- 22 Sep 2016
- Cold Call Podcast
Lego has been helping children piece together dreams and develop imaginations for decades, becoming one of the world’s most popular brands in the process. But the company lost its way in the 1990s and has stood on the brink of bankruptcy a few times since. Professor Jan Rivkin discusses his case study of Lego and how it innovates to meet the changing needs of young users in the digital age. Open for comment; 0 Comment(s) posted.
- 21 May 2014
- Lessons from the Classroom
Harvard Business School's new online primer on the fundamentals of business aims to translate some of the School's unique classroom teaching methods to the Web. Open for comment; 2 Comment(s) posted.
- 10 May 2011
- Working Paper Summaries
In marketing, the use of the customer lifetime value (CLV) metric encourages a focus on long-term customer relationships over short-term sales. This paper examines a situation in which a European bank introduced CLV data to its customer-facing employees, while still maintaining the incentives linked to short-term profitability; the goal was to discover whether and how these employees would modify their mortgage sales decisions. Research was conducted by Pablo Casas-Arce of Universitat Pompeu Fabra, and F. Asís Martínez-Jerez and V.G. Narayanan of Harvard Business School. Key concepts include: Having access to the CLV information caused bank managers to shift their focus toward more profitable client segments. However, the implementation of the CLV metric had no effect on how branch managers decided to price mortgages. Rather, they seemed to increase sales to their most valuable customers just by improving customer service. The availability of the CLV information also did not affect the bank managers' risk-taking tendencies—i.e., they did not relax their standards just to please their most valuable customers. The availability of CLV information led bank managers to cross-sell more products to their mortgage customers by targeting segments that bought a higher average number of products, but there was little effect on the average cross-selling to customers from any given segment. Closed for comment; 0 Comment(s) posted.
- 22 May 2008
- Working Paper Summaries
To what extent do balanced scorecards provide useful information for testing and validating an organization's strategy? Numerous case studies of balanced scorecard implementations document their use in translating organizational strategies to objectives and measures, communicating strategic objectives to employees, evaluating the performance of business units, and aligning the incentives of employees across business units and functions. There has been comparatively little research, however, on the potential learning and feedback role of balanced scorecards. Analyzing balanced scorecard data from Store24—a privately held convenience store retailer in New England—during the implementation of an innovative but ultimately unsuccessful strategy, this study investigates whether, when, and how information about problems with the firm's strategy was captured in the multiple performance measures of its balanced scorecard. Key concepts include: Store24's balanced scorecard contained useful and timely information for detecting problems in its strategy. The results also suggest that Store24 executives eventually learned about problems with the strategy despite a lack of reliance on such formal analysis. Analysis of the balanced scorecard could have yielded more timely information as well as more detail on why the strategy was not working as planned. Multiple measures in a balanced scorecard might systematically be used to test how well different drivers of performance are working to achieve strategic objectives and superior financial performance. Closed for comment; 0 Comment(s) posted.
- 23 Jan 2006
- Research & Ideas
Globalization is the key issue in determining the future of financial accounting, says professor Gregory S. Miller. And as more countries consider adopting an international accounting standard, India is positioned to be a strong leader. Closed for comment; 0 Comment(s) posted.
- 09 Jun 2003
- Research & Ideas
Operational problems are a drag on business and often can be traced to poor controls in interorganizational settings, says HBS professor V.G. Narayanan. Here are his suggestions for tightening up those controls. Closed for comment; 0 Comment(s) posted.