سیستم های مدیریت حسابداری ، ناهمگنی تیم مدیریت و تغییر استراتژیک
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|21463||2007||22 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Accounting, Organizations and Society, , Volume 32, Issues 7–8, October–November 2007, Pages 735-756
Institutional and market changes force many organizations across economic sectors to reconsider their strategic position and engage in strategic change. Organizations differ in their ability to realize strategic change, however, which appears to depend on several factors in their strategic management process. In this paper we explore two such factors simultaneously, which are the composition of the top management team and the characteristics of the management accounting system. In particular, the paper investigates how top management team heterogeneity affects strategic change both directly, and indirectly, through the design and use of the management accounting system. Hypotheses are developed and tested through a survey study among 103 Spanish public hospitals. We find significant effects of top management team heterogeneity on the extent and direction of strategic change, and find that the use of the management accounting system partially mediates the relationship between top management team heterogeneity and strategic change. The paper contributes to the extant literature on the complex relationships between strategic change and MAS [Gerdin, J., & Greve, J. (2004). Forms of contingency fit in management accounting research – a critical review. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 29, 303–326], by analysing both extent and direction of strategic change, and by recognizing the importance of top management teams’ use of the management accounting system for strategic change.
The literature provides evidence that organizations across industries experience increased external pressures to reconsider their strategic positions (e.g., Danneels, 2002 and Henri, 2006). This phenomenon appears to affect private and public organizations alike, as the sources of pressure originate in both institutional and market developments (e.g., Frow et al., 2005, Modell, 2004 and Nyamori et al., 2001). The ability or failure to initiate and execute strategic change in response to such external pressures has serious implications for organizational performance (Nyamori et al., 2001). However, our knowledge about the organizational factors and mechanisms that enable strategic change is incomplete and fragmented (e.g., Frow et al., 2005, Henri, 2006 and Chenhall and Langfield-Smith, 2003), despite clear evidence across the management literature that organizations systematically differ in their inclination and ability to pursue strategic change (e.g., Abernethy and Brownell, 1999, Lant and Montgomery, 1987 and Wiersema and Bantel, 1992). The strategic management literature, for example, suggests that the composition of the organization’s top management team (TMT), which is the echelon ultimately responsible for strategy development and deployment, affects the strategic choices of the organization, and the ability to execute them (see, e.g., Carpenter, Geletkanycz, & Sanders, 2004). Several studies following the so-called upper echelon perspective show that TMT heterogeneity, which is the extent to which the team consists of managers with varying backgrounds and competences, systematically varies with the organization’s inclination and ability to engage in strategic change (e.g., Finkelstein and Hambrick, 1996, Golden and Zajac, 2001 and Jarzabkowski and Searle, 2005). Typical upper echelon studies, however, do not address the process through which TMTs pursue and realize strategies, and they are therefore criticized for providing little explanation of how different TMTs use organizational mechanisms differently to realize strategic change (see, e.g., Carpenter et al., 2004, Miller et al., 1998 and Rajagopalan et al., 1993). The accounting literature, in contrast, emphasizes the role of the management accounting system (MAS) as an organizational mechanism that supports strategic change (e.g., Dent, 1990, Nilsson and Rapp, 1999 and Simons, 1995), but empirical studies have not addressed the way in which management uses the MAS to engage in strategic change directly, with a number of interpretative case studies as a notable exception (e.g., Abernethy and Chua, 1996 and Ezzamel et al., 2004). An important reason for this lack of evidence is that studies on the MAS-strategy relationship have typically modelled strategy as an (exogenous) determinant of MAS, rather than as an (endogenous) consequence of the MAS, as they typically conceive strategy as an intention and position, rather than in terms of emergence and change (see, e.g., Gerdin and Greve, 2004 and Henri, 2006). Therefore, although the broader management literature suggests that TMT composition may affect strategic change via the MAS, there is no direct empirical evidence on this effect. In this paper we aim to provide such evidence by exploring how TMT composition affects strategic change through the use of MAS, using and combining insights from the strategic management and accounting literatures. We focus on TMT heterogeneity, and explore whether the effect of TMT heterogeneity on strategic change is mediated by TMTs’ use of the MAS. In line with previous studies on the MAS-strategy relationship, we explore two dimensions of TMTs’ use of MAS, which are the scope (broad-narrow) of the MAS information that TMTs use and the style (diagnostic-interactive) in which TMTs use MAS information (cf. Abernethy and Brownell, 1999 and Henri, 2006). Strategic change is defined as the change of strategic stance from defender position to prospector position or vice versa in conformity with previous studies ( Abernethy and Brownell, 1999, Miles and Snow, 1978 and Shortell and Zajac, 1990). This paper attempts to contribute to the literature in at least three respects. First, we propose that the use of MAS is an important mediator of the relationship between TMT heterogeneity and the organization’s strategic behavior, which fills a void in the strategic management literature concerning the organizational mechanisms through which TMTs realize organizational outcomes (see, e.g., Carpenter et al., 2004, Miller et al., 1998 and Rajagopalan et al., 1993). Second, by exploring the mediating role of MAS, we answer a recent plea in the management accounting literature for more complete explanations of the origins and consequences of MAS design and use in a single study (cf. Gerdin, 2005a, Luft and Shields, 2003, Hartmann and Moers, 1999 and Hartmann and Moers, 2003). Third, and in particular, the paper adds to the limited knowledge on the strategic relevance of MAS for organizations engaging in strategic change (Nyamori et al., 2001 and Chenhall and Langfield-Smith, 2003). The remainder of this paper is structured as follows. Section “Literature review and hypotheses development” reviews the literature and develops hypotheses about the relationships between TMT heterogeneity, the use of MAS and strategic change. Section “Empirical study” describes the method. Section “Results” presents the results of the empirical analysis. Finally, section “Discussion and conclusions” presents the discussion and conclusions of this study.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The objective of this paper was to improve our understanding of MAS as a mechanism that mediates the relationship between top management team composition and organizational strategic change. Broad-scope MAS and interactive use of MAS were argued to mediate the relationship between TMT heterogeneity and the extent and direction of strategic change. Our findings can be summarized as follows. Regarding the relationship between TMT and strategic change, the findings show that TMT heterogeneity is positively related to the extent of strategic change, and especially for the strategic change towards prospector positions. TMT heterogeneity appears unrelated to strategic change for organizations moving towards defender positions. Regarding the relationship between TMT heterogeneity and MAS, the findings show that TMT heterogeneity is positively related to the interactive use of MAS. Although the traditional interpretation is that interactive use of MAS reflects interactions between different (strategic and operational) hierarchical levels, these results suggest that it may also reflect the use of MAS at a certain (i.e. board) level. The findings do not support a relationship between TMT heterogeneity and broad-scope design of MAS. This result could be explained by the fact that this is a design dimension of MAS, which cannot directly be influenced by TMTs, or which cannot be adapted to the individual characteristics of TMT members (cf. Mia & Chenhall, 1994). The additional models using the underlying four sources of heterogeneity support the aggregate analysis, although age and tenure heterogeneity appeared not to be related to strategic change. This is in line, however, with some findings from previous studies (Bantel and Jackson, 1989 and Wiersema and Bantel, 1992). For example, Wiersema and Bantel (1992) found a positive relationship between educational heterogeneity and strategic change, but concluded that age and tenure heterogeneity are less important in capturing ‘the underlying constructs of creativity – innovativeness and diversity of information’ (p. 115). Regarding the relationships between MAS and strategic change, the findings show that broad-scope MAS is positively related to strategic change for organizations moving towards prospector positions. These results are in line with Chenhall’s (2003) arguments that broad-scope design of MAS overcomes the lack of relevance of narrow-scope MAS information for managing flexibility, decentralization and innovation (cf. Bisbe and Otley, 2004, Gerdin, 2005b and Hartmann, 2005). The results also show that the interactive use of MAS is not related to strategic change for those organizations moving towards defender positions, but that it is positively related to strategic change for organizations moving towards prospector positions. This confirms the suggestions of Abernethy and Lillis, 1995, Abernethy and Lillis, 2001 and Bisbe and Otley, 2004 mentioned earlier. Finally, we found a relationship between MAS scope and the interactive use of MAS, suggesting that the perceived usefulness of broad-scope affects the way in which the information is used. Overall, we conclude that our results provide evidence for the mediating role of MAS of the relationship between TMT composition and strategic change, answering to pleas in the strategic management and management accounting literatures for a better understanding of the processes and arrangement through which organizations change their strategies (Carpenter et al., 2004, Luft and Shields, 2003, Miller et al., 1998, Rajagopalan et al., 1993 and Chenhall and Langfield-Smith, 2003). We find that this mediating role is particularly prevalent for changes towards prospector positions. This paper has several limitations, beyond those typically related to the use of the questionnaire survey (Young, 1996). Two of these limitations are the lack of ability to test for causal direction, and the paper’s focus on one industry. Regarding the latter, we believed that this industry is well suited to test our hypothesis, but it may contain idiosyncrasies that have been overlooked. Clearly, empirical testing of the hypotheses generated in this paper in a different industrial context may provide insight into the external validity of the findings. Another limitation of this paper is its focus on top management teams ‘as the sole custodians of strategy, ignoring the contributions of middle and lower level managers to the strategic process’ (Nyamori et al., 2001, p. 72). Other groups of managers may influence the relationships studied as well. This study is exploratory in nature and leaves ample room for future research. First, the findings of this study focus on the TMT, and future studies may look at the potential effects of intra-TMT group processes on MAS use. In particular, group processes such as communication, conflict, and agreement seeking could have significant effects on the relationships found in this study. In this vein, other variables beyond demographic characteristics could be analyzed for the TMT, such as the distribution of power and authority (cf. Abernethy & Vagnoni, 2004). Second, the constructs central to this study could be defined and operationalized in different ways. Regarding the TMT construct, other TMT characteristics, such as directly reflecting cognitive and psychological characteristics, could be addressed and measured (cf. Finkelstein & Hambrick, 1996). Other MAS design characteristics could be analyzed (e.g., timeliness, aggregation and integration, Chenhall & Morris, 1986), as well as specific management accounting techniques, such as the budgeting method, the use of ABC-costing or the use of scorecard-type instruments for performance appraisal. Finally, the path analyses explored here, that suggest mediation fit, could be complemented with tests for moderation forms of contingency fit, given that the proper theoretical foundation can be found (cf. Hartmann and Moers, 1999, Hartmann and Moers, 2003 and Gerdin and Greve, 2004).