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The effect of corporate social responsibility on employee advocacy behaviors: a perspective of conservation of resources

Zonghua Liu (Economics and Management School, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, China)
Yulang Guo (School of Business Administration, Guangdong University of Finance and Economics, Guangzhou, China)
Junyun Liao (School of Management, Jinan University, Guangzhou, China)
Yanping Li (Economics and Management School, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China)
Xu Wang (Economics and Management School, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, China)

Chinese Management Studies

ISSN: 1750-614X

Article publication date: 8 April 2021

Abstract

Purpose

Despite past studies revealed the positive effect of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on consumer advocacy behavior, little research has paid attention to employee advocacy behavior. This research aims to examine the relationship between CSR and employee advocacy behavior, the mediating role of meaningful work as well as the moderating effect of person–supervisor fit on CSR perception – meaningful work relationship.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used 263 employee samples to examine the relationship between CSR and employee advocacy behavior and its influence mechanism. Hierarchical regression analyses and bootstrap approach were applied to analyze the data.

Findings

The results show that CSR perception is positively related to employee advocacy behavior, meaningful work mediates the link between CSR perception and employee advocacy behavior, and the strength of the relationship between CSR perception and meaningful work depends on person–supervisor fit.

Research limitations

This study only investigated the effect of perceived CSR on employee advocacy behavior, future studies should explore the alternative mediation mechanism through which external/internal CSR perception or different CSR dimensions influence employee advocacy behavior.

Practical implications

This study has practical implications for organizational managers. First, firms should undertake CSR practices and make employee interpret them in a right way. Second, meaningful work is of significance for employees and training and development, challenging jobs and job rotation are conducive to create a sense of meaning in employees’ work.

Originality/value

This study discussed how and when CSR influences employee advocacy in the Chinese context.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study is supported by the National Social Science Foundation and the Social Responsibility of New Ventures from the Per

Citation

Liu, Z., Guo, Y., Liao, J., Li, Y. and Wang, X. (2021), "The effect of corporate social responsibility on employee advocacy behaviors: a perspective of conservation of resources", Chinese Management Studies, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/CMS-08-2020-0325

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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