Serena and Lily

By H. Grousbeck, Sara Rosenthal
2012 | Case No. E438

The Serena and Lily case describes three challenging situations faced by Lily Kanter, CEO of Serena and Lily, a luxury home goods company. The first vignette involves Marta Calfee, one of Lily’s first and most dedicated employees. As the company grows, Marta takes on increasing responsibilities, but it soon becomes clear that her title, compensation and domain are all greater than her actual capabilities, and Lily must determine how to scale back or let go one of her most loyal and trusted employees. In the second vignette, Lily deals with an extremely challenging investor/board member whose abrasive style and conflicting ideas about the strategic direction of the company threaten to severely hinder the company’s progress. Finally, Lily is trying to recruit a highly valuable consultant to a permanent position at the company, but must figure out how to compete against a lucrative counter-offer from a highly esteemed retailer.

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