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1.7 Monitoring equity performance

For those equities in issue their current market value and some indicators of their performance are provided in the daily press. Table 3 shows the closing levels and the volume of shares traded in respect of a selection of companies on the London, New York, Frankfurt and Tokyo Stock Exchanges on 7 June 2005.

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References

Baker, M. (2006). Private communication, Business in the Community, 29 March.
Brewster, D. (2004). ‘CalPERS wave-making brings flak’, Financial Times Fund Management, 9 August.
Business Week (2004). ‘Special report: corporate governance, investors fight back’, 17 May.
Butz, C. (2003). Decomposing SRI
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2.2 Recent governance failures

As we have discussed before, the creation of corporate regulation is often linked to perceived failures of corporations and their management to behave in the way society expect them to. Corporate governance is not an exception to this trend, and, as with accounting, different countries may well experience difficulties at different times. For example, the development of British codes of best practice, which began with the Cadbury Committee, can be related to governance scandals such as Polly P
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7.5 Becoming an institutional entrepreneur

While acting in ways that are seen to be legitimate is important for both individuals and organisations, social institutions are not immutable. Some people and organisations seem to have a talent for changing the rules of the game.

Some writers have referred to this as being an institutional entrepreneur. At the organisational level examples might include organisations such as Microsoft or Sun Microsystems working actively to establish industry standards which favour them. At the
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7.4 Avoiding decision traps

While it is not possible to change our human natures, it is possible to immunise ourselves to some extent against common decision traps. Useful strategies include:

  • Get in the habit of reframing problems. For example, if you are considering strategies for avoiding a loss of €10,000 try asking yourself if you would feel differently if you consider them as strategies for making a gain of €10,000.

  • Think about the information you have
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7.1 Introduction

We have taken a brief excursion through three different perspectives on decision making (the rational-economic, the psychological and the social) and we have considered how we think about risk from these different perspectives. How can you use these ideas to improve your own and others' decision making? The first way is to use them to develop greater insight into the pressures and influences that may be affecting how you process information, think, and decide. By becoming more aware of these
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6.4 Prospect theory

Kahneman and Tversky (1979) developed ‘prospect theory’ to describe this combination of risk and loss aversion. This suggests that whether an individual is risk seeking or risk averse will depend on where they are in relation to a personal reference point. The reference point divides the area where they feel as if they are in loss from the area where they feel they are in gain. This point is not usually zero, and will change over time. For example, a professional financial trader who is p
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6.2 A rational-economic perspective on risk

A rational-economic perspective generally represents risk as a combination of the expected magnitude of a gain or loss, combined with some probability distribution of anticipated outcomes. Economic ideas of risk behaviour are founded largely on expected utility theory. Expected utility theory predicts that investors will always be risk averse. The shape of the utility curve (utility plotted against increasing wealth) is such that utility increases with wealth, but at a declining rate. This is
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5.6 A way of dealing with social pressures: decoupling

Organisations often deal with these social pressures by decoupling responses to these different pressures. The need to appear legitimate in the eyes of important constituencies is met by actions and practices which have a purely ceremonial character: they are done for the sake of appearances and not with any real engagement. The example in Author(s): The Open University

5.5.2 Mimetic pressures

Mimetic pressures come from the pressure to imitate what others do. The world is complicated and finding the optimal solution often difficult. One way of dealing with this complexity is to copy others. For example, in my own consulting work I carried out an assignment for British Petroleum (BP). Subsequently, other (smaller) clients would often ask me ‘So how does BP do this?’, usually with little regard for the different circumstances they faced. It is this mimetic pressure that
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5.5 Social pressures which affect our decision making

Broadly, there are three kinds of social pressure which affect how we make decisions:

  • coercive

  • mimetic

  • normative.

We look at these in more detail below.


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5.1 Introduction

As we noted earlier, both the rational-economic and psychological perspectives on decision making tend to ignore the social context in which we live and work. We turn now to consider this social context.


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3.1 Introduction

Much of economics and finance theory rests on the notion of people as formally rational decision makers. First, people are understood to have ordered preferences. That is, if someone prefers A to B and prefers B to C then they should prefer A to C. Second, decision makers are assumed to engage in a formally rational decision-making process on the basis of those preferences.


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1.2 Offshoring

The premise is straightforward. Given modern telecommunications capability, it matters little where telephone support is based. India, with a large population of English-speaking graduates and low (by Western standards) wage rates is an obvious choice. The significant cost-savings look very attractive to many organisations.

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Introduction

‘Environment’ is one of the more popular words in the management lexicon, most generally understood to be referring to ‘something outside’. But common usage today often interprets the Environment (with or without the capital ‘E’) as referring to the planetary ecosystem. On that basis the Environment includes such things as global warming, the state of the ozone layer, deforestation and the means of energy generation. Organisations need to coexist with their environment, responding
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Acknowledgements

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Unit Image

Esthr: www.flickr.com/photos/edyson/274977240/

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3 Entrepreneurial work style

The need for supportive, open and communicative policies, structures and cultures in effective entrepreneurial firms as the optimal crucible for successful innovations comes through very strongly from studies of innovation and successful entrepreneurship. However, the strong internal locus of control of successful entrepreneurs suggests there may be a difficulty in accepting the influence of others, powerful or not. And, the strong need for autonomy does not suggest a personality open to shar
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2 Entrepreneurial qualities

It is now widely accepted that, apart from the start up phase, most small firms in Europe are more concerned about survival rather than growth and relatively few are especially entrepreneurial (Gray 1998). Consequently, a lot of research in this field has focused on finding the characteristics that set entrepreneurs and their firms apart from others. Elizabeth Chell (1985, 1999), a social psychologist, has examined numerous psychological trait-based approaches and concluded that, whilst psych
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1 Economic function of the entrepreneur

Broadly, entrepreneurs have two vital roles to play in the economy (1) to introduce new ideas and (2) to energise business processes. Strictly speaking, the term entrepreneur, which derives from the French words entre (between) and prendre (to take), referred to someone who acted as an intermediary in undertaking to do something. The term was originally used to describe the activities of what today we might call an impresario, a promoter or a deal maker. The entrep
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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should:

  • understand the nature of entrepreneurship;

  • understand the function of the entrepreneur in the successful, commercial application of innovations;

  • confirm your entrepreneurial business idea;

  • identify personal attributes that enable best use of entrepreneurial opportunities;

  • explore entrepreneurial leadership and management style;

  • identify the requirements for building an
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