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The impact of sociocultural context on strategic renewal: A twenty-six nation analysis of family firms

Kevin Au (Management, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong) (Center for Entrepreneuership, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong)
Stone Han (Graduate School of Management, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
Hsi-Mei Chung (Graduate School of Management, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)

Cross Cultural & Strategic Management

ISSN: 2059-5794

Article publication date: 10 August 2018

Issue publication date: 31 October 2018

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute a multilevel, cross-national analysis of the role that sociocultural context may play to enrich the understanding of strategic renewal in family firms. The authors conceptualize sociocultural context as consisting of firm-level social contexts and national culture, and propose that: heterogeneous social contexts in family firm management, i.e. family CEO and multigenerational involvement, give rise to mindsets that have differential effects on renewal efforts and that the proposed effects are subject to variation due to the moderation of national cultural dimensions of uncertainty avoidance and power distance.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use unique date set consisting of 959 family firms from 26 countries drawn from a cross-national, quantitative study of family firms.

Findings

The authors found that family CEO is negatively related to renewal across cultures, and this relationship is attenuated by uncertainty avoidance and power distance. In addition, multigenerational involvement is positively related to renewal, and this relationship is enhanced by the two cultural dimensions.

Practical implications

The authors suggest that decision makers examine how different contexts, practices and cognition contribute to overall dominant logics that exist in firm. In doing so, they can evaluate how logics as a whole affect renewal, and also how different parts of the logics play a role. This overall evaluation will afford managers a holistic picture of renewal forces that operate in family firm and allow managers to make precise changes to enhance strategic renewal.

Originality/value

The findings support the contention that there is cultural-dependent countervailing effects on strategic renewal within family firms.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This paper forms part of a special section: “Transgenerational entrepreneurship in the global world”.

Citation

Au, K., Han, S. and Chung, H.-M. (2018), "The impact of sociocultural context on strategic renewal: A twenty-six nation analysis of family firms", Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, Vol. 25 No. 4, pp. 604-627. https://doi.org/10.1108/CCSM-07-2017-0090

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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