Adaptive Leadership Models — Mark Mastandrea, LGO '93, Vice President of Supply Chain, Wayfair.com
Mark Mastandrea, LGO '93, gave a seminar on Adaptive Leadership Models, drawing upon his experience in leadership roles at Amazon, Kiva Systems, Weight Watchers, Webvan, Hewlett-Packard, and Oracle.
The seminar focused on how Mark used the technology and management leadership toolkit from the LGO program to adapt as a leader within very different organizations. In response to cultures driven entirely by data or driven entirely by narratives and collective agreement, Mark took the approach of defining a small "proof of concept" challenge to which he would apply a new approach and see it if worked in a given context. With a career that has ranged from autonomous mobile robots for warehouses, to Weight Watchers, to a leading home furnishings e-tailer, Mark's seminar conveys the breadth of leadership challenges he has encountered and how LGO prepared him to deal with them successfully.
Mark has been directly or indirectly associated with e-commerce for the last 14 years in roles such as Vice President of Supply Chain at Weight Watchers, Director of UK Fulfillment and General Manager at Amazon, and Director of Distribution and Director of Program Management at Webvan. In addition, as Vice President of Customer Solutions at Kiva Systems, Mark was the lead designer for E-commerce fulfillment centers for apparel, footwear, office supplies, medical products, books and media, and grocery.
One's leadership style is not only influenced by one's experiences--the people, situations, and challenges to which one is exposed--but is also developed and shaped by the leader through his or her proactive reflection and introspection on those experiences, and on her or his own strengths and weaknesses, emphasizing what has value and also learning from the less than ideal experiences. In order to be effective in a new organization, a leader must also effectively diagnose the situation and the culture, balancing personal leadership style with the needs of the organization, and evolving his or her own leadership style along the way.