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Article
Publication date: 5 August 2019

Lisa A. Pace and Ian Miles

Firms need to develop absorptive capacities to effectively source and exploit knowledge relevant to environmental behaviour for their own innovation activity…

Abstract

Purpose

Firms need to develop absorptive capacities to effectively source and exploit knowledge relevant to environmental behaviour for their own innovation activity. Business-to-business interactions can represent a significant route through which knowledge and resources about environmental innovations are transferred along the supply chain. The purpose of this paper is to explore how firms exploit business partnerships in order to build capacity for environmental innovation. In order to do so, it investigates two elements of B2B interactions – partner alignment and compatibility – and their influence on absorptive capacity-building.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based on a qualitative interview study of knowledge intensive business services (KIBS) operating in the environmental goods and services sector and their clients involved in adopting environmental innovations. Matched pairs of engineering consulting firms and their clients – tourism accommodation establishments – were selected as a sampling frame in order to study the influence of partner alignment and compatibility on the exchange of environmentally relevant knowledge and competencies.

Findings

The findings show that the synergistic attributes of business partners influence absorptive capacity-building and give rise to different patterns of interaction of KIBS with their client. The B2B interactions investigated are characterised by alignment along multiple objectives about the relevance of environmental behaviour. Furthermore, the compatibility of the partners’ competences is a key determinant of environmental innovation outcome.

Practical implications

The study highlights the role of managers in identifying and selecting those business partnerships that accrue greater potential benefit for accessing resources and competencies for eco-innovation.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the literature on absorptive capacity and innovation by demonstrating how B2B interactions – in this study, the interaction of KIBS with their clients – influence the capacity of firms to adopt environmental innovations which is an area of study that deserves further attention.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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Article
Publication date: 30 January 2007

Călin Gurău

The development of new information technology and telecommunication (ITT) devices has increased the complexity of business‐to‐business (B2B) interactions, forcing the…

Abstract

Purpose

The development of new information technology and telecommunication (ITT) devices has increased the complexity of business‐to‐business (B2B) interactions, forcing the service organisations to adopt a multi‐channel, customer‐oriented approach. The purpose of this study is to present an exploratory study of B2B interactions in Romania, which measures the preference of both service providers and client firms for various channels of interaction, and identifies the main dimensions of the interactive process.

Design/methodology/approach

The primary data were collected through an e‐mail questionnaire that was answered by 113 service providers and 102 client organisations, and then analysed using the SPSS statistical package.

Findings

Five main interaction dimensions have been identified as the framework used by client organisations to evaluate the quality of B2B interactions. These dimensions are complex constructs that have a double projection in the context of ITT systems and CRM procedures.

Originality/value

The process of B2B interactions is poorly documented for transition economies, such as Romania. After describing the dimensions of B2B interactions, the paper proposes a diagnostic procedure for evaluating the perception gaps between the service provider firm and the client organisation, concerning the quality level of each dimension. This diagnostic can be adapted and used by each service provider organisation to identify the possible areas of customer dissatisfaction and the requirements for future improvements.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2007

Nicole E. Plenge, Robin Adair Erickson and Michael E. Roloff

This article aims to examine how situational constraints impact clients' valuations of the task and socio‐emotional resources exchanged when interacting with consultants…

Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to examine how situational constraints impact clients' valuations of the task and socio‐emotional resources exchanged when interacting with consultants. In consultant‐client relationships, the emphasis on economic resources has commodified these interactions into explicit exchanges of time, money, and deliverables.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of five hypotheses were tested using a within‐subjects experimental design. Subjects consisted of 110 adult professionals who were presented with five different scenarios in a random sequence and asked to rank order and evaluate a list of professional‐service resources.

Findings

The valuation of resources was found to change when situational constraints were present. Regardless of the context, task resources were generally valued more than socio‐emotional resources. When relational constraints were salient, socio‐emotional resources were valued more in long‐term than short‐term relationships. When faced with time pressure or budgetary constraints, task needs were valued more than socio‐emotional needs.

Research limitations/implications

There is potential bias due to snowball sampling, and the hypothetical nature of the experimental scenarios limits the generalizability of this study.

Practical implications

For clients, this research indicates that the context surrounding consultant‐client interactions plays an important role in shaping clients' valuation of resources, both individually and collectively. For consultants, these findings suggest that a “one‐size‐fits‐all” strategy is not the most effective way to approach consultant‐client interactions.

Originality/value

This study contributes to our knowledge about how situational constraints impact clients' valuation of the task and socio‐emotional resources offered by consultants.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1997

Theo M.M. Verhallen, Harriette Greve and Ruud Th. Frambach

Notes that the literature on personal selling and advising on services stresses the importance of analysing the actual client‐adviser interaction process. Explores this…

Abstract

Notes that the literature on personal selling and advising on services stresses the importance of analysing the actual client‐adviser interaction process. Explores this process of interaction in a mortgage setting by observing 42 conversations between advisers and 26 clients. The exact content and characteristics of interactions were recorded and coded using a category system based on consultative selling. The results show vast differences between advisers in their selling approach. In most cases, the sequence of problem‐solving phases that advisers employed differed from those of the ideal model. Advisers generally did not probe for the wishes of clients but instead started by presenting alternative product solutions, a typical feature of a hard selling approach. Demonstrates the effectiveness of direct observation for the study of client‐server interaction in financial services.

Details

International Journal of Bank Marketing, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-2323

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 1999

Jan A. De Jong and Ilse M. Van Eekelen

Although much has been written on skills and strategies of management consultants, little research has been done on what management consultants actually do. In this…

Abstract

Although much has been written on skills and strategies of management consultants, little research has been done on what management consultants actually do. In this study, three senior consultants were shadowed, each for a one week period. Management consultancy turns out to be a hectic and highly interactive job. Important interaction partners are clients, colleagues, and secretaries, although only the first are highlighted in literature. Catalytic intervention is the most dominant approach in client contacts. The relatively rare desk work sessions of management consultants are even more interrupted than those of managers. An important function of their desk work (and of their work as a whole) is structuring information gained in client contacts.

Details

Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 20 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2006

Paula R. Dempsey

This study uses a microanalysis of interaction approach to study how interactive service workers collaborate with one another in conversations to construct their…

Abstract

This study uses a microanalysis of interaction approach to study how interactive service workers collaborate with one another in conversations to construct their professional identity in the face of the rapid contextual change. The data consist of (1) a complex written exchange downloaded from an Internet listserv and (2) a mechanically recorded conversation and detailed transcript showing the exact sequence of turns in the conversation, overlapping utterances, laughter, and speech errors. Everyday descriptions in these conversations reveal how knowledge workers produce and reproduce professional identity and a shared culture in the ways they: (1) categorize themselves and other workers, (2) amend or collaborate on each other's characterizations of clients, and (3) negotiate local policies and rules as they intersect with professional values and emotional boundaries. The results demonstrate a need for opportunities to integrate the increasing complexity of interactive service into professional identity as a response to technological and social change.

Details

Advances in Library Administration and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1410-2

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1999

Cathy Urquhart

Discusses the qualitative analysis of a case study of analyst‐client communications using grounded theory and themed analyses. Describes in detail the interaction that…

Abstract

Discusses the qualitative analysis of a case study of analyst‐client communications using grounded theory and themed analyses. Describes in detail the interaction that took place between an analyst and a client in a public sector agency in Tasmania, Australia. Uses a theatrical metaphor to give a representation that encompasses chronological and contextual aspects, providing an immediacy that enables the reader to appreciate how the interaction developed over time. Using concepts derived from the use of grounded theory techniques, demonstrates how these concepts and themes operated in this particular case. Concludes with a general discussion of themes and contextual influences as they occur in the case of the student assistance scheme and other cases studied by the author.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Book part
Publication date: 27 October 2016

Amy M. Hageman and Dann G. Fisher

Tax professionals in public accounting firms must meet professional standards in working with their clients, but may also face pressure from both their clients and firms…

Abstract

Tax professionals in public accounting firms must meet professional standards in working with their clients, but may also face pressure from both their clients and firms when making ethical decisions. The purpose of this study is to examine the influence of client factors on tax professionals’ ethical decision-making. Furthermore, we also investigate how client service climate and different ethical climate types affect these ethical decisions. Based on an experimental design with 149 practicing tax professionals, results indicate that tax professionals are not swayed by client importance or social interaction with the client when making ethical decisions. However, tax professionals are more likely to engage in ethical behavior when their own accounting firm monitors and tracks the quality of client service, whereas unethical behavior is more common when public accounting firms emphasize using personal ethical beliefs in decision-making. The results of the study suggest the importance of strong policies and procedures to promote ethical decision-making in firms.

Details

Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-973-2

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Article
Publication date: 2 September 2019

Yogi Yusuf Wibisono, Rajesri Govindaraju, Dradjad Irianto and Iman Sudirman

The purpose of this paper is to develop and to empirically test a model that explains how managing differences between an information technology (IT) provider and an…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop and to empirically test a model that explains how managing differences between an information technology (IT) provider and an overseas client influences partnership quality and ultimately affects the continuity of the relationship.

Design/methodology/approach

A field survey by distributing questionnaires to Indonesian IT providers was conducted over four months, yielding 78 completed responses. These empirical data were analyzed by the partial least squares–structural equation modeling technique to examine the measurement and structural models.

Findings

Managing differences, i.e. cultural, temporal and standards differences, has a positive impact on partnership quality through inter-firm interaction, i.e. information exchange, coordination and participation. Partnership quality, consisting of the dimensions of commitment, trust and integration, has a substantial positive impact on the continuity of the relationship.

Research limitations/implications

This study was limited by the use of a limited number of samples, reducing the precision of the results.

Practical implications

This study suggests that if the IT provider is able to manage the cultural, temporal and standards differences with the overseas client, it increases information exchange, coordination and participation between both parties, which are necessary for establishing a high-quality partnership.

Originality/value

This study is the first empirical examination of how the management of differences between an IT provider and an overseas client influences the continuity of their relationship through interaction and partnership quality.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 10 March 2020

Jean Robert Kala Kamdjoug, Ransome Epie Bawack and Aurel Edith Tuessu Tayou

The purpose of this paper is to propose an enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementation model based on the agency theory and the Delone and McLean information systems…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose an enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementation model based on the agency theory and the Delone and McLean information systems (IS) success model. This paper answers two major research questions: (i) how does client–consultant interaction affect the outcome of ERP implementation projects; and (ii) how can this interaction be managed effectively to ensure successful project outcomes?

Design/methodology/approach

An electronic banking institution in Africa was used to conduct a case study research and examine the validity of the proposed conceptual framework.

Findings

Based on the constructs of the conceptual framework, the study found that client–consultant relationships/interactions mediate the effect of human, organizational, and technological critical success factors (CSFs) on information quality, service quality, and information quality. Agency conflicts in client–consultant relationships can be managed using outcome incentive-based contracts and a conflict management committee.

Research limitations/implications

This is a single case study research. Thus, despite its analytical validity and generalizability, there is a need for more studies on the statistical validity of the model in other contexts.

Practical implications

This paper provides practical information needed to manage conflicts between clients and consultants, as well as factors that must be considered in order to keep the interest of both parties aligned.

Originality/value

No research has been conducted on how to manage client–consultant interactions and related conflicts in ERP implementation projects. This study fills this gap using a well-established theoretical foundation to propose a conceptual framework that would guide and drive further discussions on the topic. This is also one of the few studies in the context of developing countries.

Details

Business Process Management Journal, vol. 26 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-7154

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