The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between firms’ entrepreneurial orientations (EOs) and the adoption of quality management (QM) practices. The role of environmental uncertainty as the moderator of the former relationship is considered.
Using theories and related empirical evidences, two research hypotheses were argued and proposed. These hypotheses were tested using data collected from a unique sample of 301 Uruguayan and Argentinean manufacturing companies with more than 20 workers assessed through personal interviews. The empirical methodology includes statistic treatment for scale validation, statistic descriptive techniques and regression analysis.
Firms’ EO is determinant for the adoption of QM practices. The environmental uncertainty strengthens the positive impact of EO on the adoption of QM practices, mainly human resource management practices.
The data come from a particular geographical context and refer to manufacturing plants. It would be interesting to extend the scope of this study to services. The collection of data from only one individual in each organization can generate a potential problem with using single-source information.
Innovative manufacturing companies that try to adopt advanced QM practices will benefit from hiring managers who are able to take risks, and to seek a long-term orientation toward being aggressive with their environment, especially in highly competitive contexts. Mustering these features may ensure perseverance in the adoption of advanced manufacturing practices, even in the presence of complex and uncertain environments.
The principal contribution of this paper is that it advances the study of the intersection between operations management and entrepreneurship, analyzing how firms’ EO affects the adoption of new methods and practices in manufacturing. Furthermore, it is important to highlight the fact that the authors use data from a unique survey of manufacturing companies from Argentina and Uruguay in the southern cone of Latin America. The authors also contribute to the open debate about the universality of QM practices.
The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia (ECO2010-21242-C03-03; ECO2010-21393-C03-04) and from the AECI- Spanish Agency of International Cooperation.
Bello-Pintado, A., Kaufmann, R. and Merino Diaz de Cerio, J. (2018), "Firms’ entrepreneurial orientation and the adoption of quality management practices: Empirical evidence from a Latin American context", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 35 No. 9, pp. 1734-1754. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJQRM-05-2017-0089Download as .RIS
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