Case | HBS Case Collection | June 1994

Nicolas G. Hayek

by John J. Gabarro and Dominik E.D. Zehnder


With very few exceptions, established premium producers eventually begin to lose market share and profitability to new, dynamic competitiors. These companies respond by focusing on their old success strategy without regard to changes in the marketplace. This is what happened to the Swiss watch industry, until Swatch CEO Nicolas G. Hayek turned it around. This case analyzes Hayek's commitment to change, his innovative vision, his charismatic leadership, his alignment strategies, and the actions he took to align the organization to the new vision.

Keywords: Change Management; Leadership Style; Leading Change; Alignment; Innovation Leadership; Management Teams; Apparel and Accessories Industry;


Gabarro, John J., and Dominik E.D. Zehnder. "Nicolas G. Hayek." Harvard Business School Case 495-005, June 1994.