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Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • provide a range of definitions of corporate governance;

  • identify issues usually addressed by corporate governance structures;

  • summarise recent scandals and abuses and the regulatory reaction;

  • identify the other drivers of corporate governance, such as capital markets, shareholders and rating agencies.


Author(s): The Open University

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6.1 Introduction

An important aspect of decision making which crosses all three perspectives is making decisions about risks. Risk is all-pervasive in organisational life and many decisions require us to weigh up and choose between different kinds of risk. Thus any account of decision making would be incomplete without examining how our perceptions of risk affect our decisions. In this section we will examine risk from the three different perspectives we have identified: rational-economic, psychological and s
Author(s): The Open University

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5.5.3 Normative pressures

Normative pressures concern what we think we ‘should’ do. They concern our values and the broader social values to which we subscribe. Some organisations make explicit attempts to foster particular kinds of value (for example, in relation to customer service), but normative pressures also come from outside the organisation, such as from a particular professional or religious affiliation.

Institutional pressures are important for both private and public-sector organisations.
Author(s): The Open University

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4.2 Bounded rationality and the use of heuristics

As decision makers, none of us has infinite resources or time to devote to gathering and analysing information. In addition, we all have significant limitations to the amount of complexity we can cope with. Thus, even where we make conscious efforts to make decisions according to a formally rational process, we often need to make simplifying assumptions and accept limits on the availability of information and the thoroughness of our analysis.

As noted above, we constantly use heuristics
Author(s): The Open University

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4.1 Introduction

A psychological perspective does not start from the assumption that people are fundamentally irrational. Rather, it emphasises a different logic: a logic that meets the challenges we have evolved to face (Calne, 1999). For much of our evolution we have faced an environment with major differences from the modern business world. We have developed a range of cognitive mechanisms to cope with adverse environments in which resources are scarce. These include a range of simplifying and confidence-s
Author(s): The Open University

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1.1 Introducing decision-making

A vast literature on decision making stretches back over several centuries and encompasses a wide range of academic disciplines – from history and literature through to mathematics. This unit is not a comprehensive survey of this field. Rather, we have chosen a few key topics that will help you to think in broader ways about how you and others take decisions; we shall also introduce you to some themes in social science which have direct relevance to managerial decision making. In particular
Author(s): The Open University

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Introduction

This unit covers a few key topics that will help you to think in broad ways about how you and others take decisions; we shall also introduce you to some themes in social science which have direct relevance to managerial decision making. The approach of this unit is descriptive: rather than prescribing how you should make decisions we look at frameworks that will help you to understand how decisions are actually made. We aim to help you to develop greater insight into both your own deci
Author(s): The Open University

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References

Butterfield, J. (1997) ‘Strategy Development’ in Butterfield, L. (ed.) (1997) Excellence in Advertising, Oxford Institute of Practitioners in Advertising/Butterworth Heinemann pp. 65–90.
Economist, The (2001) ‘Rebirth of a salesman’, 14 April 2001, p. 82.
Fill, C. (2002) Marketing Communications: Contexts, Strategies and Applications, 3rd edition, Har
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4 Summary

This section has examined marketing communications’ claims to strategic credentials. Historically there have been several barriers to this – the fragmented nature of development and execution in the absence of strategic co-ordination, rivalries between different communications disciplines, and short-termism in the marketing communications industry itself which has led to communications being seen as a tactical rather than strategic resource.

The traditional hierarchy of strategy has
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References

Bain, P. and Taylor, P. (2004) No Passage to India? UK Unions, Globalisation and the Migration of Call Centre Jobs, Work, Employment and Society Conference 1–3 September 2004, Manchester.
Cowe, R. and Porritt, J. (2002) Government's Business: Enabling corporate sustainability. London: Forum for the Future.
Knox, S. and Maklan, S. (2004), ‘Corporate Social R
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4 Environmental factors and organisations: review

The primary thrust of this unit has been to emphasise the need for all organisations to acknowledge the influence of their environments and, in turn, the impact of organisations on their context. We have argued that the commercial environment is characterised primarily by the growing trend toward globalisation. To a much greater extent than ever before we live in a global village where goods and services will be produced wherever they can be provided at the least cost. Consumers in the West i
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2.1 The response of business

For most of human history, our influence on the planet has been small (i.e. sustainable). The waste produced by our presence has traditionally been dealt with by a process of dilution; burying things, or perhaps dumping them in the ocean, was a viable proposition because we were few and the land and the oceans were vast. Mankind was a minor perturbation on the planetary ecosystem. But with change as the ever-present factor, we grew in both numbers and influence.

In the last century, the
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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
Author(s): The Open University

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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
    Author(s): The Open University

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2.4 Problems in closure

Projects do not always go according to plan. If problems develop during the closure period there are particular difficulties. The following story is told by an integration manager of an IT project.

Activity 3

0 hours 15
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2.3 Closing the project

Closing a project can be quite an emotional experience for team members who have worked together for some time, particularly if close bonds have developed. The manager of a project has some obligations to staff who have worked for some time on it. Build into the plan a closure interview with each member of staff, so that their contribution can be formally recognised and recorded. Staff may need help to recognise the skills and experience that they have gained and how these have been evidenced
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9 Summary

The project brief is a summary of previous discussions and research. If there is earlier documentation, the project brief can refer to these documents and summarise the key points rather than repeat everything. For example, there may have been previous documentation outlining the business case for the project so that commitment could be gained in earlier stages of the decision-making process. Similarly, there may be documentation that outlines the background to the project and the reasons for
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4 Project inputs and outputs

A project involves the transformation of inputs into an output or product. For example, people's mental and physical efforts, bricks and mortar, equipment or materials might be transformed into a new road, a municipal park or an advertising campaign. Or perhaps transformed into a stream of outputs or products, for example, attendances at a conference or exhibition, state school places or data from a new in-house costing system.

The output or outputs might be used within the organisation
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Acknowledgements

This content is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Licence. See Terms and Conditions.

Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following sources for permission to reproduce material in this unit:

Sally Pawlik, Careers consultant for the Open University for her autho
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3 What would suit me?

You should now have built up a realistic picture about what you want to achieve and what you have to offer and be able to match up all of these against some possible activities.

Here are some different ways to get you started:

Have another look at some of the statements in Section 1.3. These are just to
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