Essay Sample about Leadership Experiences

Published: 2022-04-20
Essay Sample about Leadership Experiences
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Leadership analysis
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 913 words
8 min read

Morgan Stanley bank had a good 2006 and early 2007, but the Great Recession of late 2007 and 2008 introduced some new concerns about the profits that were coming from bets and increased borrowing derived from the bank's own capital. The great recession was a tough time for American firms, yet Henry Paulson played an important role by being a boss who fought for firms to stay afloat (Bolman & Deal, 2017). He managed to convince people to trust his leadership skills so he could walk the country out of the financial quagmire. His technique was working with people who had a complementary skill with the ability to compensate for their individual weaknesses. Leadership involves listening to other people by working a common ground. He believed that situations like financial crises require flexible leaders who convince people to be open to change.

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During the economic crisis, Paulson was the acting U.S.A Treasury Secretary and he took deliberate steps to get the economic situation to stabilize. He led unprecedented interventions by pushing legislation that would prevent an economic slump. His persuasion saw the authorization of the release of $700 billion to American firms in a bid to stabilize the collapsing financial system. His leadership skill of persuasion created a cooperation with the chairman of the Federal Reserve System, leading to the creation of a credit facility to firms like AIG, thereby saving it from filing for bankruptcy (Goleman, 2017). The AIG held about $2 trillion worth of life insurance plans for Americans, 401k plans, and multiple billions worth of teachers' pension plans. He continued to use his persuasion skills to call for the U.S government to use multiple billions of federal dollars to cancel off non-performing mortgages that were jeopardizing the liquidity of the firms.

I chose to write about Henry Paulson because he has impeccable leadership skills. He has a commanding presence during the turbulence of American economy. In fact, it was clear who was in charge of bailing the out he economy. He took an immense risk by twisting the arms of soundly based institutions into supporting struggling ones (Hu & Judge, 2017). He is also not shy about mentoring other people who would like to follow in his steps. For instance, he revealed that he had built a strong and trusting relationship with President George Bush before the financial crisis struck and as such, he was able to accomplish important things by working with others. Additionally, Henry Paulson also stressed the importance of being a change agent and making sure that followers are willing and ready to change course when the need arises. For instance, on the onset of the 2008 crisis, he held the opinion that a direct injection of capital into financial institutions would not work. His plan was to purchase illiquid assets since he only had prior experience with the injection of capital into banks when they were nationalized (Northouse, 2018). However, more institutions continued to indicate signs of collapse and he realized that a more drastic action was required, and it involved bailing out banking institutions. Overall, Paulson believes that good leadership relies on cooperation and teamwork to unify people. Cooperative leadership is the top level as it is built on solid teamwork coupled with effective cooperation and cooperation rather than individualistic heroism and charismatic dictatorship. Charismatic leaders may not manage to maintain dominance for long, but teams carry on a legacy for a long time.

My job as a CFP, Henry Paulson inspired me to take a lot of risks by putting Morgan Stanley on safer ground. I pioneered a dramatic lowering of borrowing and a shutdown of the bank's proprietary trading desk. With my persuasion, I worked with the CEO, Mack, to change Morgan Stanley from being a Wall Street dealer to a bank holding company. Together, we made decisions that tripped the firm's deposit base thereby creating a safer source of capital. This was quite a hard task because the bank had a 70-year history of investment banking as the driver of its profits. One step taken towards this end was the purchase of majority stake in the Solomon Smith Barney brokerage division. The acquisition was a strategic step that turned Morgan Stanley into one of the largest American-based brokerage houses.

Moreover, the skills of persuasion and negotiation came in handy in the role of customer acquisition since the aftermath of the financial crisis changed customer perceptions drastically. Potential investors were questioning the soundness of the financial system after the crisis. In response, I suggested a move to restore investors' confidence by revamping the firm's brokerage division and moving Morgan Stanley closer to its roots. This way, people saw it as an investment banking business rather than a distribution business. Together with Mack, the CEO, and other team members, we created a robust branch that offers sound advice to clients regarding mergers, bond offerings, and stock management and also complete trades for willing clients. With such facilities, the team managed to transform Morgan Stanley into an institution whose fabric is in investment banking and institutional securities that customers can trust (Goleman, 2017).


Northouse, P. G. (2018). Leadership: Theory and practice. Sage publications.

Goleman, D. (2017). Leadership That Gets Results (Harvard Business Review Classics). Harvard Business Press.

Hu, J., & Judge, T. A. (2017). Leader-team complementarity: Exploring the interactive effects of leader personality traits and team power distance values on team processes and performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 102(6), 935.

Bolman, L. G., & Deal, T. E. (2017). Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, and leadership. John Wiley & Sons.

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