Developing Market Orientation: An Exploration of Differences in Management Approaches

Author: Harris, Lloyd C.

Source: Journal of Marketing Management, Volume 18, Numbers 7-8, August 2002 , pp. 603-632(30)

Publisher: Routledge, part of the Taylor & Francis Group

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Following the seminal conceptualisation and operationalisation studies of the early 1990s, research into market orientation has blossomed. Studies abound of the plethora of antecedents and the myriad of potential consequences. However, although a greater understanding of the barriers and performance implications of market orientation has been developed, inexplicably empirical research into management approaches to developing market orientation is neglected. With the exception of a limited number of management prescriptions and an even smaller number of conceptual contributions, little is known of the different approaches, strategies or tactics management employ to improve market orientation. The current study is designed to explore this issue and to provide empirical insights into the nature of differences in management approaches. After reviewing relevant literature and describing the methods employed, the results of twelve case studies involving over 260 field interviews are presented. The results indicate that management approaches to developing market orientation differ along five main dimensions, with each firm tending to stress one of these emphases. After defining and describing the main characteristics of these differences in emphasis, the paper concludes with implications for theory and practice.
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