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Operational Slack and Venture Survival

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Abstract

Slack can act as a double-edged sword. While it can buffer against environmental threats to help ensure business continuity, slack can also be costly and reduce profitability. In this study we focus on operational slack, the form related to the firm's production processes. We investigate the role of operational slack on firm survival during its venture stage when its survival is significantly challenged by environmental threats. Specifically, we explore how change in three types of environmental uncertainty, namely dynamism, complexity, and lack of munificence, affect the relationship between operational slack and venture survival. Results suggest that with an increase in environmental uncertainty, operational slack lowers the likelihood of venture failure.

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