Date of Graduation
Chambers College of Business and Economics
This dissertation examines the impacts of exploration, exploitation, and ambidexterity on firm performance in three essays. Since exploration and exploitation have their own advantages and disadvantages, there are many debates over their impacts on firm performance. To synthesize the conflicting empirical results, the first essay conducted a meta-analytic study and demonstrates that ambidexterity in the product domain increases firm performance while ambidexterity in the market domain does not significantly influence firm performance. In addition, the results show that it is not necessary for all firms (e.g., resource-constrained firms) to pursue ambidexterity. Thus, the second and third essays examine how to leverage exploration and exploitation among two types of resource-constrained firms: U.S.-based international small- and medium-sized enterprises (ISMEs) and emerging-market (EM) firms.
In the second essay, I examined contingences of the impacts of exploration, exploitation, and ambidexterity on performance of U.S.-based ISMEs. The results based on 119 ISMEs show that the impacts of exploration, exploitation, and ambidexterity on firm performance depend on home-host country similarity and adaptive marketing capability. For instance, when ambitious ISMEs want to pursue ambidexterity, they should do so in a similar foreign country because home-host country similarity could mitigate the negative influence of ambidexterity on firm performance.
In the third essay, I examined how relative-exploration orientation mobilizes EM firms’ acquired marketing resources from firms based in developed economies. The results show that brand resources integration increases post-merger performance when relative-exploration orientation is high, and market resources integration increases post-merger performance when relative-exploration orientation is low.
The major contribution of this dissertation is enriching understandings of exploration and exploitation and provide relevant guidance for firms on selecting appropriate strategies to increase firm performance.
Su, Lixun, "Managing paradoxes of ambidexterity: The impact of exploration and exploitation on firm performance" (2020). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 7538.