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Strategy workshops facilitating and constraining strategy making

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework for exploring the key elements of strategy workshops and provide empirical evidence on how these can influence strategy making within a firm. Design/methodology/approach ‐ The research is based on structuration theory and the "practice" view of strategy. The empirical data are based on a longitudinal case study, including ethnographic data, extensive observations and interviews. Findings ‐ The findings show that strategy workshops are institutionalized as part of a firm's strategy-making process, and provide a forum for strategic discourse facilitated through knowledge-sharing and/or promotion of strategic consensus. Strategy workshops may, however, also constrain strategy making through opposition and rejection of participation which may lead to strategic paralysis. Practical implications ‐ This research propose guidelines for managers on the effective preparation and management of strategy workshops. Originality/value ‐ The paper provides a new framework to explore key elements of strategy workshops and evidence of how these influence strategy making. The research highlights the dualistic nature of strategy workshops in strategy making.
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Keywords: Strategic management; Strategic planning

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-08-07

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