Responsible Leadership Essay Assignment

Responsible Leadership
                   Responsible Leadership

Responsible Leadership

Order Instructions:

As such I am trusting you with this critical group assignment as part of the Responsible Leadership module of the MBA.

I attach the assignment together with some of the key readings from the list. Many external references are possible for this assignment owing to the highly public nature of the leaders selected.

Below is the agreed group plan with my role clearly identified. It is TASK 1 BELOW 2000 words and using Harvard referencing.

The topic is all about the leadership styles and contrast between celebrity chefs Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsay.

Title How do they maintain their public profile to maximise their breathe of influence. Use Pless and Maak for the definition of responsible leadership.

Responsible Leadership is understood as a

“ …values-based and thorough ethical principles-driven relationship between leaders and stakeholders who are connected through a shared sense of meaning and purpose through which they raise one another to higher levels of motivation and commitment for achieving sustainable values creation and social change.”

Structure Plan:

> 1. Intro and Overview/Context – Industry, organisations, importance followers (ie Ramsay first trained Oliver), Organisational challenges, Identify Stakeholders (different for Oliver and Ramsay), explain what a responsible leader is “definitions” and compare both chefs. (2000 Words – ) We are looking at the businesses developed internationally using TV, advertising, links to supermarkets, image (Oliver family, Sainsburys, school dinners for british schooks, Ramsay fiery the chef’s chef etc etc and contrasting their successes and failures. Why don’t they get on publicly?
> 2. Critically analyse the leadership challenges for Gordon Ramsay – Style, What he could do differently to engage stakeholders, how close does it fit with Responsible leadership. Hall and Talbot – Power Nye Another team member
> 3. Critically analyse the leadership challenges for Jamie Oliver -Style, What he could do differently to engage stakeholders, how close does it fit with Responsible leadership. (1500 Words – Lauren)
> 4. Recommendation on the basis of responsible leadership. Other team member
> 5. References (All)

In order to assist the reader with focus I have included the tasks assigned to the other two group members (points 2-4) which should make sense that this assignment sets the context and provides the basis for their focus on each individual chef.

Please confirm that this is understood. You have a writer of high calibre who can deliver by 20th June. Will ask questions if required. Please focus first on the assessment three document and the expectation of gaining an A grade with the marking rubric

Warm Regards

Please find attached the documents to be incorporated into the draft version which has been sent across from the writer.

Please ensure the writer reads the standards at the back of the assessment guide and aims for the A standard.

The focus needs to be on the transformational leadership style and path goal theory with relevant referencing and addressing the questions.

Innovation needs to be built in together with power analysis using Nye. This is an MBA project

Please let me know if you need any further clarifications and the deadline remains as previous

It is very important that if the writer is not clear they tell us early







There are various leadership styles that have been researched and expounded on in numerous books and articles by scholars worldwide.  These leadership styles range from traditional leadership style, servant leadership style, charismatic leadership style, dictatorial leadership style, transformational leadership style, authentic leadership style, participatory leadership style and democratic leadership style among others (Beyer, 2010).  Despite all the literature available on these styles, corporate and national leadership has failed to provide solutions to the current challenges facing society. The financial crisis in the late 2000’s pointed to deficiencies in current leadership styles practiced in many corporations. These leadership styles have been unable to control management self interest and greed which is blamed for the various challenges facing society (Pless & Maak, 2011). The collapse of corporate giants such as Enron, Lehman brothers, Arthur Andersen and World com among others has put into the limelight the leadership styles practiced by top managers in organizations. Industry regulators have formulated and passed various laws to try and tame greed and reckless self interest in managerial decision making in corporate entities (Roche, 2010).  One of the regulations that came up was the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Responsible leadership style is a new fad that intends to push managers to be conscious of the impact of their decisions on society and the world around them (Pless & Maak, 2011).  Various challenges that the world faces currently can be blamed on poor leadership styles. Some of these challenges include increasing levels of poverty in the world. The gap between the rich and the poor has continued to widen to a level that the world is viewed as having two tribes namely the filthy rich and the filthy dirt poor. The other challenges that current leadership styles have failed to address include increasing prevalence of manageable diseases which include lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and cancer among others (Pless & Maak, 2011).  The worlds has also witnessed disasters that are associated with leadership failure in organizations such as the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, the Bhopal disaster for Union Carbide, Shell’s Brent Spar and numerous Nigerian failures. These failures led to a debate on social responsibility by corporate entities and it is what has led to the new leadership fad known as responsible leadership. The current problems facing the world either on the corporate scene or in public spheres can be associated with manager’s inability to embrace responsible leadership (Pless & Maak, 2011).

Importance of followers

Great leadership inspires followership from others who are mentored by the leaders. The two celebrity chefs Gordon Ramsey and Jamie Oliver rose to their current status because they were good followers of their mentors in the industry.   Jamie Oliver was mentored by Gennaro Contaldo whom he met while on his first job as a pastry chef at Antonio Carluccio‘s Neal’s Yard restaurant. It can be argued that Jamie Oliver’s rise to fame was due to responsible leadership style that he embraced from the start of his career (Roche, 2010).  At one time Jamie Oliver trained under another celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey.  Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey was mentored by Guy Savoy whom he met in France.  The two celebrity chefs have had numerous followers whom they have trained and mentored to become responsible leaders in their various fields.   The two celebrity chefs owe their rise to fame to responsible leadership (Pless & Maak, 2011).  The society expects businesses and their leaders to take active roles in fostering responsible behavior within their organizations and also in wider societal spheres.  Responsible leaders are expected to create responsible organizational cultures that create value on societal, economic and environmental fronts.  Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver Jamie’s School Dinners were inspired by the desire to check the unhealthy eating habits of school children in British schools. This was responsible leadership as it was aimed at solved at solving one of society’s problems that was attributed to unhealthy diets.  Due to unhealthy diets many school going children have developed lifestyle diseases such as obesity, diabetes, cancer and high blood pressure among others.

Organizational Challenges

Different organizations face different challenges which impede the assimilation of responsible leadership and by extension other leadership styles. One of the major challenges is increased competition. This challenge makes it difficult for an organization to increase its revenues to fund social responsibility programs. Chef Gordon Ramsey first show was to trouble shoot on restaurants that were facing challenges and come up with solutions to turn them around. Some of the restaurants that the two celebrity chefs started or influenced their establishment also collapsed which points to the high failure rate in the industry due to stiff competition. The other challenge is the prevailing culture (Pless & Maak, 2011). In many organizations leaders or managers are viewed with a lot of suspicion. These high levels of mistrust make it impossible to mentor followers well. There is need for organizational leaders to build trust between themselves and their followers. Being authentic is one way of building trust. Leaders are supposed to be transparent in the way they coach their followers. They should not withhold information or make fun of their followers. By being sincere and honest leaders are able to build good followership.  The next challenge is modern technology which is fast changing rendering existing knowledge obsolete. This forces the leaders to keep on training to upgrade their skills. In the hospitality industry, turnover is very high and organizational failure is also high (Pless & Maak, 2011).

Stakeholders for the two celebrity chefs

It is important to note that the success of any leadership style depends on the perception that various stakeholders have on an organization. Each organization has various stakeholders.  In the case of Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsey, stakeholders include bankers who provide various financial solutions in form of debt or equity financing to enable establishment of new restaurants (Thomas, O’Doherty & Felsted, 2010). Without financiers the two celebrity chefs cannot achieve their expansion goals.  The perception that the general public has on their leadership styles and quality of the food served in their existing restaurants has a big impact on the willingness of bankers to provide finance. The other category of stakeholders includes employees. Both celebrity chefs run chains of restaurants which employ several employees (Henderson, 2011). Even though the two celebrity chefs are stars in the show, they need loyal followers in the name of employees to implement their projects and run their restaurants. These must be motivated otherwise the entire venture would simply fail. The next category of stakeholders includes customers. Customers are basically members of public who have been sufficiently persuaded to purchase an organizations products and services. Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsey must provide services and food that meet the needs of their customers otherwise they would be forced out of business. Customers are the ones who keep businesses going. Without adequate customers a business would be unable to meet its breakeven sales and volumes (Macaux, 2012).  The government is another important stakeholder in this case. The government is basically interested on the taxes that the business pays, the number of job opportunities created or to be created and the business compliance standards with statutory policies (Thomas, O’Doherty & Felsted, 2010). The government is a very powerful stakeholder who can push a company out of business very easily. The other stakeholder includes creditors. Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsey have various creditors who supply various commodities and offer services to them and their restaurants. This category is very keen to ensure they get what is due to them.  The society in general is also an important stakeholder. The society sanctions and approves the activities of companies. A company that is perceived to be a threat to the general wellbeing of society will most likely be forced out of business (Thomas, O’Doherty & Felsted, 2010).

Responsible leadership and the two celebrity chefs

Responsible leadership is a new leadership paradigm shift that is aimed at solving existing gaps in the current leadership theory and solving challenges that leaders face in their daily activities. As the name suggests, responsible leadership centers firmly on matters to do with responsibility, appropriate moral decision-making, trust and accountability (Pless & Maak, 2011).  In the context of leadership, responsible leadership attempts to identify what the word responsible entails.  Responsible leaders are accountable for the actions they take, are answerable for the decisions they make and are trusted and reliable. Responsible leadership is largely relational.   Responsible leadership is aimed at meeting other people’s needs (Henderson, 2011). Responsible leaders anticipate and address others concerns and identifies what and to whom the leaders are responsible for their actions. Responsible leaders attempt to identify who they are responsible for and what it entails to respond to the concerns that they have. Responsible leadership is an ethical and relational phenomenon that occurs in a social process of interaction with those affected or is affect by leadership and has a stake in the leadership purpose and vision (Henderson, 2011).

The two celebrity chefs can be said to have practiced responsible leadership styles.  In the Naked Chef series in 1999-2000, the title chosen for the Jamie Oliver series, was a reference to the simplicity of Oliver’s recipes and had nothing to do with nudity. Nevertheless, Jamie Oliver expressly stated that he was unhappy with the title series.  In this series Jamie Oliver demonstrated simple recipes that could be assembled by a majority of busy working people. He also distances himself from the nudity title chosen for the show (Stone, Russell & Patterson, 2004). This was ethically and morally upright. This act demonstrated what responsible leadership is all about.  In the following program called Jamie’s Kitchen, the chef attempted to train a group of disadvantaged youths who he promised to employ if they completed the course successfully at Oliver’s new restaurant “Fifteen” in Westland Place, London, N1 (Schneider & George, 2011). This was an attempt to solve a long standing problem of unemployment and also to come to the aid of the disadvantaged in society. This was responsible leadership at its best.  Jamie’s School diner’s program in 2005 in which Jamie Oliver took responsibility of running the kitchen meals in Kidbrooke School, Greenwich for a years was also a demonstration of responsible leadership (Henderson, 2011).  Jamie Oliver had been disgusted by the unhealthy food that was served to school children in British schools and the lack of alternatives on offer.  His campaign to improve the standard of British school meals caught public awareness and the British Government pledged to spend £280m on school to provide dinners to school children for a period of three years. This was a long standing societal problem which had gone unnoticed or had been ignored for years. By Oliver’s initiative a solution was found (Henderson, 2011).

Celebrity coach Gordon Ramsey also practiced responsible leadership style.  In his television series, Gordon Ramsey trained chefs for his restaurants and also empowered other people to start their own restaurants.  One of his television series was to trouble shoot on problems that affected restaurants and design solutions to turn them around (Henderson, 2011). In this way he exhibited responsible leadership as he attempted to solve the challengers facing restaurant owners.  In doing so he demonstrated a regard for others and assisted in solving the problems that they faced.  Responsible leadership builds leader-stakeholder relationships that add value to the parties.       Gordon Ramsey together with Jamie Oliver teamed up to raise awareness about discarding of hundreds of thousands of salt water fish by spending time on a trawler. This show of concern for the environment also showed that the two leaders are responsible. It demonstrates that the leaders are mindful of the environment and are willing to stop activities that harm the environment (Henderson, 2011).

Why the two coaches or leaders do not get along

One of the reasons why          Gordon Ramsey and Jamie Oliver don’t get along is because of differences in leadership style. Gordon Ramsey is known for his perfectionist attitude and short temper unlike Jamie Oliver. This personality attribute makes it impossible for them to get along as each has a different view of doing things. Jamie Oliver has also been noted as pointing out that Gordon Ramsey is jealous of his success (Henderson, 2011). It is of note to point out that Jamie Oliver has a much higher net worth at £240 million while Gordon Ramsey has a net worth of about £67 million. Gordon Ramsey is also known to engage in callous language which Jamie Oliver finds in appropriate. Gordon Ramsey has also accused Jamie Oliver of being more in sales and marketing than in cooking (Henderson, 2011).  Gordon Ramsey views Jamie Oliver as being a bad cook. The last reason why they cannot get along is that chef Gordon Ramsey is focused on being the best chef and making the best food while Jamie Oliver’s main focus is marketing and sales to generate good returns on investment. Jamie Oliver has been able to establish a much bigger empire than Gordon Ramsey. Gordon Ramsey failed in putting the necessary controls which led to his business making an improper loan to his father in-law. Gordon Ramsey also fell out with his father in –law who was in many ways one of his mentors.  Gordon Ramsey is a perfectionist who is concerned with being the best in the industry and has very limited knowledge in managing a business empire (Henderson, 2011).


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Henderson, J. C. (2011). Celebrity chefs: Expanding empires. British Food Journal, 113(5), 613-624 doi:

Macaux, W. P. (2012). Generative leadership: Responding to the call for responsibility. The Journal of Management Development,31(5), 449-469. doi:

Pless, N. M., & Maak, T. (2011). Responsible leadership: Pathways to the future. Journal of Business Ethics, 98, 3-13.

Roche, M. (2010). Learning authentic leadership in new zealand: A learner-centred methodology and evaluation. American Journal of Business Education, 3(3), 71-79. Retrieved from

Schneider, S. K., & George, W. M. (2011). Servant leadership versus transformational leadership in voluntary service organizations. Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 32(1), 60-77. doi:

Stone, A. G., Russell, R. F., & Patterson, K. (2004). Transformational versus servent leadership:

A difference in leader focus.Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 25(3), 349-361. Retrieved from

Thomas, D., O’Doherty, J., & Felsted, A. (2010). Retail centre gambles on square mile. FT.Com, Retrieved from

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