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Unformatted text preview: Catalonia, one of the most prosperous regions in Spain. Since then, although its 1 We lean on the concept of strategy formation (Burgelman, 1988; Floyd and Wooldridge, 2000; Mintzberg
and McHugh, 1985; Slevin and Covin, 1997; Wooldridge and Floyd, 1990), which integrates thinking and
acting in an ongoing manner and extends strategizing beyond the formulation-implementation dichotomy. 6 foundational goal has not changed, the organization has been able to renew itself several
times. From the outset, RACC offered a number of related services to facilitate daily use of
motor vehicles, such as roadside assistance, car insurance, car servicing, assistance in
obtaining driving licenses and permits to drive abroad. RACC’s business is similar to that of
other automobile clubs such as the American Automobile Association. They also own
facilities such as a car-racing circuit and organize sporting events such as the Formula 1
From 1986 to 1995, RACC established a number of business units and focused on
key business areas, such as assistance, insurance, sports. The emphasis was on getting closer
to a broader base of car users through improved service offerings within Catalonia. During
this same period it expanded its membership from 86,000 to 320,000 and built up the scale of
its activities to become an institution covering the whole of Catalonia. Competition had
increased in two directions. On the one hand, another automobile club had started operating
in Spain, and on the other, a number of specialized companies were offering competitive
services within each segment.
The appointment of Josep Mateu as CEO in October 1995 marked a turning point.
Mateu stressed the need to achieve a certain professional management profile, with proactive
managers trained in strategic management. At that point, though a strategic plan was in place,
it offered only “wishful thinking”, as Josep Mateu put it. With Mateu’s arrival the primary
objective became to put the organization in order. From then on, the objective function, in the
form of strategic intent, became to expand aggressively beyond Catalonia towards the whole
of Spain. Next, a new strategic exercise became necessary, and was completed by mid-2000.
A clear strategic intent was formulated, and the participation of all layers of the organization
was sought. The unit chosen to shape the strategic renewal was that of the project, each
project being formulated and developed by a different team. This final stage is the one we
By the year 2000, RACC had become a group of twelve companies, each focused on
a business area around the concept of mobility. Its management structure recognized three
dimensions: business areas (membership, assistance, insurance brokering, travel, sports, and
other member services); geographical operations (distribution units in four regions within
Spain); and functional areas. Also, strong corporate service units were established (including
corporate development, organization and quality, and auditing). With thirty-two executives in
key management positions and a total of 1,050 employe...
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- Spring '14