Edited by Daniel Hjorth
Chapter 13: Corporate entrepreneurship
Since innovation is such a critical issue for companies today, corporate entrepreneurship (CE) is being embraced today by executives as more than simply a component of a company’s strategy, but rather as the focus of an organization’s success. As Hamel (2000) advised, “In these suddenly sober times, the inescapable imperative for every organization must be to make innovation an all-the-time, everywhere capability.” Firms that are more adaptable, aggressive, and innovative are better positioned not only to adjust to a dynamic, threatening, and complex external environment, but to create change in that environment. They do not take the external environment as a given, but instead define themselves as agents of change, leading customers instead of following them, creating new markets, and rewriting the rules of the competitive game (Morris et al., 2011). Corporate entrepreneurship researchers have emphasized the importance of CE’s potential as a growth strategy (Zahra et al., 1999). Dess 8 et al. (1999) noted that, “Virtually all organizations – new start-ups, major corporations, and alliances among global partners – are striving to exploit product-market opportunities through innovative and proactive behavior” – the type of behavior that is called for by corporate entrepreneurship. Barringer and Bluedorn (1999) suggested that in light of the dynamism and complexity of today’s environments, “entrepreneurial attitudes and behaviors are necessary for firms of all sizes to prosper and flourish.” Developing organizational environments that cultivate employees’ interest in and commitment to innovation contribute to successful competition in today’s global economy. Ireland et al.
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