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Book part
Publication date: 9 July 2010

Paula Jarzabkowski and Sarah Kaplan

An increasingly large group of scholars in Europe have begun to take a practice lens to understanding problems of strategy making in organizations. Strategy-as-practice

Abstract

An increasingly large group of scholars in Europe have begun to take a practice lens to understanding problems of strategy making in organizations. Strategy-as-practice research is premised on the notion that all social life is constituted within practices, and that practices and practitioners are essential subjects of study. Applying this lens to strategy foregrounds the mundane, everyday work involved in doing strategy. In doing so, it expands our definition of the salient outcomes to be studied in strategic management and provides new perspectives on the mechanisms for producing such outcomes. As strategy-as-practice scholars, we have been puzzled about how much more slowly the ideas in this burgeoning field have traveled from their home in Europe to the United States than have other ideas in strategic management traveled from the United States to Europe. In this chapter, we contribute some thoughts about the development of the strategy-as-practice field and its travels in academia.

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The Globalization of Strategy Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-898-8

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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Emmanuel D. Adamides

The purpose of this paper is to provide a micro-level, human-activity-centred interpretative framework for the way operations strategy is formed, linked and aligned with…

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6412

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a micro-level, human-activity-centred interpretative framework for the way operations strategy is formed, linked and aligned with corporate-level strategies, and to apply it to gain insights on these processes.

Design/methodology/approach

Relying on the theoretical foundations of social practice theory and actor-network theory, as well as on the analysis of the organisational realities of the operations strategy formation process embedded in pluralistic organisational contexts, a conceptual framework for analysing the production and alignment of operations strategy is developed. The framework is then used to guide field research for the analysis of an operations-led strategic initiative in a medium-sized agro-food company.

Findings

Operations strategy formation can be interpreted as an ongoing practical, distributed social activity of network (re)formation. Specific initiatives, or events, act as catalysts for the association of operations strategy formation practices with corporate-level ones, facilitating thus the current and future alignment of strategic content. Artefacts play an active role in the linking process.

Research limitations/implications

The research presented in this paper is pioneering as it is the first explicit consideration of operations strategy formation (process) as practical social activity (practices are the focus of analysis, not individuals’ choices), in which non-human agency (informational artefacts, etc.) is explicitly taken into account. For this purpose, a novel analytic framework was developed, which, however, need to be further tested to determine the exact conditions under which it is valid.

Practical implications

The framework improves the understanding of the organisational dynamics of operations strategy formation, its linking with, and institutionalisation in, other organisational processes and strategic discourses. Thus, it can assist in the analysis of operations-led strategic initiatives.

Social implications

Application of the results obtained can provide better workplaces.

Originality/value

For the first time: operations strategy formation is considered as a social activity by focusing on the strategists and managers’ practices; the role of documents, decision-support tools and other artefacts is surfaced; and the importance of introducing operations strategy formation practices carrying strategy content into corporate and business-level strategy processes and their role in the alignment of the two strategies is emphasised.

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Business Process Management Journal, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-7154

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Article
Publication date: 26 January 2010

Pedro S. Hurtado

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the elucidation of key concepts in the new field of strategyaspractice, in order to clarify the proper object of…

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1791

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the elucidation of key concepts in the new field of strategyaspractice, in order to clarify the proper object of inquiry/unit of analysis. It does so by evaluating the degree of incorporation of Pierre Bourdieu's “theory of practice” in the literature. Bourdieu is one of the pioneers of the “practice turn” in sociology.

Design/methodology/approach

A summary and graphical framework of the key concepts of Bourdieu's “theory of practice” are developed. A small “theoretical sample” (in the sense used in “grounded theory” methodology) of representative authors and articles in the new field of strategyaspractice is analyzed vis‐à‐vis the developed framework to probe and evaluate the degree of inclusion of Bourdieu's key concepts in the literature.

Findings

The incorporation of Bourdieu's key concepts is very limited and sometimes misinterpreted. His concept of “habitus” is generally cited, but its collective implications are not emphasized and neither is its connection to social structures and power. There is significant debate around the proper unit of analysis for the new field of strategyaspractice, as well as issues of the relation between micro and macro approaches to strategy.

Originality/value

The paper opens up new conceptual possibilities for the understanding and possible application of Bourdieu's “theory of practice.”

Details

Competitiveness Review: An International Business Journal, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1059-5422

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Article
Publication date: 9 June 2021

Chaturong Napathorn

This paper examines the human resource (HR) strategies and practices that are considered to be particularly beneficial for aging employees in organizations in Thailand…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper examines the human resource (HR) strategies and practices that are considered to be particularly beneficial for aging employees in organizations in Thailand, which is an underresearched developing economy, from an employee perspective and the implications of national institutions and cultures for the adoption and implementation of those HR strategies and practices across organizations.

Design/methodology/approach

The results of the study, based on a cross-case analysis of seven organizations across industries, are primarily drawn from structured interviews and focus groups with aging employees, field visits and a review of archival documents and web-based resources, including newspaper reports and magazines.

Findings

This paper proposes that HR strategies that are appropriate for managing aging employees in organizations in Thailand’s developing economy can be classified into four bundles: growth, maintenance, recovery and regulation. Each bundle of HR strategies consists of several HR practices that are appropriate for managing aging employees in organizations. In particular, from the perspective of aging employees, these HR practices help aging employees upgrade their skills, prepare them to have a sufficient amount of financial savings after retirement, ensure that they are safe, secure and healthy, help them feel that their tacit knowledge and experience are still valuable, and help them perform jobs that are appropriate for their physical health conditions. Additionally, the adoption and implementation of the proposed HR strategies and practices tend to be influenced by national institutions in terms of deficiencies in the national skill formation system, healthcare institutions, regulatory institutions and welfare state regime and by the national culture in terms of reciprocity and respect for elderly people (i.e. aging employees). However, there are five important HR practices that are specifically appropriate for managing aging employees in Thailand and other developing economies where the level of household debt and/or personal debt is high, where the increasing number of aging employees leads to high demand for medical services when the medical services offered by private hospitals are expensive, and where tacit knowledge and experience are important for creating and maintaining firms’ competitive advantage: (1) the facilitation of financial planning, (2) safety and health training, (3) annual health check-ups, (4) the appointment of aging employees as advisors/mentors and (5) knowledge transfer/job enrichment.

Research limitations/implications

One of the limitations of this research is its methodology. Because this research is based on case studies of seven firms located in Thailand, the findings may not be generalizable to all other firms across countries. Rather, the aim of this paper is to further the discussion regarding HR strategies and practices for managing aging employees in organizations. Another limitation of this research is that it does not include firms located in several other industries, including the agricultural and fishery industry and the financial services industry. Future research may explore HR strategies and practices for managing aging employees in organizations located in these industries. Moreover, quantitative studies using large samples of aging employees who work in firms across industries might also be useful in deepening the understanding of HR strategies and practices for managing aging/retired employees in organizations.

Practical implications

This paper provides practical implications for top managers and/or HR managers of firms in Thailand and other developing economies where the level of household debt and/or personal debt is high, where the increasing number of aging employees leads to high demand for medical services when the medical services offered by private hospitals are expensive, and where tacit knowledge and experience are important for creating and maintaining firms’ competitive advantage. In particular, the aging employees in this study identified the HR practices that they perceive as being appropriate for aging employees and that were already available in firms or that they expect their firms to have but are currently missing. In this regard, HR managers should take note of these good and appropriate HR practices to ensure that they become part of official, structured HR strategies and practices. This would ultimately help line managers and aging employees think more positively about the future of aging employees within the company and help retain invaluable aging employees over time.

Social implications

This paper provides social/policy implications for the government and/or relevant public agencies of Thailand and several other developing economies where the majority of aging people do not have sufficient savings to support themselves after retirement, especially when these countries are becoming aging societies, where the increasing demand for medical services cannot be adequately addressed by existing public hospitals while private hospitals’ medical prices are quite expensive, and where intellectual property right (IPR) protection laws are weak. That said, such governments should encourage firms located in their countries to implement these HR strategies and practices for developing, maintaining, deploying and supporting aging employees.

Originality/value

This paper aims to contribute to the literature on human resource management (HRM), specifically on HR practices for aging employees, in the following ways. First, this study is different from the previous studies in that it examines HR practices for managing aging employees from an employee perspective, while most of the previous studies in this area have focused on the management of such employees from an employer perspective. In this case, it is possible that formal company policies may be different from actual HR practices as perceived by aging employees (Khilji and Wang, 2006). Second, this paper explores the implications of national institutions and cultures of Thailand’s developing economy for the adoption and implementation of HR strategies and practices that are appropriate for managing aging employees in organizations. Finally, this paper examines HR practices that are specifically appropriate for managing aging employees in Thailand and other developing economies. The literature on HR practices for aging employees has overlooked developing economies, including the underresearched country of Thailand, as most of the studies in this area have focused on developed economies. In fact, developed economies and developing economies are very different in several respects, which may influence the HR strategies and practices that are appropriate for managing aging employees in organizations.

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International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Book part
Publication date: 9 July 2010

Kimmo Suominen and Saku Mantere

Although the managerial profession is subjugated by the discipline of strategic management, managers are not completely subordinate to it. Instead, they are able to use…

Abstract

Although the managerial profession is subjugated by the discipline of strategic management, managers are not completely subordinate to it. Instead, they are able to use the institutionalized discourse of strategic management, which is not their own product, in novel and creative ways. In this paper, we focus on the tactics that managers, as central strategy practitioners, use to consume strategy. Drawing on the work of the late Michel de Certeau as a theoretical lens, we conduct an empirical analysis of discourse, produced by 36 managers operating in three case organizations. This analysis allows us to elaborate on three different tactics of strategy consumption: instrumental, playful, and intimate. The results capture the reciprocal dynamics between the micro- and macrolevels of strategy discourse, that is, between strategic management as an institutional body of knowledge and the discursive practice of individual managers.

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The Globalization of Strategy Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-898-8

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Book part
Publication date: 22 July 2021

Neil Pollock, Luciana D’adderio and Martin Kornberger

The thesis that rankings do more than just make visible an organization’s position viz-á-viz a competitor, but stimulate new competitive rivalries, has provoked much…

Abstract

The thesis that rankings do more than just make visible an organization’s position viz-á-viz a competitor, but stimulate new competitive rivalries, has provoked much interest. Yet, to date, scholars lack an understanding of how such competitive rivalries unfold at the level of organizational strategy. Put simply, if competition is played out in rankings, how does this change the way organizations strategize? We answer this question through an ethnographic study of how information technology organizations engage with rankings. The strategic responses we observed included “leapfrogging a rival,” “de-positioning a competitor,” “owning a market,” and “encouraging a breakout,” which together are theorized as “ranking strategy.” This novel conceptualization extends understanding of the organizational response to rankings by showing how common reactions like gaming are only the tip of the iceberg of a broader array of strategic responses. The study also throws light on the different ways a ranking can pattern competitive rivalries, including creating more episodic forms of rivalry.

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Worlds of Rankings
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80117-106-9

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Book part
Publication date: 12 May 2017

Mitsuru Kodama

This chapter discusses the theoretical framework of the strategic knowledge creation process for realizing business innovation. It presents an explanation of the…

Abstract

This chapter discusses the theoretical framework of the strategic knowledge creation process for realizing business innovation. It presents an explanation of the relationship between the concept of the business community that originates with the formation of “Ba” (which is required in the formulation and execution of the strategic knowledge creation process) and the strategic knowledge creation process. The chapter also analyzes and examines the theoretical framework where the holistic leadership of practitioners achieves new business innovation through the formation of a business community, which is the organizational platform for practicing strategic knowledge creation, that is, the sharing, inspiration, creation, and stockpiling of knowledge.

In particular, the chapter presents a dynamic, theoretical framework where all practitioners at every level of management demonstrate holistic leadership across a three-layered structure (three practice layers) including the formal organization layer, the informal organization layer, and the psychological boundary layer to connect elements for formulating and executing macro and micro strategies and the business community, which has its origins in the formation of “Ba,” to drive the strategic knowledge creation processes.

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Developing Holistic Leadership
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-421-7

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Book part
Publication date: 8 June 2011

Ann Langley and Chahrazad Abdallah

Purpose – This chapter presents four different approaches to doing and writing qualitative research in strategy and management based on different epistemological…

Abstract

Purpose – This chapter presents four different approaches to doing and writing qualitative research in strategy and management based on different epistemological foundations. It describes two well-established “templates” for doing such work, and introduces two more recent “turns” that merit greater attention.

Design/Methodology/Approach – The chapter draws on methodological texts and a detailed analysis of successful empirical exemplars from the strategy and organization literature to show how qualitative research on strategy processes can be effectively carried out and written up.

Findings – The two “templates” are based on different logics and modes of writing. The first is based on a positivist epistemology and aims to develop nomothetic theoretical propositions, while the second is interpretive and more concerned to capture and gain insight from the meanings given to organizational phenomena. The two “turns” (the practice turn and the discursive turn) are not as well defined but are generating innovative contributions based on new ways of considering the social world.

Originality/Value – The chapter should be helpful to researchers considering qualitative methods for the study of strategy processes. It contributes by comparing different approaches and by recognizing that part of the challenge of doing qualitative research lies in writing it up to communicate its insights in a credible way. Thus while describing the different methods, the chapter also draws attention to effective forms of writing. In addition, it introduces and assesses two more recent “turns” that offer promising routes to novel insight as well as having particular ontological and epistemological affinities with qualitative research methods.

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Building Methodological Bridges
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-026-1

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Article
Publication date: 5 May 2021

Linda Höglund, Maria Mårtensson and Kerstin Thomson

The purpose of this paper is to enhance understanding of the conceptualisation and operationalisation of public value in practice by applying Moore's (1995) strategic…

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1797

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to enhance understanding of the conceptualisation and operationalisation of public value in practice by applying Moore's (1995) strategic triangle as an analytical framework to study strategic management and management control practices in relation to public value.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses an interpretative longitudinal case study approach including qualitative methods of document studies and interviews between 2017 and 2019.

Findings

In the strategic triangle, the three nodes of authorising environment, public value creation and operational capacity are interdependent, and alignment is a necessity for a strategy to be successful. But this alignment is vulnerable. The findings suggest three propositions: (1) strategic alignment is vulnerable to management control practices having a strong focus on performance measurements, (2) strategic alignment is vulnerable to standardised management control practices and (3) strategic alignment is vulnerable to politically driven management control practices.

Originality/value

With the strategic triangle as a base, this paper tries to understand what kind of management control practices enable and/or constrain public value, as there has been a call for this kind of research. In this way it adds to earlier research on public value, to the growing interest in the strategic triangle as an analytical framework in analysing empirical material and to the request for more empirical studies on the subject. The strategic triangle also embraces political factors, government agendas and political leadership for which there has also been a call for more research.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 34 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 24 June 2020

Claire-France Picard, Sylvain Durocher and Yves Gendron

This paper investigates the strategic processes surrounding the development, in accounting firms, of office (re)design projects and their overarching objectives.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper investigates the strategic processes surrounding the development, in accounting firms, of office (re)design projects and their overarching objectives.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors’ investigation relies on a series of interviews with individuals from different accounting firms involved in the decision process related to office (re)design projects. A triangular template made up of strategy, space and time informs the analysis, which the authors complement by relying on a strategy-as-practice integrated framework.

Findings

The authors found that accounting firm office (re)design projects are characterized by a strategic spatial agenda that aims to define and create present organizational time, in ways that embed a particular vision of the future. The analysis brings to light the interrelationships between strategy practitioners, strategy practices and strategic work through which the future is actualized. Office design processes involve not only the physical transformation of office space; they also promote a prominent agenda to modify, in the long run, office members' minds. Hence, office (re)design processes may be conceived of as a significant device in the socialization of accounting practitioners.

Research limitations/implications

This study underscores that spatial strategizing constitutes a major device through which the future is brought into the present. As such, the analysis provides insights not only into the processes through which space transformations take place, but also into their underlying agenda. The latter promotes the advent, in present time, of the organic office of the future.

Practical implications

This analysis brings to the fore a concrete illustration of how the strategy-space-time triangle operates in organizational life. The authors underline the key role played by strategists in charge of designing the office of the future.

Originality/value

This study extends the burgeoning literature whose analytical gaze is informed by the strategy, space, and time triangle.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 33 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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