Crafting Strategy: Embodied Metaphors in Practice

Crafting Strategy: Embodied Metaphors in Practice

by Loizos Heracleous, Claus D. Jacobs


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The rationalist approach to strategizing emphasizes analytical and convergent thinking. Without denying the importance of this approach, this book argues that strategists must learn to complement it with a more creative approach to strategizing that emphasizes synthetic and divergent ways of thinking. The theoretical underpinnings of this approach include embodied realism, interpretivism, practice theory, theory of play, design thinking, as well as discursive approaches such as metaphorical analysis, narrative analysis, dialogical analysis and hermeneutics. The book includes in-depth discussions of these theories and shows how they can be put into practice by presenting detailed analyses of embodied metaphors built by groups of agents with step-by-step explanations of how this process can be implemented and facilitated. The link between theory and practice is further supported by the inclusion of several vignettes that describe how this approach has been successfully employed in a number of organizations, including BASF and UNICEF.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781107411692
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 11/29/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 260
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.55(d)

About the Author

Loizos Heracleous is Professor of Strategy and Organization and Head of the Strategy Group at Warwick Business School. He is also an associate fellow of Green Templeton College and the Saïd Business School at Oxford University.

Claus D. Jacobs is Swiss National Science Professor of Strategy at the Institute of Management, University of St Gallen, Switzerland. He is also a visiting fellow of Saïd Business School at Oxford University and a fellow of the Daimler Benz Foundation.

Table of Contents

List of figures; List of tables; Acknowledgements; Preface; Vignette A. BASF; 1. Strategizing out of the box; Vignette B. UNICEF; 2. Metaphor and embodied realism; 3. Analyzing embodied metaphors as an interpretive, hermeneutic endeavour; Vignette C. Voltigo (Fribourg); 4. Crafting strategy as a practice of embodied recursive enactment; 5. Play, analogical reasoning and dialogue in the crafting of strategy; Vignette D. Hephata; 6. Understanding organizations through embodied metaphors; 7. Sensemaking through embodied metaphors in organization development; Vignette E. Privatbank; 8. Strategy as a crafting practice; Vignette F. Worldvision New Zealand; 9. The process of strategizing through crafting embodied metaphors; Glossary; Index.

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