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Organizational Leadership at the Walgreen Company

This paper seeks to establish the effectiveness of the organizational leadership at Walgreen’s, the leading drugstore company in the US. Areas of focus in the paper include diversity, ethics, employee motivation, and the organizational culture. Data is collected using secondary means and evaluated against the models extant in the field of organizational theory. Some of the models used include the competing values framework and its categorization of organizational cultures into clan, market, hierarchy, and adhocracy cultures.

Based on that evaluation, the effectiveness of organizational leadership at Walgreen’s is discussed, and useful recommendations which can be used to improve leadership at the firm outlined. 1. Overview of the Research: The overriding aim of this paper is to evaluate the organizational leadership of Walgreen, the leading drugstore company in the US. It begins with a description of the firm, including its core business, mission statement, key managers, financial position, and traces the spectacular growth of the firm from a one-store entity in 1901 to date.

Of particular focus in the paper are issues of employee motivation (where various motivational models such as Maslow’s hierarchy and Hertzberg’s Two Factor Theory are used), organizational culture (where the competing values framework is used), ethics, and diversity. The

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research philosophy adopted is positivist rather than phenomenological. Objective, deductive, and both quantitative and qualitative approaches are used. Secondary data utilizing sources such as Walgreen’s annual report are used.

The paper establishes that while the employee motivation, organizational culture, diversity, and ethical behaviors of the firm have been instrumental in the firm’s growth, there is still room for improvement. In that regard, various recommendations are offered at the tail-end of the paper. 2. Overview of Walgreens: Walgreens is the leading drugstore chain in the country. Started in 1901, it is based in Deerfield, Illinois. Its core business revolves around the retail of prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs, as well as merchandise (Walgreen Co, 2010).

Some of the merchandise that it retails include: “household items, personal care, convenience foods, beauty care, photofinishing, candy, and seasonal items” (Yahoo Finance, 2010, p. 1). These products are distributed through the firm’s retail outlets, as well as through the internet and by mail order (Yahoo Finance, 2010). a. History and early growth: Walgreens was started in 1901 by Charles R Walgreen, after whom it is named.

After working as a pharmacist in a Chicago drugstore, Walgreen ended up buying the drugstore thereby setting in motion the remarkable chain of events that would culminate into America’s premier pharmacy (Walgreen Co, 2010a). Unlike other pharmacies in operation at the time, Walgreen manufactured his own line of drugs. This enabled him to keep a close eye on quality as well as to cut costs. Consequently, his drugstore offered customers better quality at a lower price (Walgreen Co, 2010a).

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