Selecting the best strategy from among a number of identified alternatives is an important part of any strategy process. Often this involves a difficult choice between the values to set and the trade‐offs to be made. Even swaps is a rational and simple method for making trade‐offs that help the decision maker in considering the value of one objective in terms of another. In this study, the principles of even swaps method are presented and its use is illustrated by applying it to a case of strategy selection in a rural enterprise in Finland. The strategy was chosen from among identified alternatives and it was evaluated with respect to the defined objectives and taking a number of possible future scenarios into account. According to the experiences gained from the case study, the decision makers found the trade‐offs difficult to make. However, they noted that the even swaps method made this difficult task more understandable by indicating the concrete changes in the objectives, allowing them to focus their mental energy on deciding the real value of the alternatives. As the swapping process is transparent, the method also supported communication and learning.
Kajanus, M., Ahola, J., Kurttila, M. and Pesonen, M. (2001), "Application of even swaps for strategy selection in a rural enterprise", Management Decision, Vol. 39 No. 5, pp. 394-402. https://doi.org/10.1108/00251740110395688Download as .RIS
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