Corporate strategy

Published on February 28, 2023   12 min
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Hi, I'm Allen Amason. I'm the Dean of the Parker College of Business at Georgia Southern University. I'm also a scholar and professor of strategic management, talking about strategic management and within that context specifically about corporate strategy.
One of the fascinating things about strategic management broadly is that it deals with multiple layers of analysis, multiple layers of phenomenon that while highly interrelated, are nevertheless distinct. I can illustrate that distinction by a couple of quick questions. Sometimes people will look at strategic management and organizational strategy and they will illustrate it with the question, what business is the organization in? That question is very different from the second one that I'll ask, which is, how will an organization compete in that particular business? Now, the reason this is interesting is because these two questions actually reflect two different levels of analysis. If you think about it, a corporation could be in multiple different businesses and so the question, how would we compete in a particular business would have a different answer, depending upon which business you were in. This distinction really gets at the distinction between business level strategy, which is focused on competition and the development of competitive advantage in corporate level strategy, which while also focused on competitive advantage, really looks at the organization as a collection of multiple business units and asks the question, what businesses will we be in and subsequently, why are we in those businesses and how do those businesses collectively contribute to the competitive advantage of the firm as a whole?