This paper elaborates theory inductively by following the evolution of fourteen strategic initiatives from an exploratory case study. The study examines the context and character of such initiatives over an 8-year period. Based on these initiatives, the paper proposes a two-stage selection mechanism for the intra-evolutionary strategy process that explains the long-term mutation of organizations. The mechanism operates by selecting according to both fit with the strategic intent and feasibility of the initiative. These two elements combine into an organizational principle that is perceived as permanent in character but mutates through constructive confrontation. This principle contributes to the organizational identity but, being a low-level element of such identity, it can be modified through learning while retaining an attribute of endurance as perceived by organizational members.
- evolutionary strategy process
- intra-evolutionary theory
- selection mechanism
- strategy-making process