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Do You Have A Survival Instinct? Leveraging genetic codes to achieve fit in hostile business environments

By Thomas Lawton, Tazeeb Rajwani and Patrick Reinmoeller


It is too easy to blame market turbulence or unexpected events for a company's poor performance. Yet this is frequently the response of managers to circumstances and activities beyond their immediate control. As a consequence, managers and owners often fail to develop strategies for coping with challenge or crisis the next time it occurs. The result is that many organizations are doomed to repeat the same or similar mistakes over and over again in a form of corporate déjà vu. To gain insights into how companies can better manage in hostile environments, we consider the solutions that have evolved in nature over billions of years. We trace nature's codes for adapting to hostile environments and explore the underlying characteristics of four genetic code types that can help business organizations to offset the negative implications of hostility through ensuring strategic fit. We link the four genetic codes most frequently found in nature with organizational capabilities. When correctly identified and leveraged, these capabilities can enable a company to focus attention and resource on how to manage successfully in hostile environment

Topics: Hostile environment, genetic codes, organizational capabilities, strategic fit, coping strategies, strategic adaptation, biomimesis.
Publisher: Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam.
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.bushor.2011.10.002
OAI identifier:
Provided by: Cranfield CERES

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