The Turnips: A Study in Leadership

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Joel White Rogers State University

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The behavior of Grover Flanks, manager of the Topeka Turnips (a fictional Minor League affiliate of the Kansas City Royals), has become a worry for the owners of the team. Flanks, a local hero, has gone from hometown attraction to on-field distraction for the Turnips. For Flanks, profane, on-field tirades are commonplace, and rule-breaking is the norm. The manager’s bad behavior is threatening the owners’ ability to secure financing for a lucrative new stadium. However, Flanks is extremely popular with the fans and is the sole reason many fans come to see the mediocre club, so firing the manager is not an option. The owners are understandably worried.

Gene Meebles is the young general manager of the Turnips who has been tasked by the owners to put an end to the Flanks problem and save the stadium deal. Meebles must find a way to relate to the fiery manager and curb his behavior. This case study examines how Meebles can do so using transactional and/or transformational leadership.

White is an assistant professor at Rogers State University, Claremore, OK.

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    • Teaching Note (PDF 209 KB)
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