Haapanen, L., Hurmelinna-Laukkanen, P. & Puumalainen, K. (2020) When strategic consensus matters : dynamic managerial capabilities and firm internationalization as seen by TMT, Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, 27(3), pp. 285-315, http://doi.org/10.1108/CCSM-09-2018-0134
When strategic consensus matters : dynamic managerial capabilities and firm internationalization as seen by TMT
|Author:||Haapanen, Lauri1; Hurmelinna-Laukkanen, Pia1; Puumalainen, Kaisu2|
1Department of Marketing, Management and International Business, Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2School of Business and Management, Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology, Lappeenranta, Finland
|Online Access:||PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.4 MB)|
|Persistent link:|| http://urn.fi/urn:nbn:fi-fe2021041410432
|Publish Date:|| 2021-04-14
Purpose: In this study, the authors explore how sensing and seizing of market opportunities, asset reconfiguration and top management team (TMT) consensus on these elements jointly relate to a firm’s international expansion. By doing this, the authors contribute to the existing literature by addressing dynamic managerial capabilities at the TMT level instead of considering them as individual executives’ traits. The authors use the qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) method to analyze our data from 261 TMT executives in 63 firms. The findings indicate that sensing, seizing and reconfiguration capabilities are highly relevant for internationalization but in different configurations for specific stages and elements of international business. Presence of sensing as a part of configurations is observable, especially in connection to a firm having foreign customers and explicit internationalization strategies, while configurations where seizing and reconfiguration emerge are connected to firms showing continuity in the international markets. The authors’ results also indicate that a lack of TMT consensus in connection to dynamic managerial capabilities is a driving force that allows the firm not to stagnate with regards to internationalization. Yet, lack of TMT consensus combined with low reconfiguration capabilities seems to generate negative results, which suggests that different views are not helpful if the firm is incapable of changing its approaches.
Design/methodology/approach: This study uses data gathered with a questionnaire where the executives select either “yes” or “no” in response to statements describing the firm situation with regard different managerial aspects and progress of international growth. The authors analyze these data from 261 TMT executives from 63 firms using the QCA method.
Findings: The findings indicate that sensing, seizing and reconfiguration capabilities are highly relevant for internationalization but to different extents for specific elements of international business; generally, while sensing is needed, in particular, for having foreign customers and internationalization strategies in the first place, seizing and reconfiguration became relevant for continuity in the international markets. Consensus or rather lack of it on these elements also plays a role. It seems that some disagreement is a driving force that allows the firm not to stagnate with regards to internationalization. However, TMT disagreement combined with low reconfiguration capabilities seems to generate negative results, which suggests that different views are not helpful if the firm is incapable of changing its approaches.
Research limitations/implications: The findings contribute to existing knowledge by exploring how managerial capabilities influence firm-level dynamic capabilities from the point of view of the TMT. The authors also add to existing research that has often focused on the relationships between TMT executives’ demographic traits and TMT consensus and, further, the (subsequent) firm performance by looking at different configuration rather than linear linkages. Together, these notions further mean that the authors change the point of view on diversity. The authors consider the consensus on existing managerial dynamic capabilities rather than evaluate the functional diversity or the TMT executives’ agreement on strategic moves.
Practical implications: All capabilities are important. TMT does not need to agree on everything, as long as they acknowledge where their problem areas are, and they can capture at least some of the relevant trends and opportunities. In fact, having some lack of consensus seems to be a driving force that allows capabilities to be questioned and potentially keeps (false) under-appreciation of existing capabilities from becoming a barrier to international expansion.
Originality/value: Unlike previous studies that have focused on the relationship between the TMT executives’ demographic characteristics and firm performance or the relationship of the demographics and TMT strategic consensus at a general level — or studies that have explained international performance with TMT consensus (or with dynamic managerial capabilities), this study brings forth how the dynamic managerial capabilities and the TMT executives’ strategic consensus with regard to these capabilities influence the firm’s international expansion. Here, the authors consider internationalization widely, looking at whether the firm has foreign customers or international expansion strategy in place, and whether there this activity is sustained and continuous (with repeated trading and long-term international contracts, in particular). To our knowledge, there is no research on TMT strategic consensus that explains how the unanimity among executives on dynamic managerial capabilities connects to the firm’s international expansion.
Cross cultural & strategic management
|Pages:||285 - 315|
|Type of Publication:||
A1 Journal article – refereed
|Field of Science:||
512 Business and management
© Lauri Haapanen, Pia Hurmelinna-Laukkanen and Kaisu Puumalainen. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen athttp://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode