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埃克塞特大学论文代写-organisational learning

organasational learning

It has been stated that a business derives value from knowledge, know-how, intellectual assets and competencies rather than ‘things’ and that these capabilities are vested within people (Hamel, 2005). Consequently, in order to create an enduring competitive advantage, a company must therefore focus on the retention and development of its organisational expertise (skills set, tacit and explicit knowledge, capabilities and core competences) and how to engage staff in the process (Porter, 2004; French, Rayner, Rees & Rumbles, 2008).

Two contrasting learning philosophies appear to exist within organisations – a basic, predominantly instructional approach focussed on remedial action to correct errors or omissions; and a more comprehensive lifelong learning recognising the fundamental importance of employees to business therefore adopting a more developmental approach (viewing people as assets) (Beardwell & Thompson, 2014).

Training is a planned and systematic way of improving an individual’s knowledge, skills and attitudes so that they can perform their current role more competently, whereas development is the process of preparing a person to take on more onerous responsibilities or equip them to face higher level, future challenges within the organisation (Malone, 2003: 76). Learning is the process that brings about a persistent change in behaviour through the acquisition of increased competence to deal successfully with the operating environment through the acquisition of knowledge, skills and required attitudes (French et al, 2008: 123).

Whilst learning is focussed on the acquisition of the required skills and competences to perform effectively, this has to be linked to performance i.e. combining this essential learning with the motivation to engage in a manner that applies it in a way that delivers improved or enhanced results (Bratton & Gold, 2007). This learning (and its application) can take place at various levels within a company – such as on an individual or team/group basis – but the focus of this paper will be on organisational learning aspects (French et al, 2008).

Key Definitions and Concepts

Organisational learning can be viewed as the process by which a company can build a collective or shared knowledge base and the development of mechanisms to retrieve and disseminate this knowledge (Hora & Hunter, 2014). This is built upon the premise that as an organisation grows and adapts, it is able to generate/create a store of institutional knowledge that delivers a collective business benefit exceeding that which could be expected to be provided by employees operating individually (Hagen, 2010). As a company develops over time, the collective learning that takes place generates organisational knowledge – the shared intelligence specific to that company accumulated through both formal systems and the shared experiences of people in the organisation (Cole & Kelly, 2011; Johnson, Whittington & Scholes, 2011).

Organisational learning therefore requires an entity capable of continual regeneration through the application of knowledge, experience and skills by creating a culture that encourages challenge and review (Johnson et al, 2011). The traditional, rigid, hierarchical structures that ensure the command and control of individuals are no longer conducive to competing in more dynamic environments or for generating organisational learning (Henry, 2011). Organisational learning consequently refers to the capacity of a company to learn how to do what it does, where what it learns is possessed not by individual members but by the collective – when the group acquires the know-how associated with its ability to carry out its collective activities then organisational learning has taken place (Cohen & Sproull, 1996).

Organisational learning provides a mechanism to address the essential nature of knowledge (Thompson & McHugh, 2009), in that there are fundamental differences in terms of explicit knowledge (which can be expressed formally and communicated through language) and tacit knowledge (which is difficult to formalise or communicate as it is embodied, personal and rooted in action/context) (Nonaka, 1994). A company requires the effective application of tacit knowledge developed from a more intimate appreciation of their operations and environment, in order to build a sustainable competitive advantage (Henry, 2011; Porter, 2004). This tacit knowledge can be perceived as corporate wisdom and despite the challenges associated with its transmission and dissemination, organisational learning approaches can be used to capture it effectively to create, innovate and maintain the competitive advantage required (Mullins & Christie, 2013).

In terms of individual employee capabilities, a company requires skill in the person (rooted within the individual and can be developed through education, training and experience), skill in the job (meeting role requirements) and skill in the setting (an understanding and appreciation of the shared/collective interests of the company and the organisational culture) (Johnson et al, 2011). Effective organisational learning approaches should therefore seek to maximise the collective return from the application and sharing of tacit knowledge, and the skills that can be acquired and developed through the working environment and culture (Hatch & Cunliffe, 2006), as these possess real business utility as they cannot be easily replicated by competitors (Barney, 1986).

Organisational Learning Approaches

Senge (1990) argued that an effective organisational approach to learning required the application of five key disciplines:

  • Personal mastery – understanding individual aspirations and creating clear linkages to organisational goals;
  • Mental models – creating a culture of reflection and inquiry to develop a wider awareness of the organisations needs so that individual thinking begins to anticipate those needs;
  • Shared vision – creating a collective commitment to a common purpose with activities and targets clearly linked to that purpose;
  • Team learning – group development interactions (rather than individual skills programmes) to ensure that training reflects requirements generated by shared goals;
  • Systems thinking – taking a holistic view to understand and appreciate key interdependencies, using feedback to develop, refine (and ultimately simplify) often complex systems.

(Senge, 1990)

For such an integrated thinking approach to be effective, the leader(s) must be able to develop a shared vision of where the organisation wants to be, developing a creative tension by also clearly articulating the current position of the company (Henry, 2011). The organisation uses clear mission and vision statements, underpinned by shared goals and targets to create a collective framework, which in turn shape learning interventions (often utilising individual or group performance development agreements) (Schein, 2004; Clegg, Kornberger & Pitsis, 2011). In order to create collective commitment, flexibility and creativity from employees, learning opportunities/interventions must be relatively frequent, as this then creates an enduring capability for change and innovation (Huczynski & Buchanan, 2013).

Whilst this approach is reflected in many large organisations and has the capacity to foster a culture that could maximise the return from tacit knowledge held within the organisation (Knights & Willmott, 2012), the structural emphasis outlined has been criticised. Unless the articulated mission and vision are regularly reviewed to consider the wider business environment and the demands of competitive advantage (Porter, 2004), thinking and learning can become constrained. Consequently, challenge is not encouraged and process/activity is seen as a worthwhile end in itself – ultimately the focus on measureable achievement/innovation can be lost and a blame culture can develop (Seddon, 2008).

Using organisational learning to manage the development and sharing of knowledge (as articulated by Senge, 1990) has the potential to maintain the competitive advantage required (Newell, Robertson, Scarborough & Swan, 2009). However, to maximise the potential return, “know-why” (such as design rationale and reasoning – the capturing of best practice) must be combined with “know-who” (the mapping of relevant expertise and skills) as well as “know-how” (promoting a learning and development environment in a manner that encourages innovation) (Mullins & Christie, 2013). Efforts to capture the critical aspect of “know-how” has led to the creation of Communities of Practice as an organisational model of learning (Lave & Wenger, 1998).

Cross-functional communities of practice seek to utilise the informal, social interaction of the group (rather than rely on structured, mechanistic knowledge transfer mechanisms) to create an engaged learning approach focussed on what needs to be known by the group (Lave & Wenger, 1998). Such groups often have the ability to capture and share vital tacit knowledge which more formal information management systems are often unable to do (Newell et al, 2009). A community of practice recognises that in order to learn and innovate, it is necessary to participate on a more personal level and to create engaged participation, it is necessary for people to feel included in the decision-process, thus allowing a sense of ownership to develop (Easterby-Smith, Burgoyne & Araujo, 1999). In sharing a concern, a set of problems, or a passion about a topic, the group/community are proactive in developing their knowledge and expertise, interacting on a regular basis (Wenger, McDermott & Snyder, 2002).

The perceived “added-value” of effective communities of practice has led to organisations attempting to manage the process by creating groups that cut across organisational boundaries in order to innovate, share knowledge and solve problems (Davenport and Hall, 2002).. However, the mere existence of a structure that brings people together does not ensure that this approach will be effective (Linstead, Fulop & Lilley 2009). Attempting to overly manage or even directly control any Community of Practice could introduce the very constraints that these informal peer-to-peer groups originally sought to work against/around and thus minimise their effectiveness (Eraut, 2002).

Issues and Caveats

Whilst it is possible to gain greater business utility and an enduring competitive advantage from organisational learning approaches, the following aspects need to be considered:

  • Superstitious learning. Where organisations learn the wrong things due to the connections between outcomes and actions being incorrectly specified e.g. rapidly or constantly adapting targets will be close to current performance levels (making being above or below the target an almost chance event) creating a misleading belief that organisational performance has improved.
  • Ambiguity of success. Where the indicators of success are constantly modified or targets continually change, it is difficult to measure what has actually been learned by the organisation even if meeting a goal is seen as a major achievement.
  • Competency Traps. Improving procedures or practices that do not deliver any real competitive advantage can create an illusion of organisational progress. In reality, they expose the company to competitors able to focus on improvements that deliver practical business benefits that meet customer requirements.

(Hatch & Cunliffe, 2006; Cohen & Sproull, 1996).

Essentially, organisational learning relies on knowledge management to capture and convert individual tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge that can be more easily shared with others in the company (Huczynski & Buchanan, 2013). In considering such knowledge management and intellectual capital capture processes in relation to a learning organisation, a number of issues can emerge:

  • Learning organisation ‘positives:
  • A rich, multi-dimensional concept affecting many aspects of organisational behaviour.
  • An innovative approach to learning, knowledge management and investment in intellectual capital.
  • Challenging concepts, focussed on the acquisition of individual and corporate knowledge.
  • An innovative approach to organisation, management and staff development.
  • Innovative application of technology to manage organisational knowledge (e.g. databases, internet and intranets).

Learning organisation negatives:

  • A complex/diffuse set of practices which can be difficult to implement systematically.
  • Attempts to use dated concepts (from change management and learning theory) re-packaged as management consultancy projects.
  • New approaches to encourage employee compliance with strict directives applied in the guise of ‘self-development’.
  • New/innovative approaches to strengthening management control over staff behaviours.
  • A technology-dependent approach which does not consider how people actually develop and use knowledge in the organisation.

(Adapted from Huczynski & Buchanan, 2013: 179).


A learning organisation is defined as an entity that encourages and facilitates the learning and development of people at all levels of the company, values that learning and which simultaneously transforms itself to maintain an enduring competitive advantage (Cole & Kelly, 2011: 487). The best learning organisations are skilled at creating, acquiring and transferring knowledge whilst also being able to modify their behaviour(s) to reflect new knowledge and insights (Garvin, 1993: 80). To do so effectively, requires skills in terms of systematic problem solving, experimentation with new approaches, learning from experience and past history, learning from the experiences and best practices of others and the ability to transfer knowledge quickly and efficiently throughout the organisation (Cole & Kelly, 2011). Unless the methods outlined (above) are able to create a collaborative environment where employees feel empowered to reflect on present practices and to provide improvement suggestions, then they will not provide any real added-value when compared to more traditional/individual learning interventions (Fineman, Gabriel & Sims, 2010).

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Organisations are highly specialized systems and people working within the organisations are generally cynical to change in the work environment as they don’t want to get into uncharted territory. It is the natural tendency of human beings to live in their comfort zone and no one likes to be comfortable being uncomfortable even for a short duration (during the change process).

But, for organisations to survive and succeed in the current environment change is no longer optional. Organisations have to learn to love change to stay ahead of competition.

  • An overview of change management

Definition – Change management is about moving from one state to another, specifically, from the problem state to the solved state (Jung, 2001).

But, the organisational terminology for change management can be varied and ‘change’ may be used under different terms. E.g. when a company talks about re-engineering, restructuring, promoting cultural transformation, or keeping pace with the industry, then it is talking about change. Lewin (1951) conceptualized that change can occur at three levels.

  • Change in the individuals who work in the organisation – that is their skills, values, attributes, and eventually behaviour. Leaders have to make sure that such individual behavioural change is always regarded as instrumental to organisational change.
  • Change in the organisational structures and systems – reward systems, reporting relationships, work design and so on.
  • A direct change in the organisation climate or interpersonal style – dealing with people relationships, conflict management and the process of decision making. (Leonard et al., 2003, cited in Mabey & Mayon-White (ed))

Change can be further classified as planned and emergent. When change is deliberate and is a product of conscious reasoning and actions is supposed to be planned. Emergent change is a direct contract to this and unfolds in an apparently spontaneous and unplanned way.

  • Drivers of change

Change is mostly driven by circumstances and always takes place with a particular goal in mind. Some of the common drivers of change are, to keep pace with the changing environment, to beat competition, technological changes to improve process efficiency etc.

No matter what the driver for change is, the goal of the whole process is to lead the organisation into a future state which is different from the current state under which the organisation operates. (Nicols, 2006) The scope and scale of change can vary. E.g. Change can be limited a particular department (operations, marketing etc.) or it might affect the whole organisation, it might relate to only a group of people or might affect every employee in the organisation.

  • Initiators of change

Irrespective of its nature, change has to be initiated, driven and implemented by someone. This is where leadership fits into the change management process. It has been found that organisations that have been successful in coping with change have strong leadership that guides the team through a series of initial steps that set the stage for success (Nadler, 2001). Leaders are responsible for bringing about change in a staged and planned manner.

Dirks (2000) points out that change has to be instigated and it is the leader who instigates the change by his vision and persuasion. Nadler, Thies and Nadler (2001) suggest that, for effective change to occur, and in particular cultural change, there is no substitute for the active engagement of the leadership and executive team.

Top leaders must assume the role of chief architect of the change process. Cartwright and Cooper (1993) take this one step further by suggesting that it is important that employees at all levels become involved in the change process. Jung (2001) also views managers as playing key roles in developing, transforming and institutionalizing organisational culture during the change process.

For managing an organisation wide change, the leadership has to possess an unusually broad and finely honed set of skills. It needs to have a clear sense of mission and delegate task effectively to build a whole team of ‘change agents’. The structure of the organisation needs to change to one with less internal bureaucracy.

Hatch (2000) suggests that the implementation of any change process often flounders because it is improperly framed by top management. The key to choosing the right approach to change is thus to keep in mind how organisations function. As social systems comprising work, people, formal and informal systems, organisations are inherently resistant to change and designed to neutralize the impact of attempts at change (Chemers, 2001). Leaders play a critical role in selecting and planning appropriate change

  • Reluctance to organisational change

Gofee and Jones (2001) point out that the reluctance to organisational change from employees and other staff is primarily due to the way change is implemented and the abilities of the leader in bringing about the change rather than the nature of change itself. Bridges (1991) believes that it isn’t the actual change that individuals resist, but rather the transition that must be made to accommodate the change.

Organisational change entails change in the work process, culture and the nature of an employee’s working conditions. Psychologists believe that resistance to change is because of people being afraid of the unknown. During times of change, it is important that the leaders of the organisation create an atmosphere of psychological safety for all individuals to engage in the new behaviours and test the waters of the new culture after the change has been implemented.

  • Approaches to change

Change can be classified in a number of ways. The categorization depends on the extent of the change and whether it is seen as organic (often characterized as bottom-up) or driven (top-down). Ackerman’s change classification segregates change into

Developmental change – may be either planned or emergent; it is first order, or incremental. It is change that enhances or corrects existing aspects of an organisation, often focusing on the improvement of a skill or process. (Ackermann, 1997)

Transitional change – seeks to achieve a known desired state that is different from the existing one. It is episodic, planned and second order, or radical. Transformational change is radical or second order in nature. It requires a shift in assumptions made by the organisation and its members. Transformation can result in an organisation that differs significantly in terms of structure, processes, culture and strategy. It may, therefore, result in the creation of an organisation that operates in developmental mode – one that continuously learns, adapts and improves. (Mabey & Mayon-White (ed), 2003)

  • Implementing change

It is widely believed that the way an organisation adapts to change is fundamental to its success. In an ever increasing competitive environment, change is ubiquitous and the way employees respond to change (resistance/acceptance) has been identified to play a vital role in the change management process. Managing organisational change requires more than reengineering and restructuring systems and processes. It requires managing the human responses that accompany any organisational change (Darwin et al., 2002).

For its smooth implementation, the change management process has to be carefully planned and the onus is on the leader to ensure a hassle free implementation through effective and sensible planning, confident and effective decision-making, and regular, complete and timely communication with the employees (Simon & Newell, 2006). Factors such as organisation culture, structure of the organisation, bureaucracy, employee attitudes, business model etc. also play their part in implementing change.

  • Skills needed for effective change implementation

Authors like Nadler and Thies (2001) have stressed on the importance of problem solving within the change management process and argue that change can only be effectively implemented by good problem solvers. Managing change is seen as a matter of moving from one state to another, specifically, from the problem state to the solved state therefore diagnosis of problems at each stage and coming out with a solution to those problems plays a big part in the change management process (Champy, 2005).

  • Implementation difficulties

Bringing about major change in a large and complex organisation is a difficult task. Policies, procedures and structures need to be altered. Individuals and groups have to be motivated to continue perform in the face of major turbulence. It is not surprising, therefore, that the process of effectively implementing organisational change has long been a topic that both managers and researchers have pondered (Nadler, cited in Mabey and Mayon-White, 2003).

Beer et al. (2003) believe that most change programs don’t work because they are guided by a theory of change that is fundamentally flawed. The problem with most company-wide change programs is that they address only one or two the crucial factors (coordination, teamwork, commitment, structure of the organisation, organisation culture)

  • Change Management Strategy

As a part of the strategy, a feasibility analysis needs to be done to assess whether the change the organisation is looking to bring about is feasible considering the present state of the organisation (Huy, 2002). Organisational configurations need to be assessed before deciding on the proper change management strategy.

Change management is a three pronged strategy: transform, reduce and apply. Before the change process is drafted, it is the responsibility of the change initiator / leader for assessing the difference between the current state of affairs and the state accomplished after the change process which Haslam & Platow (2001) terms as the transform state. This is an assessment stage which requires the leaders to assess the goals. After goal assessment, the strategy should be to try to determine ways to narrow the gap through the change process (reduce stage) and subsequently delegate responsibility to play operators (like divisional heads and other departmental leaders) to actually effect the elimination of these differences.

During the change implementation process, the leader should play a key role, firstly, in the identification of the changes necessary to produce the required outcomes and then to put an implementation process in place to bring about those changes.

Champy (2005) believes that the leader is the one responsible for the how, what and why of the change process. It is the leader who should be responsible for identifying how the changes can be effectively implemented with least resistance from employees by taking into consideration the organisation structure and culture. Communication should also form a part of the change management strategy. The change initiator and implementer have to play the role of an effective communicator to inform the employees of the reasons behind the changes.

It has to be remembered that organisations change is always brought about by team work and the change process requires frequent communication with all the members of the organisation. Leadership approach should be to address resistance through increased and sustained communications and education. As a part of the strategy, employees should be encouraged to express their ideas and concerns with regards to the change.

Change management should start with the change manager mobilizing commitment to change through joint diagnosis of business problems. A shared vision of how to organize and manage competitiveness needs to be developed. Consensus has to be fostered for the new vision. Once there is a consensus, leaders and change agents should have the competence to enact it and the cohesion to move it along. The change management process and the strategy have to revitalize all departments without pushing change from the top. As a part of the implementation strategy, the leader should monitor and adjust strategies in response to problems in the revitalization process.

Also, all too often change agents try to completely change the culture of the organisations within the change management process. The strategy should be to try to control the culture rather than influence it. Leaders don’t have to drive the change but supervise it. Change has to be implemented and driven by the people who get affected by the change. Mumford et al. (2002) point out that the reluctance to organisational change from employees and other staff is primarily due to the way change is implemented and the abilities of the leader in bringing about the change rather than the nature of change itself. Changing the culture of an organisation should be a gradual transformation process.

Change management strategy should ensure that much of the task is delegated to the departments and leadership is mainly concerned in coordinating between the departments. It has to be made sure that the departments understand the importance of change through their effective, timely and regular communication. Departmental heads should be made to realize the importance of establishing a sense of urgency and enthusiasm about the change. Change should never try to be rushed.

Communication between organisational members, at all levels, from management and among peers, should be a major priority in any change process. A feeling of ‘No Consultation’ occurs among employees is they are not properly communicated; therefore ‘consultative’ leadership should be followed during the change process. Transparency and trust also form a very important part of the change management process.

As a part of the change management strategy, leaders need to select carefully the method or approach to be used to manage the change process and develop a new culture following the change. They have to establish effective channels of communication which involve individuals at all levels of the organisation to inform individuals of the stages to be followed and to outline clearly outcomes for them.

Above all, they need to lead in a positive manner, recognizing that change is an emotive process and people need to be ‘changed’ with dignity by acknowledging contributions and justifying the reasons for them personally to move on.

Word of caution – Even though, bringing about a change is important for organisations to stay competitive in the global market environment, organisations have to bear in mind that they don’t thrust change on their employees. The infrastructure for implementation of change management has to be ready before the implementation. The change process has to be correctly configured and the need for change has to be clearly communicated to the employees who will be affected by it.


An organisation is a complex entity and bringing about a change is an equally complex ordeal. Orchestrating a companywide change process is a delicate balance which requires able leadership. Effective leader make the change process easy for themselves and the organisation. But, playing a leadership role within the change process is far from easy.

  • Not only do leaders have a responsibility to lead, but as an employee they have to deal with change themselves. Therefore, it is very important for leaders themselves to understand the benefits of the change process and how change is going to be implemented. They shouldn’t get wrapped up in bringing about the change just for the sake of changing.
  • Planned implementation of the change process is utmost important. Change should not be imposed on the employees without proper planning and consideration given to the organisation culture. Planning requires coordination and leaders need to coordinate between departments to successfully plan the change.
  • Organisations should not try to change too much too soon and need to take a staged approach to change. Change should be a well thought process and implemented in a planned and systematic manner.
  • Everyone in the organisation should be adequately informed and listened to before embarking on the cultural change process. Finkelstein & Hambrick (1996) point out that the task of change management is to bring order to a messy situation, not pretend that it’s already well organized and disciplined and leadership is hugely responsible for bringing that semblance of order.
  • Companies also need to have the right approach and mind step to deal with the change process. Successful organisations drive change rather than being driven by the change. Although, the strategic decision to change comes from the top management but the implementation should always be a bottom up process. HP’s didn’t get either of those decisions right; its decision to change came too late (when Dell had already gained ground and had the first over advantage) due to which it tried to impose the change from top down.

It is worth mentioning that change management strategy adopted is also reliant on the type of organisation. Different organisations may need to approach change differently and the type of change management approach adopted should be consistent with the objectives of the organisation and its situation. For example, an organisation whose future depended on improving customer service should, logically, adopt a change model focused on improving processes that have a direct bearing on that objective and removing obstacles that prevent its achievement. This is because; a disjunction between the objective and the mechanism would result in untoward or unwanted results.


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Culture. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester.

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D. Terry (eds), Social identity processes in organisations, pp. 213–228. Psychology Press, New York.

Hatch, M. J. (2000). ‘The cultural dynamics of organizing and change’. In: N. M. Ashkanasy, C. P. E. Wilderom and M. F. Peterson (eds), Handbook of Organisational Culture and Climate, pp. 245–261. Sage Publications Inc., London.

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Phillips strategic analysis


This paper will consider an analysis of the global LCD industry and the factors within the strategic environment which will have an impact on the industry. In order to analyze the environment, this paper will make use of a PESTLE analysis that considers the relevant political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental factors. Having conducted the analysis, the paper will then present an action plan as to how Phillips may maintain its market share in the industry.


Political factors may be seen as having a large impact on the global LCD sector and have had an impact upon both the market and manufacturing aspects of the industry. On the whole, recent decades have seen political moves to essentially open up world markets allowing producers such as Phillips to both retail and manufacture its products in a wider range of countries than previously (Griffin and Pustay, 2010, Krugman et al, 2012). Such political changes often relate to emerging markets such as China, Russia, India and Brazil all of which have taken significant political steps in recent years to attract investment from producers such as Phillips. Despite such reforms, manufacture such as Phillips also need to be aware that reversals of policy are still a possibility, this may be seen as all the more of a risk in these economically turbulent times when there may be sudden appetite on the behalf of political leaders for protectionist measures which favor domestic producers and protection of the jobs of voters.


Since 2007 it may be seen that the world economy has overall suffered from slow levels of economic growth referred to as the global economic downturn. In addition, the future outlook, especially within Western Europe and the UK would seem to remain bleak with the prospect of a double-dip recession forecast by many (BBC News, 2012). For the global LCD sector, this may mean that producers have had to focus upon a strategy of cost leadership and providing customers with a value for money based proposition rather than looking to develop value-added differentiation based strategies. However, despite the global economic downturn which has affected many countries badly, the results have not all been negative. One consideration is that while countries such as the UK and US have been heavily hit, others such as China and the emerging economies have still seen rising levels of wealth and growing middle class (Ravillion, 2010). As such, this would seem to suggest that strategic planners must focus on investing in markets that have been least affected by recent economic events.


One key issue which many countries have come to see is an ageing population, a trend seen in both the UK and Western Europe (Parliament UK 2012) but also in the emerging economy of China as a result of the long term effects of the one child policy (Hutchings, 2001). However, one interpretation of such social trends is that this could benefit the global LCD business as aging populations come to look for higher quality home entertainments and other sources of diversion which do not require mobility. Other social changes however have seen changing consumer attitudes towards issues of CSR and the environmental impact of products and consumerism in general (Parsons and Maclaran, 2009). In this case, the consumer electronics sector may be seen as facing both challenges relating to current manufacturing practises in Far East locations (Duhigg and Baboza, 2012) but also an opportunity to create additional products and services linked to developments in green technologies and manufacturing practises.


The global LCD market itself may be seen as the product of an innovation in technology and replacing earlier technologies based around the cathode ray tube. However, investment in the technology on the behalf of television and consumer electronics producers represents a risk for companies such as Phillips. On the one hand, while direct investment may reduce supply risks, equally there is a consideration that there is a wide level of uncertainty as to how long LCD technology will be the dominant force in the market (Di Serio et al, 2011). Other issues relate to technological developments of complimentary products, or products which make use of LCD technology besides the core television product such as computer monitors and other consumer electronics. One consideration is that LCD producers and users may choose to invest in the development of technologies not associated with LCD production directly but in order to develop a new generation of complimentary products which make use of existing LCD technologies.


In order to develop and improve LCD technologies, there is a requirement for significant investment on the behalf of producers such as Samsung, Phillips, Sony and others in the market. However, one issue in the innovation process is that if such investments are to continue then investors must have their intellectual property protected (Tidd and Bessant, 2009). However, at present, it would appear that such legal protection is applied in an inconsistent way on a global basis. While producers enjoy rather comprehensive protection in developed economies such as the UK, Western Europe and the United States, protection in key emerging markets such as China and the Far East can often be somewhat lacking in substance, this is despite efforts on the behalf of the WTO and other bodies to improve legislation (Griffin and Pustay, 2010, Panitchpakdi and Clifford, 2002).

Other legal issues relate to those of the HR perspective, in this case global manufacturing can often see that legal regulations a much lower in emerging economies such as the Far East and Latin America. However, a key question remains so to whether producers should necessarily take advantage of the lower legal regulations of these emerging economies. In some cases, doing so has in the past resulted in negative publicity for those in the consumer electronics sector, with Ravillion’s (2010) analysis of Apple proving the point.


Recent years would seem to suggest that the supply chains of those operating in the global LCD sector have become more international in nature with greater outsourcing of operations and the marketing of products in a wider range of international markets (Di Serio et al, 2011). While this may benefit the sector allowing firms to reduce costs through taking advantage of the comparative advantage of nations (Porter, 1998), a spate of recent incidents have shown that environmental factors have recently had a negative impact upon the international supply chains of many companies both within and out with the sector. Such examples include the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in the Southern USA, earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan which had shock waves in the supply chain of Toyota as far afield as the UK and flooding in Thailand and Pakistan (Kollewe, 2011). All in all, recent decades would seem to suggest that environmental factors present significant challenges for industries such as the LCD sector which have become increasingly internationalised in recent years.

Action Plan

Based upon the above analysis it would appear that the global LCD industry faces an uncertain environment with both significant opportunities and threats. As such, the report recommends the following action plan for a producer such as Phillips in order to maintain market share.

Cost Strategy: Given the current economic climate and the general attitude of consumers it is recommended that Phillips should focus upon a low cost based strategy. In order to achieve thus the company will need to ensure that costs are reduced at every opportunity so as to see that not only is the company able to offer consumers the lowest priced product, but also so that such a strategy may be maintained in the long term (Johnson et al, 2008).

Market Selection: A key to maintaining market share for Phillips may be to consider the amount of effort put into individual markets. In this case, the company may choose to target geographic markets which have shown a greater level of resilience in the context of the current global financial downturn (World Bank, 2012). For example, Phillips may choose to develop an emerging markets strategy targeting key high growth markets such as China, India, Russia and Brazil in order to compensate for poor performance in the US and Western Europe.

The classical approach or approaches of strategic development may be best summarised by Whittington (2001) who brings together a number theories and theorists who take a ‘top down’ rational approach towards strategic development. In other words, business level strategies are devised by those at the strategic apex of an organisation and are then implemented throughout the organisation. As Whittington (2001) points out, such approaches towards strategy are often suited to larger companies in mature and stable markets as opposed to emerging industries with a dynamic set of competitors. Having considered the classical perspective, the paper will now make the following business level strategic recommendations on behalf of Phillips in relation to the future direction of the company.

In selection an overall business level strategy, firms such as Phillips are presented with a plethora of prescriptive options, many of which are based upon a price v quality based assessment of strategy. Porter (2004) for instance offers three generic strategies based around cost leadership, differentiation and market focus. On the other hand, Bowman (1995) offers eight possible strategies based around differing levels of price and product quality based propositions. In this case, given the nature of the external strategic environment and the current position of Phillips and its strategic resources, the report recommends that Phillips should make uses of an overall cost leadership strategy attempting to offer consumers LCD televisions in the market which represent the lowest possible price. From the perspective of Bowman’s (1995) strategic clock this could result in one of three possible strategies including a no frills, low price or hybrid strategy. Considering these options, it may be the low price strategy which is of most relevant with a low price coming to meet average product quality and perceived benefits on the behalf of the consumer (Johnson et al, 2008). However, if such a strategy is to be enacted successfully, then Phillips must become the cost leader within the segment.

Having identified an overall business level strategy in the form of cost leadership, the next question is what steps must be taken to implement the strategy on the behalf of Phillips. In the first case, classical perspectives on strategy such as those put forward by Chandler (1962) advocated the expansion of businesses and the increasing of the levels of vertical integration. In this case, from a strategic perspective, classical theorists argued that larger vertically integrated companies were able to benefit from larger economies of scale and economies of scope than there smaller counterparts (Johnson et al, 2008). For this reason, the first recommendation of the report is that from a strategic perspective, Phillips should consider expanding the business not through a program of market based expansions but through a process of backwards vertical integration. In this case, Phillips may choose to acquire key suppliers of related components such as LCD panel producers, alternatively the company may choose to expand in such a direction through a process of organic investment in such in house production. Such a strategy would also seem to be consistent with the desire to reduce the power of the buyer and increase barriers to entry within the industry, key parts of Porter’s (2004) five forces analysis, a model associated with the classical school of thought on strategic management. This would seem to be desirable for Phillips at the moment given the high level of reliance which the company has on key input material providers such as Samsung (Di Serio et al, 2011).

Other possible sources of a strategic competitive advantage for Phillips may be to consider further ways of increasing the volume of sales within the business thus helping to create further economies of scale and scope and in doing so aiding the sustainability of the low cost strategy (Johnson et al, 2008). One issue to consider is that of the product range to be offered by the firm, in general terms, larger volumes of production often result in the development of a lower cost base through economies of scale and a reduction in the allocation of fixed costs (Arnold, 2008). However, not all increases in volume based production may be seen as equally as beneficial. For example, in expanding the breadth of the range of products offered by Phillips, those product additions which share common parts and components are likely to reduce the overall cost base of the company on a volume basis. However, introducing new product lines with few common components is likely to add complexity and hence cost to the business model (Slack et al, 2009, 2010). As such, the report recommends that in the future, Phillips should follow a strategy of increasing the width of its product range through related diversifications with the aim of increasing the volume of existing parts and components bought or manufactured within the company.

In summary, this section has presented a view in line with the classical planed approach towards business strategy in which Phillips should apply a low cost prescribed business strategy in order to best align the core recourses of the business with the needs of the external environment. In this case a number of recommendations have been made in order to facilitate such an approach including an increased level of vertical integration and in increasing of the breadth of the product range. From theoretical perspective, both of these strategies should help Phillips to reduce its cost base through the generation of further economies of scale and scope, thus supporting the business level strategy.

At its most basic level, the decision to outsource production is often considered in terms of a short to term cost analysis exercise with a considerable motivation coming from the prospect of being able to reduce costs and thus pass on the benefits to the end user or consumer. However, as Di Serio et al (2011) article considers, while this is true, the application of a number theoretical frameworks including the resource based view of the firm and transaction cost analysis may provide a more comprehensive framework for analysis. In the first instance, the resource based view of the firm considers that firms generate a competitive advantage by taking advantage of sets of unique and internal resources to develop a superior offering from either the cost based or product based perspective. As such, the decision to outsource of in house production is a key one for firms given that this will often be linked to the available strategic resources of the organisation, hence the decision is strategic as well as operational in nature.

Transaction cost theory on the other hand considers that there are costs associated with conducting transactions in a market context, in other words there are additional costs of outsourcing production which are not included in the delivered price of a product (Di Serio et al, 2011). Such costs include the risks involved in buying from a market context as well as more practical costs such as those of monitoring suppliers and planning the process of material acquisition. In other words, the application of transaction cost theory may act as a rebuttal to the instant attraction of manufacturers to an outsourcing strategy, highlighting a plethora of problems and costs which may not have been considered otherwise.

One key issue which is raised in specific relation to the LCD market but may be seen as applicable to any outsourcing decision is the opportunity for suppliers to behave in an opportunistic fashion (Di Serio et al, 2011). Such opportunistic behaviour can include making demands for excessive price increases or failure to supply altogether. Such a situation is more likely in markets where there is a limited number of suppliers and hence the power of the supplier is relatively high. In the case of the LCD market, this context would seem to exist with Samsung being almost the sole supplier of key components of the product. Exacerbating the problem is the fact that Samsung is not only a supplier of the product but also a competitor of Phillips in the consumer electronics sector (Di Serio et al, 2011). As such, one key issue for Phillips to consider in the outsourcing decision is to understand the significant risks being taken with regard to security of supply.

Other issue which relate to the outsourcing model consider the issue of flexibility, in this case the total impact of the decision upon a company from a strategic perspective is somewhat debatable. On the one hand, the outsourcing of production should see that firms such as Phillips have a greater level of flexibility of production output based upon the fact that capacity is increased and decreased through a market based procurement decision. In times of low demand, this is beneficial for the company in question given that it does not have to bear the cost of maintaining the fix costs associated with in housed manufacturing operations. On the other hand, in times of high demand, in theory firms such as Phillips should be able to simply buy in the additional capacity needed. However, while this is true in theory, the Di Serio et al (2011) case would seem to suggest that there can be a struggle to gain supplies from an outsourced provider during peak periods in the business or product lifecycle. Such a risk was materialised for Phillips during the course of the Football World Cup when the company struggled to obtain sufficient suppliers from outsourced operations.

Other strategic considerations for outsourcing operations come from the perception of risk of investing in technologies associated with every shortening product lifecycles. As the Di Serio et al (2011) case indicates, many in the LCD sector including Sony, LG and Phillips chose to outsource operations or create joint ventures in relation to component production simply due to a belief that investment in in-housed production represented a significant risk due to the short term nature of products in the consumer electronics sector. As such, the outsourcing decision may be seen as a mechanism for transferring such risks from manufacturer to supplier.


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Chandler, A, D. (1962). Strategy and Structure. Cambridge: MIT Press.

Di Serio, L, C, Bento, R, D, Martins, G, S, Moura Castro Duarte, A, L. (2011). Strategic outsourcing? The Phillips case in the LCD TV market. Journal of technology management and innovation. Vol. 6. Iss. 2. pp219-228.

Duhigg, C, Barboza, D. (2012). In China, human costs are built into an iPad. Available online at: [Accessed on 23/12/12].

Griffin, R, W, Pustay, M, W. (2010). International Business. 6th ed. Boston: Pearson.

Hutchings, G. (2001). Modern China. London; Penguin Books.

Johnson, G, Scholes, K, Whittington, R. (2008). Exploring corporate strategy Text and cases. 8th Ed. Harlow: FT Prentice Hall.

Kollewe, J. (2011). Japan earthquake and tsunami forces Toyota to cut production at UK plant. Available online at: [Accessed on 06/03/12].

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Panitchpakdi, S, Clifford, M, L. 2002. China and the WTO. Singapore: John Wiley and Son.

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Parsons, E, MacLaran, P. (2009). Contemporary issues in marketing and consumer behaviour. Amsterdam: Butterworth Heinemann.

Porter, M, E. (2004). Competitive advantage. Export edition. United States: Free Press.

Ravillion, M. (2010). The developing world’s bulging (but valuable) middle class. World Development. Vol. 38. Iss. 4. pp445-454.

Slack, N, Chambers, S, Johnston, R, Betts, A. (2009). Operations and process management. 2nd ed. Harlow: Prentice Hall.

Slack, N, Chambers, S, Johnston, R. (2010). Operations management. 6th ed. Harlow: FT Prentice Hall.

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伦敦大学学院论文代写-Privacy & Organizational Communication Theory

Privacy & Organizational Communication Theory



This essay will consider and evaluate the proposition “privacy is dead- get over it” by looking at organizational communication theory and practice. The essay will look at the role of the employee in the modern corporate environment, and compare and contrast this with the role and status enjoyed by the employee in more historical settings. The essay will look at the statutory framework for Data Protection in the UK, and privacy and will examine how this applies to the workplace, both in theory and in practice. The role of legislation designed to protect the interests of employees will be considered and the writer will comment on the efficacy of the legislation as well as considering the specific rights that it creates for employees and the specific responsibilities that it creates for employers. The wider sociological context for issues connected to surveillance in the workplace and employment rights will be examined also, and the writer will consider how technological advancement and the Information Age has affected the status of the modern employee in terms of their privacy. The ultimate aim of creating this context will be to inform a holistic evaluation of the proposition “privacy is dead- get over it”.

Privacy and surveillance in the workplace

In the modern workplace there are various tensions that exist between the privacy of employees and the level of surveillance that employers may employ in order to ensure that the organization functions optimally (Sprenger, P. (1999); Treacy, B. (2009); Wilkes, A. (2011)). Social networking sites are becoming more and more popular, and the internet is being used more and more to facilitate communication within organizations: “According to the Office for National Statistics’ 2010 data, 30.1 million adults in the UK (60% of the population) access the internet every day or almost everyday. This is nearly double the 2006 estimate of 16.5 million. Social networking was a popular internet activity in 2010, with 43% of internet users posting messages to social networking sites or chat sites, blogs etc. While social networking activities prove to be most popular amongst 16–24 year olds, 31% of internet users aged 45–54 have used the internet to post messages on social network sites, while 28% uploaded content. Many of the adults that use social networks do so not only for social networking purposes but also for business networking purposes. Of the individuals listed in LinkedIn this year, there are over 52,000 people, predominantly in the US, Canada, India, Italy, UK and the Netherlands (in that order) with ‘privacy’ mentioned in their profile. Within LinkedIn there are also a considerable number of privacy related LinkedIn groups which have substantial memberships. Many of the readers of this article will no doubt be in those groups for social as well as business purposes…(Bond, R. (2010) pp. 1)”, and this intensifies the debate as to how far employees’ privacy can be lawfully infringed by employers.

As organizational communication takes place more and more via email and other forms of electronic communication the problem of privacy is further heightened as more extensive records of personal communication are created and retained (Johnson, D. and Turner, C. (2003) p. 43-47; Jordan, T. (1999) p. 17-19; Kitt, G. (1996) p. 14-18). What to do with data like this poses a complex problem relating to the privacy of the employee and the right of the employer to infringe privacy in order to ensure the integrity of their organization.

The statutory framework

In the UK the privacy of an employee’s data, and an employer’s lawful access to such information is defined through a number of routes (Lunney, M. and Oliphant, K. (2003); Mc Kendrick, E. (2003)). Firstly, there is an important statutory framework that employers must respect. This is created by the Data Protection Act 1998, and also by the ECHR which requires that an individual’s private and family life be respected (Article 8 of the ECHR). These rights are enforceable by an individual in a civil court in the UK, but also by public agencies in the UK like the Office of the Information Commissioner (Sprenger, P. (1999); Treacy, B. (2009); Wilkes, A. (2011)).

The Data Protection Act 1998 has created a number of principles of data protection, which must be respected. These are that information (i) must be fairly and lawfully processed; (ii) information may only be obtained for specified lawful purposes, (ii) may not be processed in any manner incompatible with such purposes; (iii) data must be adequate, relevant and not excessive for the purposes for which it is collected; (iv) information must be accurate and where necessary kept up to date, (v) information must not be kept longer than necessary, (vi) information must be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects, (vii) security measures must be taken against unauthorized and unlawful processing of information against accidental destruction, or unauthorized or unlawful destruction, and (viii) information must not be transferred outside the European Economic Area within the consent of the data subject. In cases where these principles are not adhered to by employers, an employee may institute civil actions for breach of privacy, and or complaints to the ICO who may pursue criminal prosecutions against any party who has breached the Data Protection Principles (Kuschewsky, M. (2009); Hansson, S. and Palm, E. (2005) p. 57). As such the Data Protection Act 1998 creates a range of rights in terms of privacy and security of personal information and these may be enforced directly by an individual or by a public body such as The Information Commissioner on behalf of an individual. Breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 is a criminal offence which is punishable with fines and or up to six months imprisonment. Recent changes to the powers of the Information Commissioner gives them powers to issue fines of up to £500,000 for cases of serious breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998 (Kuschewsky, M. (2009); Hansson, S. and Palm, E. (2005) p. 57).

On the other hand there is also a statutory framework that addresses how far an employer may go in terms of monitoring their employees in the course of employment. The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and the Telecommunications (Lawful Business Practice) (Interception of Communication) Regulations 2000. These provide that monitoring of employee data can only be authorized for specific, defined purposes such as where the employer has a legitimate overriding interest in the pursuit of monitoring activities (Schirato, T. and Yell, S. (2000) p. 42-45; Sime, S. (2007) p. 12; Smith, M. and Kollock, P. (1998) p. 32-35). Thus it may be argued that there is a balance to be struck between the information that employee’s disclose which may be lawfully evaluated by the employer (deemed for example in communication privacy management theory as “self-disclosed” information (see: Petronio, S. (2002) p. 3)) and information that is subject to inappropriate uses.

Clauses in the employment contract may also define the rights and responsibilities of the employer and the employee in terms of privacy, but it is important to note that employers may not, through the operation of a private contract exclude any of the rights and or responsibilities that are defined in The Data Protection Act 1998, or the ECHR (Blanpain, R. (2007); Elliott, C. and Quinn, F. (1999)). The wider legislative framework may be further defined according to the theory of privacy rule development. Privacy rule development theory argues that cultural, and sociological factors impact the boundaries of privacy rights (Petronio, S. (2002) p. 40) and it is clear that there is a balanced approach to the rights of the employee and the responsibilities of the employer under this framework and this reflects wider liberal sociological and cultural values prevalent in the UK.

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兰卡斯特大学论文代写-International Business Strategies

International business strategy


The survival and progression of businesses in the 21st century is highly dependent on the ability of firms to expand beyond their national borders, taking into account the cost effectiveness of expansion and the complexity and risks associated with the company’s chosen international business strategy (Peng, Wang, & Jiang, 2008). The resources and objectives of a firm, as well as the demand for their product outside their national borders are important in taking the decision to globalise a company’s products and/or services (Miller, 1992). Although three strategies are more common in the management literature, namely multi domestic, global and transnational approaches, the fourth strategy available to firms, according to Barlett and Ghoshal (1989) is the international approach to global expansion. This essay will analyse the two approaches that differ in local responsiveness and cost pressure for the business, with the international approach as the least responsive and expensive for the company and the transnational approach as the most costly and locally focused from the four options available to companies.

To start with, local responsiveness of multinational corporations is often a matter of mutual expectations of the company expanding into a region and the local customers’ demands and needs (Gomez-Mejia & Palich, 1997). For instance, food and beverage companies from the Western world (i.e. the US or the UK) expanding into Asian countries need to integrate certain products in their range that suit the demands of local consumers (Watson, 2006). As such, the role of the transnational approach is to enable companies from a culturally distinct country to penetrate a new market successfully (London & Hart, 2004). There are both positive and negative effects of the transnational approach. Developing a business model and manufacturing strategies is a costly process for any company and changing this for the purpose of integrating new products specific to a region is an additional financial pressure for multinational companies (Zaheer, 1995). Although the negative impact of local adaptation may deter some firms from adopting this strategy, the success of companies like McDonalds which take this approach proves that the additional costs can increase the chances of global success and the return on investment (ROI) for the company (Luo, 2001). The core advantage of the transnational approach is the potential of multinational firms to compete with local counterparts in a more effective manner through offering local products alongside their already established reputation (Dawar & Frost, 1999). High levels of local responsiveness also ensures that the reputation in the new region contributes to the ethical image and the overall CSR of a multinational company (Husted & Allen, 2006). Large corporations are often accused of unethical conduct due to the cost competitiveness with the local providers, as international firms often perfect their manufacturing techniques in order to reduce all the time and resource waste, therefore allowing them to compete with local firms (Meyer, 2004). An increasing number of countries have launched campaigns which promote local companies over the international competitors claiming that regional businesses understand the needs and desires of their customer base more, unlike the multinational firms (Kapferer, 2002). This underlines the importance of local responsiveness, as the resistance of local customers decreases when a multinational demonstrates a desire to first understand the locals’ behaviour and adjust their strategy accordingly when entering a new region (Prahalad & Doz, 1999).

In spite of the important role and effect of the transnational approach, there are multiple companies which have succeeded despite their disregard of the local customers’ specific needs and desires (Samiee & Roth, 1992). These companies opted for internationalisation as a strategy for global expansion, relying on the recognisability of their brand name, logo, specific products, packaging, etc. A successful company which took this approach in their international expansion is Starbucks, who launched their very specific coffee shops across the world aiming to take over the market share of local coffee shops through offering a very specific experience, rather than focusing exclusively on the beverages offered (Harrison, 2005). Although the local Starbucks coffee shops across the world offer some specific products, such as a variety of green tea products in Asian countries, the core product sold by Starbucks is the experience that customers enjoy alongside their chosen beverage (Gaudio, 2003). Whilst it was difficult at start for Starbucks to maintain a standardised approach to the design of their customer experience, taking over local coffee shop chains and their clientele has proven to be a successful tactic (Loeb, 2013). This international approach therefore reduces the initial cost pressure through taking over a large share of the customers of former cafés in the local region and the premises which were built and used for an identical purpose (Barkema & Vermeulen, 1998). Rebranding the coffee shops in order to maintain a standard image is less expensive than building coffee shops from scratch, in addition to the existing customer base that the American giant is able to take over (Gaviria, 2012). In consequence, the role of the international approach as an expansion tactic is to allow companies to expand quickly, cost effectively and effortlessly (Contractor, Kumar, & Kundu, 2007). The effect of the tactic is a positive one from a financial viewpoint and, more often than not, a negative one from a reputation point of view, as citizens perceive this approach to disregard any specific cultural aspect of the region that multinationals penetrate.

It is, therefore, obvious that each of these two approaches have their advantages and disadvantages for the company aiming to explore a new region, the local competition and the customer base in the country. However, companies must take into account the impact of the global mobility of the workforce and the extent to which social media influences the demands of customers and the reputation of a multinational firm (Okazaki & Taylor, 2013). The role and effect of both international business strategies are influenced by these elements, as consistency in a multinational’s approach is even more important in the light of individuals travelling on a regular basis for business and work purposes and the ability of people all over the world to share information via social media (Jin, Park, & Kim, 2008). In other words, a company must set their priorities from the onset of internationalisation in order to maximise their earning potential and the international reputation through their chosen tactic for global reach (Vrontis, Thrassou, & Lamprianou, 2009). As a result of this, both the role and the effect of the international business strategies are enhanced in the long run, as companies are less able to change their view on the approach to conquering new regions. Well established Western companies must ponder over the decision of investing capital in the transnational approach, as their lack of success of competing against local companies could mean that their financial loss may never be recuperated (Prahalad & Doz, 1999). On the other hand, without an adaptation to the locals’ needs and desires an international company’s ability to succeed may be compromised, but the financial impact of this failure will not be as great as that supported by companies who invest capital in adaptation (Solberg, 2002).

Companies must take into account all of the influencing factors, particularly those that stem from cultural elements of the destination country, when opting for an international business strategy (Drogendijk & Slangen, 2006). The gains of the company must be maximised through international expansion and the best solution is often dependent on the capital that the multinational is willing to invest in the their global strategy, as well as the market positioning of local competitors and the resistance of local consumers to new and international products or services. The emergence of social media also offers multinational companies an advantage, as the contact between individuals from distinct areas makes it possible for demand in one country for a particular brand to grow through online advertising of particular products (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010). The international tactic is therefore made easy by the ability to promote a company through social media and export products, without any concern for local adaptation, through online shopping. On the other hand, the success of companies with brick and mortar shops in new region is significantly higher than that of companies that rely exclusively on online retail (Steinfield, Adelaar, & Liu, 2005). In addition to this, not all regions have the same level of trust towards online shopping, as the security concerns in some regions are significantly higher, particularly when no efforts of local adaptation are made by the international firm (Bart, Shankar, Sultan, & Urban, 2005).

In conclusion, the role and effect of international business strategies are crucial in the success of expanding a business beyond its national borders, but the potential of these can only be maximised when taking into account other elements that contribute to the internationalisation, such as local culture, the demands, needs and wants of customer base targeted, etc. The impact of the chosen strategy must be thoroughly analysed by a firm, as international strategies require consistency over time in the approach taken. In consequence, the advantages and disadvantages presented in this essay must be weighed against the multinational’s company mission and their future plans in order to opt for one of the two extremes, transnational or internationalisation approach, or the two other options in between, global or multinational approach.

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帝国理工学院论文代写-Balanced Scorecard




The intention of this essay is to analyse the ‘Balanced Scorecard’ and to review its effectiveness as a performance management tool. It will review briefly the short history of the ‘Balanced Scorecard’ and then analyse each of the different aspects of the management tool and describe how they link together.

History of the Balanced Scorecard

The notion of the ‘Balanced Scorecard’ first appeared in the Harvard Business Review in 1992 in an article titled “The Balanced Scorecard – Measures that Drive Performance,”authored by Robert Kaplan and David Norton (Kaplan and Norton 1992). They had conducted a year-long study with “12 companies at the leading edge of performance measurement, [and] devised a ‘balanced scorecard’”as a result of their research (Kaplan and Norton, 1992, p.71).

A ‘Balanced Scorecard’ is a “strategic planning and management system that is used to align business activities to the vision and strategy of the organisation, improve internal and external communications, and monitor organisation performance against strategic goals”(Balanced Scorecard Institute, Unknown). It was brought out of the necessity to include non-financial indicators to measure performance, where in the past businesses and managers focused primarily on financially-based indicators to measure performance. These financially-based performance measurement systems “worked well for the industrial era, but they are out of step with the skills and competencies companies are trying to master today”(Kaplan and Norton, 1992, p.71).

After spending a year with various companies, Norton and Kaplan realised that “Managers want a balanced presentation of both financial and operational measures”(Kaplan and Norton, 1992, p.71). The recognition of the importance of operational measures was a milestone in performance measurement systems, as financially-based measurements help indicate the final outcomes of actions and processes already set in place, whilst operational measures help aid the driving of future financial performance.

Since its inception in 1992 the ‘Balanced Scorecard’ is now “adopted by thousands of private, public, and non-profit enterprises around the world”(Kaplan, 2010, p. 2). Which provides testament to its importance and effectiveness as a performance management system, it is likely that businesses that have implemented the systems have seen profound impacts on their profit margins and the happiness and innovativeness’ of their workforce.

The Four Perspectives

The scorecard itself is made up of four different perspectives; Financial, Customer, Internal Business Processes, and Learning & Growth. By looking at these different perspectives the balanced scorecard “provide[s] answers to four basic questions; How do customers see us? What must we excel at? Can we continue to improve and create value? How do we look to shareholders?”(Kaplan and Norton, 1992, p.72) By providing senior managers with information from four important perspectives, another benefit of implementing a scorecard is that it minimises information over-load by “add[ing] value by providing both relevant and balanced information in a concise way for managers”(Mooraj, Oyon and Hostettler, 1999, p.489).

To understand more completely how the interaction of the phases helps an organisation create additional financial value whilst aiding in the learning and growth, internal business processes and customer satisfaction perspectives see the appendix for fig.1, and fig.2. The four different perspectives and the way they interconnect are an important issue, as such it is also important to analyse each of them on an individual basis; first it must be recognised that each of the perspectives is made up of Objectives, Measurements, Targets and finally Programmes.

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The success of a company is strongly influenced by its ability to identify and implement strategies which will help it in maintaining or enhancing its competitive position. The objective of this essay is two folds: to review the use of environment analysis in generating strategic options, and to measure the performance of a strategy. The business environment is changing rapidly, and companies need to change their strategies to adapt to changes in environment to prosper or just to survive (Wu, 2010). With external environment, and to some extent internal environment, of a firm changing quickly, it is important for a firm to review them when formulating and evaluating strategic options. The BCG matrix, Porter’s generic strategies and the Suitability, Feasibility and Acceptability framework are useful in generating strategies. The application of an environment analysis in generating strategies by using these three strategic management tools is reviewed in this essay.

The success of a strategy in achieving its objectives is also dependent upon the ability of a business to measure its performance so that corrective actions can be taken to improve performance. The two tools analysed in this essay for measuring the performance of a strategy are the benchmarking and the Balanced Scorecard.

Generating strategic options

“A strategy of a corporation forms a comprehensive master plan that states how the corporation will achieve its mission and objectives” (Wheelen and Hunger, 2006, p. 14). Strategies are developed to maintain or enhance the competitive advantage of a firm. According to Saloner et al. (2001), the two main groups of competitive advantage are based on the firm’s position and the firm’s capabilities. The firm’s position reflects its place in an external environment, and the firm’s capabilities corresponds to its internal environment. This implies that external and internal environmental analyses has a vital place in generating strategic options.

An analysis of external and internal environments helps in identifying the strategy that fits the firm most. Porter’s Five Forces and SWOT analysis show the information which can be collected from the external and internal environment analysis to be used for developing a strategy. The tools reviewed in this essay for generating strategic options after conducting an environment analysis are BCG matrix, Porter’s generic strategies and the Suitability, Feasibility and Acceptability framework.

Porter’s Five Forces

The external environment analysis is useful in understanding the factors which are influencing a firm, but are beyond its control. External environment analysis can be done with strategic tools, such as PESTEL (political, economic, social, technological, environmental and legal) and Porter’s Five Forces. The Porter’s Five Forces framework helps in understanding the position of a firm relative to customers, suppliers, competitors, new entrants and substitute products, and these are useful in generating strategic options.


The SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis is useful to a firm wishing to follow the cost leadership strategy to understand whether it has the desired set of resources to do that. A review of resources and capabilities can show whether the firm has the cost leadership abilities, and which can be maintained in the future. The internal resources of a firm play a significant role in deciding the strategic option that a firm can use to grow its business (Becerra, 2009). The SWOT analysis can also help in identifying the internal weaknesses and external threats which should be factored in deciding which one of the Porter’s generic strategies should be adopted by a firm. The selection of generic strategies would be less effective if the firm does not know whether it has the desired set of resources to defend the strategy. The SWOT analysis is useful in deciding the strategic option to choose by making the best match of the abilities of a company with market opportunities (Spulber, 2004).

BCG Matrix

The BCG matrix is a useful tool for evaluating the relative performance of markets in which an organisation operates. The BCG matrix analyses each business segment in terms of a company’s market share and market growth (Figure 1) (Grant, 2013). The four categories are Star, Cow, Question mark and Dog. The BCG matrix can be used to identify the markets that the firm should focus on to improve its performance. This is based on the results of the external environment analysis which shows growth and relative positions of competitors in different market segments.

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MBA论文代写-resist change



Why do people resist change at work and how can this resistance be overcome from an HR perspective?

1. Introduction

Change is a common feature of the workplace. This paper examines why people resist change at work. It then explores how this resistance can be surmounted from an HR viewpoint.

2. Resistance to change at work

From research into individual and organisational behaviour, it is well established that people at work can sometimes resist change (Robbins, 1992). The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) define resistance to change at work as “an individual or group engaging in acts to block or disrupt an attempt to introduce change” (CIPD, 2014, p.2) and argue that, in general, resistance to change in the workplace occurs in two ways: “resistance to the content of change” and “resistance to the process of change” (CIPD, 2014, p.2).

The reasons for resistance to change at work are numerous. Resisting change enables stability and for the status quo at work to be maintained (Robbins, 1992). Change jeopardises the comfort zones and security of employees who are risk averse and who like familiarity (Holbeche, 2001). The fear of the unknown may result in resistance to change (Robbins, 1992). There may be resistance when change appears to threaten someone’s income (Robbins, 1992). Change can appear threatening to the individual worker when it is foisted on them top down without their input as they do not feel in control (Holbeche 2001).

Gifford et al (2012), in their review of change programmes in NHS South of England, found that “many people do embrace change, but it is easy to feel undermined or threatened by it, even if one accepts at a broad level that change is needed. As well as the challenge of embracing new ways of working, it can be hard to let go of the old ways. Not only do people have ingrained habits and ways of thinking; they also become skilled in familiar work and may feel that their credibility is based upon it. For example, if someone spends years honing skills in a specific procedure and is then told they should be using a completely different technique, this may cut at their sense of self worth” (Gifford et al, 2012, p. 15).

Thus, there may be resistance if a person’s perception of how the world of work should be is threatened. Robbins (1992) explains that “individuals shape their world through their perceptions. Once they have created this world, it resists change. So individuals are guilty of selectively processing information in order to keep their perceptions intact” (Robbins, 1992, p.281).

Psychologists have studied resistance to change and it has been recognised that change may involve a significant shift for the individual, like a bereavement, where what was once certain is no longer so and they have to relinquish the familiar in order to be able to embed change (Holbeche, 2001).

The psychological contract is an important consideration when looking at resistance to change at work. Guest and Conway (2002) defined the psychological contract as “the perceptions of both parties to the employment relationship, organisation and individual, of the reciprocal promises and obligations implied in that relationship” (Guest and Conway, 2002, p.22). The CIPD (2005) argue that the psychological contract is “now best seen as a tool that can help employers negotiate the inevitable process of change so as to achieve their business objective without sacrificing the support and co-operation of employees along the way” (CIPD, 2005, p.4).

CIPD (2005) commented that people expected commitments made to them by management to be honoured and that management should make the effort to do so. Where management is not able to honour a commitment, attempts should be made, however difficult, to explain why and its impact on the employee. A breach of the psychological contract is likely to result in employees having a negative attitude to their employer which would include resistance to change. A case study at a Scottish manufacturing plant, where employees believed that the psychological contract had been breached by the employer, noted that the regular imposition of change programmes had resulted in a high level of cynicism amongst supervisors and shop floor staff (Pate, Martins and Staines 2000).

If there is a lot of organisational change in a workplace, it is likely to be negatively received by its staff (CIPD, 2005;Guest and Conway 2001). Furthermore, where there is frequent change, it is likely to result in staff believing that management do not know what they are doing and their trust in them declines (CIPD 2005) (Guest and Conway 2001).

In spite of all the above, research into change management reveals that there are things that can be done to alleviate resistance to change.

3. Overcoming resistance to change: the HR viewpoint

3.1 Adopt a positive approach to resistance at work

Resistance to change can be a cue for stakeholders in an organisation to have a meaningful debate about the merits of the proposed change. This may lead to amendments and improvements to the change (Robbins 1992).

3.2 The need to understand why change is happening

Research has shown that it is important for staff to understand why change is happening in terms how it will benefit the business and ideally how will it benefit them.

In the Gifford et al (2012) review of change programmes across the NHS South of England, it concluded that “leaders need to sell the benefits of the change. To do this they need to express their vision in a way that makes it easy for stakeholders to relate it to the purpose and values of the NHS and to their own principles and motivations” (Gifford et al., 2012, p.5). Gifford et al (2012) added that “purpose and vision [of the change programme] are crucial factors” (Gifford et al., 2012, p. 51) that should be communicated in many ways to make sure the message connects with the stakeholders.

In redundancy situations, Holbeche (2001) discovered that there was a “link between the perceived reason for the delayering and the effect on employees. If people thought that the reason for the delayering was simply cost cutting, their morale and motivation tended to be more adversely affected than where there appeared to be a more ‘strategic’ reason for the change” (Holbeche, 2001, 367).

3.3 Communication

Communication plays a critical part in helping staff understand why change is happening and in feeling engaged in the change process. Internal communication mechanisms which enable staff to feel empowered and involved are key to minimising resistance. Two way communication mechanisms like attitude surveys can be effective, but only if visible changes arise as a result (Holbeche, 2001). Other forms of communication that can help are senior management presentations (where questions can be asked and answered), road shows, team briefings and management cascades, question and answer mechanisms (for example by email) and internal newsletters (Holbeche, 2001).

Communication should ideally involve an element of being two way and should include all stakeholders. The CIPD (2005) found that top down communiques by senior managers were perhaps the most ineffectual way of delivering important messages to staff. Mission statements were slightly more effectual, but the most successful way of reaching staff with messages that they are likely to believe is through line managers (CIPD, 2005).

In recent times, storytelling, narratives and theatre have been used in change situations as innovative ways of communicating with staff in order to get them engaged and involved. These methods allow for a move away from top down senior management communication (Daley and Browning, 2014, Dennis, 2010, Thomas and Northcote, 2012).

Formal communication, in times of change, should:

  • Inform – about the organizational/ personal implications
  • Clarify – the reason for the change, the strategy and benefits
  • Provide direction – about the emerging vision, values and desired behaviours
  • Focus – on immediate work priorities and actions, together with medium term goals
  • Reassure – that the organisation will treat them [staff] with respect and dignity” (Holbeche, 2001, p.368).

3.4 Staff engagement

Those affected by the change need to feel engaged so that they believe that they are invested in the change. This can be time consuming and difficult for those leading the change (CIPD 2005, Gifford et al. 2012). Engagement can mean getting staff to buy into change that has already been devised or it can mean getting staff involved in actually designing the change (Gifford et al., 2012). Leaders need to be clear about what level of engagement is being offered as unfulfilled expectations risk demotivating staff and weakening good will. (Gifford et al, 2012).

Bearing in mind the psychological contract, the CIPD (2005) argue that managing change well involves getting employees’ buy-in and making sure that they are not caught unawares. Employees want fair treatment and it is important that they believe that they can trust management. As stated earlier, if employees’ expectations are not to be met, the reason why should be explained by management (CIPD, 2005).

3.5 Leadership

Those in leadership positions in the organisation have to act as role models for change to be successful. If the behaviour of the leaders in an organisation is at odds with their verbal utterances in a change situation, it can result in cynicism in staff and thus resistance to change.

Holbeche (2001) reports of a case study where company directors were charged with leading an organisational change involving paying particular attention to the customer. The directors talked to staff about the importance of the organisation’s values, especially teamwork. However, staff knew that the senior leadership team did not work well as a team and thus, the change message was being met with cynicism. When the Chief Executive took drastic action and threatened to punish the directors financially, that was when the directors became serious about role modelling good team work and effective leadership. As a result, the change message became believable to staff.

3.6 Apply learning from neuroscience

Dowling (2014) explored the connection between neuroscience and change management. He found that neuroplasticity, the concept of the adult brain being able to change through specific activity and experiences, was applicable in change situations, if it was self-directed by the individual employee. He advised that employers should give their employees the latitude to have their own insights into the proposed change and that this would allow new neural pathways to be formed in the employees’ brain, making sustainable change possible.

Downing (2014) also explored the impact of threat and reward on employees’ behaviour. He argued that when a person is faced with a perceived threat, the brain has an inbuilt defence mechanism which is activated. This provides some explanation as to why there is resistance at work when an employee feels threatened. This argument reinforces the need for those leading the change to emphasize the benefits of the proposed change so that the employee’s brain reward response is activated as opposed to their threat response.

Downing (2014) additionally looked at habit and how the prefrontal cortex of the human brain (the advanced cognition brain area) operates primarily on the basis of habit, otherwise it would be using a huge amount of energy which would not be sustainable. During periods of change, when individuals are being required to adopt new habits, a heavy burden is potentially being placed on the prefrontal cortex. When designing change programmes, there needs to be an awareness of the brain’s limited capacity for change (Downing, 2014, Scarlett, 2013).

3.7 HR

HR has a pivotal role to play in staff communication and engagement as well as in planning change effectively, including taking into account the learnings from neuroscience. There has to be a real partnership between the business and HR for change to be effective. HR plays a role in assisting, developing and supporting those in leadership positions to be effective in their roles so as not to undermine the success of the change programme and engender resistance to change (Holbeche, 2001, CIPD, 2005, Gifford et al., 2012).

4. Conclusion

Although resistance to change is something that occurs in the workplace for many understandable reasons, it can be minimised by good communication and staff engagement, explaining the need for change in terms of its benefits to the business and to the individual member of staff, learning from research, effective leadership as well as HR working well with the business and being an integral part of the change. Overcoming resistance at work matters, as while resistance is occurring, it may result in negative consequences such as having a negative impact on performance and productivity, creating an environment for turf wars at work as well as demoralising and demotivating staff (Holbeche, 2001,Robbins 1992, Cannon and McGee 2008, Hughes, 2010).

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人力资源论文代写范文- 华为文化冲突


The Human Resources Challenge of Huawei —- Cultural clash


Background of Huawei

In 1987, Ren Zhengfei, then 44 years old, founded a telecom equipment-trading firm in Shenzhen, China, with startup capital of CNY 21,000. By the end of 2014, Huawei had 170,000 employees in more than 170 countries and regions, serving more than one-third of the world’s population, and leading the world in international patent applications. Over 30 years, it has grown to become the largest telecom company in the world. As well as that, it has operations and representative offices in more than 100 countries and serves over 1 billion users worldwide. Huawei’s success boils down to two fundamental elements: the changing technology environment and the creativity of its people, so we can realize that employees play a very important role in Huawei and the human resources management is very crucial to Huawei.

1987年,44岁的任正非在中国深圳成立了一家电信设备贸易公司,启动资金为21,000元人民币。截至2014年底,华为在170多个国家和地区拥有17万名员工,服务于全球三分之一以上的人口,在国际专利申请方面处于世界领先地位。30多年来,它已发展成为世界上最大的电信公司。除此之外,它还在100多个国家设有运营和代表处,为全球10亿用户提供服务。华为的成功归结为两个基本要素:不断变化的技术环境和人员的创造力, 对华为来说至关重要的是,让员工认识到员工在华为和人力资源管理中扮演着非常重要的角色。

Human resources challenges of Huawei

According to Fang Lee Cooke (The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 2012, p.1845), there are several challenge to HRM in host countries and management responses of Huawei. First, because salaries are based on performance levels, inexperienced local new hires may have lower wages. Second, unlike local employment laws, as foreign companies, they need to comply more strictly with these laws than China. Third, how to strike a balance between employee development and cost-effective employee disbursement is sometimes a dilemma because HCN employees need training and development opportunities and then leave more famous Western multinationals. Fourth, multiculturalism and diversity management is another issue. Huawei may be one of the few Chinese companies that actively adopt the concept of multiculturalism and diversity management. Fifth, the lack of approval from local employees and their employers and the lack of acceptance of the corporate culture of Chinese enterprises are a double challenge to the issue of retention.

Fang Lee Cooke(国际人力资源管理杂志,2012年,p.1845)指出,人力资源管理面临着一些挑战,华为的管理层也作出了回应。首先,由于工资是基于绩效水平的,缺乏经验的本地新员工的工资可能更低。其次,与当地的就业法不同,作为外国公司,他们需要比中国更严格地遵守这些法律。第三,如何在员工发展和成本效益的员工支付之间取得平衡,有时是一个两难的选择,因为HCN员工需要培训和发展机会,然后离开更著名的西方跨国公司。第四,多元文化和多样性管理是另一个问题。华为可能是少数几个积极采用多元文化和多元化管理理念的中国公司之一。第五,缺乏当地员工及其雇主的认可,对中国企业的企业文化缺乏接受,是对留用问题的双重挑战。

The key challenge

Cultural clash is one of the key human resources aspects that affected Huawei. Huawei as a multinational company, the objective existence of the company’s internal cultural differences, is bound to cause cultural conflicts in the enterprise. As the process of global integration accelerates and the flow of human resources in multinational enterprises like Huawei continues to accelerate, this cultural friction will increase day by day and gradually begin to manifest itself in the internal management and external operation of transnational corporations, resulting in the loss of market opportunities for transnational corporations and the inefficiency of the organizational structure and make the implementation of the global strategy in trouble. Therefore, this essay will attempt to demonstrate how the Huawei can solve this problem and develop better for its brighter future using human resources management practices.


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M&S Marketing essay

Select a retail sector with which you are familiar. What is the likely impact on the sector of a downturn in the growth of consumer spending- What strategies should a (named) retailer in the sector adopt to minimise the threat?

消费者支出增长对经济衰退可能有什么影响? 选择您熟悉的零售行业。该行业的(指定)零售商采取什么策略来减少威胁?

Following the financial and economic crisis in 2007, the reduction in consumer spending had a significant impact upon major high street fashion brands including Marks and Spencer, which saw sales and profitability fall significantly. In response to this, M&S adopted a strategy of contraction, which entailed the closure of a number of stores, particularly in the Simply Foods outlet sector. However, despite the fact that this ostensibly led to a reduction of costs, it can be argued that this approach also had an adverse effect upon the marketing mix and competitive advantage of the business. This was proven by the fact that M&S lost market share as a result of this strategy while other fashion stores, such as Primark and Zara maintained their growth pattern through this period.

在2007年的金融和经济危机之后,消费者支出的减少,对包括Marks and Spencer在内的主要高街时尚品牌产生了重大影响,其销售和盈利能力大幅下降。为此,玛莎百货( M&S )采取了收缩策略,包括关闭一些商店,特别是在Simply Foods的直销店。然而,尽管这显然降低了成本,但这种方法也对营销组合和企业的竞争优势产生了不利影响。事实证明,由于这一战略,M&S失去了市场份额,而Primark和Zara等其他时装店在此期间保持了增长模式。

It is considered that the strategy M&S should have adopted should have been based upon a more proactive approach. In this respect, there are two elements that the corporation needed to address. The first of these is to ensure that a policy of value chain management is re-enforced, which would reduce costs and therefore prices, while at the same time allowing the business to maintain its profitability levels. For example, had the marketing message for M&S been more focused upon delivering consumer savings rather than news of store closures, which forces additional cost on the consumer in terms of travelling to the store, it is likely that consumer loyalty would have been maintained at a higher level. Secondly, there was a need to ensure, through appropriate marketing research, that the products being offered met with the changing demands and needs of the consumer during this period. Similarly, it is likely that had the marketing focus for the business during this period been more directed towards lower cost elements and savings available to the consumer that this would have also contributed in maintaining its market share within the fashion sector. In other words, the corporation needed to adopt a proactive rather than reactive approach to marketing during the economic downturn.


There is strong movement amongst supermarkets to buy in consumer products which are not traditional supermarket lines (e.g., TV sets). The supermarkets do not carry a full range of these items and are not committed to carrying them all the time. What are the strategic reasons for this kind of activity? What are the risks?


Over recent decades, Supermarkets in the UK have continued to diversify the range and scope of the products and services they offer to their customers. This has included an expansion into non-food products, such as technology and entertainment goods, home furnishings and even the inclusion of service based products, such as banking and insurance offerings.