ORGANIZATIONAL THEORY PERSPECTIVES TOWARD SUCCESS IN DYNAMIC ENVIRONMENTS
Schoultz, Bradley V.
Blanken, Leo J.
Borer, Douglas A.
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How can special operations forces balance present-day readiness with the requirement to stay ahead of potential revolutionary changes in the operating environment? This question presents a challenge to any organization—military or otherwise—that seeks to sustain a competitive advantage over time. The challenges of tomorrow are different from those of today, and organizations in changing environments must deal with the often-competing requirements for present and future success. Within the field of organizational study resides a deep and diverse body of work that addresses this issue from varying perspectives. This thesis reviews three of these perspectives—ambidexterity, the dynamic capabilities view, and organizational ecology—and extracts useful concepts for United States Special Operations Command to consider as it plans for the increasingly dynamic environments of the twenty-first century. Each field is reviewed in some detail, and key concepts or frameworks are reviewed and assessed for applicability. Ultimately, a concise summary of conclusions is provided along with recommendations for further study into matters that impact special operations’ readiness in environments of evolutionary and revolutionary change.
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