IntroductionRogers and Abrahamson have developed different theories to explain their thoughts on management fashion. Nevertheless, each of these theories has various strengths, and weaknesses, as brought about by different individuals. Abrahamson’s theory features are lifecycles, triggers, and common learning processes. On the other hand, Roger’s diffusion theory features include innovation, compatibility, complexity, trialability, and observability. This paper intends to explore some of the features of Roger’s theories, as well as Abrahamson’s theory. It also examines the criticisms of the theories, as well as better ways of theorizing IT innovation.
The paper also seeks to analyze main features of popular management literature, and reasons for failure of management fads. Key features of Roger’s diffusionThe key features of Roger’s diffusion theory include the considerable advantage of innovation, which means that each new idea is better than the old one it is being replaced. The second feature of theory involves measuring of the idea’s compatibility with the already existing values, adopter’s needs, and experiences. The third feature entails the degree of complexity, or the ease involved in the understanding of an innovation. Lastly, the fourth and fifth connected features are trialability and observability (Rogers 1995).
Trialability can also mean the degree of innovation implementation, while observability refers to the degree to which the innovation results are noticeable to others. A communication channel refers to the way in which information gets to an individual from another. Besides, these communication channels exist in two categories including interpersonal and mass media (Smith, Rainnie, Dunford, Hardy, Hudson, & Sadler 2002; Rogers 1995). McMasters and Wastell’s criticisms of Roger’s approachAccording to Grant (2009), social constructivist models are more significant as compared to the diffusion theory.
First, the diffusion theory does not consider the structure and the role of competition in any organization. Another limitation is that the theory does not consider marketing mix variables and competitive advantage. Additionally, it does not take into account allocation of resources and their influence on the pattern of diffusion in connection with the product cycle. Nevertheless, the limitations depend on the external and internal effects, and estimations of the values obtained at the peak of the bell-shaped curve (Gatignon & Robertson 1985; Lambkin & Day1989). Recommendations of better theorization of IT innovationIn order to improve the theorization of IT innovations, it is important to make some changes.
First, it is important to characterize the project, as well as its environment. Secondly, it is imperative to plan a set of objectives and the suitable process models, techniques, and tools used in the achievement of the goals. Thirdly, it is crucial to execute the process as per the defined objectives, product development, as well as collection and examination of every data for feedback reasons. Fourthly, it is important to analyze and package data collected after every project in order to use it future projects (Kautz & Larsen 2000). What are the key features of his theory of ‘management fashion’Acording to Perkmann and Spicer (2008), the management fashion theory emphasizes on three key features, which include its lifecycles, forces that trigger stages of its lifecycle, and type of shared learning it promoted.
Majority of the management fashion theory explain a different lifecycle for fashionable management discourse, which is a considerably long time of dormancy, after the invention, reinvention, or rediscovery of the management technique.
This is normally followed by bell-shaped, short-lived, and symmetric fame curve. Nevertheless, there is no explicit proof that management fashions have a phase of dormancy, which has a considerably wavelike pattern, short-lived, or a symmetrical pattern (Abrahamson & Fairchild 1999).