1- What leadership competencies do you recognize in Ibuka and Morita ? Justify
the leadership competencies recognized in the case of Sonny , To understand Sony,
understand its founders, Masaru Ibuka and Akio Morita. Even though both are now gone,
their executive dynasty and its haphazard, emotional governance established the model
for the Sony of today—even as it holds Sony, The two complemented each other with a
unique blend of product innovation and marketing savvy, and formed a company that
would eventually grow into a more into global organization. Ibuka was a practical
visionary who could foretell what products and technologies could be applied to everyday
life. He inspired in his engineers a spirit of innovation and pushed them to reach beyond
their own expectations. Though both of them come from different family background,
exposure and working experiences, they share the same spirit of innovation, dreams,
passion, determination and excitement in establishing their company. It could be seen
how the founders and company have overcome the hurdles and struggle in innovating
new technologies and expanding the market for their innovation with scarcity and
limited resourcefulness. They overcome problems like no machinery, little scientific
equipment and material constraints. This was overcome mainly due to their strong spirit
of innovation and excitement. The leadership competencies that could be seen in them
o Innovator:they were a genius inventors from their school days. Ibukaand Akio
Morita create new products rather than copying western technology.
o Far sighted: we were able to foresee potential new market and applications for
products in everyday life
o Leadership motivation and Inspiring: they instilled in their engineers a quest
for innovation and pushed them to reach beyond their own expectations to
reach the Sony organisation goal.
o Driven – they had an inner motivation to pursue his goals
o Open Minded: Ibuka and Akio Morita had an open to new ideas though they
are not his and able to accept and innovate from there. It can be seen that the
acquisitions of a patent license for transistors from Bell Laboratories. He saw
the potential for transistor to be used as communications devices when at the
time US companies were focused on military applications.
o Personality: they had high levels of extroversion (outgoing, talkative,
sociable, and Assertive) and conscientiousness i.e. careful, dependable and
o Cognitive and practical intelligence: The leaders above average cognitive
ability to process information (cognitive intelligence) and ability to solve real
world problems by adapting to shaping or selecting, appropriate environments
It can be seen here in the case study that when they could not afford to purchase new
equipment, Ibuka and his team made new tools themselves for e.g. screwdrivers from
motorcycle springs, construct their own electrical coil and substituted telephone cables for
o Willingness for Shared leadership: As can be observed in the case study, Ibuka
championed in introduction of new technology and let Morita lead and
manage the business aspect of their product as Morita is champion in this.
Finally , worth leadership competency to mention about Ibuku and Morita are their
application persistence and hard work and determination ; energy commitment and
responsibility and learning by experience and learning by doing , initiating creativity and
invention and pioneering and risk taking , realistic common sense and self-believing
2. How are Ibuka and Morita charismatic leaders? Justify your answers.
Ibuka and Morita are charismatic leaders in the following aspects: _
as they show high level of persistence in achieving their goal. In spite of their
significant obstacles like scarce of resources.
they overcome the hurdle by innovating and making the best use of what they have.
It can be seen that when they could not afford to purchase new equipment
They are also said to be charismatic leaders as they attract dedicated people to the
organization. They influence group of people toward the achievement of goals. As we can
see from this case study, they attracted 20 dedicated and passionate engineers as Ibuka and
Morita in their initial establishment of Sony Company.
They also are said to be charismatic leaders as they play key roles in guiding not only their
companies but their country too through crucial episodes in their history post Japan defeat in
World War II. Morita felt another burning desire to help change the image of Japan in the
eyes of the world. They saw a defeated Japan and believed that thru their company, they
could help restore Japan to a triumphant nation once again.
Both Ibuka and Morita are visionary leaders and charismatic leaders as their provide a clear
picture of a desirable future that inspires excitement and engenders commitment among their
workers and engineers. Since they are excited and energized in their goal and vision in the
electronic innovation field, they could channel and create the same exciting, energized work
environments for their engineers and workers. They fostered a dynamic and exciting
workplace with an open minded corporate culture. This especially highlights Ibuka’s
philosophy of fostering a workplace where engineers would be free to work and innovate.
Even when comes to personality, Akio Morita has proved to be very charismatic with his
charismatic energy and charm.
3. Can you recognize the elements of transformational leadership? Justify your answers.
The 4 important elements of transformational Leadership can be seen here i.e.
1. Developing a strategic vision
Here in the case study the vision of Morita and Ibuka is that to:
* Become the company most known for changing the worldwide image of Japanese products
as being of poor quality. Made in Japan will mean something fine and not shady. This is
proved by their electronic products.
* Create products that become pervasive around the world;
* Be the first Japanese company to go into an American and global market and distribute
* Fifty years from the time the company established, their brand name will be as well-known
as any on Earth.
Fifty years after this vision statement was crafted, Japan had risen from the ashes of disgrace
to a new leader in technology. Morita and Ibuka have realised their vision.
2. Communicate the vision
Morita and Ibuka able to share their vision for the organisation. They able to channel their
vision, enthusiasm and passion to their engineers and workers to realise their goal and vision.
This made the workers and engineers have the same excitement and energy in innovating new
3. Model the vision
Morita and Ibuka not only talked about their vision but they enact it. They walk the talk.
Morita and Ibuka got out of their comfort zone in realising their dreams. They were relentless
in their efforts and dedication and in overcoming the hurdles and obstacles. Morita travelled
thru America and learning new culture and doing extensive survey and observation and
promoting their product across the stores in America while Ibuka kept up working hard with
limited resources and this in turn motivate their workers and engineers to work harder in
realising the vision. It builds Sony employers trust in the company and their leaders. Ibuka
and Morita were true their vision by their deeds and action which also inspired the employers.
4. Building Commitment to the vision
Transforming Ibuka and Morita’s vision into reality required the commitment in their
partnership and the commitment of their employers. Their words, actions, persistence,
consistency build a contagious enthusiasm that energised their employers. They also fostered
a fun, dynamic and exciting workplace with and open minded corporate culture. These traits
were deeply ingrained in the company’s culture and enshrined in a set of rules known as
‘founding prospectus. These rules highlighted Ibuka’s philosophy of fostering a workplace
where engineers would be free to innovate in the context of post war Japan: ‘we must avoid
problems which befall large corporations while we create and introduce technologies which
large corporations cannot match. Here, Ibuka and Morita have built the commitment by
involving employers in the process of shaping the company’s vision.
They have proven the charismatic leaders qualities of Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka in
creation of Sony.