BMA 211 - 1 a Peters and Waterman undertook a study of 62...

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1. a. Peters and Waterman undertook a study of 62 American companies with outstandingly successful performance resulting in their highly acclaimed publication In Search of Excellence” in 1983. Elaborate on the findings of this study (15marks) Peters and Waterman in their study that led to the publication of “ In Search of Excellence” found eight common themes which they argued were responsible for the success of the chosen companies surveyed. The book explores the art and science of management used by leading 1980s companies with records of long term profitability and continuing innovation.The book devotes one chapter to each of the themes. These themes which were the findings of the study are discussed below: i. A bias for action This is about getting things done. There has to be a free flow of information and open communication. The open and informal organization is more flexible and is able to take quicker action to institute changes needed to keep up in today’s business world. Although companies’ approach to decision making may be analytical, they emphasize the importance of experiments. It is believed that too many detailed analyses may be barriers against problem solving. Their approaches of solving problems and challenges are often experimental and dealt with immediately or in a relatively short time through establishment of cross functional teams where also external partners like customers and suppliers may participate. ii. Close to the customer Successful companies listen to the voice of the customer and use the voices as input for continuous improvements and new product and service development. Successful
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companies have an obsession about the customer particularly regarding to quality, reliability or service. Excellent product quality and reliability will make a satisfied customer and a great service will keep the customer coming. iii. Autonomy and entrepreneurship This means that all employees are expected to be creative and innovative in their daily jobs. A company that is flexible and supportive of the creative process will be successful in the long run. The excellent company must foster in-house competition with intense
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