Meningsskabelse i en strategiproces

Henrik Hansen

Student thesis: Master executive thesis


When organizations are undergoing changes and formulate new strategies, the strategies often fail due to unrealistic goals, or because the members of the organization do not engage in the strategy or the implementation of it. They are often not sure they understand the strategy and how to act on it. It is therefore important, if a strategy shall succeed, that the members of the organization understand the purpose of the strategy and know how to act on it and make sense of it. University College Copenhagen got a new strategy in 2018 and the organization are in the middle of the implementation, and it is my task as a Head of Program, together with my employees in the Program, to implement the priorities and goals of this strategy. Karl Weick describes how different elements can affect the sensemaking in organizations during organizational changes and how these elements influence, the way we as individuals create meaning for ourselves and others on what we experience. The sensemaking process can be divided into two parts, the part of making sense for yourself (sensemaking) and the part of giving sense to others (sensegiving), as described by Gioia & Chittipeddi and how the sensegiving engagement depends on various factors called Triggers and Enablers. This master thesis investigates the sensemaking process during the implementation of the strategy and how members in the organization engage (or not to engage) in sensemaking and sensegiving activities. The analysis is based on primary data from semi-structured interviews of employees and of level 1, 2 and 3 leaders, e.g., a Dean, a Head of Department, and a Head of Program, respectively. Documents relevant for the Strategy Process and an observation from a strategy related meeting are used as secondary empirical data. This study shows that leaders and employees engaged in sensemaking and sensegiving activities during the formulation and implementation of the strategy at University Colleges Copenhagen. The seven elements described by Weick can be found in sensemaking activities from the organization and its members. Especially the three elements, Retrospect, Enactment and Extracted Cues have been in use in both leaders and employees. Furthermore, it shows that the sensemaking process in the organization follows a pattern of interchanging of sensemaking and sensegiving between leaders and employees describe by Gioia & Chittipeddi. The sensegiving activities are more prominent in leaders compared to emplyees and it seems that leaders deliberately use sensegiving in there interactions with employees.

EducationsMaster of Public Governance, (Executive Master Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2021
Number of pages47
SupervisorsSøren Obed Madsen