Bite-size Case Study

Open strategy and IT: IBM and CILIP

Published on January 30, 2020 Originally recorded 2019   9 min
So, let's get started. What exactly is Open Strategy? What does it mean? This is, of course, very important as the basis of this talk. So, essentially, opens strategy represents how organizations are trying to include more people in their strategy processes, and also trying to be more transparent about strategy and their own strategic actions. When we think about strategy, we typically think of it being very top-management senior at a board level activity; it is very top-down in nature, very exclusive. Open Strategy looks at how strategy can be more bottom-up, more inclusive. So, the term, in the context of this talk and the research area about this strategy, goes back to around 2007, where open innovation scholar Henry Chesbrough and his colleague Melissa Appleyard, stated that more openness is needed in strategy to help organizations balance the focus of the traditional business strategy, also with the promise of open innovation, which is Chesbrough and Appleyard's particular focus and area of interest. This also embraces the benefits of openness as a means of expanding value creation for organizations.
So, I am going to discuss two key examples here. One of these is, IBM strategy jams, or jamming processes, and I've also researched myself in some detail with the IBM CTO Europe team. I will also discuss aspects of the case from my own research which explored opened strategy at CILIP. That is the Charted Institute for Library and Information Professionals, which is a third sector public body in the United Kingdom. These cases have been selected for their clear use of IT as a driver or enabler of openness in strategy, and also different elements of inclusion and transparency, which are particularly key to the context and introduction of open strategy in this talk.