Leadership style of an organization can be the key of the success of that business. Different small
and medium size business has reached to a very good position for its leadership style. Harvey
Norma is one of the renowned retail of Australia and the founder of this organization Gerry
Harvey is popular for his innovative leadership technique and this has made this organization one
of the best organizations of Australia. Gerry Harvey maintains a close relationship with the
employees and workers of the organization so all the employees think themselves as an
important part of the organization. This increases employee’s contribution and performance,
employee’s satisfaction is important for the growth of the business. This assignment gives a clear
idea about the importance of leadership and the leadership traits of Gerry Harvey. Along with
this, different leadership theory and leadership style also has been discussed.
Leadership is a process that creates social influence; it is an individual who set benchmark in the
society. In an organization leadership style is followed for ensuring smooth operation and
ensuring the success of the business. This assignment will give an idea about the leadership style
and importance of good leadership traits for the success of the business. For making the analysis
clear the most renowned retail shop of Australia Harvey Norman is chosen. The CEO of Harvey
Norma is one of the great leaders of the world, he is an entrepreneur and his leadership skills will
get focus in this assignment.
Background of the company:
Harvey Norma has formed in 1982 and it is the multinational retail store of Australia which sales
furniture, bedding, consumer electronics and so. It is founded by Kay Leslie with his husband.
In 2015 they have 265 branches of Harvey Norma all over the world. Kay Leslie has become the
first richest female executive of Australia as her net wealth excess $50 million (Mindtools,
2014). In 2014 the total sales revenue of Harvey Norma was become almost $3 billion. Harvey
Norma is one of the largest retail shops of Australia and it is operating in the retail industry.
Harvey Norma is a successful business and it is operating with lots of challenges in the retail
industry. Retail business is affecting by online business and the competition in international
market. Instead of this the financial performance of Harvey Norma is outstanding and its profit
margin is increasing constantly.
This table is showing the financial performance of Harvey Norma and this shows its profit
margin has increased than before and it has earned 268.914,000 in 2015. It is largely operating in
Australia and New Zealand, along with this it has business in Ireland, Asia and Slovenia.
Harvey Norma has a very good reputation in the retail industry and they follow all the codes and
conducts for keeping this reputation. It is expanding business in different nation and it has lots of
opportunities in international market for its good reputation (Robinson, 2016). It is popular for its
ethical behavior and concern about customer’s satisfaction. It has been said in the annual report
that in spite of the challenges in the retail industry, this company has maintained iintegrated
franchise, retail and property systems. This company has unique market leadership traits and this
allows it to keep its position strong.
The success of an organization is dependent on its leadership activity. The skill of leaders and
traits helps organization to perform better. The success of this company is possible for the
leadership of Gerry Harvey. His behaviour towards the employees has helped this organization to
reach to the ultimate goal. He had good leadership traits and he had leaded the organization
appropriately which helped this organization to achieve the goal. He was the main reason behind
the 26 years success story of the organization.
Gerry Harvey uses situation leadership based on the activity of the organization. The retail
industry is facing huge pressure due to the development of online business. Customers prefer
online shopping and this is great threat for Harvey Norma. So the CEO Gerry has taken new
strategies for ensuring sustainability and keeping the position strong.
This theory is also known as Theory X and Theory Y. this theory is applied for human
motivation and management purpose. This theory is use for understanding the requirement of
motivation as same motivation technique is not suitable for all the employees. So for giving
motivation to the employees organization should understand what kind of motivation that
employee needs. Management team should choose proper motivation techniques for getting the
expected outcome form employees. Gerry maintains good communication with employees which
allows him to understand employee’s needs, based on this he give them support.
Gerry Harvey is one of the top entrepreneurs of Australia; he is born in 1939 in New South
Wales, Australia. He was hard working and ambitious this is the great leadership trait which
helped him to become a successful entrepreneur (Management, 2010). His hard work and
dedication has helped him to bring Harvey Norma in this position. He has introduced personal
computer for the first time in Australia, he has the best leadership skills in the world. He got
married Katie Page and they were the best business couple who have brought Harvey Norma in
this stage. The leadership style of Gerry Harvey is considered as the most influential style. They
followed several strategies for managing overall activities of the organization. They have applied
competitive strategies for managing employees, selling products, social events, investment in
properties and for ownership and franchising.
Leaders follow different style for managing people and providing direction to people. There are
many leadership style exists and different individuals follows different style.
Leaders provide commands to the subordinates and control all the activity of the organization.
All the members who work under this leader follow the direction and obey all the instructions. In
this type of leadership people works from fear in some part of the organization leaders apply this
method (Lumby, 2017). Harvey Norma follow this leadership style for managing the activity of
lower level employees like the sales person, they do not have the permission to take own
decision and they work according to the given guideline. They follow all the activities and
structures very carefully.
Paternalistic approach: In these approach leaders behave with the employees like the family
members and leaders maintain a good relationship with the employees that helps him to get
highest contribution from the employees (Northouse, 2015). Leader believes that employees will
follow the direction and guideline on own. Harvey Norma follows this kind of leadership style.
Gerry Harvey believes in maintaining good relations hip with employees as their contribution is
important for the development of the organization. He hires skilled employees who have the
ability to follow the given guideline and performing the tasks effectively. He provides proper
motivation to all the employees for ensuring highest dedication from the employees.
Situational leadership: in this leadership style organization and leaders use strategy and
techniques based on the situation. Organization take decision and makes strategies based on the
situations. Organization faces different challenges and for keeping the reputation protected.
Gerry Harvey is careful about the reputation of the organization, so he brings changes in the
strategy based on the changes in business world. Operating in international market is challenging
as competition level is high and organization need to accept the changes for keeping position
strong. So Gerry Harvey brings changes in plan and makes new strategy based on the market, he
gives proper guideline to employees so that they can work according to the plan.
Behavioural leadership: this theory is most commonly used leadership theory. Most of the
organization follows this theory for managing employees successfully (Northouse, 2015). Gerry
Harvey always led a very simple life like the employees of the organization. This helps him to
maintain a good relationship with employees. He monitors activities of employees and provides
proper guideline to all of them. In behavioural theory leaders monitor all the employees’
performance and behaviour; this helps them to evaluate employee’s activities and giving them
proper motivation. For understanding employee’s behaviour he communicates with them and
share ideas. This helps to involve employees in the vision of organization which is essential for
the success. Gerry Harvey regularly visits the stores and evaluates regular activities of
Evaluation of the leaders Gerry Harvey:
The success that Harvey Norman has got only because of the good leadership of Gerry Harvey,
his leadership role and leadership style is the reason behind this success.
Management role: the management role that Gerry Harvey has adopted is known as interpersonal
role, informational and decisional role. Gerry has this three management role and this helps him
to manage the overall activity successfully. Interpersonal role involves he travel all the outlets of
Harvey Norman and maintain good interaction with employees. Gerry takes effective decision
and involves employees in this process.
Personal skill: Leaders become successful only because of the personal skills. The personal skills
of Gerry are describing:
1. People skill: Gerry has the ability to deal with people. He maintains a good understanding with
the employees and this helps him to manage employees effectively (Kotter, 2016). For becoming
successful leaders, leader should have good verbal and non-verbal communication capabilities.
This indicated positive body language, making proper eye contract, maintain right gesture and
open communication. Gerry has good media interaction and public interaction. These people
skills of Gerry indicated that he can manage employees, stakeholders, economic and political
2. Visionary skills: the quality of visionary leaders is he can bring innovative ideas, involving
team members in the decision making process and persistence. Gerry has some of this skill but
he has failed to manage the online retail business effectively.
3. Adaptability: in this dynamic business world people’s perception and changes in world
economy is a normal matter. So, leaders should have the flexibility and adaptability skill, as
success of the business is dependent on the right decision of the leader. Gerry has taken right
decision every time and he has the ability to take the challengers for accepting the new changes.
He always accepts the new challenges in the business world and worked hard for maintaining the
reputation of organization during that difficult time. Lack of adaptability can cause great danger
for the business as they can lose the market share.
4. Ethical skill: leaders should follow the ethical codes and conducts of a business. Great leaders
follow all the rules and encourage employees to follow ethical guidelines. For becoming
successful and performing the task considering the working environment is necessary (Grout,
2017). Gerry follows low profit strategy from the ethical consideration of business. The CEO of
Harvey Norman takers a very low salary and this indicates that they are operating the business
Organizational structure and leadership style:
The leadership style is basically dependent on the organizational structure; in different
organization structure leaders apply different leadership style. The proper hierarchy of an
organization helps to maintain smooth operation, so employees face less pressure. In the proper
hierarchy of the organization, employees follow a proper chain of command so ensuring smooth
operation is easier. The CEO of Harvey Norman follow hierarchical structure, this allow shim to
maintain employees effectively. He can manage the overall activity of the organization
effectively. The command and authority is followed by a downward chain command, by
following this kind of leadership style and organizational structure the chances of mistakes and
reduces in an organization. This gives employees the freedom to show creativity.
Power type: the leaders should apply the power effectively, effective distribution of power helps
to increase the contribution of employees (Barnacle, 2015). There are two ways that the power of
Gerry is influenced, the power, negotiation power and bargaining power. Bargaining power
allows the leaders to understand the need and requirement of the employees. Bargaining power
enable leader to influence the situation and keeping this in his favour. Gerry normally use
bargaining power in the lower level, as there managing employees is bit difficult.
Gerry believes in quick changes and adapting philosophy for solving the problems among
employees. Conflicts among the lower level employees are not good for the growth of the
organization, so the use of proper bargaining power is necessary for solving the problems.
Implementation of proper leadership style is necessary for the sustainability of the organization.
Harvey Norman can face great difficulty for not following the right leadership style. After the
death of Gerry Harvey, organization can face great difficulty and lots of new challenges. So
changes in leadership style are necessary as there are different gap in the current style.
Participative leadership style: this style helps to take decision easily (Northouse, 2015). Under
this style the management team influence the employees to participate in the decision making
process. Every employee get the opportunity to share opinion and ideas, this is one of the modern
leadership style that helps organization to bring innovation and creativity. This will allow Gerry
to bring new products, can do promotional activity more effectively and competing in the retail
market in successfully.
Situational leadership: situational leadership is applying in the organization for adjusting with the
changing situation. Gerry applies this strategy but he should apply this in a more intensive
manner. He should replace the traditional strategies with new strategies based on the situation, as
the global retail chain shops are creating lots of competition with innovation. Competitors are
increasing in large extend as Wal-Mart and Tesco is doing online business very effectively.
Changes in negotiation power: Gerry should adapt more tactical negotiation power and skills. He
gives more concentration on the bargaining power; instead he should give preference on
negotiation power. This can help to make employees loyal and organization will be able to
achieve competitive advantage.
Additional skills: Harvey Gerry should focus on some additional skill for strengthen his
leadership capability. He should improve his complex problem solving capability, self-
management, coordination among the team work of employees and flexibility. Gerry should
acquire knowledge on compute, he is dependent on his secretary for conducting computer based
work, and this is not good as he cannot keep the secrecy of different important information.
Structure changes: Gerry follows divisional organization structure; he should think about brining
changes and should give concentration on strategic alliances, outsourcing and flat organizational
structure. This kind of organizational structure can help to reduce changes and maintaining the
overall activity is easier. Maintain a flat organizational structure is helpful for widen the span fo
control and cost minimization is easier. This helps to make a flexible organization structure so
adapting the changes is easier.
This assignment gives an idea about the effective leadership style which is necessary for an
organization for operating in this competitive business world. Harvey Norman is a successful
retail business of Australia and it need to adapt more technology for coping in the competitive
business world. Organization need right leadership practice for adapting right strategy based on
the situation. This assignment will give a clear idea about the leadership skills of Gerry the CEO
of Harvey Norman. His skills have helped Harvey Norman to reach to this position and for more
development Gerry need to consider some changes. Recommendation has been provided about
what changes is necessary for running in this competitive business world. The management of
the organization should apply classical management theory for conducting the overall activity
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