Strategy development in practice

Strategy workshops

The strategy workshop or "away day" is a familiar occurrence in most public and private sector organisations and is seen as an important component of the strategy development process. Surprisingly, despite this, we know very little about their effectiveness. 

This on-going research project is elucidating the relationship between the practices adopted in such workshops, how they contribute to managers’ thinking about the strategy of an organisation and the implications for the adoption of proposals arising from those workshops.  

For more information contact Gerry Johnson



Strategic planning

This research project explores how strategic planning can be optimally implemented to exploit benefits and overcome obstacles in its use as a mechanism to deliver strategic integration. 

Strategic planning has a somewhat variable reputation.  Some attack it as an annual ritual which adds little of strategic value and others argue it provides benefits by enabling strategic integration across business units and developing commitment to common strategic goals. 

Organisations continue to invest considerable resources into these events despite these disputes.  It could be argued that the potential benefits offered by strategic planning mechanisms may become more important, as increasing numbers of organisations seek to gain advantage from regional or international integration and simultaneously allow local market differentiation. 

For more information contact Duncan Angwin.


Strategic decision making in meetings

One of the most critical events within the overall organisational activity of strategizing is the process of strategic decision-making. This process is often unfolds within the context of meetings, and is often highly political rather than entirely rational. Actions taken at meetings can have significant consequences for an organisation’s overall strategic direction and positioning. From experience we know that decision outcomes can be influenced by both the skill with which both sides of a decision are positioned and argued, as well as the relative power possessed by those making the decision. Yet we still know very little about how this dynamic plays out. 

This research project seeks to understand how the real-time dynamic interplay of various individuals’ discursive strategies can influence the outcome of the strategic decision-making process. The project draws on a study within a large multinational corporation and the boards of directors of two separate business units during their monthly strategy meetings over a six-month period.

For more information contact Duncan Angwin.