The value of generating change
An Enron case study

Below is a list of Business Case Studies case studies organised alphabetically by company. To view more companies, please choose a letter from the list below.

Page 5: Corporate structure

Enron’s organisational development follows a pattern suited to a dynamic organisation. The organisation initially started out as a pipeline company. However, it has evolved into production, operating, marketing and finance groups. These groups are organised in small business units which compete independently and focus on their individual businesses, yet keep an eye out for synergies.

As Enron employees develop new ideas, they break them down into smaller components and assess the risks and rewards involved in each of these parts. New ideas are evaluated by a range of people in the organisation in order to provide valuable feedback.

Corporate philosophy

Enron has a central corporate philosophy which is easy to understand once you are familiar with the background and history of the organisation. First and foremost, Enron is a market-focused organisation, i.e. it focuses on customer needs and requirements. Enron’s vision statement sets out the core beliefs of the organisation:

“We begin with a fundamental belief in the inherent wisdom of open markets. We are innovative. We are all about creating energy. We operate safely and with concern for the environment. We treat others as we would like to be treated ourselves. We are satisfied with nothing less than the very best in everything we do.”

Key aspects of this vision are that:

  • Economic activities are better sorted out by open markets than by governments. Customers should be free to make a choice in their energy purchases.
  • Enron is a laboratory for innovation. The company therefore employs people who will make good use of opportunities provided to develop themselves within the organisation. Individuals are encouraged to be creative and to contribute to generating dynamism within the organisation.
  • Diversity is regarded as an essential attribute of the organisation. Enron believes in employing individuals from a diversity of backgrounds, aspirations and orientations, in order to maximise the input of new ideas.
  • The success of the organisation is measured by the success of Enron’s customers. Enron believes in partnership so that progress can be shared with customers.
  • Enron believes that one of the best ways it can create ‘added value’ is through respect for the environment, which will enhance the lives of present and future generations.
  • Enron believes that everything it does can change people’s lives in significant ways. Enron is reinventing the fundamentals of the energy business by providing energy at better value and in more usable forms than it has been provided before. Enron is changing the way people and companies think about energy.

Everything Enron does is about change - reinventing the organisation and the way it operates has become a habit. Innovative employees assume that the market will change every day and believe that change is to be accepted, welcomed and generated. Work environments at Enron are designed to facilitate discussions and idea exchanges.

Enron | The value of generating change