They also questioned whether Teri Robertson was the person to get the necessary breakthrough results. This alternative solution would be a hard decision for Don to consider. “Modeling the vision is important