Spring 2017 Issue
Volume 58, Issue # 3

Access the full Table of Contents below.
Issues archive
advertisement

Special Report: How to Make Your Company Smarter

advertisement

Do You Diagnose What Goes Right?

Managers should make it a priority to identify and understand the components of process success rather than waiting to dissect a failure.

Features

Columns

Embracing a Strategic Paradox

If handled well, conflicting demands in a business can be sources of creativity and opportunity.

advertisement

Frontiers

Exploring the Digital Future of Management

How to Monetize Your Data

The ability to monetize data — not hoard it — can offer competitive advantage in the digital economy.

What’s Your Data Worth?

Many organizations need to develop greater expertise at valuing their data assets.

Support for Frontiers is Provided in Part By: Nanorep-LogMeIn-75

advertisement

Building a More Intelligent Enterprise

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 21 min 

The authors examine how managers can combine a sophisticated understanding of human decision making with technology-enabled insights to make smarter choices in the face of uncertainty and complexity. Integrating the two streams of knowledge is not easy, but once management teams learn how to blend them, the advantages can be substantial.

The Most Underrated Skill in Management

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 29 min 

Few questions in business are more powerful than “What problem are you trying to solve?” Leaders who can formulate clear problem statements get more done with less effort and move more rapidly than their less-focused counterparts. But stopping to ask this question doesn’t come naturally — managers must put conscious effort into learning a structured approach.

The Smart Way to Respond to Negative Emotions at Work

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 23 min 

It is impossible to block negative emotions from the workplace. Whether provoked by bad decisions, misfortune, poor timing, or employees’ personal problems, no organization is immune from trouble. And trouble agitates bad feelings. However, in many workplaces, negative emotions are brushed aside; in some others, they are taboo. Unfortunately, the author’s research suggests that neither of these strategies is effective. Instead, insight and readiness are key to developing effective responses.

Getting Past the Hype About 3-D Printing

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 2 min 

Despite the promise of additive manufacturing, the authors argue, near-term expectations about how 3-D printing will revolutionize manufacturing are overblown. Much of the technology is still being hammered out, and the authors examine three important myths about additive manufacturing.

advertisement

The Corporate Implications of Longer Lives

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 24 min 

People are living longer and working longer — but few organizations have come to grips with the opportunities and challenges that greater longevity brings. Across the world, people are becoming more conscious of their lengthening working lives — but frustrated by their working context. The authors’ research suggests that while people know they will have to restructure their lives and careers, corporations are unprepared.

To Improve Cybersecurity, Think Like a Hacker

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 18 min 

To protect their organizations from cyberthreats, companies need to understand how hackers go about their work. The authors’ research suggests that hackers’ attacks typically involve four steps: identifying vulnerabilities; scanning and testing; gaining access; and maintaining access.

Protect Your Project From Escalating Doubts

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 27 min 

Many big projects start off well, but then lose momentum and spiral downward as skeptical stakeholders withdraw support. Executives need to identify common triggers that spark stakeholder concerns — and take action to avert the ‘cycle of doubt’ that can ensue.

Embracing a Strategic Paradox

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 6 min 

Within a business, opposing ideas typically lead to conflict and, in the face of conflicting demands, managers will feel anxiety, stress, and frustration. However, the authors’ research at Aeon Co. Ltd., one of Japan’s largest retailers, suggests that a positive approach to handling conflicts between opposing ideas can create new value for a company.

advertisement

The Heavy Toll of ‘Always On’ Technology

  • Interview
  • Read Time: 7 min 

Our electronic devices and expectations for immediate responses to communications are degrading our attention, with implications not just for productivity but also for mental health and stress levels in the workplace. That’s according to the 2016 book The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World. In an interview, coauthor Larry D. Rosen says that research now shows that “the impact from so many interruptions on our mental and emotional functioning is vast, and it needs to be addressed.”

How to Monetize Your Data

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 10 min 

Companies can monetize their data by improving internal business processes and decisions, wrapping information around core products and services, and selling information offerings to new and existing markets. Adopting any of these approaches, however, requires management commitment to specific organizational changes and targeted technology and data management upgrades.

advertisement

Mastering the Digital Innovation Challenge

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 10 min 

For Volvo Cars, pursuing digital innovation required fundamentally rethinking the organization, while also keeping the core business functioning efficiently. The company did so by balancing four interrelated competing concerns: (1) new and established innovation capabilities; (2) process and product focus; (3) external and internal collaboration; and (4) flexibility and control in relationships with external partners.