In recent years, the hierarchical nature of organizations is severely criticized. Will hierarchy be gradually replaced by networks? Or else, will it be revitalized through certain variations while remaining its distinct characteristics in the vertical relationship between upper and lower levels of an organization? Drawing upon research on “administrative organization” by Simon (1962), this research is based upon an in-depth case study on Baosteel, one of the “Fortune Global 500” Chinese iron & steel conglomerate. We find that heterarchy is a variation of hierarchy and applicable in both systems of operations management and strategic management. Moreover, the seemingly paradoxical decentralization of authority and concentration of business activities are discovered as the key driving forces in the formation of hierarchical structure. The existence of heterarchy adds variety to organizational world.
This research uses data of Chinese listed companies during 2001– 2004 to test the effects of managerial power on perquisite consumption and firm performance from the perspectives of CEO duality, ownership dispersion and long-term tenure of top executives. Results show that companies with higher managerial power tend to incur higher perquisite consumption, while their performance does not improve accordingly. Moreover, perquisite consumption fails to offer effective incentives to managers, and non-state-controlled listed companies have greater managerial power, higher perquisite consumption, and worse performance than that of their state-controlled peers. Results also show that managerial power is an important factor influencing compensation incentive.
This paper identifies five dimensions of human resource management ethics (HRME) from the extant literature, namely ethical values, rights, fairness and justice, openness, and ethical care. Based on employee manuals of 160 companies, this paper conducts a content analysis to identify the characteristics and differences of HRME in various types of firms and different industries. Results indicate that the status quo of HRME in Chinese firms is far from being satisfactory due to the lack of ethical care, unfair and nontransparent employee appraisal procedures and outcomes. The results also show that there are significant differences in the five dimensions of HRME among state-owned enterprises, private enterprises, joint ventures, and foreign companies. It is also found that there is no significant interaction effect between enterprise ownership type and industry on HRME.
Based on data from China’s listed companies from 1998 to 2005, this paper investigates whether the incorporation of corporate life cycle variables into the accrual model improves the model’s explanatory power. Results of the empirical study show that the inclusion of corporate life cycle variables reduces the likelihood of both type I and II errors, and it also significantly improves the explanatory power of the accrual model.
This paper examines the timing of big retailers’ initial internationalization and proposes a theoretical framework. Then, the framework is tested with the proportional hazard model and data of European and U.S. big retailers. Empirical results show that retailers’ entry timing is jointly influenced by the economic conditions of both the home market and target foreign markets, cultural and geographical distance, and the entry mode. Based on these findings, this article offers suggestions to China’s big retailers whose initial internationalization has just started.
Most existing studies on employee-organization relationship (EOR) are either from the employee perspective (e.g., the psychological contract approach) or from the employer perspective (e.g., the inducement and contribution approach). Drawing upon prior research, we propose in this paper an inducement-performance/commitment (I-P/C) model based on a dual perspective. Our empirical test on the model reveals that developmental inducements have stronger effects on employees’ contributions than economic inducements, and that the incongruent perception of inducements between employees and managers moderates the relationship between organizational inducements and employee contributions. We also find that employee satisfaction varies in different I-P/C combination categories.
This study develops a scale, organizational cohesion inventory (OCI), which measures cohesion at the organizational level. The OCI contains six dimensions: employee centripetalism, leader cohesiveness, task cooperation, interpersonal harmony, benefit sharing, and value identification. We conducted three studies to develop and validate the OCI in the Chinese context. In Study 1, we generated and selected scale items, and examined the construct validity of the OCI. Study 2 tested its incremental validity and nomological validity. Study 3 assessed its concurrent validity. In general, results of the three studies show that the OCI has good psychometric properties. It is therefore could be useful for more thorough and comprehensive studies on organizational cohesion.
This study investigates the impact of CIO’s presence in an organization’s top management team (TMT) on the contribution of information technology (IT) to corporate innovation. A new theoretical model is proposed based on the literature review. Through a survey of 120 CIOs of Chinese companies, we examine a series of hypotheses developed based on this model. Our findings reveal significant influences of CIO’s presence in the TMT on IT’s contribution to corporate innovations. The findings also suggest that such impacts are mediated by TMT’s IT knowledge. Furthermore, we find the significant moderating role of TMT’s risk appetite, i.e., when the executives are more willing to take risks, the relationship between CIO’s participation in TMT and the importance of IT to innovation is more significant. Theoretical contributions and practical implications of these findings are also discussed.