Professor of Entrepreneurship
Organizational Learning; Problemistic Search; Performance Feedback; Goals; Coalition; Power;
Problemistic search is a central part of behavioral strategy because it is a fundamental step in the decision process leading to strategic change. Despite the significant research efforts so far, there is a gap in our understanding of search.Unlike the theory of myopic search, most research so far has emphasized search initiated by performance relative to aspiration levels on goals that are too broad to justify directing search toward the form of strategic change selected for investigation. In the following, the author outlines the foundation of an extended theory of problemistic search in response to broad goals through either broad search, use of multiple goals, use of power, reliance on cognitive biases, or responses to environmental stimuli. Each of these processes, alone or in combination, can give more specific predictions of where firms search when encountering performance below aspiration levels on broad goals.Substantial progress in empirical research is needed, however, to distinguish which of these processes occur.