Products, activities and competence - an integrated view in association with customization

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper, not in proceeding

Abstract

Within the academic debate attempts have been made at combining the resource based view and the activities based view (C.f. Mathews, 2006). Among the calls for such attempts we find Haanes and Fjeldstad (2000) who point out that there is a need for integrating the activity based view and the resource based view, with a particular focus on competences. The view of activities as associated with competence development is further investigated by Löwendahl and Haanes (1997). Another example of these convergence tendencies can be found in the work on value constellations and value configurations. Especially Normann & Ramirez (1993), Stabell & Fjeldstad (1998), and Ramirez (1999) display similarities in the way that they describe issues on value creation logics. What is interesting is that the Normann & Ramirez paper largely originates from a competence perspective while Stabell & Fjeldstad start their discussion from the activities perspective. Another debated issue is the relationship between competences and its representation in products, systems and other types of output. This theme has for instance been discussed by authors such as Grant & Baden-Fuller (2004) and Teece et al (1997). Teece et al position capabilities and competences towards products as the focus of strategic importance. They claim that competences can be “molded” into products but do not elaborate more closely on the subject since the primary focus on the article is on dynamic capabilities. Thus, there seems to be a need for examining the relationship between competence, output and the daily work tasks of the organization and its individuals. In this paper the relationship between competence, products and activities is examined. The empirical setting of the study is focused on organizations supplying highly customized deliveries on industrial markets. The study is part of a research collaboration between the Trelleborg Group and the School of Economics and Management at Lund University. The study indicates a link between output structures, activities and competences. A hierarchical structure of outputs is associated with the establishment of long-term development and a division of application and in-depth technical competences. A linear output structure is in turn associated with informal innovation and integration of competences. A model is proposed where the interconnections between competences, activities and outputs are introduced. Finally, implications with regards to innovation are presented.

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Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Business Administration
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedNo
Event19th Business Administration Conference (NFF), 2007 - Bergen, Bergen, Norway
Duration: 2007 Aug 92007 Aug 11

Conference

Conference19th Business Administration Conference (NFF), 2007
CountryNorway
CityBergen
Period2007/08/092007/08/11

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