"Chasing Entrepreneurial Firms"
Echeverri-Carroll, Elsie and Feldman, Maryann, Industry and Innovations. 2018.
The search for a reliable data-set of entrepreneurial firms is ongoing. We analyze and assess longitudinal data on startups from two data sources – the National Establishment Time-Series (NETS) database and the Secretary of State (SOS) business registry data. Our primary purposes in this paper are to assess the usefulness and reliability of these databases in measuring startup activity along several quality indicators and to explore the possibility of integrating these large databases using both automated and manual processes. The NETS identifies a firm’s employment, sales, and industry but is expensive and suffers from a temporal lag. The SOS data provide up-to-date startup counts but offer limited variables. We conclude that policymakers and researchers will benefit from combing both the SOS and adjusted NETS since they provide complementary information on startups. We carefully document our methodology and make suggestions for use of the data for future research.
Can your employees really speak freely?
Detert, J.R. & Burris, E.R., Harvard Business Review. 2016.
No matter how approachable you may be as a manager, chances are good that your employees are withholding valuable intelligence from you. Research shows that many people are more likely to keep mum than to raise important questions or suggest new ideas. Companies use a variety of tactics to get people to open up, like “climate” surveys and all-staff feedback sessions. But they usually fall short for two key reasons: a fear of consequences and a sense of futility. In this article, two professors look at how leaders’ misguided attempts to promote candid expression fail to address—and sometimes stir up—those feelings. For example, if you ask for anonymous input, you may be signaling that it’s not safe to speak openly in your organization. And if you don’t act on feedback, employees will quickly come to believe that providing it is pointless. But there are several ways to create a much more vocal culture, say the authors. To make idea sharing less intimidating, tone down the power cues with employees, and gather feedback in regular, casual exchanges. Be transparent about the processes for gathering and following up on ideas. And if you really want to know what people think, go ask them. Research shows that when employees do speak up, organizations see increased performance. So getting all this right pays off—both for workers eager to make contributions and for their firms
Combining Logics to Transform Organizational Agency Blending Industry and Art at Alessi
Dalpiaz, E., Rindova, V., & Ravasi, D., Administrative Science Quarterly. 2016
To understand how organizations combine conflicting institutional logics strategically to create and pursue new market opportunities, we conducted an in-depth longitudinal study of the multiple efforts of the Italian manufacturer of household goods Alessi to combine the logics of industrial manufacturing and cultural production. Over three decades, Alessi developed three different strategies to combine normative elements of the two logics, using each strategy to envision and pursue different market opportunities. By combining the logics of industrial manufacturing and cultural production, Alessi was able to envision new possibilities for value creation and to enact them through innovation in product design. The three strategies triggered a common set of mechanisms through which the purposeful combining of logics enabled the pursuit of opportunity, while each strategy structured the process differently. We develop a theoretical model linking the development of recombinant strategies to the dynamic restructuring of organizational agency and the related capacity to create and pursue new market opportunities. Our findings and theoretical insights advance understanding of the processes through which organizations challenge taken-for-granted beliefs and practices to create new market opportunities, use logics as resources to enable embedded agency, and design hybrid organizational arrangements.
Creating and Sustaining High-Technology Development in Austin, Texas “The University of Texas at Austin"
Gibson, D., & Butler, J., in The Entrepreneurial University: Context and Institutional Change, Foss, L., Gibson, D., & Hodgson, B., Routledge Pubs. 2015.
Global recessions and structural economic shifts are motivating government and business leaders worldwide to increasingly look to "their" universities to stimulate regional development and to contribute to national competiveness. The challenge is clear and the question is pressing: How will universities respond?
This book presents in-depth case narratives of ten universities from Norway, Finland, Sweden, UK, and the U.S. that have overcome significant challenges to develop programs and activities to commercialize scientific research, launch entrepreneurial degree programs, establish industry partnerships, and build entrepreneurial cultures and ecosystems. The universities are quite diverse: large and small; teaching and research focused; internationally recognized and relatively new; located in major cities and in emerging regions. Each case narrative describes challenges overcome, actions taken, and resulting accomplishments.
This volume will be of interest to policymakers and university administrators as well as researchers and students interested in how different programs and activities can promote university entrepreneurship while contributing to economic growth in developed and developing economies.
“Innovations”, “Radical Innovations”, and “Disruptive Innovations”
Ahuja G, Toh PK., The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Management – Entrepreneurship, Hitt M. A. and Ireland R. D. 2015.
This new volume in the Blackwell Encyclopedia of Management volume set: The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Entrepreneurship, especially commissioned for the second edition from editors Michael A. Hitt and R. Duane Ireland, charts the key concepts and frameworks in the expanding field of Entrepreneurship.
- A brand new, state-of-the-art volume in the growing field of Entrepreneurship;
- Features 90 important entrepreneurship concepts written by 110 international contributors;
- Charts the key concepts and frameworks of the field, covering: 'creative destruction'; competitive dynamics; real options; social capital; corporate entrepreneurship; risk management; franchising; succession planning; location effects; spinoffs; and product innovation.
Organizational Oscillation Between Learning and Forgetting: The Dual Role of Serious Errors
Haunschild, P., Polidoro F., & Chandler D., Organization Science, 26(6): 1682-1701. 2015.
We know that organizations change over time as a result of their ability to learn and their tendency to forget. What we know less about, however, is why they might change back, despite evidence suggesting that this occurs. In this paper, we develop and test a model of organizational oscillation that explains why firms cycle through periods of learning and periods of forgetting. In particular, we identify a dual role for serious errors, which push firms toward a focus on safety while also pulling them away from other foci, such as efficiency or innovation. Although existing learning research recognizes errors as disruptive, this dual effect has not been theorized. We also demonstrate that, over time, the effect of a serious error on safety weakens, allowing alternative activities to emerge that lead to subsequent errors. We draw on qualitative data from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Challenger and Columbia accidents to build theory about why organizations oscillate between safety and other foci, and how serious errors trigger these shifts. We then test this theory using a data set of all pharmaceutical firms that introduced Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs in the United States from 1997 to 2004. Results confirm our theory, which contributes to our understanding of complex learning processes by identifying a mechanism by which organizations learn, then forget; then learn, then forget again.
Origins and Outcomes of Strategy in Nascent Ecosystems
Hannah, D. & Eisenhardt K., 2015 Academy of Management Best Paper Proceedings, BPS Division. Under review at Strategic Management Journal. 2015.
Prior research examines firm strategy within the context of established ecosystems. This study investigates nascent ecosystems. Through an in-depth, multiple-case study of firms in the US residential solar industry, I develop a theoretical framework to explain how firms successfully navigate nascent ecosystems over time. I identify three distinct strategies, each driven by a unique strategic logic and carrying its own unique advantages and disadvantages. In contrast to prior research, I find that the strategies of high-performing firms are motivated neither by their own preexisting capabilities nor rivalry between partners. Instead, high- performing firms are motivated to create value in collaboration with their partners, and enact strategies that allow them to do so despite the uncertain and dynamic structure of nascent ecosystems. The resultant theory has implications for research on strategy within ecosystems, as well as the relationship between strategy, capabilities, and industry structure.
Unlocking the Hidden Value of Concepts: A Cognitive Approach to Business Model Innovation
Martins, L. L., Rindova, V. P., & Greenbaum, B. E., Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 9(1): 99-117. 2015.
We advance a theory of how business models can be innovated proactively in the absence of exogenous changes, through processes of generative cognition. We contribute to the cognitive perspective in strategy by analyzing business models as schemas that organize managerial understandings about the design of firms' value-creating activities and exchanges and by theorizing how they can be innovated through processes for proactive schema change. Drawing on cognitive psychology research on two major cognitive processes through which individuals change their schema to cope with novelty, analogical reasoning and conceptual combination, we theorize firm-level strategic processes for designing innovative business models.
Who gets credit for input? Demographic and structural status cues in voice recognition.
Howell, T. M., Harrison, D. A., Burris, E. R., & Detert, J. R., Journal of Applied Psychology, 100(6), 1765-1784. 2015.
The authors investigate the employee features that, alongside overall voice expression, affect supervisors’ voice recognition. Drawing primarily from status characteristics and network position theories, the authors propose and find in a study of 693 employees from 89 different credit union units that supervisors are more likely to credit those reporting the same amount of voice if the employees have higher ascribed or assigned (by the organization) status—cued by demographic variables such as majority ethnicity and full-time work hours. Further, supervisors are more likely to recognize voice from employees who have higher achieved status—cued by their centrality in informal social structures. The authors also find that even when certain groups of lower status employees speak up more, they cannot compensate for the negative effect of their demographic membership on voice recognition by their boss. The authors underscore how recognition of employee voice by supervisors matters for employees. It carries (mediates) the effects of voice expression and status onto performance evaluations 1 year later, which means that demographic differences in the assignment of credit for voice can serve as an implicit pathway for discrimination. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved)
Do Ties Really Bind? The Effect of Knowledge & Commercialization Networks on Opposition to Standards
Ranganathan, R. & Rosenkopf, L., Academy of Management Journal, 57(2):515–540. 2014.
We examine how the multiplicity of interorganizational relationships affects strategic behavior by studying the influence of two such relationships—knowledge linkages and commercialization ties—on the voting behavior of firms in a technological standards-setting committee. We find that, while centrally positioned firms in the knowledge network exhibit lower opposition to the standard, centrally positioned firms in the commercialization network exhibit higher opposition to the standard. Thus, the influence of network position on coordination is contingent upon the type of interorganizational tie. Furthermore, when we consider these relationships jointly, knowledge centrality moderates the opposing effect of commercialization centrality, such that the commercialization centrality effect increases with decreasing levels of knowledge centrality. In other words, firms most likely to delay the standard are peripheral in the knowledge network yet central in the commercialization network, which suggests that they have the most to lose from changes to current technology.
Managing to stay in the dark: Managerial self-efficacy, ego defensiveness, and the aversion to employee voice.
Fast, N.J., Burris, E.R. & Bartel, C.A., Academy of Management Journal. 57(4), 1013-1034. 2014
Soliciting and incorporating employee voice is essential to organizational performance, yet some managers display a strong aversion to improvement-oriented input from subordinates. To help to explain this maladaptive tendency, we tested the hypothesis that managers with low managerial self-efficacy (that is, low perceived ability to meet the elevated competence expectations associated with managerial roles) seek to minimize voice as a way of compensating for a threatened ego. The results of two studies support this idea. In a field study (Study 1), managers with low managerial self-efficacy were less likely than others to solicit input, leading to lower levels of employee voice. A follow-up experimental study (Study 2) showed that: (a) manipulating low managerial self-efficacy led to voice aversion (that is, decreased voice solicitation, negative evaluations of an employee who spoke up, and reduced implementation of voice); and (b) the observed voice aversion associated with low managerial self-efficacy was driven by ego defensiveness. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of these findings, as well as highlight directions for future research on voice, management, and leadership.
A Competition-Based Explanation of Collaborative Invention within the Firm
Toh PK, Polidoro F., Strategic Management Journal, 34(10):1186-1208. 2013.
Existing literature shows that collaborative invention within the firm enhances innovativeness by facilitating knowledge recombination. Despite such benefit, firms vary in their use of collaborative invention when drawing on their individual inventors' knowledge. In addressing this puzzle, we argue that competition from rival products building on similar knowledge compels firms to favor search depth over exploratory search and respond expeditiously, thus reducing a firm's inclination toward collaborative invention. In contrast with prior research's focus on how upstream resources influence a firm's position in downstream markets, this study shows that downstream competition drives heterogeneity across firms in their utilization of upstream resources.
Can stories shape strategy? Narrative-Structured Information and Strategic Decision Making
Roundy, P.T, & Graebner, M., Academy of Management Proceedings. 2013
Despite progress made by prior research in understanding how information is used in strategic decision making, most studies are grounded on a similar, unstated assumption: information is homogeneous. We examine the influence of an important source of information heterogeneity: strategic information can be structured in narrative or non-narrative form. We develop a theoretical framework to explain why narrative information will have a greater likelihood of entering the decision making process and then, once there, why it will be more likely to influence key cognitive processes. Specifically, we propose that narrative-structured information will be more likely than non-narrative information to be granted attention, analyzed, recalled, and used in communication with other strategic decision makers. Moreover, we contend that the strength of narrative information will not be the same across stable and unstable decision making contexts.
Divergent Reactions to Convergent Strategies: Investor Beliefs and Analyst Reactions During Technological Change
Benner, M. J. & Ranganathan, R., Organization Science, 24(2): 378-394. 2013.
An important outcome of technological change is industry “convergence,” as a new technology spurs competition between established firms from different industries. We study the reactions of securities analysts, as important sources of institutional pressures for firms, to the similar product/market strategies undertaken by firms from different prior industries responding to industry convergence. Our empirical setting is the convergence between the wireline telecommunications and cable television industries in the period following the advent of voice over Internet protocol technology. Controlling for firm financial performance and capabilities, we find that analysts were consistently more positive toward the cable firms than toward the wireline telecom firms. Our findings further show that this divergence in reactions arises from differences in existing investor expectations and preferences concerning how firms create value; stocks owned by investors with a greater preference for growth receive more positive reactions than those owned by investors with a greater preference for margins. However, this divergence in reactions shrinks over time as convergence unfolds and as investors shift their shareholdings in response to misalignment between their preferences and firms' strategic changes. Reactions from analysts—reflecting inertial expectations of investors—may persist for a time despite changes to firms' strategies, thus creating challenges for some firms in responding to technological change and industry convergence while legitimating and enabling similar responses from their competitors.
No News Is Bad News: Sensegiving Activities, Media Attention, and Venture Capital Funding of New Technology Organizations
Petkova, A., Rindova, V., & Gupta, A., Organization Science, 24(3): 865-888. 2013.
A significant body of research has examined how new organizations gain legitimacy and how gaining it affects their subsequent access to resources. Less attention has been given to the problem of how new organizations attract collective attention. Although related to legitimation, the problem of attracting attention is distinct, as attention and evaluation are distinct cognitive processes. In this study, we examine the allocation of collective attention to new organizations in a system of relationships, within which new organizations seek to attract attention through their sensegiving activities; the information properties of their sensegiving activities affect the level of attention they receive from different types of media; and media attention, in turn, increases their perceived value potential in the eyes of venture capital investors (VCs). We examine these relationships in a sample of 398 information-technology start-ups that have obtained different levels of venture capital funding. Our results show that new organizations that engage in more intense and diverse sensegiving activities attract higher levels of industry media attention and that these effects are enhanced by the human capital of their founders and leaders. Diverse sensegiving activities are also associated with higher levels of attention from the general media, but only the attention of specialized industry media is positively associated with the level of VC funding obtained. These findings extend current research on information intermediation and institutional legitimation by demonstrating that media attention early in the life of new organizations affects how they are valued by a well-informed expert audience, such as VCs. They also contribute to entrepreneurship research on the effects of new organizations’ strategies on their ability to secure resources and to research on VC funding decisions.