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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2017

Bodo Steiner, Kevin Lan, Jim Unterschultz and Peter Boxall

The purpose of this paper is to explore drivers of alliance formation in a specialized supply chain from a manager’s perspective, focussing on firm-specific resources…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore drivers of alliance formation in a specialized supply chain from a manager’s perspective, focussing on firm-specific resources, resources embedded in inter-firm relationships and capabilities under the control of the focal firm.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper focusses on the resource-based view to obtain insights from the analysis of a manager survey conducted in Canada’s beef sector, applying a logistic regression approach to study alliance formation.

Findings

In identifying significant roles for resource richness and diversification of resource usage, the analysis highlights the importance of resource characteristics underlying factor market imperfections as drivers of alliance formation in a single primary input supply chain. The results suggest that resource heterogeneity is important for alliance formation and organizational success in specialized supply chains.

Research limitations/implications

If previous alliance-related experience of managers, controlled for in the underlying cross-sectional survey, serves as an approximation for persistent unobservables impacting the alliance formation decision, we may face spurious state-dependence.

Practical implications

Managers interested in building compatible alliances in specialized single primary input supply chains may benefit from an improved understanding of the differential role of resource characteristics and resource heterogeneity for alliance formation, as these can function as a source of competitive advantage.

Originality/value

The analysis provides new insights from an individual manager’s perspective on alliance formation drivers in a specialized agri-food supply chain, thereby solidifying extant findings on alliance formation obtained in other sectors. The study contributes to the understanding of the role of resources in alliance formation with regard to prior relationship experience, resource heterogeneity and thus causal ambiguity, thereby also contributing to the debate of the role of relational capabilities vs firm-internal resources for sustained competitive advantage.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 February 2018

Meng-Long Huo and Peter Boxall

Grounded in the theory of person-organisation fit, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the extent to which instrumental work values influence the relationship…

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1242

Abstract

Purpose

Grounded in the theory of person-organisation fit, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the extent to which instrumental work values influence the relationship between HR practices and employee well-being (measured by job satisfaction) in a sample of Chinese workers.

Design/methodology/approach

Questionnaire data for this cross-sectional, quantitative study were collected from 371 front-line workers in a Chinese manufacturer. Structural equation modelling was used to test the hypotheses.

Findings

The results show that work instrumentalism significantly reduces the positive effect of training on job satisfaction while boosting the positive effect of remuneration on job satisfaction. In contrast, there is no evidence for an interaction between instrumentalism and employee involvement.

Practical implications

The results imply that the degree to which HR practices are effective in promoting job satisfaction among these Chinese workers depends both on their work-value orientations and on the implications of the particular HR practice. Managers concerned about job satisfaction in China need to consider the impact of work values and the goals of particular HR practices.

Originality/value

China makes an enormously important contribution to world manufacturing output but the authors need a better understanding of how Chinese workers are likely to interpret and respond to HR practices if employee well-being in Chinese enterprises is to be fostered.

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Book part
Publication date: 15 July 2019

Peter Boxall, Meng-Long Huo, Keith Macky and Jonathan Winterton

High-involvement work processes (HIWPs) are associated with high levels of employee influence over the work process, such as high levels of control over how to handle…

Abstract

High-involvement work processes (HIWPs) are associated with high levels of employee influence over the work process, such as high levels of control over how to handle individual job tasks or a high level of involvement at team or workplace level in designing work procedures. When implementations of HIWPs are accompanied by companion investments in human capital – for example, in better information and training, higher pay and stronger employee voice – it is appropriate to talk not only of HIWPs but of “high-involvement work systems” (HIWSs). This chapter reviews the theory and practice of HIWPs and HIWSs. Across a range of academic perspectives and societies, it has regularly been argued that steps to enhance employee involvement in decision-making create better opportunities to perform, better utilization of skill and human potential, and better employee motivation, leading, in turn, to various improvements in organizational and employee outcomes.

However, there are also costs to increased employee involvement and the authors review the important economic and sociopolitical contingencies that help to explain the incidence or distribution of HIWPs and HIWSs. The authors also review the research on the outcomes of higher employee involvement for firms and workers, discuss the quality of the research methods used, and consider the tensions with which the model is associated. This chapter concludes with an outline of the research agenda, envisaging an ongoing role for both quantitative and qualitative studies. Without ignoring the difficulties involved, the authors argue, from the societal perspective, that the high-involvement pathway should be considered one of the most important vectors available to improve the quality of work and employee well-being.

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2009

John Gilbert and Peter Boxall

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the findings of a study of the management of senior managers. The aim is to describe the ways in which firms in a small economy…

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2352

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the findings of a study of the management of senior managers. The aim is to describe the ways in which firms in a small economy, such as New Zealand, manage their managers and analyse how they deal with the strategic challenges that are involved.

Design/methodology/approach

The study applies the Boxall and Gilbert typology of company styles in the management of senior managers. A case‐study approach is used with data collected through interviews with directors, chief executive officers and senior managers in firms chosen as characteristic of New Zealand conditions.

Findings

The case studies confirm the main expectations of the model: difficulties with the recruitment and retention of talented managers are severe in New Zealand, overshadowing all other problems, such as “agency” risks. The findings underscore the need for boards of directors to take a more proactive and comprehensive approach to the management of managers.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations of a qualitative, case‐based approach are acknowledged. However, the intent is to discern and analyse patterns and problems in a particular societal context. There is ample scope for similar studies in other contexts.

Practical implications

The study underlines the challenges firms in small economies can face in securing, developing and retaining a credible senior management team and suggests ways in which firms may approach these problems more effectively.

Originality/value

The paper presents an original study of how firms manage senior managers and uses a novel framework in drawing together themes from organisational economics, human resource development and strategic human resource management to provide an integrated analysis of how managers are managed.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Mark Le Fevre, Peter Boxall and Keith Macky

– The purpose of this paper is to identify whether there are particular employee groups that are more vulnerable to work intensification and its outcomes for well-being.

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1465

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify whether there are particular employee groups that are more vulnerable to work intensification and its outcomes for well-being.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper utilises data collected in two representative national surveys in 2005 (n=1,004) and 2009 (n=1,016), first to determine which employee groups are most vulnerable to work intensification and, second, to identify who is more vulnerable to the impacts of high work intensity on well-being, in terms of job (dis)satisfaction, stress, fatigue, and work-life imbalance.

Findings

Professionals reported significantly higher levels of work intensity than all other occupational groups, and higher levels of stress and work-life imbalance. In addition, full-time employees experienced greater work intensity than part-timers, and union members than non-union members. Public-sector employees reported greater stress and work-life imbalance than those in the private sector. There was also a small, but significant and consistent, interaction effect that identified women as more negatively impacted by high work intensity than men.

Research limitations/implications

Professionals have become vulnerable workers, in the sense of high levels of work demand, and the notion of worker vulnerability needs to recognise this. Future research on vulnerable employees would benefit from a broader conception of what constitutes vulnerability, exploring a wider range of employee groups who might be considered vulnerable, and including a wider range of potential outcomes for the lives and well-being of the individuals concerned. In particular, a more finely grained examination of the working conditions of professionals would be desirable, as would a more detailed examination of the reasons for the higher negative impact of work intensity on women.

Practical implications

One way of improving the sustainability of professional working is to foster higher rates of part-time working, which brings better outcomes in terms of stress and work-life balance. This, however, is hardly a societal remedy and the question of how to reverse deteriorating job quality among professionals, particularly those struggling to balance work and family demands, is something that needs much greater attention.

Originality/value

The paper expands the notion of “vulnerable workers” to recognise those groups most at risk of work intensification, and the outcomes of that intensification for satisfaction, stress, fatigue, and work-life balance. The authors add to the small group of studies highlighting the degradation of professional work, as well as identifying other types of employee who are more vulnerable to work intensification. The use of two large-scale surveys, with a four-year gap, has allowed a high degree of consistency in the patterns of vulnerability to be revealed.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 36 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2015

Carla Houkamau and Peter Boxall

The purpose of this paper is to examine the “other-group orientation” (OGO) of New Zealand (NZ) workers as a way of measuring their attitudes to the growing ethnic…

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1207

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the “other-group orientation” (OGO) of New Zealand (NZ) workers as a way of measuring their attitudes to the growing ethnic diversity in the contemporary workplace.

Design/methodology/approach

In all, 500 randomly selected NZ employees were surveyed through computer-assisted telephone interviews. Males, females and ethnic groups were included according to their current proportions in the NZ workforce. Analysis is based on 485 useable cases.

Findings

While New Zealanders generally have a high level of OGO, minority ethnic groups and graduates score higher on OGO. Among people under 38 years, males tend to have a higher OGO, while among those over 38, females tend to be higher.

Research limitations/implications

The study shows the value of studying the attitudes of workers in relation to diversity and OGO. Workers bring their own orientations into the workplace, affecting the way they relate to their co-workers.

Social implications

The pathway to more inclusive workplaces in NZ lies largely in influencing the attitudes and behaviour of NZ Europeans. The study suggests that inclusive educational experiences may be a key part of that process.

Originality/value

While the research shows that NZ workers are generally very positive about ethnic diversity, it reveals variations among ethnic and educational groups in terms of their openness to others.

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Book part
Publication date: 15 July 2019

Abstract

Details

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-852-0

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Book part
Publication date: 15 July 2019

Abstract

Details

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-852-0

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2003

Janet Druker

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6241

Abstract

Details

Management Decision, vol. 41 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 20 February 2007

Keith M.C. O'Sullivan

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144

Abstract

Details

Reference Reviews, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0950-4125

Keywords

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