Corporate Entrepreneurship at IBM

Corporate Entrepreneurship at IBM

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Corporate Entrepreneurship at IBM


Businesses today should focus on practices that would increase their chances of excelling in their various areas of operations. Corporations that pay attention to aspects that could improve how they serve are at a better chance of overcoming competition from rival firms that are equally focused and determined to secure a significant portion of the market share (Steingrimsson et al., 2011). Therefore, organizational leaders should engage their workers in finding approaches that are likely to bolster performance and work towards strengthening them. Working as a team is crucial in advancing the various forms that could transform how a company performs, which is the reason why the concerted effort is crucial. Consequently, this analysis looks into the use of corporate entrepreneurship at IBM where the company uses the approach as a way of elevating its performance. The essay begins by offering a background of the company, covering the key elements of the technology-based American multinational corporation. The analysis then proceeds to describe how IBM implements corporate entrepreneurship by addressing the primary elements. In addition, the writing illustrates some of the benefits and disadvantages of using corporate entrepreneurship at IBM whereby it emerges that whereas the practice has some merits, implementers need to consider some of the potential constraints they are likely to witness from using the approach. Some of the merits associated with corporate entrepreneurship include improved freedom for employees, enlarged chances of making more profits, and chance for organizational growth. However, it emerges that corporate entrepreneurship has certain limitations such as likelihood of losing one’s position at the workplace and high cost. The argument here is that using corporate entrepreneurship boosts key operations at IBM and that taking measures to address the constraints could result in better outcome.

Background of the Company

Operating in at least 170 countries around the globe, International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), is a multinational technology company in the U.S. based in Armonk, New York. The group that has been in operation since 1911 has undergone significant transformations over the years, encompassing a change in name when it shifted from the Computing Tabulating-Recording Company to IMB in 1924. The group focuses on the production and selling of computer software, middleware, and hardware, as well as offers consulting and hosting services in various areas, encompassing nanotechnology and mainframe computers. The company also serves as a leading research facility, having earned a record for receiving the most patents yearly. Some of the innovations by IBM that the company is proud of include the ATM, UPC barcode, the hard disk drive (HDD), and the SQL programming language among other innovations. Having at least 280,000, IBM is termed as having one of the largest number of employees. The group clings to activities that could enable it to maintain its revenue of $57.34 (2021), and which allow it to be increasingly innovative (IBM, 2022). In addition to innovation, IBM has made significant strides towards building its brand, an initiative that has earned it many loyal buyers. In addition, the group has invested significantly in its research and development (R&D) initiatives with the belief that this is a key area of operation that requires much attention. Moreover, the company has achieved impressive performance in its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives, a commitment that has boosted the group’s relations with its purchasers and the communities where it serves. The management and staff at IBM are committed to elevate how the firm performs, especially now that the level of competition is a notch higher.

How Corporate Entrepreneurship is used at the Company

IBM acknowledges the values of using corporate entrepreneurship, which is the reason why the group enacts measures to implement the approach. Corporate entrepreneurship according to Sakhadari (2016) is a process utilized to create new organizational processes, services, or products inside of an already existing institution to generate value and foster new revenue advancement via entrepreneurial actions and thoughts. In other words, corporate entrepreneurship is the formation of new services, products, or businesses from inside a firm to create additional revenues via entrepreneurial actions (Urban & Wood, 2017). Thus, knowing how the approach works increases the chances of witnessing impressive results from its implementation.

IBM uses corporate entrepreneurship in a way that would elevate its practices. The group deploys the practice by engaging in constant research and development initiatives aimed at developing new products and services. The urge to formulate effective solutions to some of the tech-related issues serve as the primary diver behind the R&D initiatives. Increased focus in this area has allowed the company to come up with recent innovations such as the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in space, quantum computing, IBM garage, and enhanced accessibility (IBM, 2022). The group also supports various initiatives aimed at training workers to make them more competent in the way they handle the various organizational practices, especially those that could boost the formation of new ideas and concepts. In addition to the constant production of innovative products, thanks to the implementation of corporate entrepreneurship, IBM also manifests its use of the approach by constantly developing services that would enhance its practice. For instance, the advancements in hybrid cloud services, technology support operations, and talent management services illustrate IBM’s commitment to use corporate entrepreneurship (IBM, 2022). The description suggests that IBM has made significant strides in its use of corporate entrepreneurship.

Benefits and Demerits of the Approach

IBM enjoys various merits from its use of corporate entrepreneurship. Some of the reasons why the group pays considerable attention to the technique is that it offers the chance to engage workers, give them autonomy and self-expression to interact with new opportunities and technology. The opportunity improve their confidence, and improves their skills (Urban & Wood, 2017). In addition, using corporate entrepreneurship impact on workers because they feel motivated, valued, and increases their chances of being highly productive. Another benefit is that the company increases its chances of generating more revenues from the newly created products and services (Urban & Wood, 2017). The other reason why IBM and other companies deploy corporate entrepreneurship is that the technique plays crucial functions in fostering business growth (Urban & Wood, 2017). The many benefits of implementing corporate entrepreneurship is the reason why businesses such as IBM invests significantly in this area with the anticipation of achieving more impressive outcomes.

However, using corporate entrepreneurship compel the company to consider some of the possible limitations associated with the approach. One of the major concerns associated with corporate entrepreneurship revolves around the issue of job security. In the paper by Sakhadari (2016), it emerges that there is always a sense of risk involved when commencing something new. If the plan does not turn out as anticipated, then it can have an unanticipated outcome. The other limitation is that the practice requires additional financial input, a commitment that may be difficult to meet, especially if the group does not generate much revenue from its activities (Gocke, Hulsebusch & Menter, 2022). Hence, only those companies that generate substantial revenue from their operations are likely to witness more satisfying results from their engagement in corporate entrepreneurship. Thus, enacting measures to overcome the challenges that could derail the implementation of corporate entrepreneurship increases the chances of excelling in this area.


The use of corporate entrepreneurship at IBM plays fundamental functions in bolstering performance. It is the reason why the management pays considerable attention to this area that has the capacity to elevate how the group functions. The essay gives valuable information regarding the technology company that has served for many decades, thus earning it a name as a competent operator. The analysis reveals that IBM generates a lot of revenue from its operations and functions across various countries in the world. Consequently, it requires effective working structures that would ensure that it maintains its good performance. Deploying appropriate techniques also offers it a chance to put up with the tough competition in the sector where various operators try to outshine the other. It is the reason why the company pays considerable attention to the concept of corporate entrepreneurship. It uses the approach by engaging in constant production of new ideas that facilitate operations in various areas. The group ensures that all its workers have relevant knowledge to enable them excel in this functional area. The essay illustrates how using the approach has various advantages, including increased autonomy for workers, increased chances of generating more revenues, and opportunity for business growth. However, the practice could present various limitations such as job security and high financial commitment. Consequently, companies that want to excel in their use of corporate entrepreneurship should take time to understand how the concept works and assess the possible merits and demerits associated with it to avoid any inconveniences during implementation.


Gocke, L., Hulsebusch, K., & Menter, M. (2022). The legitimacy of corporate ]entrepreneurship: A structured literature review. Management Review Quarterly, 72, 385-416.

IBM. (2022). IBM. Retrieved from

Sakhadari, K. (2016). Corporate entrepreneurship: A review and future research  agenda. Technology Innovation Management Review, 6(8), 5-18.

Steingrimsson, J., Bilge, P., Heyer, S., & Seliger, G. (2011). Business strategies for competition and collaboration for remanufacturing of production equipment. Retrieved from

Urban, B., & Wood, E. (2017). The innovating firm as corporate entrepreneurship. European Journal of Innovation Management, 20(4), 534-556.

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