The follower's dilemma: Innovation and imitation in the professional services industry

Matthew Semadeni, Brian S. Anderson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Firms contemplating imitation of a competitor's innovation face a dilemma imitate a new, unproven offering, or forgo imitation and perhaps miss out on the next big thing. We examine the innovation imitation decision under environmental uncertainty, when theory predicts the greatest tension in the imitation decision. We apply information-based theories of imitation to evaluate both firm- and service-level factors important to the decision to competitor innovation imitation. Analyzing the largest 50 professional services firms over an 11-year period, we find that while firm-level factors increase imitation, service-level factors decrease imitation. Furthermore, firm- and service-level factors interact to affect imitation outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management 2009 Annual Meeting: Green Management Matters, AOM 2009
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event69th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2009 - Chicago, IL, United States
Duration: Aug 7 2009Aug 11 2009

Other

Other69th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2009
CountryUnited States
CityChicago, IL
Period8/7/098/11/09

Keywords

  • Imitation
  • Innovation
  • Professional services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Information Systems
  • Management of Technology and Innovation
  • Industrial relations

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  • Cite this

    Semadeni, M., & Anderson, B. S. (2009). The follower's dilemma: Innovation and imitation in the professional services industry. In Academy of Management 2009 Annual Meeting: Green Management Matters, AOM 2009