What to Do Next? The Case for Non-Predictive Strategy

Posted: 23 Feb 2007

See all articles by Robert Wiltbank

Robert Wiltbank

Willamette University - Atkinson Graduate School of Management

Nicholas Dew

Naval Postgraduate School

Saras D. Sarasvathy

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

Stuart Read

IMD International - Marketing and e-Commerce

Date Written: 2004

Abstract

Two prescriptions dominate the topic of what firms should do next in uncertain situations; planning approaches and adaptive approaches. These differ primarily on the appropriate role of prediction in the decision process. Prediction is a central issue in strategy making due to the presumption that what can be predicted can be controlled. In this paper we argue for the independence of prediction and control, that the pursuit of successful outcomes can occur through either predictive or control oriented approaches. We further develop and highlight control oriented approaches to open new avenues for dealing with the uncertainty inherent to the question of what organizations should do next. These approaches significantly impact the costs and risk of firm strategy as well as their innovative efforts.

Keywords: Strategy Making, Uncertainty, Decision Making, Market Creation, Construction, Effectuation

Suggested Citation

Wiltbank, Robert and Dew, Nicholas and Sarasvathy, Saras D. and Read, Stuart, What to Do Next? The Case for Non-Predictive Strategy (2004). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=964746

Robert Wiltbank

Willamette University - Atkinson Graduate School of Management ( email )

900 State Street
Salem, OR 97301
United States
503 370 6955 (Phone)
503 370 3011 (Fax)

Nicholas Dew (Contact Author)

Naval Postgraduate School ( email )

1522 Cunningham Road
Monterey, CA 93943-5201
United States

Saras D. Sarasvathy

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.effectuation.org

Stuart Read

IMD International - Marketing and e-Commerce ( email )

Chemin de Bellerive 23
P.O. Box 915
CH-1001 Lausanne
Switzerland

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