Bill Burpitt, LSB associate dean for graduate and executive programs and professor of management, and Matthew Valle, professor of management, recently published an article, “Balancing Exploration and Exploitation in a Declining Industry: Antecedents to Firm Adaptation Strategy and Performance,” in the most recent issue (21, 1) of the Journal of Small Business Strategy. The article explores why some firms are better able than others to adapt to threatening changes in their markets.
Burpitt and Valle investigated the performance implications of three strategic adaptation approaches—exploitation, exploration and organizational ambidexterity—in 94 small firms supplying tools and materials to the U.S.-based furniture industry. Their research measured four organizational antecedents to strategic adaptation as well as the performance outcomes associated with adaptation choice. The results demonstrated that organizational deftness, group potency, elements of communication and cooperation within the firm, and low centralization were significantly related to organizational ambidexterity, and that ambidexterity was positively related to revenue and profit growth.
In the article, Burpitt and Valle include steps that organizational leaders can take to improve the ambidextrous posture of their organizations.