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Innovative Approaches to Corporate Management

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Innovative Approaches to Corporate Management


Innovative Approaches to Corporate Management

University of Phoenix


Year after year the same companies find themselves on the Fortune 500 list. One common denominator has been their approach to corporate management. In order for a company to be successful in today’s market, companies have to have a clear cut vision in the form of a mission statement and create a corporate culture which moves that vision into a reality. Companies cannot fear change, but rather embrace it and view it as a way to take their companies to the next level and become a model for other companies to emulate.

Innovative Approaches to Corporate Management

In 2001, Enron, based in Houston, Texas, was one of the world’s leading electricity, natural gas, and communications companies. Fortune Magazine named Enron as one of America’s most innovative company for six consecutive years from 1996-2001(Enron, 2006). Enron was well positioned in the market, and there seemed to be no stopping this powerhouse corporation. By the end of 2001, Enron had declared bankruptcy and became, arguably, the biggest corporate failure in American history due to poor corporate management (Epstein, 2006). While Enron’s Chief Executive Officer, executives, and managers let corruption, dishonesty, and greed be their mantra for corporate management, successful companies such as Microsoft were flourishing by taking innovative approaches to their corporate management policies.

Microsoft was founded in 1975 by Bill Gates and Paul Allen in Albuquerque, New Mexico and incorporates in 1981 (Microsoft, 2007). Over 30 years later Microsoft has become the leading software company in the world today thanks to the development of a software package called Windows (Microsoft, 2007). Windows is found on virtually every home and office computer in use today. In fiscal year 2006, Microsoft generated over $44 billion dollars and returned $26 billion to its shareholders (Microsoft, 2007). Currently, Microsoft employs over 76,000 people in over 100 countries and continues to expand to new markets (Microsoft, 2007). Microsoft’s overall success can be attributed to their corporate management and corporate governance.

In the 1970’s and early 1980’s companies typically held board meetings, and the executives sat in the conference room to decide the company’s fate in their morning meetings. By the end of the 1980’s and the early 1990’s, companies employed new tactics by hiring so called visionaries to help take their company into the new millennium, but had trouble implementing the vision into a working plan, or they faced resistance from the common worker who could not quite see the “big picture” because they were not privy to all the pieces of the puzzle. Companies like Microsoft were able to surpass their competition by moving that vision from the board room to the quarterly shareholder’s meeting and then to the break room so that they were able to move their vision into execution. A prime example of Microsoft moving vision into execution is the gaming system X-Box.

When Bill Gates first announced the X-Box at the turn of the century, everyone thought he was mad or just plain crazy. Sony was the front runner with the Playstation, and Nintendo was running a close second with the Game Cube, while Sega was bringing up the rear in third place with the Saturn (Chang & Kakuchi, 2000). The gaming market seemed impossible to penetrate given the competition producing such quality gaming systems, but Microsoft was determined to announce their presence with authority in an industry noted for its opposition to outsiders. Gates marketed his vision to produce a gaming console to over 150 developers including the likes of Activision, Konami, Capcom, Eidos, Epic, and eventually Entertainment Arts (Microsoft, 2007). Seven years later, Microsoft has claimed the number two spot, only slightly behind Sony (Ars Technia, 2007).

Having a vision is one thing, however being able to effectively

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