جنبه های ناملموس قابلیت نوآوری در شرکتهای کوچک و متوسط: تاثیرات حجم و صنعت
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|21420||2014||15 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||7190 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Engineering and Technology Management, Volume 33, July–September 2014, Pages 32–46
In the current literature, developing innovation capability in an organization is increasingly important. The approach of this study is quantitative. The data for the study were gathered using a web-based questionnaire targeting Finnish SMEs employing 11–249 persons and with less than 50 Meuro in revenue. A sample of 2400 SMEs was randomly selected. The response rate was 7.68 percent. This paper contributes to current understanding by presenting a construct for categorizing the intangible aspects of organizational innovation capability. The study also reveals that a firm's size or industry does not have a remarkable effect on the firm's innovation capability.
The successful operation of firms in almost all industries is becoming highly dependent on the firms’ abilities to produce innovations. Innovation is a process of turning opportunities into new ideas and turning these ideas into widely used practices (Tidd et al., 2005). Innovation is more than just a great idea; it is the opportunity to solve a problem that matters. The key is executing an idea in useful practice. Scholars have suggested that innovation capability is a multi-faceted construct. The categories used for innovation capability often adopt a certain type of innovation, such as product innovation, instead of the overall innovation capability (Ibrahim et al., 2009). In addition, innovation capability has been divided into radical and incremental innovation capabilities (Sen and Egelhoff, 2000). Moreover, the current literature has concentrated on evaluating a firm's innovation capability by defining the types of capabilities that form the overall innovation capability. For example, product innovation capability, process innovation capability, market innovation capability, strategic innovation capability, organizational capability, manufacturing capability, networking capability, entrepreneurial capability, and R&D capability have been studied (see Christensen, 1995, Guan and Ma, 2003, Wang and Ahmed, 2004 and Forsman, 2009). However, no dominant theoretical perspective integrates the individual sections of innovation research (Drazin and Schoonhoven, 1996). Therefore, innovation capability needs to be defined through an empirical study using existing innovation research. The concept of innovation capability presented in this paper is intangible because innovation capability refers to the potential to create innovations. Due to the special features of SMEs, the potential for innovation is observed as more important than the commercial end. The scarcity of resources, including human resources (both management and personnel), financial capital, time, and security, has been considered one of the features of SMEs (e.g., Singh et al., 2008 and Ates and Bititci, 2011). Although size represents a weakness in terms of available resources, it favors a flat organizational structure with a lack of bureaucracy. This size dependence allows for flexibility, adaptability and speed in responding to the changing environment (Garengo et al., 2005). For this reason, SMEs usually have a high potential for innovation, which may result in types of innovations other than just commercial products. Innovation capability, similar to intangibles in general, is hard to specify directly, but it can be specified by defining closely related aspects. These aspects of innovation capability are also innovation activity inputs. According to Davila et al. (2006), the inputs are the resources dedicated to creating innovations. These inputs may be tangible, such as people, money, time, equipment, or intangible, such as motivation, knowledge and firm culture. Many studies have presented intangible aspects related to innovation capability (Lawson and Samson, 2001, Martensen et al., 2007, Skarzynski and Gibson, 2008, Tura et al., 2008 and Paalanen et al., 2009) but often from a theoretical perspective. The results have seldom been based on empirical studies, as is the case in this study. In addition, this study caters to various aspects of innovation capability, departing from the majority of existing empirical studies that focus only on one or two intangible aspects of innovation capability (e.g., culture, structures). The objective of this study is to define the intangible aspect of a firm's innovation capability using a questionnaire targeting Finnish SMEs. The paper contributes to current understanding by presenting a construct for categorizing the intangible aspects of a firm's innovation capability in practice. In this respect, the nature of the study is explorative. Another purpose of the paper is to clarify whether innovation capability differs with the size and industry of the firm. The results contribute to the existing discussion on innovation capability by diminishing the gap between theory and practice and by building requisites for further research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The purpose of this study was to examine whether a firm's size or the industry have a significant impact on intangible aspects of innovation capability in SMEs. As the main contribution, the results indicate that the size of the company does not explain the level of innovation capability. This result is important because previous studies found that small firms were more resource-constrained. However, this characteristic is not the case in innovation capability, and the differences between the intangible aspects of innovation capability in SMEs must be studied and explained by other predictors. As an exception, the participatory leadership culture, which refers to the leaders’ ability to guide and direct employees to be more innovative, was significantly higher in smaller companies. Thus, small firms are more innovative than medium-sized firms in terms of the leadership aspect of innovation capability that guides innovation. In the other hypothesis, significant differences in intangible aspects of innovation capability for industrial- and service-oriented firms were studied. No major differences were found, apart from the differences in know-how development. This study contributes to the literature by showing that predictors other than industry must turn capability into successful innovations. The result is important because prior studies agree that manufacturing and service industries are different with respect to innovation. The greater ability of service-oriented firms in know-how development supports earlier findings, which suggest that the service sector focuses more on knowledge-based understanding of technology than on how to generate it. Furthermore, the study aimed to empirically define the intangible aspects of firm innovation capability by conducting a questionnaire among SMEs. A categorization of the aspects was presented as the study result. The innovation capability categorization presented in this paper caters to various intangible aspects of innovation capability, departing from the majority of existing innovation capability studies that focus on only one or two intangible aspects of innovation. The study thus develops the fragmented theory of innovation capability by presenting a more holistic approach to innovation capability. In addition, this study contributes to current understanding by diminishing the gap between theory and practice; the majority of studies tend to capture these aspects of innovation capability as a whole and are theoretical. According to the statistical analysis, seven types of intangible aspects of firm innovation capability were discovered: participatory leadership culture, ideation and organizing structures, work climate and well-being, know-how development, regeneration, external knowledge, and individual activity. The experiences of conducting the questionnaire in SMEs showed that it provided a proper picture of the multidimensional nature of firm innovation capability. As the sample covered more than 25 percent of Finnish SMEs with more than 10 employees and revenue of 2–50 Meuro, the results are inclusive. Innovation capability is a broad concept and should cover the entire range of different aspects. The categorization presented in this paper provides a good starting point for defining the intangible aspects of a firm's innovation capability. Using the results of this study, practitioners can improve their innovation capability to take better account of various aspects. The presented categorization can also assist future research by providing guidelines for how innovation capability can be understood in practical settings. Because firm size and industry do not seem to comprehensively explain the differences in the intangible aspects of innovation capability in SMEs, when pursuing better innovativeness in the future, it is beneficial to study the predictors that affect a firm's exploitation of the innovation capability. It is also important to study how the participatory leadership that guides employees for innovativeness is managed differently in small companies compared to medium-sized companies as well as the reasons behind the different types of know-how development in service-oriented firms compared to industrial firms. These issues can be tackled, for example, with in-depth case studies to achieve a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved.