MGT3LWM Leadership Case Study

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The purpose of this report is explain and critically analyse leaders and leadership styles particularly after a crisis.

Task details

Please read the abstract below and write a report addressing all the questions.



The case study ‘Jacinda Ardern – Leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic’ describes how New Zealand under the leadership of its youngest woman Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, successfully managed to contain the spread of the corona virus. The case details the political career of Ardern and highlights the various measures that were put in place to fight the pandemic. It then describes Ardern’s leadership style and how a sensible and firm decision-making approach through an early lockdown helped the country control the spread of the infection. Ardern’s empathetic and casual conversations over Facebook Live with the general public and the regular health updates she gave helped in building support for the lockdown despite the challenges New Zealanders had to face.

The case also highlights the evidence-based scientific approach taken by Ardern and the trust she imposed in the public health experts to decide on testing, containment, and treatment. The case ends with the economic and political challenges that lie ahead for Ardern and New Zealanders in terms of lack of jobs, rising debt, absence of revenues from the Tourism sector, and the national elections.


On June 08, 2020, the Government of New Zealand lifted all COVID-19 restrictions and declared the nation virus-free, two weeks ahead of the planned date of June 22. The decision to remove all restrictions was taken after no new cases were reported for 17 days. Jacinda Ardern (Ardern), Prime Minister of New Zealand, announced, “While the job is not done, there is no denying this is a milestone. So can I finish with a very simple, ‘Thank you, New Zealand’


Ardern was born Jacinda Kate Laurel Ardern on July 26, 1980, in Hamilton. She was the second of two daughters and raised as a Mormon but left the church in 2005. She grew up in Morrinsville where she attended primary and secondary school and later in Muruparaa in the southeast of Auckland on New Zealand’s North Island. She matriculated to the University of Waikato in 1999 and later completed a Bachelor of Communication Studies in Public Relations and Political Science at Waikato Management School from 1999 to 2001.


Ardern had showcased her ability to manage a crisis effectively when an attack on a mosque in Christchurch left 51 dead in 2018. But the Covid-19 crisis was a lot more challenging, and any policy decision would impact the entire population and the livelihoods of people. Ardern decided to act early and ‘go hard’. She was very clear in the steps needed to manage the crisis and was happy to take science-backed decisions. She ensured that there were regular casual conversations over Facebook Live during which she addressed the people on health and mental wellbeing and motivated them during the lockdown period.


New Zealand recorded 1,154 confirmed cases and 22 deaths from Covid-19 since late February till the time the lockdown was lifted. (See Exhibit IV for a comparison between countries). Though Ardern was widely praised for handling the crisis well, the success had to also be attributed to the impressive collective effort by public-health institutions, opposition politicians, and New Zealanders as a whole, who had largely abided by the social-distancing restrictions.


  1. Examine the impacts of a global pandemic and environmental disasters on the macroeconomic environment of nations in a globalized economy.
  2. What leadership style did Jacinda Arden display during the crisis? What does this say about the importance of an empathic approach to leadership?
  3. Can you explain what crisis communication is? And why is it an important aspect of leadership?
  4. How did Jacinda Arden manage the crisis?
  5. What personality traits did she display and what was the impact?
  6. Reflection- if you were a leader during the pandemic, what would you have done? Assess Jacinda Arden handling of the crisis and whether you would have done things differently?

Structure the responses in a report format

  • Title page
    · Table of contents
    · Introduction
    · Main body – answering all the required questions
    · Conclusion
    · References
    · Appendices (if applicable)

Resources and readings relevant to the assessment

Students should use at least 10 references including academic journals, books, industry sources and newspaper articles (media sources)


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