Managing organizational paradoxes: a case in the financial industry
Keywords:Innovation, Ambidexterity, Exploitation, Exploration, Innovation function (IF)
Purpose – The purpose of this article is to contribute to studies on organizational ambidexterity by analyzing
how an incumbent company is managing its innovation structures and balancing exploitation and exploration
activities to generate value in a digital economy context.
Design/methodology/approach – The research was designed in a qualitative format through a single case
study in a Brazilian financial institution, with semi-structured interviews conducted with internal and external
Findings – Based on the case study, two possible contributions emerged as results, to fill the research gap: the
need to develop more complex innovation structures, which act in a way that is integrated to the ecosystem; and
the establishment of an organizational function, with a specific mandate to seek innovation in new business
Originality/value – Although the theory gives evidence about the potential that ambidexterity represents for
companies, ‘how’ to orchestrate the trade-offs to achieve it is not clear, particularly in regards to first steps
toward ambidexterity. This work aims to contribute to fill this gap through an empirical study in a large
Brazilian company, analyzing its trajectory toward ambidexterity.