Strategic management and reputation
Strategic management refers to deliberate organizational efforts to produce fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, what it does, and why it does it (i.e. strategic planning), and the subsequent adoption of courses of action and allocation of resources necessary for carrying out these goals (i.e. strategy implementation).
The key of strategic planning is to determine what an organization intends to do and who it wants to be. An important element of this exercise is to distinguish oneself from other services. Already in 1957, Philip Selznick used the term “distinctive competence” to refer to organizations’ efforts to distinguish itself. Several decades later, Jim Collins argued that organizations should figure out why they exist before they decide what they do (see also Sinek: “Start with Why”). Even though strategies and tactics change frequently, successful organizations manage to maintain a core ideology, or set of values and guiding principles.
My research addresses organizations’ efforts to find and nurture their core ideology. An increasingly critical element of such efforts in contemporary society is careful stakeholder management. How to manage stakeholders in an attempt to create a distinctive organizational identity is the core interest of reputation scholars. Reputation generally refers to organizations’ visibility (being known), distinctiveness and predictability (being known for something), and attractiveness in the minds of their stakeholders. Being an increasingly important intangible asset, reputation management is a topic of key strategic concern for most organizations. In my own research, I have published a wide range of studies related to how organizations’ reputation, and their reputation management.