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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Management
 Degree Level: Doctoral
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Absorptive Capacity: An Empirical Examination of the Phenomenon and Relationships with Firm Capabilities
The field of strategic management addresses challenges that firms encounter in an attempt to remain competitive. The ability to explain variation in firm success through examination of knowledge flows has become a prominent focus of research in the strategic management literature. Specifically, researchers have sought to further examine how firms convert knowledge, a phenomenon conceptualized as absorptive capacity. Absorptive capacity is the firm’s ability to acquire, assimilate, transform, and exploit knowledge. Few studies have captured the richness and multi-dimensionality of absorptive capacity, and it remains to be understood how the dimensions of the phenomenon convert knowledge. Furthermore, how absorptive capacity influences the firm remains to be understood. To address these research gaps, this dissertation seeks to (1) determine how absorptive capacity converts knowledge, and (2) determine how absorptive capacity influences firm capabilities. The research questions are investigated using structural modeling techniques to analyze data collected from software-industry firms. The findings offer contributions to the absorptive capacity and capability literatures. For example, absorptive capacity is hypothesized to consist of complex relationships among its internal dimensions. However, findings of this study suggest the relationships among the dimensions are linear in nature. This finding is in line with the theoretical foundations of and early literature on absorptive capacity but contrary to recent conceptualizations, which suggests relationships among the dimensions are more closely related to the theoretical origins of absorptive capacity. Additionally, to examine how absorptive capacity influences the firm, a capability-based perspective is used to hypothesize the influence of absorptive capacity on firm capabilities. Findings suggest absorptive capacity positively influences each dimension of firm capabilities (e.g., operational, customer, and innovation capabilities); thus, absorptive capacity influences the firm by altering firm capabilities. Given the richness of the findings, numerous fields are likely to benefit from this investigation. Through an examination of absorptive capacity and capabilities, this study contributes to the understanding of the absorptive capacity phenomenon and offers insight into how the phenomenon influences the firm. Furthermore, practical implications are offered for managers interested in enhancing firm competitiveness. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115064/
Authentic transformational leadership and implicit leadership theories.
Transformational leadership describes a leader who motivates followers to performance beyond expectations, but it has often been attacked for its potential to be abused. A newer form of leadership has been proposed, that of authentic leadership. Authentic leadership is an over-arching concept that proposes to include transformational leadership and all positive forms of leadership. At the heart of authentic leadership is the concept of ethicality. The concept of authenticity may contribute to the transformational leadership paradigm, producing an ideal form of leadership. Authentic leadership may not be an over-arching form of leadership, but one suited particularly to transformational leadership. I propose that authentic transformational leadership resides in leaders' and followers' implicit leadership theories. This experiment addresses authentic transformational leadership and the role of implicit leadership theories in directing leader behavior. A model is developed that outlines the relationship between authentic transformational leadership and implicit leadership theories, including the separate implicit theories of leader and follower, leader-member exchange (LMX), and leader effectiveness. Hypotheses concerning these relationships are developed. The study is experimental, using WebCT as a delivery tool. Scenario-based surveys were developed to collect data, using both known measures and measures developed specifically for this experiment. Two pilot studies were conducted to test the soundness of the delivery tool and the validity of the constructed scenarios and measures, which largely supported the hypotheses. In the main study, all hypotheses were supported with the exception of one. The results of the unsupported hypothesis, however, suggest authentic transformational leadership may be an ideal form of leadership. There are several contributions to the literature made by this study. The first contribution is the development of authentic transformational leadership as an ideal form of leadership. Second, the development of both follower and leader implicit leadership theories and their relationship to authentic transformational leadership is studied through leader effectiveness, a concept not previously researched. Lastly, the role of a follower's implicit leadership theory and its effects on a leader are examined, a notion that is largely under-researched. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9056/
Customer induced uncertainty and its impact on organizational design
How firms facing environmental uncertainty should organize their activities remains an important and challenging question for today's managers and organizational researchers. Proponents of contingency theory have argued that organizations must adjust their activities to fit the level of environmental uncertainty to ensure long-term survival. Although much work has been done on contingency theory, it is clear that our understanding of uncertainty is far from complete. One important aspect of today's organizations is their focus on service, mass customization, and continuous innovation. This focus often results in the customer being brought either into the organization or at least into closer contact with it. Even though the literature provides numerous evidences of the increasing customer focus, it is yet to empirically explain how the complications of customer-organizational interactions might create uncertainty for contemporary organizations. The traditional measure of uncertainty still considers customers as an environmental factor causing demand uncertainty while ignoring the complex nature of customer and organizational encounters. Seeking to further refine the concept of uncertainty and focusing on the contemporary business phenomena, this study develops measures aspects of customer induced uncertainty and examines their relationships with three organizational design variables. Specifically, this study explains the complicated nature of customer - organizational encounters that creates organizational uncertainty. Also, this study develops three operational measurement instruments for the three aspects of customer induced uncertainty. Finally, this study shows specific relationships between aspects of customer induced uncertainty and specific organizational design variables. This study conducted a mail survey of middle level managers. With a sample size of 118 the measurement instruments were shown to have validity and reliability using factor analysis and Cronbach's alpha. Regression analyses indicate the presence of specific rather than general relationship between customer induced uncertainty variables and organizational design variables. Regression results suggested that the relationships between customer induced uncertainty variable and design variables were depended on the specific combination. For example, Customer acquisitiveness was negatively related to formalization where as Customer importance was positively related to professionalism. Results also suggested a possible positive relationship between decentralization and customer induced ambiguity. Although not without limitations, this study improves our understanding of contemporary environmental uncertainty. Moreover, it provides preliminary measurement instruments of customer induced uncertainty variables for numerous future studies. Overall, this study is a preliminary step toward further understanding of the uncertainty-design contingencies of contemporary and future organizations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2214/
Determination of the Relationship Between Ethical Positions and Intended Behavior Among Managers
This study was conducted to determine the relationship between managers' ethical positions and their intended behavior. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279005/
Effectiveness in Company-sponsored Foundations : A Utilization of the Competing Values Framework
The purpose of this study was to determine the criteria used by foundation directors in assessing the effectiveness of contribution programs in company sponsored foundations. Quinn and Rohrbaugh's Competing Values Approach of organizational effectiveness was used as the theoretical framework for the study. The Competing Values Approach is an integrative effectiveness model which clusters eight criteria of effectiveness into four theoretical models of organizational effectiveness. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277615/
An Emotional Business: the Role of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurial Success
Successful entrepreneurial activity is important for a healthy economy and can be a major source of job creation. While the concept of entrepreneurship has been around for quite some time, researchers continue to explore the factors that underlie entrepreneurial performance. Specifically, researchers have sought to further examine why some entrepreneurial ventures are more successful than others. the concept of emotional intelligence (EI) has gained the attention of researchers and practitioners alike. Practitioners have realized that employees can no longer be perceived as biological machines that are capable of leaving their feelings, norms, and attitudes at home when they go to work. Researchers are embracing the concept of emotional intelligence because of its relationship with efficiency, productivity, sales, revenues, quality of service, customer loyalty, employee recruitment and retention, employee commitment, employee health and satisfaction, and morale. While there is considerable evidence documenting the effects of emotional intelligence on leadership performance, job performance in large firms, and educational performance, very little research has examined how emotional intelligence affects entrepreneurial performance and the variables that account for this relationship. Individuals in entrepreneurial occupations face business situations that necessitate unique skills and abilities in social interactions. Emotional intelligence has implications for entrepreneurial situations and social interactions such as negotiation, obtaining and organizing resources, identifying and exploiting opportunities, managing stress, obtaining and maintaining customers, and providing leadership. the primary purpose of this study is to investigate emotional intelligence in the context of entrepreneurship. in addition, the study will shed light on the mediating effects of individual competencies, organizational tasks, and the environmental culture and climate. the results of the study provide insights for emotional intelligence researchers, entrepreneurship researchers, individuals with entrepreneurial aspirations, academic institutions, as well as government and financial entities that provide resources to new ventures. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115117/
An empirical investigation of manufacturing flexibility and organizational performance as moderated by strategic integration and organizational infrastructure.
The purpose of this study is empirically investigating four research questions related to manufacturing flexibility. 1) What are the components of manufacturing flexibility? 2) Is there a relationship between manufacturing flexibility and organizational performance? 3) Do integrated strategies strengthen the relationship between manufacturing flexibility and organizational performance? 4) Are there organizational characteristics that strengthen the relationship between manufacturing flexibility and organizational performance? This study used a cross-sectional survey design to collect data from manufacturing organizations in multiple industries. Organizational performance was quantified using common manufacturing measures. Strategic integration and organizational infrastructure were also measured. Data were collected using a self-administered questionnaire. Factor analysis, correlation analysis, and regression were used to analyze the data. The results indicate the variables and expected relationships exist as hypothesized. This study contributes to the manufacturing flexibility body of knowledge by identifying relationships between the manufacturing flexibility component, performance, strategic integration, and organizational infrastructure. The instrument development in this study is of particular value as there are few rigorously developed and validated instruments to measure the manufacturing flexibility components and performance. Understanding these relationships will help practitioners make better decisions in manufacturing organizations as well as enable application of the concepts in this study to other contexts such as service organizations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11065/
An Empirical Investigation of Personal and Situational Factors That Relate to the Formation of Entrepreneurial Intentions
New entrepreneurial organizations emerge as a result of careful thought and action. Therefore, entrepreneurship may be considered an example of planned behavior. Previous research suggests that intentions are the single best predictor of planned behavior. Given the significance of intentions, the purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between the personal characteristics of the entrepreneur and perceived environmental factors, and entrepreneurial intentions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279175/
An Empirical Investigation of the Effectiveness of Using Assigned, Easy Goals to Strengthen Self-efficacy Perceptions and Personal Goals in Complex Task Performance
The perception of self-efficacy is a central cognitive construct in explaining motivation. Assigned goals are established in the literature as affecting self-efficacy, but only a few researchers investigated their effects in complex tasks. One stream of research revealed the positive effects of easy goals on performance in a complex task without regard to self-efficacy perceptions. In the present study, the focus was on the effects of assigned, easy goals on self-efficacy and personal goals in complex task performance. It was expected that easy goals would be superior to moderate or impossible goals because the complexity and uncertainty of the task distorts subjects' perceptions of goal difficulty. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278537/
An Empirical Investigation of the Interaction Effects of Leader-Member Locus of Control on Participation in Strategic Decision Making
The purpose of this study was to test for a relationship between locus of control and participation in strategic decision making. The research model included the variables of gender, locus of control, job-work involvement and preference for participative environment as possible influences on team member participation in strategic decision making. Another feature of the model was the proposed three-way interaction effect on member participation. This interaction included member job-work involvement, member preference for participation and leader locus of control. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278461/
Environmental Scanning Practices of Manufacturing Firms in Nigeria
The purpose of this study was to examine scanning practices in a developing country by looking at the scanning behavior of executives of Nigerian manufacturing firms. Specifically, this study examined the decision maker's perception of environmental uncertainty (PEU), the frequency and degree of interest with which decision makers scan each sector of the environment, the frequency of use of various sources of information, the number of organizational adjustments made in response to actions of environmental groups, and the obstacles encountered in collecting information from the environment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277815/
An Examination of the Similarities and Differences Between Transformational and Authentic Leadership and Their Relationship to Followers' Outcomes
To date there is no comprehensive understanding of what leadership is, nor is there an agreement among different theorists on what a good or effective leader should be. The purpose of this dissertation is to examine the theoretical and empirical similarities and differences of two styles of leadership – transformational and authentic leadership. Follower outcomes, as well as, the effects of trust and psychological capital within these paradigms are of particular interest. Although theoretical differences are proposed for the leadership style, the extent of overlap suggests the need to more closely examine each theory. Pilot studies were created to validate original scenarios created for the study as well as to examine the validity and reliability of new measurement instruments. The dissertation is designed to determine whether the relationships between authentic leadership and a variety of follower outcomes including performance, affective commitment, satisfaction, trust, and organizational citizenship behavior are similar to those between transformational leadership and these outcomes. In addition, variables more unique to authentic leadership research including psychological capital and follower well-being were examined within both paradigms to determine whether their relationships are similar to each type of leadership style. An experimental study using Qualtrics was used to collect the data with the expectation that there would be significant differences in the two styles of leadership such that each explains unique variance in follower behavior. The results of this dissertation support the lack of perceptual difference between the two theories of leadership. The results of this experiment do not come completely unexpected because of the ethical overlap between the two styles of leadership. Although subjects in the experiment could differentiate authentic leadership from transformational leadership based on the manipulations, authentic leadership effects were not significantly different when compared to transformational leadership effects. As a result, analyses in my research do not support previous theoretical development of authentic leadership as a separate theory from transformational leadership. Consequently, lack of support for my hypotheses actually provides valuable information to the study of leadership and calls into question the continued pursuit of research on authentic leadership. Although this dissertation was constructed to investigate the differences between authentic leadership and transformational leadership relative to follower outcomes, results found for gender differences may highlight an additional component to these leadership paradigms not previously considered. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283823/
Examining Curvilinearity and Moderation in the Relationship between the Degree of Relatedness of Individual Diversification Actions and Firm Performance
Corporate diversification continues to be an important phenomenon in the modern business world. More than thirty years of research on diversification suggests that the degree of relatedness among a firm's business units is a factor that can affect firm performance, but the true effect of diversification relatedness on firm performance is still inconclusive. The purpose of this dissertation is to shed more light on this inconclusive association. However, attention is focused on the performance implications of individual diversification actions (e.g., acquisitions and joint ventures) rather than on the overall performance of firms with different levels of diversification. A non-experimental, longitudinal analysis of secondary data was conducted on over 450 unique acquisitions and on more than 210 joint ventures. Results suggest that even when individual diversification actions rather than entire business portfolios are examined, an inverted curvilinear association between diversification relatedness and performance is likely to emerge. This pattern is observed in both acquisitions and joint ventures. However, the association between diversification relatedness and performance in acquisitions is moderated by the level of industry adversity, though factors such as corporate coherence and heterogeneous experience do not moderate the association between diversification relatedness and performance. This study augments the body of knowledge on diversification and adds refinement to the traditional curvilinear finding regarding relatedness. By studying acquisitions and joint ventures independently, the results reveal differences in both slope and inflection points that suggest the relative impact of relatedness may vary depending on the mode of diversification. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc67967/
High Risk Occupations: Employee Stress and Behavior Under Crisis
The purpose of this study is to analyze the relationships between stress and outcomes including organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), job satisfaction, and burnout in high-risk occupations. Moreover, how personality, emotions, coping, and leadership influence this relationship is investigated. Data were collected from 379 officers in 9 police organizations located in the Southern and Southwest United States. The primary research question addressed within this dissertation is: What is the relationship between stress and behavioral and affective outcomes in high-risk occupations as governed by coping, leadership, and crisis? The majority of the hypothesized relationships were supported, and inconsistencies center on methodological and theoretical factors. Findings indicate that occupational stressors negatively influence individuals in high-risk occupations. Moreover, crisis events exacerbate these influences. The use of adaptive coping strategies is most effective under conditions of low stress, but less so under highly stressful circumstances. Similarly, transformational leader behaviors most effectively influence how individuals in high-risk occupations are affected by lower, but not higher levels of stress. Profiles of personality characteristics and levels of emotional dissonance also influence the chosen coping strategies of those working in high-risk occupations. Prescriptively, it is important to understand the influences among the variables assessed in this study, because negative outcomes in high-risk occupations are potentially more harmful to workers and more costly to organizations. Thus, this dissertation answers the research question, but much work in this area remains to be done. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84269/
The Impact of Social Capital and Dynamic Capabilities on New Product Development: An Investigation of the Entertainment Software Industry
Businesses today face intense international competition, a heightened pace of development and shortened product life cycles. As a result, many researchers recommend firms collaborate and partner with other firms to succeed. With over a decade of research examining alliances and inter-firm collaboration, we know a great deal about the benefits and outcomes firms realize through collaboration. An important gap exists, however, in our understanding of the effect of partnering firms on collaborative outputs. This study attempts to address this gap by examining the success of collaborative new product development outputs. The study was a quasi-experimental study using archival, time-series data. Hypotheses were tested at the project level, defined as the product output from the collaborative development effort. Predictors were developed at both the firm and dyadic levels. Several findings emerged from this research. The primary finding is that roles of alliance partners impact which capability and capital benefits accrue. Firms functioning as a publisher benefit from increases in relevant experience. Firms functioning as a developer benefit from working in areas in which they have experience, but largely to the extent that the developer also generalizes their capabilities. One implication emerging from the capability findings suggests a need for configurational capability research. From a social capital conception, developers with high network centrality have a negative impact on the perceived quality of the final software product. Developers also benefit from embeddedness, products developed by developers in constrained networks outperformed products developed by developers in brokered networks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9016/
The Influence of Interorganizational Trust, Individualism and Collectivism, and Superordinate Goal of JIT/TQM on Interorganizational Cooperation: An Exploratory Analysis of Institutions in Mexico
Since their introduction to the United States from Japan in the 1980s, inter-organizational cooperation practices between buyers and suppliers have provided lower costs, shorter development and production cycles, and higher levels of quality and productivity. Many studies of interorganizational cooperation have relied on transaction cost economicsframeworks,which ignore cultural differences. Few studies have analyzed inter-organizational cooperation in Mexico, a less-developed country (LDC) with a cultural and industrial environment differentfromthe U.S. This study is concerned with the influence of interorganizational trust, individualism and collectivism (indcol), and the superordinate goal ofjust-in-time/total quality management (JIT/TQM) on inter-organizational cooperation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278619/
Interorganizational Relationships: The Effects of Organizational Efficacy on Member Firm Performance
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Relationships between the collective actors within interorganizational relationships are a growing area of research in management. Interorganizational networks continue to be a popular mechanism used by organizations to achieve greater performance. Organizations develop competencies to work with other organizations, but the confidence of these organizations to use these strengths for a competitive advantage has yet to be empirically examined. The purpose of this study is to examine organizational efficacy, how competencies may related to that efficacy, and the relationship of efficacy with performance. The goal of this study is to observe the relationship among trust, dependence, information quality, continuous quality improvement, and supplier flexibility with organizational efficacy. In addition, the relationship between organizational efficacy and performance is also observed. There are two primary research questions driving this study. First, what is the relationship between trust, dependence, information quality, continuous quality improvement, supplier flexibility and organizational efficacy? Second, what is the relationship between organizational efficacy and performance? The theories supporting the hypotheses generated from these questions include theories such as social cognitive theory, quality improvement, and path-goal theory. Data collected from the suppliers of a large university support the hypotheses. Regression analysis and structure coefficients were used to analyze the data. Results indicate that both research question one and research question two are supported. In addition, the theoretical model as a whole, which indicates a mediating relationship, was examined and discussed. This study contributes to both academic and practice by examining efficacy in an interorganizational setting. In addition, as organizations better understand the relationship between competencies and confidence, they will better know how to collectively work to achieve greater results with more attention being placed on monitoring the relationship in order to experience more desired outcomes. Limitations of the current study and opportunities for future research are also discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5313/
Introduction of Self-Manage Work Teams at a Brownfield Site: a Study of Organization-Based Self-Esteem and Performance
This empirical study is aimed at understanding the patterns of relationships among the organization structure of self-managed work teams in terms of three sets of constructs: 1. organization-based self-esteem; 2. consequent behaviors of intrinsic work motivation, general job satisfaction, organization citizenship, and organization commitment; and 3. performance. The primary significance of this study is that it adds to the pool of empirical knowledge in the field of self-managed work team research. The significance of this study to practicing managers is that it can help them make better-informed decisions on the use of the self-managed work team structure. This study was a sample survey composed of five standardized questionnaires using a five-point Likert-type scale, open-ended questions, and demographic questions. Unstructured interviews supplemented the structured survey and for means of triangulation of results. The variables were analyzed using regression analysis for the purpose of path analysis. The site was a manufacturing plant structured around self-managed work teams. The population was full-time, first-line production employees. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277664/
An investigation of the relationships between job characteristics, satisfaction, and team commitment as influenced by organization-based self-esteem within a team-based environment
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Team-based management is a popular contemporary method of redesigning jobs in order to more effectively utilize the human potential of employees. The use of such management techniques should result in increased satisfaction and team commitment; however, many research studies have failed to demonstrate increases in affective outcomes on the part of the employee. The research question examined in this study is, "What specific job dimensions and situational factors result in higher levels of satisfaction and team commitment?" The Job Characteristics Model (Hackman & Oldham, 1975) provided a basis for this study. The model was designed for individual contributors and has not been extensively used in team research. As expected it was found that within a team-based environment higher levels of the five core job dimensions of skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and job feedback were associated with increased satisfaction and team commitment. Organization-based self-esteem was found to mediate the relationship between the five core job dimensions and the affective outcome variables. Contrary to expectations, however, it was found that consultative team members experienced higher levels of satisfaction and commitment than substantive team members. In addition, consultative team members reported higher levels of two core job dimensions, skill variety and task significance, and on the overall Job Diagnostic Survey than did substantive team members. These findings have significant implications for companies undergoing organizational redesign and questions whether those companies should implement advanced levels of employee involvement activities if the organizational goal is to increase satisfaction and commitment. The study employed a survey research design in which data was collected using a self-report questionnaire. A heterogeneous sample of 183 team members participating in either a consultative and substantive team from four different companies in nine locations provided the data for this field survey. Multivariate analyses, including hierarchial set regression, were used to test the hypotheses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2589/
Leader Emergence and Effectiveness in Virtual Workgroups: Dispositional and Social Identity Perspectives
In today's global competitive environment, many organizations utilize virtual workgroups to overcome geographic and organizational boundaries. Research into their dynamics has received the attention of scholars within multiple disciplines, and the potential for an integrative approach to the study of virtual workgroups exists. This dissertation is a first step towards such an approach. The primary aim of this research is to examine antecedent and contextual factors that affect the emergence and effectiveness of leaders in virtual workgroups. To achieve this aim, an integrative model assembled from theory and empirical findings in leadership, management, social identity, and communications research is posited. Hypothesized relationships depicted in the model identify key dispositional and contextual variables linked to leader emergence, member behavior, and leader effectiveness within virtual workgroups. This study employed a nonexperimental research design, in which leader emergence and social identity manifest as naturally occurring phenomena. Data collection occurred via two web-based surveys administered at different points in time. Hypothesized relationships were tested utilizing correlational and hierarchical moderated multiple regression analyses. The findings of this dissertation suggest that traits, such as personality and cognitive ability, are not associated with leader emergence in virtual workgroups. In addition, the results indicate that the exhibition of relationship-oriented leader behaviors enhances group identity. In turn, identification is associated with increases in perceptions of leader effectiveness and decreases in counterproductive behavior exhibited by group members. This dissertation exposes an important limitation to the application of trait leadership theory. It also demonstrates the importance of relationship-oriented behavior and social identity in virtual contexts. Further, it advances an integrative theoretical model for the study of virtual workgroup phenomena. These contributions should assist and inform other researchers, as well as practitioners, interested in leadership and group member behavior in virtual workgroups. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11035/
Linkage of Business and Manufacturing Strategies as a Determinant of Enterprise Performance: an Empirical Study in the Textile Industry
The main question in this study was: do business units that exhibit a "linkage" or "fit" between their business strategy and manufacturing strategy variables, outperform competitors who lack such a fit? This exploratory research focused on two business strategies: cost leadership and differentiation. Based on existing literature, twenty-four hypotheses concerning the relationship between business strategy and selected manufacturing strategy variables were developed. The manufacturing executives of eighty-eight broadwoven cotton fabric mills (SIC 2211) were surveyed using a qualitative questionnaire. Two sets of comparisons were made between the manufacturing strategy variables of the sampled firms: first, high vs. low performers pursuing cost leadership strategy; and second, high vs. low performers focusing on differentiation strategy. Within each set of comparisons, high performers reported linkage between their business strategies and selected manufacturing strategy variables. This study re-affirms the importance of linking business strategy with manufacturing strategy variables as a forceful weapon for overcoming competition. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278687/
Optimal design of Dutch auctions with discrete bid levels.
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The theory of auction has become an active research area spanning multiple disciplines such as economics, finance, marketing and management science. But a close examination of it reveals that most of the existing studies deal with ascending (i.e., English) auctions in which it is assumed that the bid increments are continuous. There is a clear lack of research on optimal descending (i.e., Dutch) auction design with discrete bid levels. This dissertation aims to fill this void by considering single-unit, open-bid, first price Dutch auctions in which the bid levels are restricted to a finite set of values, the number of bidders may be certain or uncertain, and a secret reserve price may be present or absent. These types of auctions are most attractive for selling products that are perishable (e.g., flowers) or whose value decreases with time (e.g., air flight seats and concert tickets) (Carare and Rothkopf, 2005). I began by conducting a comprehensive survey of the current literature to identify the key dimensions of an auction model. I then zeroed in on the particular combination of parameters that characterize the Dutch auctions of interest. As a significant departure from the traditional methods employed by applied economists and game theorists, a novel approach is taken by formulating the auctioning problem as a constrained mathematical program and applying standard nonlinear optimization techniques to solve it. In each of the basic Dutch auction model and its two extensions, interesting properties possessed by the optimal bid levels and the auctioneer's maximum expected revenue are uncovered. Numerical examples are provided to illustrate the major propositions where appropriate. The superiority of the optimal strategy recommended in this study over two commonly-used heuristic procedures for setting bid levels is also demonstrated both theoretically and empirically. Finally, economic as well as managerial implications of the findings reported in this dissertation research are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28450/
Organizational Commitment: A Cross-National Comparison of Arab and Non-Arab Employees in Saudi Petrochemical Companies
Individuals with different personal demographics and job-based factors have different attitudes and behaviors, which can influence their levels of commitment to their organizations. These differences in organizational commitment increase as their cultural backgrounds differ significantly. Personal demographics and job-related factors are reliable predictors of employees' commitment to their employing organizations. The purpose of this study was to empirically investigate if there is a difference in the level of employees' commitment to Saudi petrochemical companies on the basis of differences in their personal demographics and job-related factors. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277912/
Post-Implementation Evaluation of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems
The purposes of this dissertation were to define enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, assess the varying performance benefits flowing from different ERP system implementation statuses, and investigate the impact of critical success factors (CSFs) on the ERP system deployment process. A conceptual model was developed and a survey instrument constructed to gather data for testing the hypothesized model relationships. Data were collected through a cross-sectional field study of Indian production firms considered pioneers in understanding and implementing ERP systems. The sample data were drawn from a target population of 900 firms belonging to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). The production firms in the CII member directory represent a well-balanced mix of firms of different sizes, production processes, and industries. The conceptual model was tested using factor analysis, multiple linear regression analysis and univariate Anova. The results indicate that the contributions of different ERP system modules vary with different measures of changes in performance and that a holistic ERP system contributes to performance changes. The results further indicate that the contributions of CSFs vary with different measures of changes in performance and that CSFs and the holistic ERP system influences the success achieved from deployments. Also, firms that emphasize CSFs throughout the ERP implementation process achieve greater performance benefits as compared to those that focus on CSFs during the initial ERP system deployment. Overall, the results of the study support the relationships hypothesized in the conceptual model. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6081/
Predicting Small Business Executives' Intentions to Comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 Using the Theories of Reasoned Action and Planned Behavior and the Concept of Offender Empathy
This study attempted to determine if the theories of reasoned action (TRA) and planned behavior (TPB), as well as a relatively new construct called offender empathy, could help to predict the intentions of small business executives (SBEs) to comply with the employment provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277842/
Predicting the Use of External Labor Arrangements: A Transaction Costs Perspective
Firms' use of external labor arrangements (ELAs), such as temporary, contract and seasonal workers, has become increasingly prevalent over the last two decades. Despite the increasing importance of this phenomenon, little is known about firms' reasons for using ELAs. Most research to date has been exploratory, using qualitative methods or archival data not well suited to the constructs. The result of this research has been a long and often contradictory list of proposed antecedents of ELA use. In this study, I tested the ability of the transaction costs theory to predict when firms will fill a given job using an ELA rather that a permanent employment relationship. According to this theory, three characteristics of the job will determine whether the job will be filled using an ELA: transaction-specific investment, likelihood of repetition, and uncertainty of performance. Firms will be less likely to staff a given job using an ELA when the job requires investment in idiosyncratic skills, when the firm is likely to require a person with that set of skills regularly, and when performance in that job is difficult to measure. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277753/
Psychological Diversity Climate and Its Effects: the Role of Organizational Identification
Organizations have begun to focus heavily on diversity. As a result, organizations spend time and resources creating diversity policies and investing extensively in diversity training programs. While an abundance of research exists on demographic diversity, research has just begun to incorporate employees’ perceptions of diversity as an influential factor affecting organizationally relevant employee outcomes. Employees are a crucial reference in understanding whether organizations benefit from engaging in such actions. The purpose of this study is to examine the influence of diversity climate on employees’ organizational identification. Furthermore, I investigate how organizational identification mediates the relationship between diversity climate perceptions and outcomes including turnover intentions, job satisfaction, and organizational citizenship behavior. I refine our understanding by identifying personal characteristics that influence the diversity climate (PDC) – organizational identification (OID) relationship. This research offers several contributions to management literature and scholars as well as practitioners. First this study empirically examines the relationship between PDC and OID. This connection is important as it identifies the psychological mechanism linking PDC to subsequent outcomes as well as showing how positive climate perception can influence an employee’s sense of belonging. The second contribution is the in-depth identification of personal characteristics and their role in this relationship specifically, demographics, values, and attachment to demographic category. Individuals will differ in their beliefs and thus their attachment based on climate perceptions. Finally, this study links diversity climate to organizationally relevant outcomes through organizational identification. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407849/
The Relationship Between Environmental Barriers and Modes of Technology Transfer: A Study of United States Companies with Operations in Mexico
This study is an empirical evaluation of the relationship between perceptions of the elements of the remote environment of business and the mode of transfer utilized by 90 United States companies transferring technology to Mexico. Characteristics of the technology, the company, and the industry were found, from a thorough search of the literature, to be the key aspects of technology transfer. The primary hypothesis predicted that a significant relationship would exist between perceptions of barriers and choice of transfer mode. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279176/
The role of strategy in the innovation process: A stage approach.
Organizational innovation has been of central interest in recent years because of its importance for organizational survival and competitive advantage. Researchers in the field have divided the innovation process into stages in an attempt to understand the innovation process and the factors that affect it. However, empirical studies that examine the relationship between the stages are scarce. In addition, although business strategy is emphasized as an important factor in the innovation process, little is known about its role in the innovation process and its effect on the stages. This research provides empirical support for the relationship between the stages of the innovation process and the moderating effect of organizational strategy on the relationship between the stages within the two stage model of innovation. In this study, a direct, positive relationship is proposed between the innovation generation (first stage) and innovation outcome (second stage) stages of the innovation process. Dimensions of innovation outcome that are examined include innovation type (product innovation and process innovation), innovation radicalness and innovation frequency. Low cost, differentiation and market orientation strategies are proposed to be moderators on the relationship between the stages. To test the proposed relationships, a survey was mailed to executives who are involved in the innovation process in organizations where innovation is expected to be common and they were asked to complete the questionnaire. Hierarchical regression was the primary data analysis method and General Linear Model was applied as the pot-hoc data analysis method. Results of the primary data analyses provided support for the direct, positive relationship between the innovation generation and innovation outcome stages of the innovation process. Specifically, there was a direct, positive relationship between innovation generation and product innovation, process innovation, innovation frequency and innovation radicalness. Result of the primary data analysis provided support for the moderating effect of strategy (market orientation and differentiation) on the relationship between innovation generation and only innovation frequency dimension of innovation outcome. Post-hoc analysis suggested a significant moderating effect of strategy (market orientation and differentiation) on the relationship between innovation generation and innovation radicalness dimension of innovation outcome. Limitations of the study and directions for future research are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4877/
Small Business Owner-Managers and Corporate Managers: a Comparative Study of Achievement Motivation, Risk Taking Propensity and Preference for Innovation
Despite the economic significance of entrepreneurship, relatively little is known about the entrepreneur, particularly how the entrepreneur differs from the corporate manager. This problem is both cause and symptom of the discord regarding definitions of the entrepreneur, rendering sampling, research replication and generalizations about entrepreneurs problematic. As a result, inquiry has failed to adequately establish how entrepreneurs differ from managers, a problem partially stemming from a dearth of methodologically rigorous comparisons of entrepreneurs with managers. The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the potential of psychological constructs to predict a proclivity for entrepreneurship. Moreover, differences in types of small business owner-managers were also investigated. Included in the research model were three common themes in the entrepreneurship literature: achievement motivation, risk taking propensity and preference for innovation. Also incorporated were the interactions of the psychological constructs, as well as individual and firm demographic variables. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277602/
Social Exchange Under Fire: Direct and Moderated Effects of Job Insecurity on Social Exchange
This study is concerned with the impact of job insecurity on the vital social exchange relationship between employee and employer. Specifically, it explored the relationship between job insecurity and two important social exchange outcomes—organizational commitment and organizational citizenship behavior. Moreover, it assessed the moderating effects of individual factors (communal orientation and powerlessness) and situational factors (trust in management, procedural fairness, and organizational support) on these relationships. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278227/
Social Innovation in Venture Capital Firms: Strategy, Structure, and Performance
Social innovations are solutions related to humanistic needs and the betterment of mankind with the intent of creating social value and eventual societal level changes. Social innovation therefore broadens traditional views of innovation to include processes of societal transformations and human behaviors. These social innovations are becoming more commonplace across all sectors, including capital markets. Private equity and venture capital firms in the capital markets sector engage in social innovation by investing capital with the goal of delivering both economic and social value. Despite the critical importance of venture capital (VC) in the success of social innovations through socially responsible investing, there is a paucity of research in understanding the factors that affect the performance of these social VC firms. This research gap is addressed by asking the following primary research question: What is the role of strategic and structural factors in the performance of socially innovative venture capital firms? The firm level research is theoretically based on the well-established design school. This framework highlights the overarching importance of strategy and structure in the accomplishment of firm goals. In the context of the venture capital industry, it was hypothesized that certain unique strategic and structural factors (i.e., stage of investment, age, size, and network relationships) would influence the performance of socially innovative VC firms. A moderated mediation model was proposed to examine these factors and their influence on performance variation. The sample of socially innovative VC firms was generated from the ThomsonOne Private Equity Database. The research design and methodology followed a systematic and objective process. This included identification of the sample of 381 VC firms, collection of mission statements for each VC firm, development of key word list pertaining to social innovation for content analysis and the collection of archival data on each VC firm. Content analysis was then used to identify the degree to which the firm’s strategic orientation (mission statement) was related to social innovation. Finally, both traditional and more cutting edge statistical analyses (Preacher & Hayes, 2008) were used to evaluate the moderated mediation model. The results of this study provide several key take-a-ways for both researchers and practitioners focusing on social venture capital. Firstly, results indicated that firms adopt distinct foci of social investing that directs their strategic orientation. These various foci have vastly differing effects on the firm’s overall performance, the strategic decisions they make, and the architecture of their structural design. It is therefore necessary to treat each focus area separately given differences in strategies, industry and investment focus, and market orientations. Secondly, including socially related language in the firm’s mission statement does not guarantee that a VC firm will actually implement a social orientation or seek to create the social value inherent in social innovation. Thirdly, certain investment strategies appear to be more advantageous depending of the size of the firm and the socialness of the firm’s orientation. Lastly, results supported that the adoption of a social orientation did not negatively influence firm performance. Overall, results suggest that pursuing a social orientation is viable and effective in delivering blended value strategies for VC firms engaging in social innovation. These findings offers socially oriented venture capital firms insights into strategic and structural aspects that are important to their success in achieving positive exists of their portfolio companies, thus increasing both financial and social value. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407767/
Strategy, Structure, and Performance of U.S.-Based Multinational Organizations: A Fit Theory Study
The research question addressed by the study asks, "Is international integration strategic and departmental structural fit a predictor of performance in U.S.-based, single-business multinational organizations?" The study is designed to extend existing research in international integration strategy, which is often called "global strategy," "globalization," or "internationalization" in the popular press and academic research literature. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278252/
Structural holes and Simmelian ties: Exploring social capital, task interdependence, and individual effectiveness
Two contrasting notions have been put forward on how social capital may influence individual effectiveness in organizations. Burt (1992) sets forth the informational and control advantages that are possible by building an open network characterized by large numbers of structural holes. In contrast, Coleman (1990) and Simmel (1950) have suggested that network closure, exemplified by large numbers of Simmelian ties, enables actors to develop trust, cohesiveness, and norms which contribute to effectiveness. Simmelian ties are strong, reciprocal ties shared by three actors. It is proposed that an actor's network cannot be dominated by both structural holes and Simmelian ties. Thus, this study examines whether a moderating variable is at work. It is proposed that the actor's task interdependence in the workplace influences the relationship between network closure and individual effectiveness. Actors in less task interdependent environments will benefit especially from the information and control benefits afforded by a network characterized by structural holes. Conversely, actors in highly interdependent environments will benefit especially from the creation of trust and cooperation that result from large numbers of Simmelian ties. Data was collected on 113 subjects in three organizations. Subjects were asked to rate the strength of their relationship with all organization members and their own level of task interdependence. Contrary to expectations, nearly all subjects reported high levels of task interdependence. Raters in each organization provided individual effectiveness measures for all subjects. Hypotheses were tested using hierarchical set regression and bivariate correlation. The results indicated support for the hypothesized relationship of Simmelian ties with task interdependence. When examining all cases, no support was found for the hypothesized relationship of structural holes and Simmelian ties with individual effectiveness and of structural holes with task interdependence. Nonetheless, additional analyses provided some indication of an association between Simmelian ties and individual effectiveness. Task interdependence did not moderate the relationships between either Simmelian ties or structural holes and individual effectiveness. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2251/
A Study of Effective Leadership in the Chinese Context
Leadership has attracted a significant amount of scholarly attention in the past few decades. However, most research and theory contributions are to a great extent limited to accounting for leadership practices in the West (Littrell, 2002). This study is designed to develop an effective leadership model that works in the Chinese context. Paternalistic leadership, a dominant leadership style in an Eastern business environment, is compared with transformational leadership, a dominant leadership style in a Western business environment. The notion of transformational leadership was developed under the tutelage of Bernard Bass (1998). Transformational leadership is found to be compatible with collectivistic values (Walumbwa & Lwwler, 2003) and is believed to be appealing and generalizable to Chinese leadership situations (Chen & Farh, 1999). Other researchers have found that within Chinese organizations, leader behaviors are quite distinct from transformational leadership, referring to this leader style as paternalistic leadership (Redding, 1990; Cheng, 1995). The questions are asked, “Transformational or paternalistic leadership, which one is more effective in Chinese organizations? Is one type of leadership superior to the other one in the Chinese culture?” To answer these questions, a model is proposed to clarify the mediating effects of trust and harmony on the relationship between leadership style and its effectiveness, and to interpret the moderating effects of generation on the relationships between both paternalistic and transformational leadership with trust and harmony. Most theories of leadership in organizational behavior originated in the United States and Western Europe and are hypothesized to be universally applicable to non-Western contexts. Departing from this tradition, the current study proposes a Chinese culture-specific leadership theory, built on traditional Confucianism. The principle aim is to examine and articulate a culturally informed and warranted ground for a leadership model in the Chinese context. The results of the study provide a new perspective on leadership in the Chinese context by focusing on three dimensions of paternalistic leadership (authoritative, benevolent, and moral leadership) that are ignored in the Western leadership literature. The results also suggest that trust in the leader and harmonious relationships in an organization are key mechanisms for explaining effective leadership in Chinese organizations regardless of whether paternalistic or transformational leadership is used. What’s more, as the younger generation is becoming the dominant workforce, a successful leader in China should use Western practices and integrate them to fit in Chinese organizations in a way that also acknowledges Chinese traditions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149628/
A Theoretical Model of Technical Professionals in Work Teams
The purpose of this research project was to develop and test a theoretical model of technical professionals in self-managing work teams using a number of constructs that have not been tested with this population. The overall aim was to begin to humbly fill a significant gap in the research literature focused on self-managing work teams. The rationale for the need to address technical professional perspectives in team settings is discussed in the following section. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278072/
Time-Based Manufacturing Competence and Business Performance: An Empirical Study in the Steel Minimill Industry
The main research question pertains to the relationship between time-based manufacturing competence and business performance: Is there a positive relationship between time-based manufacturing competence and business performance. The objective of the study, therefore, is to examine the relationship between time -based manufacturing competence and business performance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278328/
Total Quality Environmental Management: A Study of the Relationship between Quality Practices and Environmental Performance of the Standard and Poor 500 Companies
The purpose of this study is to explore empirically the correlation of quality practices and environmental performance and suggest its applicability as a model for integrating the two fields. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278106/
Toward the Development of Information Technology Variables to Help Predict Organizational Structure
There is a growing awareness that information technology plays a critical role in helping determine organizational structure. Unfortunately, that role has not been adequately defined. This study provides a foundation for an increase in our understanding of the relationship between information technology and organizational structure by defining a new set of information technology variables and identifying differences in organizational structure based on these new variables. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278238/
Trust and Governance in Hybrid Relationships: An Investigation of Logistics Alliances
Transaction cost economics (TCE) theorists traditionally have classified transactions between firms as governed by either market or hierarchy. By assessing characteristics of the transaction - asset specificity, uncertainty, and frequency - firms choose the governance form which minimizes transaction costs, the costs of administering the business deal. During the 1980s, however, TCE has found itself unable to explain the proliferation of strategic alliances. These hybrid relationships seek the benefits of both markets and hierarchies, including quasi-integration, the control of assets without actual ownership. Further, hybrids tend to prefer trust-based relational contracting. TCE's acknowledgment of hybrids, however, raises other questions surrounding the behavioral assumptions which supposedly influence the transaction characteristic governance linkage. Various dissenting researchers have theorized that (1) trust is more dominant in business than opportunism (2) the behavioral assumptions actually function as variables in different contexts, and (3) trust offers an integration mechanism for behavioral variables. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279315/