This case, which follows up on "The Evolution of a Practitioner to Leadership (A)" (UVA-E-0463), finds Will Cohen adjusting his leadership style after reflecting on the challenges he had faced in his first six months as Bank of America's market sales executive for the mid-Atlantic region.
Instead of jumping in to solve problems, he adopted a more Socratic approach, asking his employees questions such as, "How would you approach the situation/opportunity?" and "How do you recommend we move forward?" His focus became more about creating a positive, creative environment than simply solving problems. The results were gratifying because his team became more unified and its members were recognized for their successes by higher-ups at the bank. Many were promoted to positions of greater responsibility and impact. Cohen himself was promoted to lead a national initiative for the firm. In the first 18 months after launching the new initiative, the firm saw 45% client growth, an enhanced client experience, and the development of new resources. Cohen's pivot, after much thought and reimagining of his leadership, had been successful.