Communication of strategy at AG healthcare: an interpretive case study

Miles, T 2008, Communication of strategy at AG healthcare: an interpretive case study, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Business, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Communication of strategy at AG healthcare: an interpretive case study
Author(s) Miles, T
Year 2008
Abstract In 2001 AG Healthcare Headquarters, Belgium communication of strategy was failing to engage its social group members. This interpretive case study research concerns the communication of strategy of AG Healthcare Headquarters, a division of AG Digital Belgium (an engineering company), and its geographical group, AG Healthcare Oceania. This case study developed from the premise that communication of strategy is one of the key enablers of strategy. Using an interpretive approach, a qualitative semi-structured interview guide was designed to enable conversations with the interviewees (AG Healthcare Oceania, management group), to gain an understanding of their thinking of AG Healthcare Headquarters’ communication of strategy. The aim of this interpretive case study research was to identify the contextual factors that should inform the thinking and communication of strategy practitioners.

An initial search for literature concerning communication of strategy did not identify sufficient material for conducting the review. Thus, the search was extended to include strategy process, which generated a significant volume of relevant material. Mintzberg and Quinn’s (1991) strategy process omits communication from its content and therefore, the researcher proposed a modified strategy process adding to formulation and implementation a third component: communication. The generation of interviewee data focused on what the interviewees believed to be the issues concerning AG Healthcare Headquarters’ communication of strategy. A discussion and analysis of interviewee data, using abduction, identified new insights and interviewee conundrums (pieces of puzzle) indicating four specific interviewee behaviors toward AG Healthcare Headquarters’ new strategy: distrust, resistance, adapting/influencing and sensemaking. The researcher recognized, however, that the interviewee accounts were a narrow explanation of the ongoings at AG Healthcare Headquarters and could not address the research aim and research questions using the data analysis alone.

Therefore, he utilized the literature review and to a lesser extent, his experience as a strategy practitioner to assist him in the identification of the organizational contextual factors that should inform the thinking and communication of strategy practitioners. The identification of organizational contextual factors gave the researcher the notion of a strategy environment model and a strategy engagement model, to address the issues raised by the interviewees. The strategy environment model connects the nuances of strategy process with relevant social groups through organizational culture, politics, structure, and trust. The engagement model builds upon the strategy environment model, adding the concept of a feedback loop and a communication hub where social group members can resolve any misconceptions they may have about AG Healthcare Headquarters’ communication of strategy. Any organization could apply the engagement model in their workplace. This study contributes to strategy practitioners’ understanding of the interactions between strategy process and organizational culture, politics, structure, and trust, trans-organizational relationships and that a systems-thinking approach integrates each organizational element into a ‘whole’ strategy.

The outcome of this case study research shows that connecting strategy process with the nuances of social group memberships, using a systems-thinking approach affords strategy practitioners the opportunity of mediating their communication of strategy through organizational culture, politics, structure, and trust.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Business
Keyword(s) Strategy
Communication
Trust
Culture
Structure
Politics
Systems-thinking
Trans-organizational
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Created: Wed, 22 Jun 2016, 14:14:24 EST by Denise Paciocco
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