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Journal of Strategic Management

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ISSN: 1649-3877

Listed by: Cabells and EBSCO

Frequency: 1 online Volume per year


Tinkering in Class: Using the Tinker Toy Exercise to Teach First Mover Advantages and the Resource-Based View

JSME vol 1 issue 1

Author(s): Russell Coff (Emory University, USA) and Donald E. Hatfield (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University)

We suggest how an experiential exercise using building toys - such as Tinker Toys or Builderifics - can be used to teach students about the concepts of first-mover advantages and the resource-based view. The exercise requires the class to be broken up into teams. Each team is then assigned the task of building the tallest tinker toy tower they can in a short amount of time. After each team is allowed sequentially to attempt to build a tall tower, the class then discusses why later teams tended to do better than earlier teams at accomplishing this task. The discussion should revolve around the resource-based view concepts of rarity, imitability and substitutability, and the first-mover advantages (technological leadership, preemption, switching costs and buyer uncertainty) and disadvantages (free-rider effects, resolution of technological or market uncertainty, shifts in technological or customer needs, and incumbent inertia).

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