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Leadership Homework :) there is no referencing needed for this and take ur time do to it. if possible try to link it with the lecture :D


Donna Fernandes: She?s the Leader of the Pack

 

Donna Fernandes isn?t your average MBA. Her expertise lies in the

 

behavior of

 

slugs?real ones, not the human kind. She also holds a Doctor of Sciences

 

degree

 

from Princeton, she?s worked at the Franklin Park Zoo in Boston, led

 

wildlife tours

 

through Kenya and Tanzania, hosted her own educational television show,

 

and now

 

she?s the director of the Buffalo Zoo in upstate New York, where her clients

 

include

 

elephants, gorillas, hyenas, polar bears, and more.

 

When Fernandes arrived at the 23-acre zoo a couple of years ago, it was a

 

mess.

 

?Most of what I found about the current state of the zoo was negative,?

 

she recalls.

 

The 125-year-old park, the third oldest zoo in the country, was in a terrible

 

state of

 

disrepair and was in danger of losing its accreditation. The management

 

and board of

 

directors were considering moving the zoo from its home in the Delaware

 

Park area of

 

Buffalo and relocating it to an industrial neighborhood along the Buffalo

 

River. But

 

the community rallied against the move, and it was postponed. Still,

 

something had to

 

be done to bring the zoo back to life. Fernandes quickly found that her

 

base of

 

support as a leader would come from the community and from volunteers

 

and workers

 

at the zoo. ?As soon as I walked through the gates of the zoo, I just felt at

 

home,? she

 

says. ?The people were really friendly... It seemed like people all wanted to

 

improve

 

the zoo. The amount of grass roots support for this zoo is phenomenal.?

 

Fernandes used her position power to put forth a vision for improvement,

 

but she

 

quickly developed personal power as well. People liked her and respected

 

her from

 

the outset. She immediately outlined plans to bring the zoo back up to the

 

standards

 

of the American Zoo and Aquarium Association, which were backed by a

 

pledge of

 

$350,000 from Governor George Pataki. More funding was needed, so the

 

board

 

undertook a massive fundraising effort. Fernandes noted that as the zoo

 

was upgraded

 

she would place more emphasis on children and education through

 

programs at the

 


 

zoo. ?I will also focus on trying to increase family visitors by making

 

exhibits the

 

right height for children in strollers and people in wheelchairs.? In

 

addition, she

 

planned to create more natural settings for the animals, with an emphasis

 

on wildlife

 

habitats rather than cages. ?These are issues to which I am very

 

sensitive,? she

 

explained.

 

With strong support for Fernandes? vision, plans to relocate the zoo were

 

abandoned,

 

though she was careful to say that she understood the reasons why the

 

board had

 

considered it. Today, visitors enjoy the giraffe feeding station, guided

 

tours, and

 

especially the WILD place, where curious?and brave?participants can

 

wash an

 

elephant or even watch one paint. (Daryl Hoffman, the elephant keeper

 

and head of

 

the animal training committee at the zoo, has instituted a program called

 

Art Gone

 

Wild, in which the zoo sells ?artwork? created by elephants, primates, and

 

big cats.)

 

The zoo?s outreach program includes the Zoomobile and Distance

 

Learning, both of

 

which take the zoo?s mission outside the grounds to people who might not

 

be able to

 

visit the zoo in person.

 

Fernandes? democratic leadership style encourages input from staff,

 

groundskeepers,

 

volunteers, the community, and the board of directors. She likes people to

 

stop by her

 

office to give her feedback, suggestions, and even complaints. But this

 

open

 

atmosphere didn?t exist before Fernandes arrived, so she had to cultivate

 

it. The

 

change began almost by accident. In the days following the events of the

 

September

 

11, 2001, attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, everyone

 

around the

 

zoo was shaken. So on a whim, Fernandes decided to bring her new puppy

 

into the

 

office to cheer herself and others up. Pretty soon people were stopping by

 

to see the

 

puppy and have a chat. Before long, Fernandes was receiving valuable

 

feedback from

 

people who would never have otherwise felt comfortable providing it?and

 

a whole

 


 

new line of communication had opened up between Fernandes and her

 

staff. The

 

puppy, which is rapidly growing, now makes regular appearances at the

 

office, and

 

Fernandes lets everyone know that she likes her employees to visit

 

whenever they

 

want.

 

Fernandes is happy with her work and seems comfortable in her

 

leadership role. Of

 

the 186 accredited zoos in the country, only 20 have female directors; so

 

she is aware

 

of her mentoring role as well. ?I believe this is probably the most

 

important thing I

 

will ever do, being in this position in a community at a juncture where

 

they want to

 

rebuild their zoo,? she says. ?When I interviewed for this job, I did a

 

presentation to

 

the board on my vision for the zoo. I told them it would take 10 to 25

 

years of a

 

shared dream, rather than just my vision, to restore the Buffalo Zoo to its

 

greatness.?

 

Fernandes truly believes that her zoo will enjoy a second golden age?

 

within limits.

 

?I won?t promise the world in rebuilding this zoo, but if I promise a

 

continent, you?ll

 

get a continent.? Which is plenty of ground for everyone.

 

Questions:

 

1. Would you define Fernandes? leadership behaviours as a task or relationship

 

orientation?

 

2. How does Fernandes influence people?

 

3. Create a profile of Fernandes? personal characteristics as a leader.

 


 

 

Paper#9256866 | Written in 27-Jul-2016

Price : $16
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