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There is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families. Margaret Thatcher (1987). [The myth of individualism] gets in the way of understanding how the world actually works. And in doing so it lowers our chances of success, depresses our pay, limits our promotions, decreases the value we create, reduces our ability to get things done, and even jeopardizes our health, happiness, and welfare. And it closes off all the great possibilities of life. Wayne Baker (2000) Achieving Success Through Social Capital
Senge’s five ‘disciplines’: • 1. personal visions; • 2. surfacing implicit models of decision making; • 3. developing a shared vision; • 4. team learning; • 5. systems thinking • understanding how the relationships and interactions between the elements of the organization and the environment effect the whole through: • - seeing interrelationships and processes rather than things and snapshots; • - recognizing that individual ‘cogs’ are not to blame for poor performance; • - distinguishing which parts of the system have high impact on strategy and which are only minor details; • - focusing on areas of ‘high leverage’ – the 20% of things that will make 80% of difference; • - looking beyond solving ‘symptoms’ and ‘outcomes’ through popular ‘quick fixes’ or applying generic buzzwords.
de Geus defines the successful living company as having four aspects: • Sensitivity to the environment – an ability to learn and adapt. • Cohesion and identity – an ability to build a personality and a community for itself. • Tolerance and decentralization – awareness of its ecology, its ability to build constructive relationships with other entities, within and outside itself. • Conservative financing – an ability to govern its own life and evolution effectively.
The classical top-down view of strategy versus the emergent or ‘bottom-up’ perspective (Source, Cummings & Wilson, Images of Strategy (2003)).
1. Using figure 6.2 as a guiding framework, outline the living strategy dimensions that you believe have contributed to Team Ferrari’s eventual success?
1. Apply Senge’s “5 disciplines” and any other frameworks you think appropriate, to analyse what makes a group of musicians, like the one described above, successful. 2. Why does a group produce music that is different from, and often superior to, that produced by the individuals who make up the group? (The Rolling Stones are a good case in point). 3. Can you relate your answers in question 1 and 2 to how you might want to develop strategy in an organization?
1. Why might branches staffed with living beings (as opposed to other technological banking interfaces) become more important in a “knowledge society”? 2. What learning and social capital might accrue from these local branches? How could you feed this learning and social capital into strategy development?
1. What is the strategic value of Mark Wood and Prudential’s story-telling approach outlined in this case? 2. What does the HOPE mission provide that the conventional Pru vision described at the beginning of the case does not?
1. What strategic benefits might accrue to the members of this network? 2. What strategic benefits might accrue to Deutsche Bank through their involvement in developing and helping to maintain this network? 3. Can you foresee any negative effects that might emerge as WEB becomes more established? How would you manage these?
1. Outline the strategic advantages of the “relational dialogue” approach outlined in the third picture in figure 6-6.1? 2. Draw a diagram that shows the greater range of resources that the organizations described in Figure 6-6.2 might be able to tap into and how they are networked together. What superior capabilities might this provide that could give little “folkdevil” networks like this a competitive advantage over bigger more established companies? 3. How might bigger companies also seek to learn from what Matt and Naked and Folkdevil.com are advocating in this case?
1. Although the scientist’s did not arrive at an official “all purpose” oath, what learning and social capital might have accrued from the process of seeking one? 2. Despite this seemingly negative outcome, can you develop a strategic story based on these events that provides a positive message about the value of what members of this association do? 3. How did the change in the strategy making process help the soldiers get down the mountain even though their map was flawed? 4. Even though they did not apply Porter’s frameworks in the manner that they are generally presented, why might Power’s managers have benefited from the practice they engaged in as described above?
1. Where did Honda and 3M’s winning strategies described above come from? … 2. What skills do managers need to enable winning strategies to emerge in organizations? 3. In reality, do you think that the best strategies emerge from the bottom of an organization, are instilled from the top down, or both? 4. Briefly describe how Honda’s of 3M’s approaches could be evaluated according to … Kaplan and Norton’s balanced scorecard. 5. … do you think Honda’s implicit balancing of short-term financial performance with other aspects had an influence on their development of the approaches outlined above?