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Leadership_Case_Studies_Catalogues - LEADERSHIP LEADERSHIP...

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2 www.ibscdc.org Women Leaders in Fashion Business: Yves Saint Laurent's (YSL) Valerie Hermann The Darwinian Theory – 'survival of the fittest' applies to the fashion industry where fashion changes faster than seasons. The definition of 'fittest' also changes accordingly. Fashion businesses for over decades has been built on the core principles of rarity and exclusivity – operated with 'supply-creates-demand' psyche. Buzz around the founder, engulfed the business side. With the emergence of new contexts, fashion businesses are waking up to the new realities. With increasing competition and high volatility in fashion trends, these companies are realising the need to strike a balance between creativity and business. Like other major industries namely banking, IT, retail, etc., this industry is learning the economics of business. Although the industry has embraced technology, improvised its supply chain logistics, modified organisational structures, not much change has been witnessed in terms of encouraging the participation of women in business as executives. The industry has a dearth of women executives – barring a few like Coco Chanel and Liz Claiborne. However, proving detractors wrong, more number of women are shouldering big responsibilities in this industry. Valerie Hermann took up the challenge of turning around YSL as its CEO in 2005 – that was suffering for decades. Her new initiatives are paying off and her approach towards YSL is being commended by analysts. This case study discusses the role of women executives in an unpredictable fashion industry and debates upon whether women executives can become 'the turnaround CEOs of loss-making businesses'. Pedagogical Objectives To prepare an industry analysis of the fashion business to gain insights of its market dynamics and to analyse the industry attractiveness using Porter's Five Forces Model To examine the emergence of women in business especially in the fashion industry and therefore compare the leadership styles of women executives with that of men To discuss the challenges and constraints for women executives in the fashion industry and debate on what it takes to be a successful women executive in this industry. Industry Fashion Retailing Reference No. LDS0029 Year of Pub. 2009 Teaching Note Available Struc.Assig. Available Keywords Leadership, Valerie HermannWomen in Business, Fashion, Industry Analysis, Industry Attractiveness, Five Forces, Portat, YSL, Retail, Coco Chanel, Supply Chain, Leadership Case Studies, Creative Industries, Turnaround Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS): Leadership Lessons "Study the past if you would divine the future", said Confucius, which is the overarching objective of this case. How were all the battles and wars fought, right from Sun Tzu's The Art of War and Genghis Khan, and may be even beyond? What principles guided some of the armies to victory, while many were left with bruised failures? How did they formulate strategies and who executed them? What was the
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