Green Mountain Resort Case Study

Benjamin L. Martinez Davenport University


Green Mountain Resort was initially constructed as an attractive amenity for home ownership in the Appalachians. Property owners received a membership to the resort and were offered a not only a home, but a lifestyle.

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The problem with this strategy was that Green Mountain was made for buyers and not vacationers.

As it had happened with other developments in the past similar to Green Mountain, the fear that once there were no homes there would be no more buyers and the resort would eventually lose its appeal and go out of business. After the investors decided to continue to have the operation running, the second issue was that of personnel turnover. Since it was not a big operation, there was not much room for advancement, and turnover was inevitable. The root problem in this case is that Gunter wishes to eliminate or reduce the turnover rate in employees.

Turnover costs include productivity losses during training, recruiting and lost work while a position is vacant” (Lucas, 2012). Though the Hotel/Restaurant industry are lower paying, they have a 37 percent turnover rate which can add up quickly and affect the bottom line in an organization (Lucas, 2012). It’s important for businesses to work on creating environments that retain employees, and it is also important for HR to be aware of those people who will make a good fit in the organization.

Case Questions

Which of the six change images discussed in this chapter can be identified in the assumptions about managing turnover that were held by: Gunter, the hospitality literature, and the consultant? Gunter displays a change manager as a coach to the new students who provide exceptional customer service at the resort. “In the coach image, the assumption is that change managers (or change consultants) are able to intentionally shape the organization’s capabilities in particular ways” (Palmer, Dunford, Akin, pg.


Since Green Mountain has an excellent reputation for the outstanding training they provide to employees, they decide to continue to do this and give opportunities to those waiting in line to start a career with this organization when other employees leave. With the first-rate training at Green Mountain, each employee will advance in their career and Gunter will still be able to provide high quality service to his customers amid a high turnover rate. The hospitality literature plays the role of the navigator. In the navigator image, control is still seen as the heart of management action, although a variety of factors external to managers mean that while they may achieve some intended change outcomes, others will occur over which they have little control” (Palmer, Dunford, Akin, pg. 27).

The hospitality literature makes suggestions to reduce the effects of turnover; however it also states that the turnover problem is one that has to be endured. Because of this it is evident to see that the literature focuses more on dealing with and navigating the problem that will not go away.

The consultant played the role of the interpreter. “The interpreter image to managing change places the change manager in the position of creating meaning for other organizational members, helping them to make sense of various organizational events and actions” (Palmer, Dunford, Akin, pg. 31).

The consultant was able to perceive and present the problem to Gunter in a different light as something positive for Green Mountain. How did these assumptions influence prescriptions for dealing with “the turnover problem”?

Gunter began as a nurturer before he was influenced by the HR literature and the consultant. “Nurturers may organize, and facilitate organization qualities that enable positive self-organizing to occur” (Palmer, Dunford, Akin, pg. 32). The literature would have pushed Gunter to take a role as a navigator however, after reassessing the problem and viewing it differently he was able to view it positively and take the role of coach. Choose another change image and apply it to the “turnover problem.

” To what new insights does it lead?

The caretaker image, the (ideal) image of management is still one of control, although the ability to exercise control is severely constrained by a variety of forces, both internally and externally driven, that propel change relatively independent of a manager’s intentions” (Palmer, Dunford, Akin, pg. 28). Gunter could have taken this approach as caretaker and lowered turnover rate successfully. He could have structured arrangements in contracts, benefits, and coerced people to stay, but this was not what he wished to do.

If Gunter went this way he could have implemented these arrangements and let the company grow while letting the organization grow and run itself while he took the role of “shepherd”. This role may have helped make Green Mountain a great organization to work for with low turnover.

It would have been important for Gunter to generate a commitment to vision among employees, ensure that all the employees were developed and awarded accordingly, shift responsibility to management and empower employees, and finally plan for setbacks that may occur during the process.

Since caretakers do not have much influence over the direction of change, it would be important for Gunter to trust his team and allow them to make decisions and mistakes. What conclusions do you draw from this about the statement at the start of the chapter that “if we only draw upon one particular frame, then this will take us away from thinking about what is going on from an alternative perspective”? Before Gunter called in the consultant, he was looking at only one angle of the problem. That was the same view that the HR literature had as well as all of the hospitality industry.

It viewed turnover as something that happened maybe was a bit annoying, and it had to be put up with. Upon viewing how it could be a good thing rather than negative, the problem was not solved, but it did give a bright outlook to the potential Green Mountain had.

If they had not seen the opportunity to of releasing and hiring top notch people, they may have caused an even bigger problem for themselves where quality people would not be attracted to work there. If we only see things from one perspective we may miss opportunities to do something better.

It is always important to be able to see the potential in the negative as well as the positive. Having open mindedness as a manger can help view things from multiple perspectives.


Lucas, Suzanne. (November 21, 2012).

How much does it cost companies to loose employees? MoneyWatch.

Retrieved from: http://www. cbsnews. com/8301-505125_162-57552899/how-much-does-it-cost-companies-to-lose-employees/ Palmer, I. ; Dunford, R.

; Akin, G. (2009).

Managing organizational change: A Multiple Perspectives Approach. McGraw-Hill Higher Education.