When “pro bono” entrepreneurial support becomes a strategic lever to foster innovation. Exploratory study within a consulting firm

SALEH Y., Management Question(s) (forthcoming) Original title : « Lorsque l’accompagnement entrepreneurial “pro bono” devient un levier stratégique pour favoriser l’innovation. Etude exploratoire au sein d’un cabinet de conseil ».

Rather than embarking on an internal transformation, which is long by nature due to the organizational and cultural learning it requires, bringing companies closer to start-ups or to business incubators promises to better meet the requirements of their highly digitalized environment and to innovate quickly. This research explores the deployment of these nearing strategies by focusing on the case of a consulting firm that launched a business incubator as an ad hoc innovation structure. According to a qualitative data collection approach, the research shows how the project owners support program has made it possible to develop the firm’s organizational creativity because of the “pro bono” nature of the support. The research also sheds light on the tensions underlying this support relationship before proposing several managerial implications. 

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