Resilience, defined as the capacity for continuous reconstruction, is based on Hamel’s earlier work on core competencies. We deploy the resilience concept to explain the performance differentials of small information technology companies. Our interviews with owner-managers suggest that the resilience concept is insufficient to account for competitive advantage and suggest that a sole focus on core competencies can even create competitive disadvantage. In particular, those managers that focused too much on their own core competencies and ignored market developments and other stakeholders created competitive disadvantages. We therefore suggest that resilience can only be a source of competitive advantage if it is extended with the option of replacing core competencies. In addition, core competencies frequently have to be supplemented by competencies of partners or customers in order to achieve competitive advantage.


Core competence core rigidity resilience SMEs IT 


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Copyright information

© International Federation for Information Processing 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brian Webb
    • 1
  • Frank Schlemmer
    • 1
  1. 1.Queen’s University of BelfastBelfastN. Ireland

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