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The need for speed—unfamiliar problems, capability rigidity, and ad hoc processes in organizations

Published on Oct 1, 2016in Industrial and Corporate Change1.82
· DOI :10.1093/icc/dtw028
Paavo Ritala14
Estimated H-index: 14
(Lappeenranta University of Technology),
Bruce Heiman6
Estimated H-index: 6
(SFSU: San Francisco State University),
Pia Hurmelinna-Laukkanen19
Estimated H-index: 19
(University of Oulu)
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Abstract
Dynamic capabilities, which are subject to organizational embeddedness and potential path dependence, are sometimes inadequate for dealing with urgent and unexpected organizational and strategic problems. This study explores the boundary conditions of dynamic capabilities and proposes a complementary approach for dealing with unfamiliar problems: the ad hoc problem-finding and problem-solving perspective. Building on theoretical arguments of the dynamic capability view, managerial choice, and problem-finding/problem-solving logic, we suggest that managers addressing unfamiliar problems make discrete organizing choices over a range of dynamic capabilities and ad hoc processes. A series of theory-driven propositions are developed to illustrate our arguments.
  • References (128)
  • Citations (5)
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References128
Newest
Published on Apr 17, 2018
Gerald C. Meyers2
Estimated H-index: 2
,
John Holusha2
Estimated H-index: 2
Published on Sep 29, 2015
Gary P. Pisano40
Estimated H-index: 40
The field of strategy has mounted an enormous effort to understand, define, predict, and measure how organizational capabilities shape competitive advantage. While the notion that capabilities influence strategy dates back to the work of Andrews (1971), attempts to formalize a “capabilities based” approach to strategy only began to take shape in the past twenty years. In particular, the publication of Teece and Pisano (1994) and Teece, Pisano, and Shuen (1997) work on “dynamic capabilities” trig...
Published on Jun 1, 2015in Strategic Management Journal5.57
Constance E. Helfat33
Estimated H-index: 33
(Dartmouth College),
Margaret A. Peteraf21
Estimated H-index: 21
(Dartmouth College)
type="main" xml:id="smj2247-abs-0001"> The microfoundations of dynamic capabilities have assumed greater importance in the search for factors that facilitate strategic change. Here, we focus on microfoundations at the level of the individual manager. We introduce the concept of “managerial cognitive capability,” which highlights the fact that capabilities involve the capacity to perform not only physical but also mental activities. We identify specific types of cognitive capabilities that are li...
Published on Jan 1, 2015
Jeffrey T. Macher16
Estimated H-index: 16
(Georgetown University),
Jackson A. Nickerson26
Estimated H-index: 26
(WashU: Washington University in St. Louis)
This paper examines how the knowledge-based view (KBV) can be applied to firm boundary decisions and the performance implications of those decisions. At the center of the paper is a theoretical and empirical examination of how firms efficiently organize manufacturing in a regulated industry. We find that distinct organizational approaches are advantaged in terms of regulatory performance, depending on the complexity (i.e., technological sophistication) and structure (i.e., novelty) of particular...
Published on Jan 1, 2015
Jörg Sydow1
Estimated H-index: 1
The network form of organizing is usually considered to provide organizations with the strategic flexibility needed to survive in increasingly turbulent environments. At the same time, empirical research demonstrates that the network form—not least strategic alliances, regional networks and clusters, and global production and supply networks—runs the risk of becoming inert over time, reducing not only the networks’ strategic flexibility but also making organizational change increasingly difficul...
Published on Jan 1, 2015
Horst Albach1
Estimated H-index: 1
Part I: New Challenges for Change (Management).- Part II: The Role of Cooperation, Co-determination and Networks in Organizing Change.- Part III: Re-thinking Change in the Context of Open Innovation.- Part IV. Influences of Markets and Regulation on Change.- Part V. From Theory to Practice: New Approaches in Consultancy for Organisational Change.
Published on Nov 1, 2014in Academy of Management Perspectives3.86
Giada Di Stefano9
Estimated H-index: 9
(HEC Paris),
Margaret A. Peteraf21
Estimated H-index: 21
(Dartmouth College),
Gianmario Verona19
Estimated H-index: 19
(Bocconi University)
Although the research domain of dynamic capabilities has become one of the most active in strategic management, critics have charged that it is plagued by confusion around the construct itself. In this paper, we uncover a potential reason for this confusion embedded in the unique nature of the construct's development path—a peculiarity that has led to split understandings of what constitutes a dynamic capability. We suggest a solution to this problem in the form of an illustrative metaphor—what ...
Published on Nov 1, 2014in Academy of Management Perspectives3.86
David J. Teece72
Estimated H-index: 72
(University of California, Berkeley)
The dynamic capabilities framework has had a significant impact on strategic management theory and practice, but the sizable literature on the topic has not always been unified. This paper begins with a restatement of the framework encompassing clarifications and extensions that have occurred since it was introduced. The paper highlights key elements that have been omitted or poorly integrated into the dynamic capabilities literature: the role of individual action by entrepreneurial managers, th...
Published on Mar 1, 2014in The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science1.68
Min Basadur21
Estimated H-index: 21
(McMaster University),
Garry Gelade3
Estimated H-index: 3
,
Tim Basadur5
Estimated H-index: 5
(Concordia University Chicago)
In this theoretical article, organizational adaptability is modeled as a four-stage creative problem-solving process, with each stage involving a different kind of cognitive activity. Individuals have different preferences for each stage and thus are said to have different creative problem-solving process “styles.” The Creative Problem Solving Profile (CPSP) assesses these styles and maps onto and interconnects directly with the four stages of this creative problem-solving process. Field researc...
Published on Feb 1, 2014in Strategic Management Journal5.57
Oliver Schilke20
Estimated H-index: 20
(UCLA: University of California, Los Angeles)
This article suggests that dynamic capabilities can give the firm competitive advantage, but this effect is contingent on the level of dynamism of the firm’s external environment. A nonlinear, inverse U-shaped moderation is proposed, implying that the relationship between dynamic capabilities and competitive advantage is strongest under intermediate levels of dynamism but comparatively weaker when dynamism is low or high. This proposition is tested using data on alliance management capability an...
Cited By5
Newest
Published on Apr 1, 2019in International Business Review3.64
Lauri Haapanen1
Estimated H-index: 1
(University of Oulu),
Pia Hurmelinna-Laukkanen19
Estimated H-index: 19
(University of Oulu)
+ 1 AuthorsPertti Paakkolanvaara1
Estimated H-index: 1
(University of Oulu)
Abstract In mergers and acquisitions, the acquiring firm must combine two firms’ resources and capabilities so that the outcome yields value. In individual firms, the marketing & sales, and R&D functions have typically developed intertwined and complex relationships over time. These multifaceted dependencies may obscure the integration of the firms and their functions. In order to reveal to what extent cross-functional relationships determine the success or failure of an acquisitions, we have ma...
Published on Jan 1, 2019in International Business Review3.64
Oscar F. Bustinza14
Estimated H-index: 14
(UGR: University of Granada),
Ferran Vendrell-Herrero14
Estimated H-index: 14
(University of Birmingham),
Emanuel Gomes11
Estimated H-index: 11
(NOVA: Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
Abstract This study tests whether strategic ambidexterity improves Product-service innovation (PSI) outcomes for manufacturing multinational enterprises (MMNEs). It also tests successful pathways to develop PSI properly by organizing exploitation and exploration activities. Data from a survey of 338 MMNEs are analysed through Structural Equations Modelling. The sample contains firms from five world regions, including emerging economies. This approach enables contrast to determine cross-country h...
Published on Jan 2, 2018in Management & Organizational History
Julie Bower1
Estimated H-index: 1
AbstractThis study investigates the UK former family firm, Whitbread, and its transformation from traditional brewer to leading leisure retailer comprising two main business lines, Costa Coffee and Premier Inn hotels. An unexpected regulatory intervention in 1989 all but ended the centuries-old vertically integrated model of the UK brewing industry, of which Whitbread was an important member. The major brewers were challenged to find alternative business models and growth trajectories. In the su...
Published on Oct 1, 2017in Industrial Marketing Management4.78
Pia Hurmelinna-Laukkanen19
Estimated H-index: 19
(University of Oulu),
Satu Nätti11
Estimated H-index: 11
(University of Oulu)
Abstract In this study, attention is turned to those actors who orchestrate innovation networks; their types, roles and capabilities. We assert that the type of orchestrator and what they (can) do are related aspects. Our starting point is that while orchestration in general comprises a variety of important activities, ranging from ensuring knowledge mobility to coordination, not all of these are accomplished by the same means or are equally emphasized at all times. A conceptual review of existi...
Lauri Haapanen1
Estimated H-index: 1
(University of Oulu),
Pia Hurmelinna-Laukkanen19
Estimated H-index: 19
(University of Oulu),
Jan Hermes2
Estimated H-index: 2
(University of Oulu)
Prior literature suggests that dynamic capabilities enable, on the one hand, firms to respond successfully to the changes in the markets, and on the other hand, to embrace firms’ ability to shape their business environments. However, existing studies have not fully considered how some firms within the same industry are able to shape markets, and why others need to adapt to these changes in a Kirznerian manner. We make an attempt, based on contemporary literature on the microfoundations of dynami...
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