Defining the Minimum Winning Game in High-Technology Ventures

by Robert Burgelman, Robert Siegel



Based on a combination of exploratory field research and executive experience, this article proposes that defining the “Minimum Winning Game” (MWG) is a difficult yet critical responsibility of top management. It is essential to keep a high-technology venture focused and to enable managers to learn from their ongoing efforts in the face of rapidly evolving technological and market uncertainties. Achieving the MWG requires the intelligent balancing of three “key drivers of strategic action”: technology development, product development, and strategy development. Finally, instilling the discipline necessary to define the MWG and balance the drivers of strategic action is facilitated by the use of a strategy-making process informed by key data gathering and analysis tools such as the Market Requirement Document and the Product Requirement Document.

California Management Review

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Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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