The sequence observed from objective function setting

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Unformatted text preview: t among organizational members was the outstanding feature of RACC’s strategy-making process. The sequence observed, from objective function setting to participative strategy-making, ending in agreed upon objectives from which strategic initiatives were generated, is shown schematically in Figure 2. This refined framework presents a multi-level interplay between middle managers (MM) and top managers (TM). Top management sets and conveys the objective function, which is grounded in the organization and perceived as ambitious and 13 feasible. The interaction between participation and conveyance produces dialogue and deliberation between top management and lower managerial levels. Thus, the objective function and its subsequent strategic objectives build into a shared understanding or agreed upon guidelines. Subsequently, strategic initiatives are generated in compliance with strategic objectives. The dotted box for strategic initiatives denotes that this segment’s finding will be discussed in the next section. Evidence at RACC suggests that this participative practice strikes the very purpose of strategy-making. Through strategy-making, strategy is not only formed, but also endorsed by lower level managers. In addition, thanks to this same pattern of interaction between managerial levels, the system is open to revise strategic objectives when needed. In contrast to our ex ante framework, this framework does not show three sub-processes. Though the objective function setting (process 1) turns out, as expected, to be driven by top management (TM), it converges into participative objective setting and results in agreed strategic objectives. At this stage, TM interacts with middle managers (MM). Process 2 (issue selling and idea generation) happens partly within participation and partly within strategic initiatives; while process 3 (managerial work and project development) does not appear as a key process. On the contrary, during participation in strategy-making the emphasis was placed on analysis of the potential future and not on current projects. In addition, managerial interplay was found to occur periodically, through tracking and revision, rather than just once, as had been expected. Figure 2. Diagram for Strategy-Making TM Objective function setting TM Conveyance TM TM MM Participation in StrategyMaking MMM Strategic Objective Setting by Agreement Strategic Inititative Tracking TM MM 14 Patterns in Strategic Initiatives Using the Bower-Burgelman scheme, we inductively interpreted field data for the evolution of fourteen strategic initiatives at RACC. Our aim was to build theory on how strategic intent was translated into action through the development of strategic initiatives. An example of a critical path, as was developed for all initiatives, is shown in the examples in Figure 3, and a brief description of each initiative is given in Table 2. The data for each initiative, obtained through interviews and company documents, was placed into the matrix, according to whe...
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