Exam Management Accounting Change

Topics: Apple Inc., Steve Jobs, Apple I Pages: 7 (1138 words) Published: September 20, 2014

Management Accounting Change

18 January 2013, 09.00 – 12.00.

Apart from dictionaries, no calculators, notes or books are allowed on the exam.

This exam consists of 7 pages (3 assignments). Please, check whether your set is complete.

Please write your name and student number on each page. We will publish your grade on Nestor as soon as possible.

Both the answers and the assignment sheets need to be handed in to the invigilator.

In total, you can earn 100 points for this exam. The maximum number of points is mentioned for each assignment.

Write clearly. We cannot give you points for unreadable answers.

The course material consists of the following literature:

- Reader Management accounting change, 2012-2013.
- The lectures.
- The research clinics.

Good luck!

Assignment 1

The following is taken from a report for investors about Apple Computer: ‘In a note to clients, Kaufman Bros. analyst Shaw Wu offered his own thoughts and perspective on the situation, arguing against the notion that Apple is one man show but rather a vast family of enthusiastic professionals who share Jobs' leadership skills and penchant for innovation.

"While CEO Steve Jobs deserves a lot of credit for the revival and success of Apple and, as one of the founding fathers of technology, helping revolutionize the world with the Apple I, Apple II, Lisa, Macintosh, NeXT, Pixar, Mac OS X, the Apple Store, iTunes, iPod, and iPhone, we believe Apple today has a deep bench and its culture of innovation and execution or 'spirit' has more or less been institutionalized," he wrote.’

In their article Conceptualizing management accounting change: an institutional framework, Burns & Scapens explain the process of institutionalisation.

Assignment (8 points)
Using the Burns & Scapens framework, explain how organisational features such as innovativeness can become institutionalised over time.

A good answer does not need to be longer than 100 words.

However, another commentator questioned whether Apple would be able to institutionalise the principles introduced by CEO Steve Jobs. This commentator noted: ‘The main issue, of course, is what happens when Jobs’ illness requires a successor? Despite claims that Apple has institutionalized practices that foster creativity, innovation, good design, and other legacies of Steve Jobs, it is really impossible to replace true genius. When Jobs returned from the wilderness to save Apple, John Sculley acknowledged “I’m convinced that if Steve hadn’t come back when he did… Apple would have been history” ‘.

In their paper: Institutional logics, ICT and stability of management accounting, Hyvonen et al. provide several strategies which people can use to resist processes of institutionalisation. One of which is referred to as a ‘defiance strategy/dismissing tactics’.

Assignment (8 points)
Explain how a management control system may be used to reduce these ‘defiance strategy/dismissing tactics’ if employees would employ this strategy to resist the institutionalisation of creativity, innovation and good design.

A good answer does not need to be longer than 100 words. Make sure you explain the essence of the aforementioned strategies.

Finally, a further publication reported on an effort of Apple to support the institutionalisation of the CEO’s vision: ‘Apple University revealed as plan to teach executives to think like Steve Jobs A secretive "Apple University" program that the company initiated in 2008 has been clarified to be a way to teach executives to emulate and perpetuate the successful strategies of Steve Jobs.’

Assignment (8 points)
Explain, using proper theory, how training can contribute to institutional change in an organisation.

A good answer does not need to be longer than 100 words. Make sure you use theoretical concepts to make your argument....
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