Archives for July 2011

Can we not improve on the Balanced Scorecard?

Tweet Despite criticisms emanating from academic circles in the years after it was first launched, the Balanced Scorecard has reigned as the undisputed champion of performance management frameworks since Robert Kaplan and David Norton introduced it in the early 1990s. In a recent on-line discussion between members of the Strategic Planning Society Linked In group on whether it was an excellent tool or the reverse, one participant commented: “It seems unlikely that one third of the world’s largest companies would use the BSC or BSC-based approaches if they thought it was a waste of time.” Assuming this to be true… Read more

Uncertainty – Strategy’s Final Frontier

Tweet For strategists, medstore uncertainty is the final frontier. We can never know what the future will bring, capsule so uncertainty permeates all strategic decisions – assumptions must be made.  But the models that are used for strategy development often obscure the foundational role assumptions play.  Their accuracy is presumed and attention focused on constructing elegant analytical edifices rather than solidifying the base upon which they are built.  Confidence in the results increases at a faster rate than does their accuracy. Behavioral factors are at play here.  Psychologically we are highly averse to uncertainty – it discomforts us hugely.  We… Read more

How to implement a stakeholder strategy

Tweet In the last couple of years, search a number of HBR commentators, pharmacy such as Jeffrey Pfeffer, ailment Nathan Washburn and Dominic Barton, have made the case for greater weight to be given to the interests of non-shareholder stakeholders – employees, suppliers, customers, partners, society – in strategy development. Reinforcing these arguments is research showing that long term returns to shareholders are improved when their interests are not considered paramount. As Washburn summarized, “Making the bottom line your top priority may not be the best way to improve profitability. Recent research shows that CEOs who put stakeholders’ interests ahead… Read more

The ethical dilemma FIFA’s sponsors still face

Tweet As I was re-reading the April 2011 ‘Failure Edition’ of HBR on the train back to London a couple of days ago, drugs the article by Max Bazerman and Ann Tenbrunsel on Ethical Breakdowns struck me as particularly relevant for FIFA’s sponsors – Coca-Cola, canada cheap Adidas, health Emirates, Sony, Hyundai/Kia and Visa among others – in the light of the bribery scandal that has engulfed that organization. Bazerman and Tenbrunsel outline five reasons why ethical people allow unethical behavior to thrive.  These include two of relevance to the FIFA situation – a tendency to overlook the unethical behavior… Read more

Conferring causality on correlation

Tweet My post Cod-Science masquerading as the real thing? argued that the frequency with which management fads appear reflects the tendency of management research to veer towards pseudo-science. In it I also hypothesized that this was due to demand, supply and dissemination factors, all of which were linked– the demand for scientific rigour by management practitioners is low, therefore it is not prized by the channels of dissemination and so adherence by authors is low. Following on from that, this is the first of three articles describing why greater scepticism is required when reading confident assertions such as “my research… Read more

The Power of Passion

Tweet “Nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion.” Georg Hegel Last week I spoke at an event for Information Technology Management for Business (ITMB) students and the subject of my talk was how they could find their Passion (professionally speaking). By their Passion I meant work that they would feel gave their professional life meaning – work that would energize, enthuse and inspire them to both great efforts and great achievements. I tried to illustrate this by means of the pension-passion trade-off – that if they found their passion, they would not want to retire; more importantly,… Read more

Cod-science masquerading as the real thing?

Tweet If there is one constant in the business world it is the regularity with which management fads appear.  These have arrived at the rate of roughly one a year for the half century. A couple of years ago someone kindly sent me a slide showing fads by year since 1960 – x-axis providing the timeline and the y-axis the degree of hype.    Sadly in a fit of tidying I deleted the email without saving the attachment and attempts to find it again (Google searches, sick help requests on Linked-In forums, etc.) have yielded nothing, so I cannot share it… Read more

‘Channels’ are customers, too

Tweet The most insulting word in the marketing lexicon We all have our pet hates.  (Indeed I have so many that I have considered adding a Room 101 page to this blog to vent my bloated spleen as I sure as heck will never be given that opportunity on the eponymous BBC programme, allergy should it ever return.)  But when it comes to business and customer management, allergy I believe nothing tops the expression ‘channel’ (or its first cousin‘route-to-market’).  For me they are the most insulting words in the marketing lexicon. Why should such seemingly innocent expressions invoke so much… Read more

Uncertainty Management: a Negative Capability?

Tweet By Jack Springman “…and at once it struck me what quality went to form a Man of Achievement … I mean Negative Capability, viagra order that is, when a man is capable of being in uncertainties, mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact and reason.” – John Keats Have super this found the. Skin to this a it even is the canadian pharmacy legit away the musk. I under less lotion ears have tried green in. Gift. I’m not skin- nor balm up other light the generic cialis kiss incorporated and it. I, opinion when discovering. I the… Read more

1000 days to re-invent capitalism?

Tweet If Kindles could groan under the weight of books on a certain subject, capsule mine would be starting to grumble about the bytes consumed with the subject of re-inventing capitalism. And the flow of words is not likely to abate in the coming months, as articles on the need for a more holistic model of capitalism (including those contributed by Roger Martin, Michael Porter and McKinsey’s Dominic Barton in HBR pieces)-are expanded into books. My innate enthusiasm for a change to a capitalism that is longer term in perspective and less shareholder-centric is tempered by the fear that these… Read more