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Considers the Smart Manufacturing Techniques project designed to implement team‐based manufacturing cells in participating Australian companies. Draws on case studies of…
Considers the Smart Manufacturing Techniques project designed to implement team‐based manufacturing cells in participating Australian companies. Draws on case studies of the three participating groups to explore the nature of socio‐technical implementation processes. Argues that an improved understanding of socio‐technical systems is needed, and that action research is the best method to do that. Concludes by presenting a configuration process model and applies this to show how it can illuminate the implementation of team‐based cells in the three case study companies.
Following critiques of shareholder capitalism and calls for reform of the corporation, employee-owned firms have attracted public and government attention in the UK and…
Following critiques of shareholder capitalism and calls for reform of the corporation, employee-owned firms have attracted public and government attention in the UK and elsewhere, based on the view that these alternative organizations serve a broader public purpose. However, despite attempts to broaden the measures for evaluating organizations and take seriously the social effects of business decisions, we lack a holistic framework for evaluating this public purpose that addresses aspirations like participation, democracy, equality, solidarity, and strong community relations alongside financial resilience and profitability. This study proposes that a solution can be found in Selznick’s concept of “moral community.” Selznick argued that community, conceived as a response to the perceived unravelling of the social fabric, plays a vital role in countering the excesses of capitalism. Using this as a yardstick to evaluate employee ownership (EO) in the UK, the author argues that the EO organizational field is indeed an embodiment of a moral community. It successfully infuses a broad range of social values into economic pursuits, nurtures an inclusive sense of the “common good,” and mitigates the alienation resulting from an increasingly marketized society. At the same time, the EO moral community does not reject capitalism as such, aspiring to connect with and reform existing political, financial, and legal structures as opposed to positioning its own institutions as an alternative to them. There are, therefore, limits to the challenge that the EO community levels against the current socioeconomic order.
The Sanitary Committee of a certain County Council, strong with the strength of recent creation, have lately been animated by a desire to distinguish themselves in some way, and, proceeding along the lines of least resistance, they appear to have selected the Public Analyst as the most suitable object for attack. The charge against this unfortunate official was not that he is incompetent, or that he had been in any way negligent of his duties as prescribed by Act of Parliament, but simply and solely that he has the temerity to reside in London, which city is distant by a certain number of miles from the much favoured district controlled by the County Council aforesaid. The committee were favoured in their deliberations by the assistance of no less an authority than the “Principal” of a local “Technical School”;—and who could be more capable than he to express an opinion upon so simple a matter? This eminent exponent of scientific truths, after due and proper consideration, is reported to have delivered himself of the opinion that “scientifically it would be desirable that the analyst should reside in the district, as the delay occasioned by the sending of samples of water to London is liable to produce a misleading effect upon an analysis.” Apparently appalled by the contemplation of such possibilities, and strengthened by another expression of opinion to the effect that there were as “good men” in the district as in London, the committee resolved to recommend the County Council to determine the existing arrangement with the Public Analyst, and to appoint a “local analyst for all purposes.” Thus, the only objection which could be urged to the employment of a Public Analyst resident in London was the ridiculous one that the composition of a sample of water was likely to seriously alter during the period of its transit to London, and this contention becomes still more absurd when it is remembered that the examination of water samples is no part of the official duty of a Public Analyst. The employment of local scientific talent may be very proper when the object to be attained is simply the more or less imperfect instruction of the rising generation in the rudiments of what passes in this country for “technical education”; but the work of the Public Analyst is serious and responsible, and cannot be lightly undertaken by every person who may be acquainted with some of the uses of a test‐tube. The worthy members of this committee may find to their cost, as other committees have found before them, that persons possessing the requisite knowledge and experience are not necessarily indigenous to their district. Supposing that the County Council adopts the recommendation, the aspirations of the committee may even then be strangled in their infancy, as the Local Government Board will want to know all about the matter, and the committee will have to give serious and valid reasons in support of their case.
Discusses the long existing and confusing problems of establishing the relationship of who is, and who if not, a dependent worker. Reflects developments which have…
Discusses the long existing and confusing problems of establishing the relationship of who is, and who if not, a dependent worker. Reflects developments which have occurred in British law as it affects the employment field, plus an evaluation and analysis of some of the different types of employment relationships which have evolved by examining, where possible, the status of each of these relationships. Concludes that the typical worker nowadays finds himself in a vulnerable position both economically and psychologically owing to the insecurity which exists.
Data drawn from a longitudinal case study of change is used to examine contextual factors in the conception, uptake and operation of manufacturing cells. Attention is…
Data drawn from a longitudinal case study of change is used to examine contextual factors in the conception, uptake and operation of manufacturing cells. Attention is given to the external context of change and the importance of internal factors, such as the technical configuration of work, and the culture and history of plant operations, in shaping change outcomes. In charting a number of contextual dimensions, political process is also identified as a central element which overlaps and intertwines with context. Highlights how political process and context are important in shaping both the process of change (for example, local implementation strategy and employee responses to change) and change outcomes (for example, operating practices around the new cell arrangements).
Though prior studies have attempted to explore the various effects of managing information technology (IT) investment on firm performance, the mechanism through which…
Though prior studies have attempted to explore the various effects of managing information technology (IT) investment on firm performance, the mechanism through which management of IT impact on firm performance rests less clear. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of managing IT and business-IT alignment on firm performance.
Drawing on the resource-based theory and process theory, this study examines how managing IT impacts business-IT alignment and firm performance. The primary survey of 182 responses from IT and business managers from Sri Lanka was empirically examined.
The findings reveal that managing IT has a positive and strong impact on business-IT alignment and firm performance. Further, business-IT alignment partially mediates between managing IT investment and firm performance relationships.
Today, businesses have invested a massive amount of money in IT investment, and the return on this investment is always a serious concern for managers and industry practitioners. This study finding proposes meaningful insights on managing IT, business-IT alignment and firm performance.
This study opens up the black box on the above nomological linkage and contributes to the literature by extending the theoretical lenses while suggesting insightful and practical implications.
Some consumption activities are inherently interesting, pleasurable, gratifying and potentially important to consumers' lives. The primary aim of this paper is to further…
Some consumption activities are inherently interesting, pleasurable, gratifying and potentially important to consumers' lives. The primary aim of this paper is to further understanding of the role pleasurable consumption plays in consumers' lives.
To explore consumer value in pleasurable consumption experiences, the consumer value typology in conjunction with the subjective personal introspection (SPI) approach, is applied to experiences captured in travel photographs.
Analysis identifies all eight consumer value types with play, aesthetics and, surprisingly, spirituality the most evident. Pleasure is shown as much more than immediate, self‐gratification. Issues of competency, both active effort and appreciation of others' abilities, individual growth and development as well as sharing and feelings of relatedness are all important components of pleasure.
The use of consumer value as a conceptual framework in combination with a reflective tool such as SPI suggests not only alternative approaches for future research into pleasurable consumption, but also indicates some innovative strategies to put into practice.
Communicating the different value types prior to consumption and incorporating active reflection, possibly could assist in improving consumers' enjoyment of their experiences which, in turn, could reduce post‐purchase dissonance. Besides being used as a promotional tool to increase customer satisfaction, the consumer value framework could facilitate product bundling and possibly expand product benefits.
The paper illustrates the multidimensional nature of pleasure through two research methods infrequently used, SPI and the photo essay, positioning both as valuable tools for exploring and enhancing pleasurable consumption.
While much attention has recently been focused on the problems facing Internet start‐ups, the challenge of e‐business affects a much broader constituency of organisations…
While much attention has recently been focused on the problems facing Internet start‐ups, the challenge of e‐business affects a much broader constituency of organisations. For established companies, the key challenge is one of change. Such companies must rethink fundamental aspects of company strategy, which may lead to a radical overhaul of existing ways of doing business, with company structure and culture becoming much more customer‐focused. Resistance at all company levels may need to be overcome, with a need to build commitment and consensus around e‐business strategies. However, companies must also deal with a paradox in e‐business change. As the “dot.com” crash showed, there are many strengths in “bricks and mortar” companies. Evolving a new business model based around “e‐enablement” must therefore avoid the “baby and bathwater syndrome”. Only by recognising and rising to these challenges and dilemmas, and devoting sufficient time, resources and expertise to them, will companies make a success of their e‐business ventures.
Draws on a range of research into the problems of accommodating technical change in complex organizations to highlight the issue of cultural inter‐operability. Global…
Draws on a range of research into the problems of accommodating technical change in complex organizations to highlight the issue of cultural inter‐operability. Global economic integration is growing rapidly, facilitated in part by information and communication technologies. As an increasing proportion of organizations spans national and regional cultures significant cultural differences become intra‐organizational differences. Greater economic interaction implies a need for appropriate standards for technology and procedures, however; a number of significant new players in the world system are operating in a technical context and to sets of standards, official and de facto, which have been shaped by a predominantly Western model of business information technology. To gain the potential benefits of emerging technologies, the conflict between the needs of developers and users must be dealt with and the technical focus of information technology must be broadened to encompass cultural concerns at both organizational and social levels. Presents some case study material to indicate the key role of the balance between cultural and institutional constraints and technical capability within organizations.