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Book part
Publication date: 23 December 2005

Kalle Pajunen

The lack of systematic methods for reducing the complex reality has hampered many of the contributions that processual research might have produced. This paper presents a…

Abstract

The lack of systematic methods for reducing the complex reality has hampered many of the contributions that processual research might have produced. This paper presents a methodology for processual strategy research that offers a systematic approach for causal explanation across complex sequences of events and enables theorization about underlying causal mechanisms driving the processes. In addition, a comparative analysis of two organizational decline and turnaround processes is presented in order to illuminate how the methodology is able to generate a substantial advancement in knowledge by indicating the causal mechanisms underlying the decline and turnaround processes. The findings show that the turnaround is produced by four causal mechanisms that cumulatively and interdependently work against the mechanism of decline.

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Strategy Process
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-340-2

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Book part
Publication date: 21 July 2016

Ramkrishnan (Ram) V. Tenkasi and Yehia Kamel

A neglected area of research in ODC is the turnaround of poorly performing firms such as those under bankruptcy protection. We researched 142 companies that attempted…

Abstract

A neglected area of research in ODC is the turnaround of poorly performing firms such as those under bankruptcy protection. We researched 142 companies that attempted reorganization under bankruptcy protection between 1983 and 2003. Firms deployed one or more of four distinct strategies to turnaround: rationalizing existing resources, developing existing resources, generating new resources, and investing in future resources. Firms that generated new resources, and developed and rationalized existing resources, had the highest probability of emergence. Interestingly firms that sustained their turnaround post-emergence invested in future resources in addition to generating, developing, and rationalizing resources. Implications for ODC are discussed.

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Research in Organizational Change and Development
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-360-3

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Article
Publication date: 5 December 2020

Mampe Kumalo and Caren Brenda Scheepers

Organisational decline has far-reaching, negative emotional and financial consequences for staff and customers, generating academic and practitioner interest in turnaround

Abstract

Purpose

Organisational decline has far-reaching, negative emotional and financial consequences for staff and customers, generating academic and practitioner interest in turnaround change processes. Despite numerous studies to identify the stages during turnarounds, the findings have been inconclusive. The purpose of this paper is to address the gap by defining these stages, or episodes. The characteristics of leaders affect the outcome of organisational change towards turnarounds. This paper focusses, therefore, on the leadership requirements during specific episodes, from the initial crisis to the full recovery phases.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 11 semi-structured interviews were conducted with executives from the public sector in South Africa who went through or were going through turnaround change processes and 3 with experts consulting to these organisations.

Findings

Contrary to current literature in organisational change, this study found that, in these turnaround situations, leadership in the form of either an individual CEO or director general was preferable to shared leadership or leadership distributed throughout the organisation. This study found four critical episodes that occurred during all the public service turnarounds explored, and established that key leadership requirements differ across these episodes. The study shows how these requirements relate to the current literature on transactional, transformational and authentic leadership.

Practical implications

The findings on the leadership requirements ultimately inform the selection and development of leaders tasked with high-risk turnaround change processes.

Originality/value

Four episodes with corresponding leadership requirements were established in the particular context of public sector turnaround change processes.

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Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 34 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

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Article
Publication date: 28 December 2020

Mohammad Reza Moniri, Akbar Alem Tabriz, Ashkan Ayough and Mostafa Zandieh

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework for assessing the risks of turnaround projects in upstream oil process plants.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework for assessing the risks of turnaround projects in upstream oil process plants.

Design/methodology/approach

This study represents a new hybrid framework for turnaround project risk assessment. First, according to experts’ opinions, the project risks were identified using interviews and brainstorming. The most important risks selected by experts and a hybrid multiple-attribute decision-making (MADM) method used to assess and prioritize them. The proposed MADM method uses fuzzy step-wise weight assessment ratio analysis (SWARA) and fuzzy evaluation based on distance from average solution (EDAS) methods based on trapezoidal fuzzy numbers.

Findings

In this research, 28 usual risks of turnaround projects are identified and 10 risks are then selected as the most important ones. The findings show, that among the risks of upstream oil industry turnaround projects from the perspective of experts, the risk of timely financing by the employer, with an appraisal score of 0.83, has the highest rank among the risks and the risk of machine and equipment failure during operation, with an appraisal score of 0.04, has the lowest rank.

Research limitations/implications

The risk analysis based on inputs collected from the experts in the Iranian upstream oil industry, and so the generalization of the results is limited to the context of developing countries, especially oil producer ones. However, the proposed risk analysis methodology and key insights developed can be useful for researchers and practitioners in any other process industry everywhere.

Originality/value

A novel framework for risk assessment is introduced for turnaround projects in the oil industry using MADM methods. There is no literature on using MADM methods for turnaround project risk analysis in the oil and gas industries. Furthermore, this paper presents a hybrid fuzzy method based on SWARA and EDAS.

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Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology , vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1726-0531

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Article
Publication date: 29 June 2020

Yan Tao, Gaoyan Xu and Hong Liu

This paper extends the current understanding of the retrenchment-–turnaround relationship in declined companies by introducing a compensation gap view. It argues that the…

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1007

Abstract

Purpose

This paper extends the current understanding of the retrenchment-–turnaround relationship in declined companies by introducing a compensation gap view. It argues that the effectiveness of the retrenchment strategy is contingent on reducing the executive-employee compensation gap in the turnaround process.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing from a two-stage turnaround model and insights from the literature on executive-employee compensation gap, we develop and test a theoretical model that explains how five attributes, which refer to executive-employee compensation gap, asset retrenchment, cost retrenchment, ownership and size, affect the outcome of the organizational turnaround. This paper uses the fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) method and based on the samples of 112 listed companies that experience the decline between 2005 and 2013.

Findings

This paper concludes two valid causal paths and finds that small companies with small executive-employee compensation gap have a higher likelihood of successful turnaround when they implement cost or asset retrenchment actions. As for large state-owned companies, they should reduce the costs and maintain a small executive-employee compensation gap. An excessive compensation gap can be problematic, which could impair the organizational ability to cope with adversity and decline.

Research limitations/implications

First, this paper taps the vital role of employees in the turnaround process besides the mainstream “organizational decline-layoffs” logic, which hints a new human resource management strategy when organizations are facing decline. Second, this paper reveals the theoretical linkage between pay dispersion, internal stakeholder and organizational resilience. Third, as a methodological contribution, we introduce fsQCA, overcoming the shortcomings of turnaround strategy research with case and regression analysis and breaking through the paradigm of “specific factor-turnaround.”

Practical implications

Organizational turnaround is a systematic process that constitutes multiple factors together. When organizations take the asset retrenchment to stop bleeding, reducing the executive-employee compensation gap will help enhance employee's cognition of organizational values and strategic goals, eliminate feelings of exploitation in retrenchment implementation and thus effectively promote turnaround. This paper also provides a basis for executive compensation restrictions and re-examines pay dispersion and economic inequality.

Originality/value

This study sheds some light on the importance of the executive-employee compensation gap in retrenchment strategy and contributes to both organizational turnaround and pay dispersion theories. Also, it reveals the theoretical linkage between internal stakeholders, organizational resilience and long-term orientation.

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Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 33 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2008

Joseph Murphy

The purpose of this paper is to review the literature from the organizational sciences to develop a grounded narrative of turnaround leadership.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the literature from the organizational sciences to develop a grounded narrative of turnaround leadership.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is a review of literature, which employs a ten‐step process to explore and make sense of the turnaround literature from the organizational sciences. The paper relies on strategies appropriate for document analysis, and borrows analytic strategies (e.g. memoing, coding) employed with interview data.

Findings

The paper finds three defining themes that flow from the review of empirical and theoretical work on organizational recovery in firms, non‐educational public agencies, and not‐for‐profit organizations: leadership as the critical variable in the turnaround equation; change of leadership as a generally essential element in organizational recovery; and type of leadership, but not style, as important in organizational reintegration work.

Practical implications

The paper posits that the literature on turning around failing organizations in sectors outside of education provides blueprints for recovery activity in failing schools. The implications for turnaround leadership are particularly strong.

Originality/value

This paper is the first systematic effort to mine research in the corporate, not‐for‐profit, and public sectors to develop insights for leadership in failing schools.

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Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 46 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2010

Michael A. Abebe

The purpose of this study is to empirically examine the effect of top management team (TMT) characteristics on corporate turnaround performance in declining firms under…

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1901

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to empirically examine the effect of top management team (TMT) characteristics on corporate turnaround performance in declining firms under conditions of environmental stability and turbulence.

Design/methodology/approach

Theoretical hypotheses were developed and tested using data collected from 98 US manufacturing firms that experienced performance decline and turnaround during the periods 1990‐1994 and 1995‐2000 respectively. Data were collected from the COMPUSTAT database and annual filings and analyzed using a moderated regression analysis.

Findings

The results of moderated regression analysis indicate an adverse effect of long organizational tenure on corporate turnaround, especially in turbulent environments. Hence, if was found that the effect of top team composition on corporate turnaround varies depending on the environmental context.

Research limitations/implications

The study contributes to the ongoing corporate turnaround research by examining the interplay between TMT characteristics and turnaround performance under different environmental contexts. Consequently, the findings of the study suggest that the environmental context in which declining firms operate matter just as much as the nature and characteristics of their top team in determining the success of their turnaround attempt.

Practical implications

The results of the study shed some light on corporate governance issues, specifically on the importance of matching top management change efforts in declining firms with the respective environmental context.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the corporate turnaround literature by addressing the recent call for research in the TMT‐turnaround relationship under environmental contingencies (i.e. environmental stability/turbulence).

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Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article
Publication date: 26 October 2010

Syahida Binti, Zeni and Rashid Ameer

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the applicability of developed country turnaround predication models as well as an “in country” developed turnaround prediction…

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1885

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the applicability of developed country turnaround predication models as well as an “in country” developed turnaround prediction model for a sample of financially distressed Malaysian companies over the period of 2000‐2007.

Design/methodology/approach

Multiple Discriminant Analysis (MDA) technique was used to determine companies' financial health.

Findings

It was found that severity of financial distress, profitability, liquidity and size are significant predictor variables in determining turnaround potential of distressed companies in Malaysia. The findings show that developed country turnaround predication models have relatively better prediction accuracies compared to turnaround model based on Malaysian firm‐level data. These models' prediction accuracies were gauged by comparing their predicated successful/failed turnaround companies (Type I and II errors) with actual classification of successful/failed turnaround companies by the Bursa Malaysia, and it was found that developed country models were better than model developed using Malaysian data in identifying correctly some of the actual successful turnaround companies.

Practical implications

The paper's comparisons show that Bursa's methodology is appropriate in classifying and monitoring the distressed companies.

Originality/value

This is believed to be the first paper to examine turnaround of the companies in Malaysian context.

Details

Journal of Financial Reporting and Accounting, vol. 8 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1985-2517

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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2009

Michael A. Abebe

The purpose of this paper is to empirically examine the relationship between chief executive officer characteristics and corporate turnaround performance of declining…

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1273

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to empirically examine the relationship between chief executive officer characteristics and corporate turnaround performance of declining firms attempting turnaround.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample of 60 US manufacturing firms that experience severe performance decline and turnaround from 1985 to 2000 are selected from a population of declining manufacturing firms in the COMPUSTAT database. Data on leadership characteristics are collected and analyzed using ordinary least square regression analysis and ANOVA.

Findings

The general findings of the study provide empirical support for the upper echelons theory that emphasizes leadership characteristics as predictors of organizational outcomes. More specifically, the findings suggest the strong and adverse influence of long executive tenure on corporate turnaround performance. The findings also indicate that executives with output‐related functional background positively influence corporate turnaround performance in declining firms attempting turnaround.

Research limitations/implications

The findings of this paper have important implications for corporate governance issues in declining firms attempting turnaround. In addition, the findings also lend further empirical support for the role of strategic leadership in shaping organizational outcomes especially under declining environmental conditions.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the turnaround literature by providing empirical evidence on the role of strategic leadership in formulating and implementing turnaround strategies in declining firms. It also provides further support for the upper echelons perspective and strategic decision making.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

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Article
Publication date: 16 February 2015

Sunitha Panicker and Mathew J. Manimala

The purpose of this paper is to report on a research study aimed at comparing the causes of organisational decline and turnaround strategies involved in cases of…

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1138

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report on a research study aimed at comparing the causes of organisational decline and turnaround strategies involved in cases of successful and unsuccessful turnarounds, with a view to identifying the differences, if any, between the two groups, which in turn is expected to provide useful information to academics, practitioners and policy makers.

Design/methodology/approach

Since turnaround is a business phenomenon of general interest, their stories are often published in business periodicals, which are a rich source of data on them. In order to tap this data source, the present paper employed a method of content analysis for the proposed investigation on the cause of organisational decline and turnaround strategies used. In order to quantify the data, a three-point scale was developed, where the presence of a cause/strategy is rated as “3”, its ambivalence as “2” and its absence as “1”, whose validity was assessed through the inter-rater agreement indices. The data thus generated are amenable to statistical analyses, using which the more commonly prevalent causes of organisational decline and the strategies commonly employed for turnaround by the successful and unsuccessful companies are identified.

Findings

The findings of the present study have generated a few useful insights. First, the primary causes for organisational decline are the internal weaknesses of the organisation; in fact the external changes can adversely affect the organisation only if it is internally weak. Second, organisational decline caused by multiple factors (which is usually the case) can be managed effectively by adopting a variety of strategies; hence a single-pronged strategy is often found to be ineffective. Third, the more successful turnarounds had a diverse portfolio of strategies including those of institution-building, often employed in a phased manner, consistent with the stage theories of turnaround.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations of this research arise mainly from the generation of data from published sources and the consequent biases, which can be managed, to a large extent, by using multiple sources for the same case for reducing the publishers’ biases as well as by having multiple raters for identifying the researcher’s biases, if any.

Originality/value

The study has highlighted the need for addressing the internal causes of organisational decline on a priority-basis rather than blaming the external factors, besides pointing to the need for adopting a variety of strategies for dealing with the diversity of causes affecting the organisation’s health, particularly the need for institutionalising the changes. These findings can be of help especially to turnaround managers and policy-makers in dealing with organisational decline and thus contribute to the creation and enhancement of economic value.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

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