Adapting a concept from the biological sciences, organizational researchers have proposed a life cycle of organizational development from birth to death. Several distinct models have been postulated, ranging from three to ten stages. This paper proposes a fivestage model and tests it empirically to assess the specific stage of the life cycle of any organization. Results of a twentyitem scale that captures managers' perceptions of their firms' position in the life cycle are discussed. Knowledge of an organization's present position or stage of development can aid top managers in understanding the relationships between organizational life cycle, competitive strategy, and performance.
The International Journal of Organizational Analysis – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 1, 2003