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Book part
Publication date: 4 August 2014

Guktae Kim and Moon-Goo Huh

Despite the theoretical assumption that balancing exploration and exploitation is important for long-term performance and survival, previous studies have provided few…

Abstract

Despite the theoretical assumption that balancing exploration and exploitation is important for long-term performance and survival, previous studies have provided few insights into these relationships because they have focused mainly on the short-term financial performance of organizations. In addition, balancing exploration and exploitation is a critical challenge for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that lack the resources, capabilities, and experience necessary to achieving ambidexterity. In this regards, this study empirically explores the relationship between the explorationexploitation balance and SMEs’ longevity in order to address two important questions from the ambidexterity perspective: (1) How does the balance between exploration and exploitation influence organizational survival? (2) How is the appropriate balance between exploration and exploitation influenced by an organization’s internal and external contexts?

An analysis of 1981–2012 data from the Korean SMEs in IT industry reveals an inverted U-shaped curvilinear relationship between the extent of exploratory innovation and organizational longevity, providing support for the ambidexterity perspective. We further examine the moderating effects of financial slack and environmental dynamism on the relationship between exploratory innovation and organizational longevity. The results indicate that financial slack moderated the exploration–longevity relationship and call for a contingency approach for a better understanding of performance implications of the explorationexploitation balance.

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Exploration and Exploitation in Early Stage Ventures and SMEs
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-655-2

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Book part
Publication date: 11 May 2010

Toni Sfirtsis and Rudy Moenaert

The dynamic capabilities perspective focuses on the ability of an organization to develop its resource base in order to meet environmental expectations. Therefore, it is…

Abstract

The dynamic capabilities perspective focuses on the ability of an organization to develop its resource base in order to meet environmental expectations. Therefore, it is closely interrelated to the issue of managing the interaction of exploration and exploitation. The competence of continuously optimizing the interaction of exploration and exploitation has been referred to as organizational ambidexterity. Managing this interaction implies resolving a firm's permanent struggle to overcome the barriers related to the right configuration between exploration and exploitation.

By incorporating the concept of combinative capabilities as balancing routines into the conceptualization of ambidexterity we distinguish structural, interaction, and socialization capabilities that are deployed in overcoming these barriers to resource (re)configuration.

Drawing on knowledge management and barriers to resource configuration we expect that the way organizations deploy combinative capabilities to manage the interaction between exploration and exploitation depends on the observed barriers to resource (re)configuration. By combining the constructs of barriers to resource reconfiguration, ambidexterity, and combinative capabilities we intend to gain more insight in the way organizations manage the actual interaction between exploration and exploitation. Our paper will introduce a set of propositions indicating the relationship between ambidexterity, barriers to resource (re)configuration, and combinative capabilities as balancing routines.

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A Focussed Issue on Identifying, Building, and Linking Competences
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-990-9

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Book part
Publication date: 4 August 2014

Blake D. Mathias

Since March (1991) presented his ideas on organizational learning, hundreds of empirical tests have been conducted on relationships among the activities of exploration

Abstract

Since March (1991) presented his ideas on organizational learning, hundreds of empirical tests have been conducted on relationships among the activities of exploration, exploitation, ambidexterity, and firm performance. Despite continued interest in his ideas, there has not been a systematic assessment of extant research to reveal whether, and to what extent, these activities relate to firm performance. This study uses meta-analysis to take a next step by aggregating results of 117 studies from more than 21,000 firms. I find strong performance effects for exploration and exploitation, but contrary to received theory, I discover ambidexterity yields weaker effects than a focus on either exploration or exploitation. Thus, I leverage these findings to offer future research opportunities.

Details

Exploration and Exploitation in Early Stage Ventures and SMEs
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-655-2

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Book part
Publication date: 22 November 2018

Younggeun Lee and Patrick M. Kreiser

In this chapter, the authors examine the main effect of entrepreneurial orientation (EO) – a firm’s strategic entrepreneurial posture – on balancing exploration and…

Abstract

In this chapter, the authors examine the main effect of entrepreneurial orientation (EO) – a firm’s strategic entrepreneurial posture – on balancing exploration and exploitation in the form of organizational ambidexterity. Resource-constrained firms face an imperative to conduct innovative activities, survive hostile environments, and compete with larger and more resource-rich firms. The authors contend that firms can address these potential impediments through achieving ambidexterity via dynamic capabilities, firm-specific resources, and institutional factors. Specifically, The authors review the EO and ambidexterity literatures and summarize extant arguments related to the relationship between EO, exploration, and exploitation. The authors also discuss the most prominent scales and measures of EO, exploration, and exploitation. Moreover, the authors discuss operationalizational challenges that should be considered when conducting EO–ambidexterity research and suggest future research directions by specifying an agenda outlining useful theoretical perspectives and various contingencies that may influence the EO–ambidexterity relationship.

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The Challenges of Corporate Entrepreneurship in the Disruptive Age
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78754-443-7

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2012

Sara Louise Muhr, Michael Pedersen and Mats Alvesson

Contemporary working life highlights the challenge between exploitation and exploration both on a general and a more individual level. Here, we focus on the latter, and…

Abstract

Contemporary working life highlights the challenge between exploitation and exploration both on a general and a more individual level. Here, we focus on the latter, and connect the critical debate regarding self-management to March's exploitation/exploration trade-off, as this forms a useful theoretical frame to understand how employees make sense of their self-management efforts. The employee is subjected to an individual responsibility to understand and manage an exploration of the self while handling the norms of self-exploitation that a self-management culture creates. Through an empirical study of a large group of management consultants, we explore how they perform and make sense of self-exploitation and self-exploration through three specific discourses: the discourse of workload, the discourse of aspiration, and the discourse of fun. Through these, the consultants try to identify optimal amounts of work, play, and ambition, all while handling the trade-off between self-exploitation and self-exploration. We show how this keeps failing, but how it reappears as a necessary condition for avoiding future failures. In all three discourses, the trade-off therefore presents itself as the problem of as well as the solution to self-management.

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Managing ‘Human Resources’ by Exploiting and Exploring People’s Potentials
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-506-7

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Article
Publication date: 31 July 2020

Jorge Ferreira, Arnaldo Coelho and Luiz Moutinho

This study delves in the controversy about the nature and the sign of the effect of strategic alliances and exploration and exploitation capabilities on innovation and new…

Abstract

Purpose

This study delves in the controversy about the nature and the sign of the effect of strategic alliances and exploration and exploitation capabilities on innovation and new product development. The paper analyses the effects of knowledge sharing and strategic alliances relationships at the firm level. Specifically, we study the influence of strategic alliances relationships in new product development and the mediating role of exploration and exploitation as dynamic capabilities.

Design/methodology/approach

This investigation proposes a theoretical model tested using structural equation modeling (SEM). The multigroup analysis was performed to understand the moderating role of. A questionnaire survey was developed to explore the relations between strategic alliances and innovation and new product development variables. For this study, 387 valid questionnaires were collected from a sample of Portugal SME' firms. A 90-item questionnaire was submitted to employees managers of a large number of Portuguese SMEs, which consists to study the relationships among all the variables.

Findings

The results show that exists a positive direct influence of strategic alliances on innovation and new product development, and mediating impact the exploration and exploitation by the moderating role of knowledge sharing.

Research limitations/implications

This study has some methodological limitations affecting its potential contributions. A cross-sectional study that captures one image in time and its ability to identify strict causality between variables is limited. Furthermore, the results are based on log collected from a key respondent, rather than broader actual data. The results are restricted to one country, Portugal. Future research should initially target different countries. Such research could then test the generalizability of the results.

Practical implications

To fill this managerial relevance gap, we propose a process model in which the main antecedents of alliance stability will be examined. We argue that an alliance's evolutionary dynamics depend on these factors and variables that the partners must assess and manage over its developmental stages. In this sense, managers have significant scope to influence the ultimate success of strategic alliances. This study highlights the need to actively manage the cooperation – competition (coopetition) tension with the alliance partner and to apply the knowledge acquired from the partner to create new knowledge to enhance innovative performance

Originality/value

This paper contributes to fill the gap between strategic alliances and new product development mediated by exploration and exploitation in the dynamic capabilities view.

Details

Management Decision, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Book part
Publication date: 4 August 2014

Uriel Stettner, Barak S. Aharonson and Terry L. Amburgey

Despite a growing body of research on exploration and exploitation, scholars have tended to study the phenomena from a narrow perspective mostly within larger…

Abstract

Despite a growing body of research on exploration and exploitation, scholars have tended to study the phenomena from a narrow perspective mostly within larger, well-established organizations. However, it is still far from obvious how top management within small-to-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are to address the liability of newness and seek access to resources and capabilities relevant for the pursuit of exploration and exploitation. Resource sourcing and allocation decisions are particularly critical in SMEs and must be aligned with the firm’s fundamental strategic intent and growth model. For example, organizations following a stage model by first developing a domestic market and then expanding globally will require different bundles of resources and capabilities than organizations that are designed to conquer the global arena. Indeed, management systems will likely need to adapt across the firm life cycle such that it can fulfill an explorative function in the earlier stages and an exploitative function in later ones. Hence, early-stage ventures have to master the resource reallocation process which is contingent on their access to capital. Across the firm life cycle, venture capitalists can tap into the growth potential of early-stage ventures is a key factor behind their successful short-term innovative performance as well as long-term survival.

Details

Exploration and Exploitation in Early Stage Ventures and SMEs
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-655-2

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Book part
Publication date: 21 September 2018

Charlotte Reypens and Sheen S. Levine

Measuring behavior requires research methods that can capture observed outcomes and expose underlying processes and mechanisms. In this chapter, we present a toolbox of…

Abstract

Measuring behavior requires research methods that can capture observed outcomes and expose underlying processes and mechanisms. In this chapter, we present a toolbox of instruments and techniques we designed experimental tasks to simulate decision environments and capture behavior. We deployed protocol analysis and text analysis to examine the underlying cognitive processes. In combination, these can simultaneously grasp antecedents, outcomes, processes, and mechanisms. We applied them to collect rich behavioral data on two key topics in strategic management: the explorationexploitation trade-off and strategic risk-taking. This mix of methods is particularly useful in describing actual behavior as it is, not as it should be, replacing assumptions with data and offering a finer-grained perspective of strategic decision-making.

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Behavioral Strategy in Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-348-3

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Article
Publication date: 18 May 2020

Jorge Ferreira and Arnaldo Coelho

The purpose of this paper is to understand the impact of dynamic capabilities (DC) (in the view of exploration and exploitation) on competitiveness and performance…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand the impact of dynamic capabilities (DC) (in the view of exploration and exploitation) on competitiveness and performance, considering the mediating role the innovation capability (IC) and branding capabilities (BC)on competitive advantage and firm’s performance and the moderating role of entrepreneurial orientation (EO).

Design/methodology/approach

This investigation proposes a theoretical model tested using structural equation modelling (SEM). Multi-group analysis was performed to understand the moderating role of. A questionnaire survey was developed to explore the relations between DC and innovation variable. For this study, 387 valid questionnaires were collected from a sample of Portugal SME’ firms. A 90-item questionnaire which consists to study the relationships among all the variables.

Findings

The results show that exists a positive direct and indirect influence of DC on competitive advantage and performance variables and mediating impact the IC and BC.

Research limitations/implications

This study has some methodological limitations affecting its potential contributions. As a cross-sectional study that captures one image in time, its ability to identify strict causality between variables is limited. Furthermore, the results are based on log collected from a key respondent, rather than broader actual data. The results are restricted to one country, Portugal. Some variables, such as ICs, may play a different role in other countries. Future research should initially target different countries. Such research could then test the generalizability of the results.

Practical implications

This study has important implications for the managers. It highlights the necessity of firms to develop superior strategic orientation of all their members and to invest in better resources and consequently superior capabilities as a way of achieving high levels of firm performance. Another implication from the study is that the firms should develop their marketing programs by focusing on developing innovativeness.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the understanding of the indirect and direct impact of exploration and exploitation variables, and the mediating role of ICs and BC on the competitive advantage and performance and the moderating effect of EO.

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Article
Publication date: 6 May 2020

Laure Ambroise, Céline Bérard and Isabelle Prim-Allaz

This paper aims to explore the complex relationships between knowledge strategies (i.e. exploration and exploitation) and the performance of manufacturing SMEs by testing…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the complex relationships between knowledge strategies (i.e. exploration and exploitation) and the performance of manufacturing SMEs by testing the mediating role of customer relationship management capabilities, which are defined as a firm’s level of interaction orientation in this study.

Design/methodology/approach

Following a hypothetical deductive approach and using data collected from 793 French manufacturing SMEs, the measurement model and relationships among the constructs were examined with structural equation modelling, using the partial least squares approach.

Findings

The results support the expected mediating role of interaction orientation between exploitation and performance, and stress a competitive mediating role between exploration and performance. Complementary analyses demonstrate that while both exploration and exploitation are effectively antecedents of interaction orientation, which also acts as a lever to performance, they exhibit specific effects on the different dimensions of interaction orientation.

Originality/value

The results specifically highlight that interaction orientation counterbalances the negative impact of exploration on performance. Moreover, the findings underline the key role that customer interaction processes and tools play in making exploration and exploitation singularly effective. This is a real issue, as SMEs broadly tend to adopt opportunistic tools, not necessarily as part of a clearly defined strategic focus.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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