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Article

Elizabeth Daniel, Elizabeth Hartnett and Maureen Meadows

Social media such as blogs are being widely used in organizations in order to undertake internal communication and share knowledge, rendering them important boundary…

Abstract

Purpose

Social media such as blogs are being widely used in organizations in order to undertake internal communication and share knowledge, rendering them important boundary objects. A root metaphor of the boundary object domain is the notion of relatively static and inert objects spanning similarly static boundaries. A strong sociomaterial perspective allows the immisciblity of object and boundary to be challenged, since a key tenet of this perspective is the ongoing and mutually constituted performance of the material and social. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The aim of the research is to draw upon sociomateriality to explore the operation of social media platforms as intra-organizational boundary objects. Given the novel perspective of this study and its social constructivist ontology, the authors adopt an exploratory, interpretivist research design. This is operationalized as a case study of the use of an organizational blog by a major UK Government department over an extended period. A novel aspect of the study is the use of data released under a Freedom of Information request.

Findings

The authors present three exemplar instances of how the blog and organizational boundaries were performed in the situated practice of the case study organization. The authors draw on the literature on boundary objects, blogs and sociomateriality in order to provide a theoretical explication of the mutually constituted performance of the blog and organizational boundaries. The authors also invoke the notion of “extended chains of intra-action” to theorize changes in the wider organization.

Originality/value

Adoption of a sociomaterial lens provides a highly novel perspective of boundary objects and organizational boundaries. The study highlights the indeterminate and dynamic nature of boundary objects and boundaries, with both being in an intra-active state of becoming challenging conventional conceptions. The study demonstrates that specific material-discursive practices arising from the situated practice of the blog at the respective boundaries were performative, reconfiguring the blog and boundaries and being generative of further changes in the organization.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

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Article

Frances O’Brien and Maureen Meadows

This paper describes case vignettes of the practice of vision development in eight financial services organisations. Important observations emerge about current practice;…

Abstract

This paper describes case vignettes of the practice of vision development in eight financial services organisations. Important observations emerge about current practice; for example, formal methodologies are rarely adopted in vision development; rather, more informal processes of debate are preferred. A major tension is observed in organisations that exist to provide a service, and yet do not involve the deliverers of that service in the process of vision development. Weaknesses in internal communication and staff buy‐in to the vision are identified, along with difficulties in completing the strategic development process.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 41 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article

Alan Betts, Maureen Meadows and Paul Walley

Call centres often experience large fluctuations in demand over relatively short periods of time. However, most centres also need to maintain short response times to the…

Abstract

Call centres often experience large fluctuations in demand over relatively short periods of time. However, most centres also need to maintain short response times to the demand. This places great emphasis upon capacity management practices within call centre operations. A total of 12 UK‐based call centres from one retail bank were studied to investigate how they managed forecasting, capacity management and scheduling tasks. Provides evidence of the difficulties associated with capacity management in call centres. Regression modelling is used to link forecasting and capacity planning practices to performance. Shows that random variation is a very important factor when assessing call centre performance. The results suggest that call centre managers can have only a small influence upon short‐term performance. Existing mathematical models, such as the Erlang queuing system methodologies, have only limited value as the assumptions concerning demand patterns made in their derivation contradict observations made within the 12 sites. Spiked demand patterns present special capacity management problems, including a direct trade‐off between high service levels and operator boredom. Conventional methods of flexing capacity cannot respond sufficiently well to some of the short‐term fluctuations in demand.

Details

International Journal of Service Industry Management, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-4233

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Article

Maureen Meadows and Sally Dibb

Market segmentation is widely regarded as a panacea for a variety of marketing ailments. Yet research in the financial services market highlights a number of significant…

Abstract

Market segmentation is widely regarded as a panacea for a variety of marketing ailments. Yet research in the financial services market highlights a number of significant barriers to the implementation of segmentation schemes. These barriers range from weaknesses in customer data and inappropriate organisational structure, to lack of marketing orientation and difficulties in obtaining a fit within the existing distribution structure. While the marketing literature acknowledges that these difficulties exist, there has been little formal analysis to capture the characteristics of these barriers. This problem is compounded by the considerable size and diversity of the sector which make it difficult to generalise about the implementation problems. This means that the extent of any barriers may vary in different areas of the financial services market and even in different organisations and that this variation may feasibly translate into different levels of segmentation usage. This research uses four short financial services case studies to examine the application of segmentation and consider the implementation barriers. Although the case studies cover a range of financial services companies, the analysis focuses on the provision of charge/credit cards by these organisations. The growth rate and increasing importance of the charge/credit card business make this a particularly pertinent area to analyse and allow a comparison with retail banking services more generally. The findings support the notion that a range of barriers to segmentation exists and shows how the importance of these barriers varies in different organisations.

Details

International Journal of Service Industry Management, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-4233

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Article

Barbara J. DeSanto

This paper discusses the contribution psychographics can make to the public relations process. While marketers and advertisers rely on building up groups through…

Abstract

This paper discusses the contribution psychographics can make to the public relations process. While marketers and advertisers rely on building up groups through individuals' consumer purchasing behaviour, public relations practitioners have traditionally assessed different groups' public opinion to provide guidance in developing communication. Psychographics offers practitioners a dimension between the individual and the group choices that takes into consideration the individuality of the marketing/advertising approach and the group mentality of the public opinion process. Correctly researched, psychographics can also add attitudinal and behavioural information to traditional demographic categories, allowing practitioners to tailor communication to match the attitudes and perceptions of their target publics. The key, of course, to making effective use of psychographics is carefully constructing the research to generate the genuine responses that accurately reflect target publics' feelings, motivations and values.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

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Article

Kathi Vian, Matt Chwierutt, Tessa Finlev, David Evan Harris and Maureen Kirchner

The Institute for the Future (IFTF) has collaborated with the Rockefeller Foundation and its Searchlight function to create a framework for broad engagement in strategic

Abstract

Purpose

The Institute for the Future (IFTF) has collaborated with the Rockefeller Foundation and its Searchlight function to create a framework for broad engagement in strategic thinking about ways to catalyze change in the lives of poor or vulnerable communities. This paper seeks to focus on this broad‐based approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Starting from the top‐down horizon scan of the foundation's Searchlight partners – a network of horizon scanning organizations – IFTF created a public database of signals of innovation and disruption in the domain of poverty and social change. This signals database was used to build a visual map of catalysts for change, creating a simple hierarchy of four catalyst types, each containing four action zones and a pivotal challenge. This map provided the language and framework for engaging a global community in a serious game to extend the vision of the Searchlight function and capture novel ideas for innovations that could improve the lives of those in marginalized communities.

Findings

With an estimated global reach of 160,000 views and 1,600 game players from 79 countries, the game produced more than 18,000 ideas about catalysts for change.

Originality/value

This framework of foresight (the signals database) to insight (the visual map of catalysts for change) to action (global strategic game) demonstrates a way to integrate top‐down expert foresight with bottom‐up strategic ideation on a global scale.

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Book part

Maureen L. Ambrose, Regina Taylor and Ronald L. Hess Jr

In this chapter, we examine employee prosocial rule breaking as a response to organizations’ unfair treatment of customers. Drawing on the deontic perspective and research…

Abstract

In this chapter, we examine employee prosocial rule breaking as a response to organizations’ unfair treatment of customers. Drawing on the deontic perspective and research on third-party reactions to unfairness, we suggest employees engage in customer-directed prosocial rule breaking when they believe their organizations’ policies treat customers unfairly. Additionally, we consider employee, customer, and situational characteristics that enhance or inhibit the relationship between employees’ perceptions of organizational policy unfairness and customer-directed prosocial rule breaking.

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Abstract

Details

Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2018
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-416-8

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Article

Marjorie Peregoy, Julia M. Rholes and Sandra L. Tucker

This is a resource guide for librarians who wish to gather books and other materials to use in promoting National Women's History Week or, as it will be soon, National…

Abstract

This is a resource guide for librarians who wish to gather books and other materials to use in promoting National Women's History Week or, as it will be soon, National Women's History Month. The emphasis is on history rather than on current women's issues. Most of the materials cited have appeared within the past ten years, but a few important older works are included as well.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 14 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

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Article

Jessica Keech, Maureen Morrin and Jeffrey Steven Podoshen

The increasing desire of consumers for socially responsible luxury products combined with fluctuating supplies in consumer markets are leading various industries to seek…

Abstract

Purpose

The increasing desire of consumers for socially responsible luxury products combined with fluctuating supplies in consumer markets are leading various industries to seek alternative sources to be able to meet the needs of its customers. One possible solution that may meet the demands of the future is lab-grown products. Because these products confer multiple benefits, this study aims to investigate the most effective ways to appeal to consumers by aligning the benefits of the products with their values as marketers seek to find effective promotion for these items.

Design/methodology/approach

We examine the effectiveness of an ethical positioning strategy for two types of luxury lab-grown (synthetic) products among high versus low materialism consumers in three experiments.

Findings

Findings suggest that a positioning strategy stressing product ethicality is more effective for low materialism consumers, whereas the strategy is less effective, and may even backfire, for high materialism consumers. The impact on social status consumers perceive from a lab-grown product explains why this effect occurs among low materialism consumers. Therefore, marketers should take caution and use specific appeals for different segments based on values such as consumers’ materialism levels.

Originality/value

If lab-grown products represent the wave of the future, it is important to understand how consumers will respond to this emerging technology and how promotion strategies may enhance their evaluation.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 37 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

Keywords

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