Session 357

Learning Processes

Track P

Date: Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Time: 17:15 – 18:30


Room: Estancia 311

Session Chair:

  • Laura Poppo, University of Kansas

Title: Avoiding Rookie Mistakes: The Value of Managerial Experience for Firm Performance


  • Bryan Hong, Western University

Abstract: While managerial experience has been recognized as an important determinant of firm performance, few empirical studies have examined how possessing different levels of managerial experience actually affects performance. Using a proprietary dataset from a quick-service restaurant firm, I compare the decisions of inexperienced “rookie” managers to their more experienced counterparts after assuming control of a business unit, and observe the performance consequences of their decisions. The results show that rookie managers cut costs that initially increase performance, but these gains quickly reverse and performance ultimately declines below the previous manager’s levels in subsequent months. By contrast, experienced managers do not make any significant changes after assuming responsibility over a business unit, and no evidence of changes in performance is found.

Title: Falling from Grace: Why Great Reputations Fail to Protect Companies from Alleged Violations


  • Laura Poppo, University of Kansas
  • Karl Kammerer, University of Kansas
  • Donald Schepker, University of South Carolina

Abstract: As an attribute ascribed to a firm, reputation is widely recognized as one of the most valuable, intangible assets that a firm possesses. Understudied in this literature is the dynamic ‘updating’ process of reputational beliefs when consumers are exposed to negative event which alleges that a focal firm may be responsible for it. Because prior research has not examined this gap empirically, our experimental design is novel, yet based on the rich theoretical and empirical literatures of reputation, trust violations, behavioral decision theory, and causal attribution theory. Our preliminary hypotheses and results show that consumers judge companies as if they are responsible for the casually ambiguous negative events, and that great reputations fail to buffer the company from negative judgments.

Title: The Forming of Shared Cognition in Business Ecosystems: Collective Sensemaking and its Influence on Mental Models


  • Vincent de Gooyert, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Etiënne Rouwette, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Hans Van Kranenburg, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Edward Freeman, University of Virginia
  • Harry van Breen, Alliander

Abstract: Mental models tend to converge within organizations and this hinders cooperation across organizations. For a business ecosystem to be effective, it is therefore crucial to build shared cognition between the partnering organizations. Collective sensemaking has been suggested to play an important role in the forming of shared cognition, but how does collective sensemaking in business ecosystems come about and what is its influence on mental models? To answer that question, we follow 96 managers from the Dutch energy sector that engage in group model building workshops aimed at making sense of the ongoing ‘energy transition’. Mental model measurements before and after the workshops provide evidence for the resulting change in shared cognition.

Title: Two Faces of Experience in Organizational Learning: Aspiration Adaptation and Belief Adaptation


  • Songcui Hu, University of Arizona
  • Hart Posen, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Abstract: Scholars of organizational learning generally consider experience can enhance knowledge. Yet experience can also alter a firm's performance aspirations. In this paper, we consider the implications of the dual role of experience for organizational learning. We extend the canonical model of aspiration-adaptation. We embed a formal model of experiential learning that allows risk-taking to be an endogenous outcome of belief-adaptation. We find that superior performance can be an outcome of organizational learning in which experience increases aspirations more quickly than it does knowledge, with risk-taking as an endogenous consequence. Moreover, in contrast to March's well-known result that slower learning rates in beliefs or aspirations enhance performance, we find that when the dual roles of experience are considered jointly, faster learning may engender superior performance.

All Sessions in Track P...

Sun: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 459: Theoretical Foundations of Behavioral Strategy I
Sun: 09:30 – 10:45
Session 460: Theoretical Foundations of Behavioral Strategy II
Sun: 11:15 – 12:30
Session 461: Theoretical Foundations of Behavioral Strategy III
Sun: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 360: Heuristics and Biases in Strategy Choices
Session 363: Social Influence & Comparisons
Sun: 17:15 – 18:30
Session 612: Behavioral Strategy IG Business Meeting
Mon: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 354: Goals and Aspirations
Mon: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 352: CEO Decision Making
Mon: 14:45 – 16:00
Session 265: Learning, Search, Slack: The behavioral theory revisited
Session 353: Behavioral Foundations of Mergers & Acquisitions
Mon: 16:30 – 17:45
Session 359: Cognition Under Uncertainty & Risk Taking
Tue: 08:00 – 09:15
Session 358: Cognitive Processes in Strategy
Session 362: Search for Better Strategies
Tue: 11:00 – 12:15
Session 361: Creativity and Innovation
Tue: 15:30 – 16:45
Session 355: Behavioral Elements of Institutional Theory
Session 453: Competitive Dynamics
Tue: 17:15 – 18:30
Session 356: Affective and Cognitive Processes in Strategy
Session 357: Learning Processes

Strategic Management Society