Reviving Manpower Inc. - The Joerres Way

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Case Details:

Case Code : BSTR208
Case Length : 13 Pages
Pages Period : 1998-2006
Organization : Manpower
Pub Date : 2006
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : US
Industry : Staffing Services

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Introduction Contd...

Joerres was entrusted with the job of getting Manpower back on the growth path and helping it regain its number one position in staffing services. Commenting on the task ahead for Joerres, Adam Waldo, analyst at Credit Suisse First Boston4 said, "He must remake a company more intent on revenue and market share than on profits, return on capital, and margins."5 Manpower's stock price touched its all-time low at US$ 22 in August 1999 from an all-time high of US$ 50 in August 1997. This made industry experts speculate that there would be a takeover bid. At that time, Anthony E. Spare, the Chairman of Spare, Kaplan, Bischel & Associates6 that owned 45,000 shares of Manpower said, "Either the current management fixes it, they look outside for new managers, or the company gets acquired."7

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Joerres admitted the serious problems at the company, saying, "We have not done justice for our shareholders, and I'm working my tail off to fix it."8

About Manpower Inc.

Manpower was founded in 1948 by Elmer Winter and Aaron Scheinfeld, attorneys and business partners. They were under constant pressure to meet deadlines for their legal work and wanted to hire additional contractual staff. However, at that time, there were no companies that offered staffing services. This gave them the idea of establishing a staffing services company themselves, and they established Manpower in 1948. The first Manpower office was set up in Milwaukee in Wisconsin state in the US, and was later the company's global headquarters. In the 1950s, Manpower established several branches in the US...

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4] Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB) is a leading global investment bank serving institutional, corporate, government and high net worth clients. CSFB's businesses include securities underwriting, sales & trading, investment banking, private equity, financial advisory services, investment research, and asset management.

5] Richard A Melcher, Carol Matlack, "I'm Working My Tail Off to Fix It," BusinessWeek, August 16, 1999.

6] Spare, Kaplan, Bischel & Associates (SKBA) is an institutional investment advisory firm located in San Francisco, California. Founded in 1989, SKBA is an investment advisory firm dealing in both corporate and public pension funds, endowments, foundations and select private clients.

7] Richard A Melcher, Carol Matlack, "I'm Working My Tail Off to Fix It," BusinessWeek, August 16, 1999.

8] Richard A Melcher, Carol Matlack, "I'm Working My Tail Off to Fix It," BusinessWeek, August 16, 1999.


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