Stakeholders expect “value” from firms they interact with. “Value” has many meanings. Economists use the term “utility” for the measure of pleasure or happiness in goods and services that stakeholders receive. Stakeholders want utility in four areas: (1) the actual goods and services companies provide, (2) being treated fairly called organizational justice, (3) affiliating with companies that exhibit practices consistent with the things they value, and (4) getting a good deal when compared to other companies. Stakeholders are more cooperative if they feel that they have shared utility in a relationship.
Be sure that you accurately answer the following questions in your analysis:
- Knowing that stakeholders with shared utility are more cooperative, explain how shared utility impacts the ways that organizations govern a stakeholder’s actions.
- Does shared utility mean that firms and stakeholders have each others’ best interests in mind? Why or why not?
- Identify an organization you worked for, or one you can research and identify at least five stakeholder groups (e.g., customers, government, community, employees, etc.). Explain the differences in shared utility for the firm and each group. Some will have more or less shared utility than others.
- How does the firm manage the way the firm and each stakeholder group interact? What methods of communication do they share, if any, and how often? Is the relationship formal or informal? Who has the power?
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