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New offer development in banking: The role of senior leadership

Gademann, S. (2004). New offer development in banking: The role of senior leadership. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, City, University of London)


The development of new offers, an activity that has traditionally been referred to as ‘new product development’, is key to the survival and growth of long-established banks. The term ‘new offer’ refers to both tangible goods and intangible services. The extant literature posits a wide range of factors that has been found to affect new offer development success. A critical challenge is effective project management. The style of the senior leader has been identified in previous research as an important factor affecting project success. Senior leadership style refers to the way the senior leader acts. Despite the importance of senior leadership, few studies have empirically examined the association between senior leadership style and new offer development success.

A conceptual model is developed of the association between senior leadership style and new offer development success grounded both in previous literature and in qualitative multiple case studies. Building on the notion of behavioural complexity, it is posited that new offer development success is associated with a senior leadership style characterised by a particular repertoire of control and support. A systematic process was used for conducting case research using criterion sampling and multiple data collection methods. Data was collected from senior leaders and their reports in eight banks in the UK - UBS, Barclays Group, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, ABN Amro, RBS, LloydsTSB and Abbey - involving a total of 33 in-depth interviews.

The findings shed new light on the role of the senior leader in the new offer development context. They suggest that some analysts have exaggerated the involvement of the senior leader at the project level. There is evidence of limited involvement by senior leaders in many development projects. Senior leaders were found to be uninvolved, deploying low support and low control, when the development project was of limited size and scope. High senior leadership involvement was found in developments of large size and strategic importance. Not surprisingly, senior leaders were particularly involved in individual projects, deploying much support and control, when their reputation depended on the project’s successful completion. The overall findings indicate that it is less the deployment of a particular senior leadership style that is associated with new offer development success, but rather the constructive interplay of the styles of the senior leader and project leader both operating at different hierarchical levels. This role of multiple leadership in new offer development provides rich possibilities for further research.

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
H Social Sciences > HG Finance
Departments: Bayes Business School > Bayes Business School Doctoral Theses
Bayes Business School > Management
Doctoral Theses
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