Strategic view of performance
Strategic view of performance

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4.1.1 Role of middle managers in the emergence of strategy

As we noted above in our discussion of Intel, middle managers may play a significant role in the emergence of organisational strategy, since they often have a similarly significant role in resource allocation. You may like to consider how a middle manager could shape organisational strategy using the following checklist of functions by Floyd and Wooldridge:

Upward

Synthesising information:

  • Gather information on the feasibility of new programmes

  • Communicate the activities of competitors, suppliers, etc.

  • Assess changes in the external environment

Championing:

  • Justify and define new programmes

  • Evaluate the merits of new proposals

  • Search for new opportunities

  • Propose programmes or projects to higher-level managers

Downward

Facilitating adaptability:

  • Relax regulations to get new projects started

  • ‘Buy time’ for experimental programmes

  • Locate and provide resources for trial projects

  • Provide a safe haven for experimental programmes

  • Encourage informal discussion and information sharing

Implementing deliberate strategy:

  • Monitor activities to support top management objectives

  • Translate goals into action plans

  • Translate goals into individual objectives

  • Sell top management initiatives to subordinates

(Floyd and Wooldridge, 1997, p. 467)

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