According to Bob De Wit and Ron Meyer, global strategy can be divided in three parts: process, content and context. These can be recognized in all business situations in relation to managers. The strategy process is defined as a set of essential questions about the business as a whole. In these three dimensions, there appear some tensions between apparent opposites. We will focus our attention on the strategy content and will try to explain the strategy tension between competition and cooperation in the Network level strategy.
Companies and their units work at different levels and in different markets. It is possible that the group of companies can have a strategy together. The strategy doesn't just imply the company itself but also all units that build the environment in which company is operating. That represents a business network. The question for the manager of the firm is to well define the relationship with other firms. Is it more interesting to develop a strong work relation with one firm or to keep far from it? In order to answer this question, it is necessary to work on inter-organizational relationships.
The issue of inter-organizational relationships:
Whatever the products or the market are, companies have to work with others, they interact with organizations. It's defined in four parts.
[...] With this approach, firms recognize they have similar interests, and working together leads to creation of more value and to avoid problem with other firms. So, for managers, the problem of competition and cooperation is far from being resolved. They have to cooperate or compete with other firms in order to reach their goals, to simplify some process and also to satisfy maximum customers or other part of the relational actors. Managers well know who their enemies or friends are but sometimes [...]
[...] The second relation is the relational objectives that show how the firms are sharing their skills in order to have more value added and to reap synergy. One of the relations consists of sharing information and resources in order to improve their quantity and quality. They can learn from other companies (learning oriented) or lend information to better analyse them (lending oriented). The other relation is oriented towards integrating activities that is more applicable in the vertical link between buyers and sellers. [...]
[...] That is a key success factor for their intentions and actions to avoid problems Perspectives on network level strategy Managers should fix limits to their cooperation with or in competition against other companies. But it's not easy to realize. In order to better draw the boundaries, we divide the relation in two parts: The discrete organization perspective It's a discrete organization because the firm is a detached part of the environment. That perspective is taken when firm is competing with others in a strong market. [...]
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