Handbook of Middle Management Strategy Process Research
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Handbook of Middle Management Strategy Process Research

Edited by Steven W. Floyd and Bill Wooldridge

The premise of this volume is that the complex social processes that animate strategic decisions involve not only top-level executives, but also middle managers distributed throughout the organization. Designed for doctoral students and others interested in middle managers and strategy process, the Handbook integrates the threads of scholarly work in this domain and charts a course for future research. Chapters are written both by scholars who have ‘paved the way’ for the middle management perspective and scholars who have done recent, cutting edge research from this point of view.
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Chapter 4: The role of issue selling in effective strategy making

Susan J. Ashford, Madeline Ong and Gareth D. Keeves


This chapter provides a comprehensive review of the literature on middle management issue selling since 1993. In addition to issue selling per se, contributions from three other related literatures _ silence, voice, and strategic championing _ are included. The review is organized around three major themes: personal and contextual conditions influencing issue selling; how middle managers issue sell; and individual and organizational outcomes associated with issue selling attempts. The review concludes with four observations regarding the state of the literature and where it needs to go. The authors note that while issue selling has clearly had an impact with micro-level scholars, the construct has been less influential with strategy researchers. They argue for the importance of the topic within strategy and suggest future studies place a priority on: (1) organizational outcomes associated with issue selling; (2) how differences in national culture affect middle managers’ issue selling; and (3) how the nature of the issue being raised influences whether and how it is raised.

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