Strategy: Managing Effectiveness

37 Results

 

Reflecting on Work Improves Job Performance

New research by Francesca Gino, Gary Pisano, and colleagues shows that taking time to reflect on our work improves job performance in the long run. Open for comment; 26 Comments posted.

Negotiation and All That Jazz

In his new book The Art of Negotiation, Michael Wheeler throws away the script to examine how master negotiators really get what they want. Open for comment; 2 Comments posted.

When Do Alliances Make Sense?

Analyzing drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico, John Beshears explores a question as old as business itself: When does it pay to make an alliance? Open for comment; 2 Comments posted.

Is Top-Down Resource Allocation on the Rise?

Summing Up Respondents to this month's column provided Jim Heskett possible explanations for greater reliance on top-down resource allocation processes while arguing that a blend of influences from the top and bottom of an organization are still important for best results. Closed for comment; 14 Comments posted.

Is Leadership an Increasingly Difficult Balancing Act?

Summing Up: Do we long for the days of the conventional authority figure? Jim Heskett sums up this month's column. Closed for comment; 19 Comments posted.

Breaking Through a Growth Stall

Many companies get stuck on a plateau, unable to grow and burning through cash at a frightening rate. Frank V. Cespedes discusses how focusing on the right customers can generate growth again. Closed for comment; 3 Comments posted.

Should We Rethink the Promise of Teams?

Summing Up: Teams that are properly structured and managed can support innovative thinking that depends on contributions from both extroverts and introverts, according to Professor Jim Heskett's readers. Closed for comment; 24 Comments posted.

Will Business Management Save US Health Care?

Summing Up: Problems confronting the US health care system are much larger and broader than those that can be solved by management in the absence of other remedies, readers tell Jim Heskett. Open for comment; 28 Comments posted.

The Importance of Teaming

Managers need to stop thinking of teams as static groups of individuals who have ample time to practice interacting successfully and efficiently, says Amy Edmondson in her new book, Teaming: How Organizations Learn, Innovate, and Compete in the Knowledge Economy. The reason: Today's corporate teams band and disband by the minute, requiring a more dynamic approach to how teams absorb knowledge. Closed for comment; 10 Comments posted.

Crowded at the Top: The Rise of the Functional Manager

It's not lonely at the top anymore—today's CEO has an average of 10 direct reports, according to new research by Julie M. Wulf, Maria Guadalupe, and Hongyi Li. Thank a dramatic increase in the number of "functional" managers for crowding in the C-suite. Closed for comment; 13 Comments posted.

Rethinking the Fairness of Organ Transplants

Because of an organ shortage, hundreds or even thousands of people miss out on needed organ transplants each year. Business researchers at Harvard and MIT are rethinking how kidney transplants are allocated to give patients longer lives. An interview with professor Nikolaos Trichakis. Closed for comment; 16 Comments posted.

Signaling to Partially Informed Investors in the Newsvendor Model

Why might firms make operational decisions that purposefully do not maximize expected profits? This model looks at the question by developing scenarios using the example of inventory management in the face of an external investor. The research was conducted by Vishal Gaur of Cornell University, Richard Lai of the University of Pennsylvania, and Ananth Raman and William Schmidt of Harvard Business School. Read More

When Smaller Menus are Better: Variability in Menu-Setting Ability and 401(k) Plans

Economists love menus, which can be used to help understand people's choices. For example, do we prefer more choices (larger menu) or fewer (shorter menu)? But the menu itself has to be pre-selected. Research by David Goldreich (Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto) and Hanna Halaburda (Harvard Business School) focuses on the menu setter's decisions about what to include, and how large a menu to construct in the context of 401(k) plan choices. Read More

What Do CEOs Do?

If time is money, as the old adage goes, then a CEO's schedule is especially important to a firm's financial success. This raises a fair question: What do CEOs do all day? To that end, researchers followed the activities of 94 CEOs in Italy over the course of a pre-specified week, enlisting the CEOs' personal assistants to track their bosses' activities with time-use diaries. Research was conducted by Raffaella Sadun of Harvard Business School, Luigi Guiso of the European University Institute, and Oriana Bandiera and Andrea Prat of the London School of Economics. Read More

How Should Management Deal With “Anonymous”?

Summing Up When it comes to the leaky Web, Jim Heskett's readers say assume the worst and act accordingly. (New forum on February 3.) Closed for comment; 33 Comments posted.

Connecting Goals and Go-To-Market Initiatives

In some respects, developing strategy is the easy part. Executing that strategy in alignment with strategic priorities is where real mastery of management takes place. Harvard Business School senior lecturer Frank V. Cespedes shows how it is done. Open for comment; 14 Comments posted.

When Does a Platform Create Value by Limiting Choice?

Platforms such as video games and smartphones need to attract users, and the best way to do so is to offer more and more applications. Is there ever a point where a platform should limit the variety available? Researchers Ramon Casadesus-Masanell and Hanna Halaburda observe that in many situations users enjoy consuming applications together. When such consumption complementarities are present, users may benefit if the platform limits choice. With fewer applications to choose from, it is easier for users to take full advantage from shared consumption. Read More

HBS Introduces Marketing Analysis Tools for Managers

The tools can help managers inform decisions on market analysis, breakeven analysis, customer lifetime value, profit and pricing, and analyzing the competitive environment. Interview with Tom Steenburgh. Read More

The Hard Work of Measuring Social Impact

Donors are placing nonprofits on the hot seat to measure social performance. Problem is, there is little agreement on what those metrics should be. Professor Alnoor Ebrahim on how nonprofit managers should respond. Read More

Business Summit: Enterprise Risk Management

Risk management is a key to sustained firm growth, says professor Robert S. Kaplan. Key ingredients to a successful risk management program include the proper culture, clear parameters, discipline, measurement, and accountability. Read More

Sharpening Your Skills: Operations Management

Can lean production methods be used in service industries? How can operations be used to competitive advantage? These are several of the questions answered in this month's Sharpening Your Skills on the topic of operations management. Read More

Managing Alignment as a Process

"Most organizations attempt to create synergy, but in a fragmented, uncoordinated way," say HBS professor Robert S. Kaplan and colleague David P. Norton. Their new book excerpted here, Alignment, tells how to see alignment as a management process. Read More

When Benchmarks Don’t Work

Benchmarks have their virtues, but professor Robert S. Kaplan argues they should be saved for surveys of commoditized processes or services. From Balanced Scorecard Report. Read More

What Really Drives Your Strategy?

For better or worse, why do so many companies veer off their strategic plan? Look for a disconnect between strategy and how resources are allocated, say Harvard Business School’s Joseph L. Bower and Clark G. Gilbert. Read More

Creating the Office of Strategy Management

Organizations often fail to execute their strategy—failure rates may range as high as 60 to 90 percent. Successful companies align their key management processes for effective strategy execution. Creating a new corporate-unit level, the Office of Strategy Management (OSM), may help align management processes to strategy. The authors explain, among other topics, OSM core processes, desirable OSM processes, integrative processes, and positioning the OSM. Read More

Why Do Managers Fail to Act on Their Predictions?

Important trends are identified as part of nearly every strategic planning exercise. But the efforts to address them too often stop there. How come? Closed for comment; 15 Comments posted.

Four Ways to Create Lasting Change

Managers and employees often dismiss change initiatives as the new flavor of the month. In this Q&A, Professor Michael A. Roberto and Senior Researcher Lynne C. Levesque discuss new techniques to make change stick. Read More

Mapping Your Board’s Effectiveness

To be effective, board members must understand their company’s strategy. Professor Robert S. Kaplan offers methods for using the Balanced Scorecard and strategy maps to increase board power. From Strategy & Innovation. Read More

Racial Diversity Pays Off

Diversity has been a buzzword in organizations for at least fifteen years. How much is really known about its effects on performance? HBS professors Robin Ely and David Thomas investigate. Read More

Don’t Get Buried in Customer Data—Use It

Don't blame your CRM technology. Be smarter about collecting and using your data, says Jean Ayers in this article from Harvard Management Update. Read More

4+2 = Sustained Business Success

HBS professor Nitin Nohria along with William Joyce and Bruce Roberson studied 160 companies to look for common management practices that succeed. A hint: Business basics matter. Read More

Pay-for-Performance Doesn’t Always Pay Off

Paying your employees more for hitting specific targets may backfire, according to HBS professor Michael Beer. As he learned in his study of thirteen pay-for-performance plans at Hewlett-Packard, the unspoken contract may make or break these programs. Read More

Putting the Project Puzzle Together

How can you maximize the potential of your project portfolio? Read our interview with F. Warren McFarlan, a Harvard Business School professor. Plus: An excerpt from Connecting the Dots: Aligning Projects with Objectives in Unpredictable Times, a new book by McFarlan and Cathleen Benko. Read More

Commodity Busters: Be a Price Maker, Not a Price Taker

Too many businesses are price takers, not price makers. That means they are willing to lower prices to capture market share or to sign up a marquee customer. But Harvard Business School professor Benson P. Shapiro says don't let your ego get in the way of good business sense. Here are seven steps toward naming your own price. Read More

Partnering and the Balanced Scorecard

Created in 1992, the Balanced Scorecard has become an effective tool for managing strategy. Now authors Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton propose using it to communicate values and vision to employees and partners. The payoff? Better strategic relationships with partners. Read More

Want a Happy Customer? Coordinate Sales and Marketing

In today's hyper-competitive world, your sales and marketing functions must yoke together at every level—from the core central concepts of the strategy to the minute details of execution. Harvard Business School professor Benson Shapiro on creating the customer-centric team. Read More

The Strategy-Focused Organization

In the ten years since it was introduced, Robert Kaplan's and David Norton's Balanced Scorecard has become not just a measurement tool but a means of putting strategy at the center of a company's key management processes and systems. Read More