Managing Strategic Contradictions: A Top Management Model for Managing Innovation Streams

  • Smith W
  • Tushman M
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Abstract

Sustained organizational performance depends on top management teams effectively exploring and exploiting. These strategic agendas are, however, associated with contradictory organizational architectures. Using the literature on paradox, contradictions, and conflict, we develop a model of managing strategic contradictions that is associated with paradoxical cognition -- senior leaders and/or theor teams (a) articulating a paradoxical frame, (b) differentiating between the strategy and architecture for the existing product and those for innovation, and (c) integrating between those strategies and architectures. We further argue that the locus of paradox in top management teams resides either with the senior leader or with the entire team. We identify a set of top management team conditions that facilitates a team's ability to engage in paradoxical cognitive processes.

Author-supplied keywords

  • innovations
  • management

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Authors

  • Wendy Smith

  • Michael Tushman

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