EXPLORING STRATEGY TRANSLATION IN PROJECTS

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • Mazen Melebari

Abstract

Many management studies report poor implementation of organisational strategy into practice (Yukl and Lepsinger, 2007; Li et al., 2008) and the absence within the literature of the question of how to translate strategy into effective practice provides the encouragement for this study. There are suggestions that by adopting a project management approach, organisations can better implement their overall strategies, meaning that what they do is properly and totally aligned with their goals (Pellegrinelli and Bowman, 1994). However, recent studies have concluded that project management makes little contribution to the achievement of organisational objectives, and possibly causes failure in this respect (Young and Grant, 2014). That said, Young and Grant (2014) have not provided any detailed information on the reason for such failure. At the same time, some management studies have revealed a number of challenges that confront organisations when approaching strategy implementation.Given these observations, this study aims to explore how organisations in Saudi Arabia are practising project management. It does so by adopting a qualitative method, involving thirty (30) face-to-face semi-structured and unstructured interviews undertaken in two phases with five organisations from the banking, property development, and higher education sectors. Two exploratory case studies (IT and Construction) were used to investigate the translation challenges in respect of strategy and project management implementation. From these, the study has identified a number of challenges confronting the participating organisations, and shows these challenges to be inter-related. Furthermore, it arrives at an understanding of why these challenges arise by investigating how the practice has been translated in these organisations. The tools and materials which resulted as objects from the translation are used to establish common knowledge, but are insufficient to create a clear view of the strategy within the participating organisations. Three main challengers related directly to the translation of project management practice emerged, namely: change, individual influences, and the role of the objects. The study makes several recommendations to improve the translation concept so that strategy implementation and overall project management practice can be enhanced. Additionally, it makes recommendations for further research to continue the efforts in this field of enquiry.

Details

Original languageEnglish
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Supervisors/Advisors
Award date31 Dec 2016