How Resource-deprived Mavericks Circumvent Central Control: Walking or Stumbling on Two Feet?

Carsten Lund Pedersen, Torben Juul Andersen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


This study of a market-leader in a turbulent hostile telecommunications market uncovers how the competitive context influences strategy-making and cultivates central control that opposes autonomous initiatives. It shows how a highly competitive industry context reduces organizational slack that inhibits autonomy and drives central actions. Strategic initiatives primarily arise as deliberate actions induced by top management. This creates an information gap between ongoing experiences gained by employees operating in the periphery of the organization and the perceptions of decision-makers at the corporate center. In this organizational setting, the authors observe maverick behavior among entrepreneurial individuals that deliberately circumvent the formal rules to turn autonomous initiatives into viable strategic ventures in the best interest of the firm. Where conventional views presume that power delegation and organizational slack are necessary for autonomous strategic initiatives to emerge, the authors find that central control can provoke autonomous rule-breaking maverick behavior among resource-deprived entrepreneurial individuals inside the organization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationStrategic Responses for a Sustainable Future : New Research in International Management
EditorsTorben Juul Andersen
Number of pages35
Place of PublicationBingley
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing
Publication date2021
ISBN (Print)9781800719309
ISBN (Electronic)9781800719293, 9781800719316
Publication statusPublished - 2021
SeriesEmerald Studies in Global Strategic Responsiveness


  • Autonomus initiatives
  • Competitive hostility
  • Emergent strategy
  • Intended strategy
  • Maverick behavior
  • Organizational adaptation

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