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F.A.T. Leadership

Podcast with Tippie College Executive in Residence, John J. Case

John J. Case John J. Case

A special leadership podcast with John Case from the NeuroLeadership Summit in New York

This is Peter Clayton reporting from the North American Leadership Summit. Our special conference leadership series is sponsored by Deloitte.

A former CEO, John J. Case has applied his leadership skills and personal philosophy of "Focus... Accountability... Teamwork" to lead two different companies to the forefunt of their respective industries; La-Z-Boy, Inc., and Elecrolux Home Care Products. He now draws on those experiences in his role as an Executive in Residence, with the Tippie College of Business at the University of Iowa and as a leadership consultant and guest lecturer.

At the NeuroLeadership Summit, John participated in a panel discusson on the neuroscience of leadership. One of the first things he told the audience of scientists, medical professionals, senior executives and leadership coaches was; "Every CEO will tell you that their people are their most important competitive advantage. With most companies, this is total bu**sh*t."

John's company, F.A.T. Leadership, introduces a simple leadership approach that bridges the gap and creates work environments that fully align and energize the organization to increased levels of performance. The key elements outlined in F.A.T. can be used in the smallest company or the largest, strategically or operationally, in a department, a division or a corporation to create measurable results.


As President of La-Z-Boy Branded Products, John J. Case used his leadership skills and personal philosophy of "Focus, Accountability and Teamwork" to help lead the company to the forefront of the home furnishings industry. In 2004 he took the experience and success accumulated during those years and began to apply them toward the Electrolux and Eureka brands of floor care products in his role as President and CEO of Electrolux Home Care Products North America.

Joining La-Z-Boy in 1977, Case held a variety of management positions with the company, including director of marketing and vice-president of retail development and services. In 1986, he was named vice president of marketing and was responsible for the iconic La-Z-Boy brand, which was successfully reinvented to appeal to younger, more affluent consumers. He also had responsibility for the various support programs for the growing La-Z-Boy proprietary store program. That store initiative, under the La-Z-Boy Furniture Galleries name, grew to be the largest network of branded furniture stores in the U.S. In 1998 he was named to Advertising Age magazine's "Top 100 Marketers" list.

In 1999 he was appointed president of La-Z-Boy Residential, the corporation's flagship division, taking on all P&L responsibility for this billion dollar enterprise. Following a significant corporate acquisition, Case was named president of the La-Z-Boy Upholstery Group in 2001, with oversight for eight upholstery divisions. In 2003, following yet another reorganization by the firm, he became responsible for all divisions using the La-Z-Boy name, including La-Z-Boy Residential, La-Z-Boy International, La-Z-Boy Contract and La-Z-Boy Retail, the entity charged with managing the corporately owned Furniture Galleries stores.

In 2004, Case joined Swedish based Electrolux AB, one of the largest home appliance producers in the world as President and CEO of Electrolux Home Care Products North America. The North American operation included both the Electrolux and Eureka consumer brands of floor care products. Under his guidance, North American Floor Care achieved a near record turnaround. In 2006 and again in 2007 it was named Wal-Mart Supplier of the Year in its category, from a field of nearly 150 companies.

A graduate of Michigan State University, Case also attended Eastern Michigan University's Graduate School of Education and completed the Advanced Management Program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a member of the advisory board of Asolo, Italy based CIMBA University and also served on the executive board of the Sam Walton Center For Retailing Excellence at the University of Arkansas.

The 2008 Summits were held in Sydney, Australia and New York City in the United States. The 2007 Summit was held in Asolo, Italy and brought together 55 open-minded, high-powered thinkers from many corners of the globe. The hope is to build a better science for leadership by integrating relevant neuroscientific research.

If you missed the summits or would like to review what you learned from these insightful leaders, the keynotes audio recordings are now available for purchase.

Peter Clayton

About Peter Clayton

Peter Clayton, Producer/Host, is an award-winning producer/director of radio, television, documentary, video, interactive and Web-based media who has created breakthrough media for a wide array of Fortune 100 clients.


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