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The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things Happen in Organizations, 5th Edition by Barry Z. Posner, James M. Kouzes

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CHAPTER 3

Set the Example

KANEKA TEXAS IS A specialty polymer manufacturing company in Pasadena, Texas. In operation since 1984, the plant had been through a number of growth spurts when Steve Skarke suddenly found himself tapped to be the plant manager in 2002. Steve readily admits that he was unprepared for the job, but after a few years of “trial-and-error leadership,” he started honing in on his own style of leading, which usually included some rather unorthodox ideas—at least for the mostly conservative crew at Kaneka.1

Steve wanted to make a real change in the state of housekeeping around the site. For a couple of years, the manufacturing management team had been discussing the vision of becoming a “World Class Plant.” They debated the ...

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