New on iversity!
Dr. Thomas K. Maran

Creating Ambidextrous Organizations

  • PRO
  • 3h 48 min
  • Self-Paced
  • Englisch
  • Management

Über den Kurs

Alphabet, 3M, IBM - all big names in the corporate world. What do these behemoths, and others like them, share? They share a vision for an ambidextrous form of corporate organization, which enables them to exploit their current markets while equally thinking forward to explore the markets of tomorrow. The former allows them to build a firm bedrock to stand on. The latter pours the cement for their future foundation. Together, they spell health and profit for a company, in the case of IBM for over a century, a rare occurrence in an economy where an average company can expect to shutter its doors after a few decades.

While adaptability and flexibility may seem more naturally to go hand in hand in our time of internet-driven super start-ups like Alphabet, this sort of monumental success does not come by accident. It requires a purposeful and careful minded approach to balancing exploitation of one’s core business and exploration of one's next core business. Especially in established companies, the latter can be a real challenge. Petrified structures don’t easily give way when the wind of change finally blows down their hallways. It’s up to you to open the necessary doors, find the necessary solutions, make the necessary changes.

But how can you apply this, whether in your project, team, unit, or in an entire firm? Join our evidence-based management approach to find out, and dive into the topic of organizational ambidexterity.


What will I learn in this course?

In this course, you will learn the management practices needed to realize organizational ambidexterity. In compiling this course, we took great care to draw from both management practice excellence and the cutting edge of management science.

However, learning has to be interesting, it has to capture the imagination, and this is why we have built our course around case studies. They will form a central feature, making you familiar with the application of organizational ambidexterity in the real world. In each chapter you will learn the theoretical and methodological foundations, which you will then apply to your own course project. Finally, we include individual exercises which facilitate the transfer of knowledge from the course to participants' daily practice of management.

When you have completed the course, you will know how to use specific techniques to help you align your exploitation units more efficiently and know how to use practices helping to promote innovation in these, or other specialized exploration units. All facets of the changes necessary for organizational ambidexterity will be covered, including structure, processes, performance management systems and leadership style. In addition, you will be made aware of potential roadblocks which commonly pop up you try to implement organizational ambidexterity, and how to react quickly and decisively to neutralize them.

Chapter 1

Pinning Down Organizational Ambidexterity

Relevance: You will learn why organizational ambidexterity is relevant to you and your company. Concept: You will understand the concept of and logic behind organizational ambidexterity. Use: You will learn why companies need to balance exploitation and exploration, and what happens when they fail to explore.

Chapter 2

How to exploit?

Definition: You will learn to define exploitation, know what it is in practice and how to optimize your organization. Practices: You will learn the strategy, leadership style, structure and performance management system necessary for effective exploitation. Application: You will see exploitation in action in several case studies, for example IBM's Lou Gerstner reviving a struggling company through effective exploitation.

Chapter 3

How to explore?

Definition: You will learn to define exploration, learn to stimulate it and learn how to avoid taking it too far. Practices: You will again learn all aspects of the topic, both theory and practice, in order to enable you to explore successfully. Application: Among others, we will introduce you to the case study revolving around the rise of Netflix, and how their success and Blockbuster’s fall were due to different approaches to exploration.

Chapter 4

How to do both?

Duality: We will show you the synergy between effective exploitation and good exploration which makes a company truly ambidextrous. Contradiction: We will show you some pitfalls to avoid, and how both exploitation and exploration can happen in harmony. Bringing them together: You will learn specific practices which stimulate exploitation and exploration at the same time, and therefore will help you create a truly ambidextrous organization.

Chapter 5

Solution I: Structural Ambidexterity and Corporate Venturing

Concepts: You will learn to define and understand the concepts of structural ambidexterity and corporate venturing, as well as gain some insight into ecosystems of cooperation. Carrying it out: We will give you hands-on tips to help you carry out the separation of existing units, or the acquisition of new units, to supplement your core business.

Chapter 6

Solution II: Contextual and Temporal Ambidexterity

Concepts: You will learn to define and understand the concepts of contextual ambidexterity and temporal ambidexterity. Finding the right approach: We will show you how these two approaches to ambidexterity can be applied in companies which are not big or capitalized enough to finance separate units for exploration or to acquire them whole. Cases: You will be given a number of case studies showing you how different companies have found their own unique way of implementing ambidexterity cheaply and effectively.

Chapter 7

Achieving Ambidexterity: Align, Create, Survive

Review: You will be given a chance to take stock of what you have learned, and on how it all fits together, now that you’ve reached the end of the course. Revise: We will take you back through the main points of each chapter, emphasizing those points which are vital, and recommending which sections are particularly important to repeat if you feel unsure about them. Reflect: Finally, we will go through some reflections together on how you can apply what you have learned in your company, and how it will profit you.


Who should take this course?

The course is addressed to all those who wish to improve their personal competence or have an interest in the topic.

  • Top-level managers in charge of entire organization, who must balance exploitation and exploration for the long-term health of their company.
  • Mid-level managers who are keen on improving the efficiency or long term effectiveness of their unit.
  • Project managers and team leaders that are responsible for planning, staffing and seeing through both exploitative and explorative projects.
  • Entrepreneurs who are at the cusp of creating a new business, and want a full 360-degree outlook on how to do it.
  • Anyone looking to become a successful manager, or looking to learn something about the topic.

What is included in this course?

Our course offers you high quality teaching videos, compiled by expert lecturers who are leaders in their fields. To supplement them, we have included a range of further reading and additional materials. All together, the combination of theory, concrete practices, examples in case studies and handy tips and tricks will enable you to apply organizational ambidexterity in your company, whatever roadblocks you may face. Furthermore, at the end of the course, you will have a chance to discuss the material with other participants.

Once registered, you will have access to:

  • All course materials
  • A wealth of engaging and illuminating tests, which will help you revise and remember the topics covered in the course
  • A community of learners who, just like you, want to apply organizational ambidexterity

Once you have completed the course, you will receive:

  • A statement of participation, to show that you have completed this course and can correctly and effectively apply organizational ambidexterity.

What our customers say about the course..

"Beides. Viele gut verständliche Informationen, die methodisch didaktisch konsequent aufgebaut sind. Ambidextrie in Perfektion. Die Grundlagen werden umfassend erklärt und wichtige Fragen in der Tiefe behandelt. Gut ausgewählte Literaturhinweise ermöglichen es, den Fragen auf den Grund zu gehen. Der Aufbau des Kurses ist gut nachvollziehbar und ermöglicht die Einordnung der Kernthemen. Durch kurze, prägnante Aufgaben wird der Lernfortschritt sichergestellt und dazu animiert, den Kurs erfolgreich abzuschliessen. Der Erfolg des Kurses „Creating Ambidextrous Organizations“ wird im Projektteam, in der Abteilung und in der gesamten Firma spürbar sein." -Univ.-Prof. Dr. Urs Baldegger, Universität Liechtenstein

"This course makes it possible to convey extensive content on the topic of ambidextry in a short time and in a concise manner. It is therefore suitable for experts and practitioners alike, because it not only provides the theoretical superstructure, but also gives very concrete recommendations for action and uses case studies to illustrate them." -Gottfried Klösel Geschäftsführer, Weidenfeld GmbH

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