Title

Untangling the effects of over-exploration and over-exploitation on organizational performance: The moderating role of environmental dynamism

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2008

Abstract

Because a firm’s optimal knowledge search behavior is determined by unique firm and industry conditions, organizational performance should be contingent on the degree to which a firm’s actual level of knowledge search deviates from the optimal level. It is thus hypothesized that deviation from the optimal search, in the form of either overexploitation or overexploration, is detrimental to organizational performance. Furthermore, the negative effect of search deviation on organizational performance varies with environmental dynamism; that is, overexploitation is expected to become more harmful, whereas overexploration becomes less so with an increase in environmental dynamism. The empirical analyses yield results consistent with these arguments. Implications for research and practice are correspondingly discussed.

Keywords

overexploitation/overexploration, consistency in search, environmental dynamism, organizational performance

Discipline

Organizational Behavior and Theory

Research Areas

Organisational Behaviour and Human Resources

Publication

Journal of Management

Volume

34

Issue

5

First Page

925

Last Page

951

ISSN

0149-2063

Identifier

10.1177/0149206308321547