Session 92

Attention, Goals and Renewal

Track H

Date: Monday, October 8, 2012


Time: 13:30 – 14:45


Room: Club A

Session Chair:

  • Sarah Kaplan, University of Toronto

Title: Aspire to Innovate: How a Firm\'s Technological and Financial Aspiration Levels Affect its Technology Deployment Decision


  • I-Chen Wang, Suffolk University
  • Lihong Qian, Portland State University

Abstract: How a firm's technological and financial aspiration levels affect its technology deployment decision? This study focuses on using firm performance and return on investment to explain and predict a firm’s innovation activities. We hypothesize that performance below technological or financial aspiration level encourages a firm to adopt an average return technology. Furthermore, when technological and financial performance aggravates, the effect of below-technological-aspiration performance on a firm's likelihood of deploying an average return technology is likely to be greater. Most of our hypotheses receive support from data in the flat panel display industry. Our study contributes to the extant literature by connecting the aspiration theory with technology management literature, and simultaneously considering the effect of technological and financial aspiration levels on a firm’s technology deployment decision.

Title: Attention to Multiple Goals in Strategic Decision Making: An Inductive Analysis of Technology Commercialization at Motorola


  • John Joseph, University of California, Irvine
  • William Ocasio, Northwestern University

Abstract: To develop theory on how attention is allocated to multiple organizational goals and how goal attention affects strategic decision making, we use a case study and qualitative comparative analysis of 20 technology projects in Motorola’s new ventures group. We inductively develop a process model of goal matching based on three mechanisms: goal awareness, matching, and primacy. We propose that although managers are broadly aware of multiple goals, only a subset are matched with new initiatives. We propose that both active and inactive organizational goals may affect technology commercialization contingent on their primacy: operationality and constituency support. Overall our theory—that decision makers may choose among which of multiple constraints they may satisfy—stands in contrast to past accounts which either posit that goals serve as hard constraints on organizational decision making, or alternatively that goals are inconsequential.

Title: Beyond Motivation: A Theory of Firm Level Goal Setting Strategy


  • Greg Reilly, University of Connecticut
  • Mark Maltarich, University of South Carolina
  • Anthony Nyberg, University of South Carolina

Abstract: Organizational goals impact internal and external stakeholders in very different ways. Goals that are easily attainable can build credibility and a track record of success, but are less effective motivators for employees. We explain why organizations will set different goals based on the need for coordination or signaling. We test our theory with a data set of goals for compound development set by biotechnology firms. Our data support the prediction that firms will be relatively consistent in their goal setting strategies, but will respond to the environmental context. Recognizing the signaling and coordinative aspects of goal setting adds to the rich literature of individual goal setting that has focused on its motivational consequences.

Title: Exploring and Reconfiguring a Firm\'s Competence Base: A Process Model of Strategic Renewal


  • Gianmario Verona, Bocconi University
  • Andrea Lipparini, University of Bologna
  • Emanuela Prandelli, Bocconi University

Abstract: The processes of organizational and strategic renewal are essential for the long-term survival of the firm. To disentangle the ability of senior managers to run a process of renewal, we provide an in-depth longitudinal evidence of Ducati Motor Holding (1996-2007). Our findings highlight how the creation of a new competence that drew an analogy with the entertainment business enabled Ducati to overcome, in the short run, the critical financial situation that had almost brought it on the verge of bankruptcy. At the same time, it set in motion a series of contradictions that jeopardized the overall renewal process. We note that such contradictions do not only have a technical and rational nature, but also a normative nature. Overcoming these contradictions implies starting up a process of reconfiguration based on integrating the newly emerged capabilities with the original competence base.

All Sessions in Track H...

Sun: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 267: Strategic Processes in Transition
Sun: 09:30 – 10:45
Session 268: Capabilities that Help or Hurt Acquisition Processes
Sun: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 269: Chief Strategy Officer’s Role in Strategy Processes
Sun: 15:15 – 16:30
Session 89: Strategic Alignment and Strategy Implementation
Mon: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 99: Ambidexterity and Innovativeness
Mon: 09:30 – 10:45
Session 91: Consensus and Commitment
Mon: 13:30 – 14:45
Session 92: Attention, Goals and Renewal
Mon: 16:30 – 17:45
Session 90: Participation, Cooperation and Commitment
Tue: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 94: Going Beyond the Conventional Wisdom
Tue: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 95: Emotions and Behavior
Tue: 14:15 – 15:30
Session 96: Comprehensiveness and Time
Tue: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 98: Management of Emerging Strategic Issues
Tue: 17:30 – 18:45
Session 93: Cognition and Intuition
Session 97: Cognition and Capabilities

Strategic Management Society