Abstract

It has been suggested that bricolage can help firms build a resource base from seemingly nothing, but that bricolage can also spin out of control and eventually limit growth (e.g. Baker & Nelson, 2005). Yet, “bricoleurs” are clearly able to innovate, proactively solve customer needs, and take risks by challenging the institutional environment. However, mainstream research on entrepreneurial orientation (EO) suggests that a combination of innovativeness, proactiveness, and risk taking linearly promotes growth (e.g. Rauch et al., 2009). To resolve this paradox, we make use of the additional autonomy and competitive aggressiveness dimensions of EO (Lumpkin & Dess, 1996). We hypothesize that firms that are entrenched in habitual “parallel” bricolage have high entrepreneurial autonomy, but are less competitively aggressive. This would limit their growth particularly in hostile environments (Lumpkin & Dess, 2002) - the very settings that seemingly promote bricolage.

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