Strategic philosophy and management level

UNCP Author/Contributor (non-UNCP co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Dr. John Parnell, Belk Chair of Management (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP )
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Abstract: Purpose – To examine how a manager's strategic philosophy is influenced by his or her management level in the organization. Design/methodology/approach – Scales are developed to measure managers' philosophical perspectives along three key dimensions and tested with 289 managers in the United States. Refined scales are administered to 237 managers. Findings – A manager's level in the organization influences his or her strategic philosophy. As compared to middle-and lower-level managers, top managers were more likely to view strategy formulation as an art, to emphasize strategic flexibility as opposed to strategic consistency, and to see strategy as top-down process. Research limitations/implications – No single strategic philosophy is suggested as the optimal perspective. In addition, there are multiple possible explanations for the findings. Additional research is needed. Recognizing differences in strategic philosophy can also enhance training and development efforts at the lower and middle management levels. Practical implications – Findings lend support to the notion that one's strategic philosophy is not independent of one's management position and suggests that managers at each level may adopt perspectives that facilitate the managerial responsibilities at that level. Originality/value – This paper provides empirical evidence for a nexus between management level and strategic philosophy, a stream of research that received only limited research interest to date.

Additional Information

Management Decision Vol. 43, No. 2
Language: English
Date: 2005
Corporate strategy, Philosophy, Decision making, Senior managers, Middle managers

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