Role of Self-efficacy, Optimism and Job Engagement in Positive Change

Role of Self-efficacy, Optimism and Job Engagement in Positive Change: Evidence from the Middle East

“When leaders adopt positive practices for change, it has significant outcomes”

Positive organizational change has grown out of the newly emerging field of positive organizational scholarship (POS), which refers to the investigation of positive outcomes, practices, attributes, and changes that occur in organizations and their members.

Positive change examines factors that influence adoption of a positive lens, focusing on positively deviant performance, effects of an affirmative bias, and impact of virtuousness or best of human conditions.

Individuals who energize others performed higher than even those who were in the central role in the network.

After the global financial crisis, there was an urgent need for change at a Middle-Eastern financial services firm. The management team designed a positive business initiative called ‘RACE’, which involved various sports, arts, cultural, and everyday business activities, intended to engage employees and build their psychological strengths.

The RACE initiative had four major events—

Marathon (daily business parameters), hurdles (business challenges), sprint (sports), and relay (arts and cultural).

  • These practices engage the employees cognitively, emotionally, and physically.
  • These positive practices generate positively deviant performance.
  • Individuals feel safe to express themselves in these informal settings.
  • The fear of underperformance gets converted into the joy of participation.
  • On an ongoing basis, they set goals and identify alternative pathways for goal achievement.
  • When routine jobs are converted into games, employees are more likely to work with intensity and invest their energies into it.

About the journal:

Vikalpa: The Journal for Decision Makers is the journal of the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (www.iima.ac.in/web/iima). Launched in January 1976, this peer-reviewed journal is published quarterly. The word Vikalpa, in Sanskrit, carries a rich repository of meanings: diversity, alternatives, logic, and freedom of choice.

Click here to read Role of Self-efficacy, Optimism and Job Engagement in Positive Change: Evidence from the Middle East, for free from the journal Vikalpa: The Journal for Decision Makers.

Before You Make the Sale: B2G Insights for Your Business

[Reblogged from the American Marketing Association, Before You Make the Sale: B2G Insights for Your Business]

The U.S. government is the largest customer in the world, purchasing more than a half-trillion dollars’ worth of goods and services yearly out of its $4 trillion budget. So it’s no wonder that some 60% of Fortune 1000 customers sell to the government. But is this client one to go “all in” on? While a stable customer, the U.S. government market can prove challenging to navigate in other ways. For example, Lockheed Martin had to cut costs (and thus revenue) of the F-35 fighter jet in response to sudden political pressure, which prompted a 4% drop in its ma​rket value in 2017.

Despite the U.S. government’s buying power, there has been little research conducted on whether selling and serving this customer positively affects firm performance and profitability. A new study in the Journal of Marketing seeks to address this gap. Our research team developed a conceptual framework based upon qualitative in-depth interviews with 19 government contracting experts. We then used prime contract award data provided by the U.S. Government Accountability Office to assess revenue provided by the U.S. government to 1,360 publicly traded firms between 2000 and 2017. Finally, we developed a large empirical model to study the stock market’s response.

In our interviews, we learned that U.S. government business has unique characteristics that differ from commercial markets, including promoting diverse socioeconomic goals, allocating millions in set-aside contracts for historically disadvantaged firms, and sweeping upheavals accompanying political leadership changes. In addition, U.S. government customers often shun taking risks to acquire novel solutions and technologies and are under constant pressure to reduce spending. Firms that serve the government are subject to strict regulations and must follow specific rules and guidelines to bid for and execute work. However, the U.S. government’s purchasing power is enormous, contracts are large, and its agencies are less likely to have solvency issues than commercial firms.

Key findings include:

– Serving the Business-to-Government marketplace has pros (scale and reliability) and cons (high compliance and learning costs).

– Investors see value benefits accrue to those companies that do a large book of business with the U.S. government, typically over 30% of their yearly sales.

– However, investors also see risk concerns to serving the Business-to-Government marketplace.

– Executives should recognize that in order to reap full benefits from B2G relationships, they need to strategically manage their portfolio of government customers (both in terms of breadth and depth).

– Regulations may entrench market incumbents, rather than increasing market access to more participants, an unintended consequence.

So how can companies that serve the U.S. government seek to optimize both performance and risk? Our research team suggests that they should:

– Become “purists” rather than “tourists” by increasing government emphasis, rather than dabbling in this market, due to its cost and complexity of entry.

– Develop a concentrated portfolio of key accounts (i.e., agencies) and then build strong relationships with these customers to extract the most value from them. This will improve firm performance by increasing value and reducing risk.

Managers at firms can use this research to evaluate their government marketing and sales strategies to optimize performance and risk – or decide whether to pursue this market at all. Top executives of firms should consider whether increasing their government focus is key to future success or creates systemic financial vulnerability that could create significant future harm if political priorities change.

Policymakers should be cognizant that current regulations and procurement barriers entrench incumbents, making it harder for U.S. agencies to get new solutions and competitive prices. If so, current processes may need to be reformed to increase competition.

Read the full article.

From: Brett Josephson, Ju-Yeon Lee, Babu John Mariadoss, and Jean Johnson, “Uncle Sam Rising: Performance Implications of Business-to-Government Relationships,” Journal of Marketing, 85 (January). ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Read the latest research from the Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Marketing Research, the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, and the Journal of International Marketing today!

Who’s afraid of Big Data?

[We’re pleased to welcome authors Massimiliano Nuccio and Marco Guerzoni of the University of Torino. They recently published an article in Competition & Change entitled “Big data: Hell or heaven? Digital platforms and market power in the data-driven economy,” which is currently free to read for a limited time. Below, they briefly describe the motivation and innovations of this research:]

What motivated you to pursue this research?

Following the 2018 scandal Facebook-Cambridge Analytica, a growing case has mounted over the abuse of personal data as a practice allegedly diffused among big tech companies, who are supposed to gain market control over the exploitation of big data. Influential opinion makers on the world press are also calling for an antitrust intervention arguing that incumbent firms can exploit market power to the detriment not only of competitors, but also of consumers and the society as a whole.

Has the growing availability of digital information around consumers reduced competition and consumer welfare? And again, to what extent do these oligopolies reduce the incentive to innovate so as not to cannibalize their products?

In what ways is your research innovative, and how do you think it will impact the field?

We recognise that the technology underlying digital transformation has triggered a process of concentration in several markets and a few global players (also called digital platforms) have typically risen by leveraging on network externalities and economies of scale. Using the toolbox of the economics of information and innovation we show that potential risks of big data champions do not necessarily lie in competition or welfare issues. In particular, we show that consumers tend to benefit from discriminating practices in online markets, since firms pursue these practices by lowering prices for the low-end markets, thus expanding the output, while leaving welfare unaltered for old consumers.

Moreover, the giant leap in both cloud computing and machine learning could have not been possible without the impressive investment in R&D by big tech companies, that reinvested large part of their extra profits. For instance, the software MapReduce by Google has become one of the most widespread standards for parallel computing and in 2016 Google’s capital expenditure in production equipment, facilities and data centers peaked at 10.9 billion dollars. Facebook has also set a new standard with the two billion-dollar “Open Compute Project” trying to redesign its software and its physical network infrastructure. Concerning the improvement in machine learning, DeepFace, the Facebook algorithm for face recognition is quickly approaching the human-level performance, and we are only scratching the surface of the possibility and value of Google’s semantic search algorithms.

Our findings are not an a-priori apologia of large incumbents in digital markets, but rather an attempt to argue that market concentration is not necessarily detrimental when it stimulates continuous innovation. Nonetheless, the concentration of power in a few global players should raise other concerns linked with the supranational nature of these firms, which can easily cherry-pick locations to exploit tax competition among countries or more favourable privacy legislation and the fair use of personal data.
Policy makers and scholars stressing the risk of market control by big data companies tend to overestimate the technological aspect over the human factor. We suggest that for any (digital) business model, the value of data is built around the capability for extracting knowledge, and not its mere acquisition and storage. Underlying solutions and innovative culture are still more important than data itself.

Stay up-to-date with the latest research from the journal and sign up for email alerts today through the homepage!

Should a Marketer be on the Board of Directors?

SAGE is proud to feature a fascinating interview with author Kimberly Whitler,  Assistant Professor of Marketing at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, Kim, Ryan Krause, Texas Christian University and Donald Lehmann, Columbia University, recently published their paper, titled “When and How Board Members with Marketing Experience Facilitate Firm Growth,” in the September 2018 issue of Journal of Marketing

[Reblogged from the American Marketing Association, Marketing News Marketer Representation at the Board Level Can Drive Growth. So Why Are They Underrepresented?]

​”No Kim, you don’t understand: Never, ever should a marketer be on a board.”

Kimberly Whitler remembers having to keep herself from shaking with anger when she heard this response. The comment came from a European businessman she was interviewing, she says, a man who had sat on many boards over the years, mostly in manufacturing. She found his opinion dogmatic and short-sighted. “It just didn’t make sense to me,” she says.

Whitler calmed herself. “Help me understand,” she remembers saying, “what is it that makes you think that marketers are never valuable on the board.”

“Well, marketing is largely luck,” he responded. “And it’s not strategic.” Whitler asked what functions were strategic, to which he replied, “Operations.”

Whitler says that she nearly fell out of her chair—operations is strategic but marketing isn’t?, she thought. Instead of telling him that he was wrong, she kept listening and realized that the way he thought made sense: The boards he had served on likely marginalized marketing, shunning it as a waste of time and money, never treating it as a strategic function or giving it a chance to drive growth. How could he think that marketers should be on boards if he’s never worked with a good marketer?

Whitler—who earned her Ph.D. in marketing in 2014 after two decades as a high-level marketing practitioner and now works as an assistant professor of marketing at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business—wanted to explore what effect marketers could have on boards. After eight years of research and writing, Whitler and two colleagues—Ryan Krause and Donald Lehmann—published their paper, titled “When and How Board Members with Marketing Experience Facilitate Firm Growth,” in the September 2018 issue of Journal of Marketing.

Numbers in the paper show a stark reality: Although 16% of boards have at least one member with high-level marketing experience, a survey of board members showed that only 4% believe that marketing experience is important. Ninety percent of boards with a marketer have only one; 9% have two and less than 1% have three marketers. They found no boards had more than three marketers.

But there’s room for hope: Whitler, Krause and Lehmann analyzed 64,086 biographies of board members who sat on Standard & Poor’s 1500 firms between 2007 and 2012, searching for those with marketing experience. They found that firms with at least one experienced marketer on the board had revenue increases of 5.78 percentage points compared with firms with no marketers on board. The researchers found evidence suggesting that boards with experienced marketers are positively associated with future business growth, but say that this relationship is “highly contingent.” For example, growth is stronger when the firm’s economic circumstances demand marketing expertise—namely, when the company’s market share is weak and its industry is experiencing weak growth. What does it take to make a board pay attention to marketing? Perhaps a single marketer, the paper says, but “[the marketer’s] ability to do so depends on the extent to which they can influence the board and the extent to which the board can influence the [top management team​].” The lack of marketers on boards “impairs firms’ ability to tackle demand-side problems, even though boards and CEOs consider growth generation among their most challenging problems,” the paper says. This is a contradiction, the authors write, which suggests that boards can’t see the connection between their inability to address growth challenges and their lack of marketing experience.

Marketing News spoke with Whitler about her research, board-level aversion to marketing expertise and how marketers can win more influence in the years ahead. This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

Marketing News: Why has so little research been done on how marketing influences the board?

Whitler: Management believes that it’s a marketing issue and marketing has historically said upper echelon stuff—governance, boards—is the realm of management. I’m hopeful that some of the work that’s been done at the CMO level—like the work Frank Germann, Peter Ebbes and Rajdeep Grewal have been done on why the CMO matters—makes an impact on the firm. There’s hope, energy and excitement for marketing to weigh in and potentially even lead the marketing conversation in the upper echelons of the firm.

MN: Why do boards seem averse to marketing expertise?

Whitler: There has been research done on management that demonstrates that board members are susceptible to in-group bias, just like the rest of us are. In this case, the in-group bias is functional. If you have a board of all finance people, they all use the same language, they’re all trained in a similar way and all see the firm in a similar way. When given a choice, they’d love to hire more finance folks.

That collides with something else that happened: In 2002, the U.S. passed the Sarbanes–Oxley Act after the implosion of Enron, WorldCom and others. It’s a regulation that mandated all boards must have financial experts and it held boards more accountable for firm performance. After that regulation passed, boards structured themselves differently. There are fewer board members—part of the reason is that the requirements of board members went up and it was tougher to get sitting CEOs on the board. Also, the average size of boards tended to go down. You’re now being mandated to have a finance expert on the board because of the need to monitor the firm’s performance. There was this rapid shift toward pushing for more regulatory-type experts on the board—finance, accounting, maybe legal in some cases, but a lot of finance experts. So now you have a shrinking average board and more of one function and one mindset. What happens on any team when you start getting a dominant group? Is it possible that you might look for more people like yourself?

Now the mindset of the board chiefs changes and their desire to bring in marketers lessens. This is all a hypothesis—I’m still pulling together pieces of information. But over time, we’ve had regulatory and marketplace changes that have driven structure and composition changes. Then on top of that, we know that in-group bias exists at the board level. These are problems.

MN: One section of your paper says that this bias against marketers is most likely to be held by CFOs. How can marketers change that bias?

Whitler: Marketers and finance people come from very different thought worlds. In managerial research, it’s well recorded that there’s been some conflict between the two functions. Finance tends to manage the purse strings, but marketers are trying to engineer growth. Engineering growth oftentimes requires investment, so they think differently. Marketers have a growth mindset and an external mindset, while finance is a more inwardly focused, throughput-oriented function. They have different orientations and they’re oftentimes pitted against each other.

The nature of these two has to be in balance for the company to work well. You need both sides—it’s the yin and yang. I would suggest that you want both functions to look for the value in the other. But if I’m talking to a marketing community, the onus is on us to help. We’re in charge of changing consumers’ minds. If you have an obstacle inside the company where a function doesn’t value you, we should have an expertise in being able to affect that belief.

MN: In 2018, Spencer Stuart reported that a large number of CMOs were changing jobs; some CMOs changed companies, some lost jobs. Are companies—perhaps even marketers themselves—still confused about what, exactly, a high-level marketer does and how they should be measured?

Whitler: Yes. Over the course of the last eight or nine years, I’ve conducted 500 or 600 interviews—I’ve talked to CMOs, CEOs and executive recruiters. Nobody really understands the variance in the marketing function.

I’ll give you an example: I was talking to a marketer who graduated from a top MBA program. He worked at a large beverage company before taking a promotion to work at a tech company. I know from my research that those marketing roles are totally different. At the beverage company, he led strategy for the brand; he was in the driver’s seat. In tech, marketing follows. He had moved from one type of marketing role that was a leadership, strategic role to one where marketing was not valued nearly as much. It was more of a support staff for the engineers. After all my interviews, I knew that would be a horrible shift. I asked him, “Knowing what you now know, would you have taken the job at the tech firm?” He said, “Absolutely not.”

The problem is that he did not know of the variance in roles. All he knows is levels: He knows that a director is senior to a brand manager and so he’s looking at a very blue-chip tech company going, gosh, everybody thinks this is a great company! Well, it is—for engineers; not as much for marketers. All he evaluated was brand name is good, level is better and money is better. That’s the degree of his assessment and he jumped. Now, his training is not a great fit and the job is not what he thought it would be.

MN: If marketers don’t even know their roles, how can CEOs or the board know?

Whitler: CEOs are not experts in CMO roles. I’ve interviewed folks who have had five, six or seven different CMO roles—they get it because they’ve lived through the pain. But somebody who’s had one or two CMO roles doesn’t know enough to figure it out.

MN: Do CMOs and marketers consider who is on the board when looking for a new company?

Whitler: CMOs have not historically thought about the board. My hope is that our research will help them understand how who’s on the board can affect them. Just something as simple as: Are you invited to board meetings? Because if you have an advocate—a marketer—on the board, they’re more likely to want to hear from the CMO and the firm.

MN: Is increasing influence as simple as having one board member with marketing experience?

Whitler: In our dataset of over 65,000 board member biographies, we don’t have much incidence of board members being marketers. Roughly 16% of boards have marketers, but it’s typically one person. We don’t have boards with six or seven marketers on them, so we don’t have a large sample. But I can give you a story of how the power of just one individual can change everything.

I spoke with a woman who is on the boards of multiple large companies. On one board, in an industry with monopoly-like power, she was the first marketer on the board. I asked her, “Do marketers matter? Help me understand what type of impact you have.” She said that when she got to the board, she was fascinated because her experience had been in industries where marketers were drivers of firms—she had that profit-and-loss marketing experience. For her to enter an industry where marketing has not historically been very important and many of the firms have monopoly power, she noticed that the thinking is quite different. During her first meetings, she just observed and said that the board didn’t talk about the consumer or the customer. Not once. She’s on other boards and she’s a very successful practitioner who had reached the C-level at large, respected companies—to sit through a board meeting and not hear anybody talk about the external consumer was somewhat shocking to her. She also asked about their digital strategy, because that was a hot topic at that point. After the board meeting, she was pulled aside and told that digital is a tactical discussion and they, at the board level, don’t deal with tactical discussions.

Now, three to four years later, digital transformation is a core strategy of the company. They talk about the consumer all the time and they even have somebody at the C-level who is in charge of consumer engagement. How did that happen? How does one voice change the strategic direction of the firm? I started probing, asking her questions, and she said, “I just started helping them see the future. They currently have a monopoly, but in the future they will not. I started showing them trend information data and where the industry is going. And then I simply asked questions.”

MN: Is one voice on the board enough to influence the top management team—CEOs, CFOs, CMOs?

Whitler: One of the things that surprised me most when I did the interviews with the marketing board members is how engaged they were with the internal marketing apparatus of the firm. We’re taught, historically, that the board meets four times a year and has very little direct interaction with the management team. Obviously, they have a lot of interaction with the CEO and the CFO, but beyond that, not a whole lot. But several of the individuals I interviewed were asked to lead or serve on task forces. They have different terms, like ad-hoc committee task forces, but these are essentially special committees designed to help solve operational issues in the firm.

When this would happen, the marketing board member was working directly with the CMO and with some marketing function to solve specific problems. One marketer, who worked with a very large fast-food company in the U.S., was on their board and saw that marketing in the firm was not doing well. The CEO-chairman asked the marketer on the board to lead a task force to look at marketing in the firm, including key partners like advertising agencies. That’s a very engaged level of work with the management team. This individual brought in experts from New York ad agencies and other leading marketing companies and formed a group to counsel the internal marketing organization.

MN: Fast-food companies are struggling with a shrinking market right now, so it makes sense that they’d try that. But are stories like this out of the ordinary?

Whitler: Today’s contemporary, progressive board is expected to improve business outcomes, one board member told me. Think about it this way: If you’re paying board members $250,000 per year and you’re paying to wine and dine them, the board could be a multimillion dollar investment. Don’t you expect an ROI? If all they’re there to do is to make sure that the books are accurate and to monitor the functioning of the management team, you’re not activating the full potential of the board. More progressive boards expect board members to have positive impact on business results.

In management literature, researchers think of boards as playing three different types of roles: a monitoring role, a social capital role and a human capital role. The social capital role is about the value of networks, meaning if I’m a board member on American Express and a board member of Procter & Gamble, I now have relationships in two different industries and experiences that I can bring to bear on each company. My knowledge as a board member at Procter & Gamble may help me make connections and my network may be able to help the performance of Amex and vice versa. A finance person can serve on the board and in a monitoring role, but they also have expertise potentially in M&A work and that expertise can be useful in helping the management team. These people have 40 to 50 years of experience—the human capital role can be critically important.

MN: How can marketers win more board-level influence?

Whitler: The first thing is that they have to earn it. I spoke with a CMO of a large financial services firm and the CEO was clear: He wasn’t going to give her more authority, but he wanted her to have a bigger impact. The CEO invited the whole marketing function to step up. “I’m inviting you to play a more impactful role,” he told her. “I’m not giving you more territory but I’m inviting you to be more influential.” She said to her team, “Let’s engage in a different way: How do we think about the big problems of the company?” She listened differently to the CEO and the senior team. She looked at the big challenges and stepped into the gap. Rather than saying, “This isn’t my job, my job is X,” she said, “The company is having a problem in a certain area. Let me get my team to think about it and I’m going to come back to the table with some thoughts.” Her team wasn’t asked to think, but they started stepping up. I call this stepping into the gap. She told the CEO, “I know that this is not technically in my area, but marketing can lend a voice on this. I’m pretty sure what started happening is…” And the CEO said that he knew she was going to have a bigger impact.

How do you get more influence? The short answer is that you have to earn it. At one level, you can be invited to the table, but when you’re at the table, you actually have to have influence. How do you know if you’re in a position to grow your influence? How do you earn that right? Demonstrating the type of impact you can have, the way you work with your internal peers and help them achieve their goals are likely effective ways. There’s an opportunity to step into that gap. Over time, if we do a good job of that, we earn the right to be invited to more of those important conversations.

MN: And in most cases, I’m guessing that there will be no invitation. The CMO or marketing manager must take the initiative.

Whitler: Yeah. As a former manager, a former CMO and a former GM, who did I always love to promote? The people who stepped into the gaps. There are a lot of people who wait for the ball to be thrown to them, but the problem is that balls are being dropped all around us. I look for the people to step up and say, “Hey, that ball didn’t come to me, but the ball’s being dropped and I’m going to step up and I’m going to pick up that ball.” That’s a signal that you’re ready to be promoted. Those tend to be very high-impact people. To earn the right, you have to be competent. One of the things I often share with CMOs is that you want to constantly be developing and growing and improving your own capability. Invest in your own learning and growth. Most C-level marketers need to go back and at least take contemporary stats. When I was learning stats the first time, we had books; we didn’t have computers, we did everything manually. Today, you can quickly do conjoint or cluster or factor analysis—tasks that would have taken two hours to calculate manually. C-level marketers need to retool and to stay current with the digital transformation.

MN: What about marketers who want to get onto a board themselves?

Whitler: Part of it is awareness of marketers’ positive impact. There are a couple of executive recruiters who use our research to share with boards when it might make sense to add a marketer. It’s not under all conditions, but if boards or companies are struggling with certain issues, there are times when it might be valuable to add a marketer. It’s good for them to have this empirical evidence of how marketers can have a positive influence.

Another part of is it that when marketers get on board, they have to be successful and effective. If you have only one marketer on a board—like the marketer on the board with monopoly-like power—you need to speak the board’s language. If she came to the company and didn’t speak the language of the board and wasn’t perceived to have a positive effect on board processes and outcomes, that wouldn’t be helpful. We want effective, successful marketers that will help grow the companies for marketers in the future to be in the boardroom. There has to be a positive experience for the board members who sit on multiple boards. They should be saying, “I have a marketer on this other board. They’ve really been helpful in addressing certain issues at the company and I think that type of expertise might be valuable on this board.” But if they don’t have a positive experience, that will not bode well for marketers.

I don’t think that all marketers are going to necessarily be good board members—not all marketers are equally skilled or are prepared to go on boards. Future research needs to help us understand what those skills are. Under what conditions are some marketers prepared to be successful at the board level? What type of training is required? We don’t know yet.

Read the latest research from the Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Marketing Research, the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, and the Journal of International Marketing today!

Outcome-Based Contracts as a Sine Qua None for Complex Industrial Services?

 We’re pleased to welcome authors Eva Böhm of PaderbornUniversity, Christof Backhaus of Aston Business School, Andreas Eggert of PaderbornUniversity, and Tim Cummins of IACCM (International Association for Contractand Commercial Management). Their paper Understandingoutcome-based contracts: Benefits and risks from the buyers’ and sellers’perspective won the JSCAN Best Paper Awardand is currently free to read for a limited time. Below, they briefly writeabout the motivation and impact of their research.

What motivated you to pursue this research?

Many businesses nowadays not only offer basic after-sales services, like repair or maintenance, but also operate entire processes on their customers’ behalf. When buyers and sellers negotiate and arrange for such complex customer solutions, so called outcome-based contracts are increasingly made use of. Outcome-based means that suppliers get paid based on the realized outcome of the service or solution (e.g., the time a machine runs without breakdown) as opposed to the resources invested by the supplier (e.g., time and material). Rolls Royce’s “Power by the Hour”, Michelin’s Fleet Solutions, and BASF’s Coatings are frequently cited prototypes for industrial services and solutions that build on such outcome-based contracts.
While outcome-based contracts have a longer history in markets such as airlines, defense, logistics, and also health care and public services, suppliers in diverse industries are now experimenting with this new business model. Given that empirical research on outcome-based contracts is still comparatively scarce, we were interested in finding out how both buyers and sellers assess two particular types of outcome-based contracts – that is contracts based on a payment for availability (aOBC) vs. contracts based on a payment for economic results (eOBCs) logic – with regard to associated benefits and risks and also their overall performance.

In what ways is your research innovative?

Although providing valuable insights, existing studies on outcome-based contracts are limited in three respects: First, outcome-based contracts are mainly looked at from the customer’s perspective, while the supplier’s perspective is often ignored. Second, while the existence of different types of outcome-based contracts has been acknowledged, there is no study investigating differential outcomes. Third, empirical verifications of the effectiveness of outcome-based contracts under specific contextual circumstances are largely missing. In light of these gaps, it was our goal to provide a finer-grained view on the bright and dark sides of outcome-based contracts from both the customers’ and the suppliers’ perspective. Also, we took into account two important context characteristics, that is, product innovativeness and technological turbulence, to see how the picture looks like under varying market conditions. With the help of the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM), who distributed our survey among its members, it was possible to collect a relatively large sample of 259 buyers and sellers using OBCs in complex industrial services, which allowed us to empirically test our assumptions.

How do you think your research will impact on the field?

From a theoretical perspective, our results highlight the need to differentiate between the different perspectives on outcome-based contracts. According to our results, advantages of the use of a particular contractual arrangement for one exchange partner do not necessarily correspond with advantages for the other one. For managers, our findings help to better decide which type of outcome-based contract promises to be most beneficial under the given contextual conditions. For example, we could show that outcome-based contracts based on economic results should be the preferred option when contractual arrangements regarding established and well-understood products are made in highly turbulent environments. Here, the net benefit of shifting comparatively higher levels of responsibility to sellers is highest for both parties.

For more from the journal, visit the homepage!

Happy Holidays from SAGE!

It’s now time for the holidays and we at Business and Management INK would like to extend a warm season’s greeting to our readers. Here is a fascinating article about the “12 days of Christmas.” Happy Holidays!

JOM 2018 Best Paper & Scholarly Impact Awards

joma_44_7_cover.pngCongratulations to the recent winners of the Journal of Management 2018 Best Paper Award and 2018 Scholarly Impact Awards. The Scholarly Impact and Best Paper Paper award are presented to the articles published 5 years ago. Below are the abstracts of each article. Please note that the full articles will be free to read for a limited time.


Journal of Management 2018 Best Paper Award:

Rebecca R. Kehoe of Cornell University, and Patrick M. Wright of the University of South Carolina for their work entitled “The Impact of High Performance Human Resource Practices on Employees’ Attitudes and Behaviors!

Although strategic human resource (HR) management research has established a significant relationship between high-performance HR practices and firm-level financial and market outcomes, few studies have considered the important role of employees’ perceptions of HR practice use or examined the more proximal outcomes of high-performance HR practices that may play mediating roles in the HR practice–performance relationship. To address recent calls in the literature for an investigation of this nature, this study examined the relationships between employees’ perceptions of high-performance HR practice use in their job groups and employee absenteeism, intent to remain with the organization, and organizational citizenship behavior, dedicating a focus to the possible mediating role of affective organizational commitment in these relationships. Data in this study were collected from surveys of employees at a large multiunit food service organization. The model was tested with CWC(M) mediation analysis (i.e., centered within context with reintroduction of the subtracted means at Level 2), which accounted for the multilevel structure of the data. Results indicate that employees’ perceptions of high-performance HR practice use at the job group level positively related to all dependent variables and that affective organizational commitment partially mediated the relationship between HR practice perceptions and organizational citizenship behavior and fully mediated the relationship between HR practice perceptions and intent to remain with the organization. The discussion reviews the implications of these results and suggests future directions for research in this vein.


Journal of Management 2018 Scholarly Impact Award:

Scott G. Johnson of Oklahoma State University, Karen Schnatterly of the University of Missouri-Columbia , and Aaron D. Hill of Oklahoma State University for their work, “Board Composition Beyond Independence: Social Capital, and Demographics

Board composition is a critical element in the ability of the board to impact firm outcomes. While much of this research has focused on size and independence, there is growing literature that investigates the composition of directors’ demography, human capital, and social capital. The purpose of this article is to synthesize this diverse literature. The authors first review the literature on board demographics, human capital, and social capital composition research. In doing so, they highlight the theoretical and methodological approaches utilized. Finally, they suggest avenues for future research that can advance our understanding of the effects of board composition.


Journal of Management 2018 Scholarly Impact Award:

Daniel C. Ganster of Colorado State University , and Christopher C. Rosen of the University of Arkansas for the article “Work Stress and Employee Health: A Multidisciplinary Review

We review and summarize the literature on work stress with particular emphasis on those studies that examined the effects of work characteristics on employee health. Although there is not convincing evidence that job stressors cause health effects, the indirect evidence is strongly suggestive of a work stress effect. This evidence comes from occupational studies that show differences in health and mortality that are not easily explained by other factors and within-subject studies that demonstrate a causal effect of work experiences on physiological and emotional responses. We argue that studies relying on self-reports of working conditions and outcomes, whether cross-sectional or longitudinal, are unlikely to add significantly to the accumulated evidence. Finally, we make recommendations for how organizational researchers are most likely to contribute to this knowledge.


Journal of Management 2018 Scholarly Impact Award:

Lilia M. Cortina of the University of Michigan , Dana Kabat-Farr of the University of Michigan, Emily A. Leskinen of the University of Michigan, Marisela Huerta of the University of Michigan, and Vicki J. Magley of the University of Connecticut for their contribution entitled “Selective Incivility as Modern Discrimination in Organizations: Evidence and Impact.”

This collection of studies tested aspects of Cortina’s theory of selective incivility as a “modern” manifestation of sexism and racism in the workplace and also tested an extension of that theory to ageism. Survey data came from employees in three organizations: a city government (N = 369), a law enforcement agency (N = 653), and the U.S. military (N = 15,497). According to analyses of simple mediation, target gender and race (but not age) affected vulnerability to uncivil treatment on the job, which in turn predicted intent to leave that job. Evidence of moderated mediation also emerged, with target gender and race interacting to predict uncivil experiences, such that women of color reported the worst treatment. The article concludes with implications for interventions to promote civility and nondiscrimination in organizations.


Journal of Management 2018 Scholarly Impact Award:

Deniz Ucbasaran of the University of Warwick, Dean A. Shepherd of Indiana University
Andy Lockett of the University of Warwick, and S. John Lyon of the University of Warwick for the article “Life After Business Failure The Process and Consequences of Business Failure for Entrepreneurs

Where there is uncertainty, there is bound to be failure. It is not surprising, therefore, that many new ventures fail. What happens to entrepreneurs when their business fails? People hear of highly successful entrepreneurs extolling the virtues of failure as a valuable teacher. Yet the aftermath of failure is often fraught with psychological, social, and financial turmoil. The purpose of this article is to review research on life after business failure for entrepreneurs, from the immediate aftermath through to recovery and re-emergence. First, the authors examine the financial, social, and psychological costs of failure, highlighting factors that may influence the magnitude of these costs (including individual responses to managing these costs). Second, they review research that explains how entrepreneurs make sense of and learn from failure. Finally, the authors present research on the outcomes of business failure, including recovery as well as cognitive and behavioral outcomes. They develop a schema to organize extant work and use this as a platform for developing an agenda for future research.


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