Organizational Ambidexterity: Crossing the Great Divide of Exploration and Exploitation in Small Firms
Second International Conference of Rajarata university of Sri Lanka (pp. 135-138). Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka: Rajarata University of Sri Lanbka, 2014
4 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2014
Date Written: December 24, 2014
The concept of organizational ambidexterity has gained momentum in research on business firms. Ambidexterity signifies a firm’s capacity to perform conflicting activities simultaneously (Lubatkin et al. 2006). Recent research criticizes the early idea that tradeoffs between exploitation and exploration as insurmountable and proposes that ambidextrous firms are capable of engage in underlined processes at simultaneously (Jansen et al. 2009; Lubatkin et al. 2006). Although increasing attention toward the concept of ambidexterity in recent years contribute to the refinement and extension of the concept, a review of the extant literature reveals that important research issues are remained unexplored (Jansen et al. 2009; Lubatkin et al. 2006; Gulati and Puranam, 2009). In fact, research suggests multiple paths to ambidexterity. Theory of ambidexterity proposes dual structure and strategies, differentiating efforts to focus on each exploitation and exploration (Guptha et al. 2006). Contextual ambidexterity incumbent emphasizes behavioral and social means of integrating exploitation and exploration (Gibson and Birkinshaw, 2004). Moreover, some studies provide evidence for a positive association between organizational ambidexterity and firm performance (Gibson and Birkinshaw, 2004; He and Wong, 2004; Lubatkin et al. 2006) while very recent studies have examined moderate effect of environmental and organizational factors on the relationship between ambidexterity and its antecedents and performance outcome (Jansen et al. 2006; Kyriakopoulos and Moorman, 2004). Informal networks and leadership based have also been investigated as an antecedent of ambidexterity (Gibson and Bikinshaw, 2004; Gulati and Purahan, 2009). In response, this paper examines necessity of ambidexterity for small firms. Specially, a holistic and an alternative framework is devised to reach ambidexterity under the pressure of limited resources and complex market conditions.
Keywords: Ambidexterity, Exploitation, Exploration, Small firms
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