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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|9631||2010||15 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||9290 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of International Management, Volume 16, Issue 4, December 2010, Pages 354–368
Building on a large-scale survey study in Germany and China, this research develops and validates a model of internal variables fostering entrepreneurial orientation. The objective of the research is to understand whether organizational mechanisms, such as organizational structure or leadership style that underlie entrepreneurial organizations are universal or are contingent on national culture. The findings of this study indicate that some components are universal and some are contingent on culture. For instance, cross-functional integration, consideration, and development culture impact most dimensions of entrepreneurial orientation across cultures positively, whereas centralization does so negatively, suggesting strong similarities of entrepreneurial organizations. On the other hand, participation exerts an influence on entrepreneurial orientation only in Germany. There are also differences in the strength of relationships: cross-functional integration and consideration have stronger effects in China than in Germany. One major implication is that commonalities of entrepreneurial organizations are generally not strong enough to completely outweigh the influences of national culture. This research may help managers to foster the degree of entrepreneurial orientation in their businesses that operate internationally.
Research has found that organizations with a high degree of entrepreneurial orientation (EO) perform better (e.g., Wiklund, 1999). The positive relationship between EO and performance is robust in both western and eastern settings (Li et al., 2008). However, there is also a consensus that a high degree of EO exists only when it is developed and supported through organizational structure, leadership style and organizational culture (Covin and Slevin, 1991). Given the global robustness of the EO-performance relationship, the question arises whether there is one right way to foster EO (i.e., one set of choices concerning organizational structure, leadership style, and organizational culture), or whether the way organizations foster their EO is affected by national culture. The literature provides two contradictory positions: Kreiser et al. (2002) hold that a fundamental tenet of entrepreneurship research is that organizations with a high degree of EO differ significantly from other types of organizations. Similarly, Covin and Slevin (1991) point out that organizations with a high degree of EO share certain features, such as a low degree of centralization. Thus, this stream holds that organizations with a high degree of EO show similarities that may outweigh other influences, such as national culture. On the other hand, findings from related research streams, such as cross-cultural management (e.g., Rauch et al., 2000) and cross-cultural marketing (e.g., Brettel et al., 2008), suggest that the impact of internal variables on desired outcomes such as EO may be contingent on the national culture in which the organization operates. These studies suggest that national culture is a major influence on individual behavior in organizations, so the means to facilitate a strong EO must be subject to national culture. To resolve these contradictory positions, the present study develops and empirically tests a theoretical model which integrates the internal variables that support organizational EO, specifically organizational structure, leadership style, and organizational culture, with Hofstede's (1980) multidimensional framework of cultural dimensions. The theoretical analysis and survey-based empirical research are conducted from German and Chinese perspectives for three reasons: the two nations differ significantly on the two most important cultural dimensions of power distance and collectivism (Hofstede, 1980 and House et al., 2004); their two economies are major drivers of growth, with Germany as the most important European economy and China as one of the largest economies in the world with above-average growth (Quer et al., 2007); and both countries have in common that entrepreneurship has recently increased in importance. In Germany, entrepreneurial organizations have become a major topic because of the countries efforts to create a more “entrepreneurial society.” The German economy has traditionally been driven by large companies, but these large companies are no longer able to provide sufficient numbers of jobs; young, entrepreneurial organizations are the major job creators (Bergmann and Sternberg, 2007). In China, the government relaxed its grip on the economy in the late 1970s (Holt, 1997) and, by the end of the twentieth century, the number of private enterprises had passed the one million mark (Ahlstrom et al., 2007). Koveos and Tang (2007) point out that China's economic upturn is strongly rooted in people's enthusiasm for business creation and that the entrepreneurial spirit has even entered large Chinese “blue-chip” enterprises. In short, Germany and China are appropriate for a cultural comparison and merit attention because of their economic importance and emphasis on entrepreneurship. This study proceeds as follows: The next section lays out the theoretical premises. Hypotheses are generated in the following section. The fourth section presents the methodology of the analysis. The findings are presented in Section 5 and discussed in detail in Section 6.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
6.1. Implications for research There is an agreement in the literature that EO positively impacts performance, but the question of how companies in different cultures can become entrepreneurial has not yet been answered. Research to date has provided no insights into whether it is the entrepreneurial organizations' similarities or their national culture that dominate the mechanisms that foster EO. The objective of this research was to address this gap by developing and testing a theoretical model that links organizational structure, leadership style, and organizational culture with EO. The relationships between these constructs were compared in terms of the German and Chinese cultural types. The findings for both national cultures indicate that drivers of EO are evident in all areas examined (i.e., organizational structure, leadership, and organizational culture). Cross-functional integration, consideration, and development culture as well as participation in the German cultural setting facilitate at least some dimensions of EO at the organizational level, whereas a high degree of centralization impedes EO. The first major finding is that, of all antecedents examined in this study, a development culture exerts the strongest influence on EO in both the German and Chinese contexts. Thus, one of the major tasks for management should be to foster an organizational culture that provides guidance for employees to behave in an entrepreneurial way. This result is in line with previous conceptual research that emphasizes the dominant role that organizational culture assumes in forming EO (e.g., Morris et al., 2007). The antecedents that belong to organizational structure and leadership style are less influential on EO than in a development culture, emphasizing the major role of this informal antecedent for EO. In terms of the more formal antecedents of organizational structure, the degree of cross-functional integration positively impacts risk-taking and proactiveness in both cultural contexts, and consideration and participation (in Germany) are positively and significantly linked to at least some dimensions of EO. The second major finding is that national culture impacts on the strength of some relationships of antecedents to EO, so the commonalities of entrepreneurial organizations are generally not strong enough to completely outweigh the influences of national culture. For example, cross-functional integration and consideration are both more important to EO in Chinese organizations than they are in German organizations. While these antecedents are important in both cultures, they are more essential for EO in China because people in this culture tend to value the opportunity to work together in groups (cross-functional integration) and to have harmonious relationships (consideration) more than Germans do. However, even though cross-functional integration and consideration do not address a major value of the German culture, both antecedents positively impact at least some dimensions of EO, emphasizing the robust nature of the direction of these relationships (Burgess and Steenkamp, 2006). Although there are no significant relationships between participation and the dimensions of EO in the Chinese sample, EO in German organizations is fostered by a strong degree of participation. Participation builds upon the notion that subordinates have sufficient freedom to make decisions by themselves, so this antecedent is particularly promising in the German context because it emphasizes the role of the individual and his or her decision-making authority. As Szabo et al. (2002) contend that these are values that are at the heart of the German cultural type. 6.2. Opportunities for future research and limitations The findings and limitations in the design of the present study lead to opportunities for future research. First, the present study's findings indicate that both culture-dependent and culture-independent relationships coexist. Cross-cultural generalization is typically implicit in entrepreneurship theories since we usually develop theories without explicit reference to their national cultural context. The present study's results in terms of cross-functional integration, consideration and, especially, participation suggest that theories and empirical results in organization-level entrepreneurship derived from one culture are limited in their generalizability. For example, a study solely conducted in a western context such as Germany would not have detected the strong role that consideration plays in shaping EO in the eastern context, especially in terms of innovativeness as a major dimension of EO. It follows that theoretical models in entrepreneurship research and empirical studies should be evaluated in light of possible national cultural dependencies. Where these dependencies are possible or likely, future studies should incorporate national culture as a major moderating variable. Second, a major limitation of the present study is that it does not use direct measures of national culture but, instead, compares two nations that differ markedly in terms of two major cultural dimensions. It follows that the moderators in this case are countries, and not the relevant measures of power distance or collectivism. Thus, while being a common procedure in the cross-cultural management literature, alternative explanations, such as differences in institutional contexts, cannot be completely ruled out as explanatory variables. Third, a limitation lies in the problem of ethnocentrism; since researchers are invariably biased by their own cultural heritage, their perceptions and interpretations of foreign cultures may also be biased. Future research might even be inspired by the ethnocentrism problem: Discussion among researchers from different national cultural settings may aid in detecting topics that are subject to ethnocentrism, and research on these topics may help researchers to think differently about the impacts of national culture. Fourth, the same measurement instruments were used in both cultural contexts, in line with Berry, 1989's recommendation that only similar measurement instruments can result in meaningful comparisons. However, Berry (1989) also explains that further studies may require adaptations to accommodate cultural particularities since, for example, a development culture may look different in China compared to the western context. Fifth, another limitation is that the present study focused only on a selection of antecedents of EO. While this approach might be suitable for a first study on the cultural dependence, future studies should incorporate antecedents such as formalization, management emphasis, and incentive structures (e.g., Covin and Slevin, 1989). Sixth, there is a further limitation in the concrete selection of Germany and China. While there are strong differences between them in terms of collectivism and power distance, the nations share commonalities regarding masculinity and uncertainty avoidance, so it follows that the influences of the latter two national cultural dimensions on the relationships examined in the present study cannot be found. Further, as evident in the hypothesis derivation for centralization, when the effects of the two examined cultural dimensions cancel out, no generalizable conclusions can be drawn from the comparison between Germany and China. 6.3. Practical implications The study has several practical implications. Generally, the findings indicate that the degree of EO is manageable, that is, an organization is not per se EO or not. In the effort to promote EO, managers are well-advised to focus first on establishing a strong development culture, regardless of the national cultural setting. In addition, managers who work across different cultures should know that more formal management levels related to the degree of EO are contingent on the employees' cultural predeterminations. While universal and situation-dependent relationships are both present, managers must be sensible to cultural particularities. In western settings, after having ensured a sufficient degree of development culture, managers should focus on increasing the level of participation in order to achieve higher levels of EO as subordinates in western cultural settings are more open to engaging in joint decision-making processes. However, in eastern countries, participation should not be of primary consideration when aiming at a higher degree of EO. Rather, promoting the integration between various functions in an organization can lead to greater EO since subordinates in these cultures value the opportunity to interact with other organization members more strongly. Further, increasing the degree of consideration is a promising option in order to foster EO. Thus, a manager who has successfully fostered EO in the western setting by putting emphasis on participation may have to adapt the approach for the eastern setting by focusing on cross-functional integration and consideration. The finding that the more formal antecedents of EO are particularly subject to national culture means that managers need to understand how the larger set of these antecedents (e.g., reward systems; Covin and Slevin, 1989) work in different cultural settings. Generally, the present study suggests that the desired effect can be expected when an antecedent is in line with the core values of the national culture.