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Article
Publication date: 13 August 2020

Xiaoyu Guan and Stephen Frenkel

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether perceived organizational support for strength use (POSSU) predicts employee thriving at work and the underlying mechanisms that…

1464

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether perceived organizational support for strength use (POSSU) predicts employee thriving at work and the underlying mechanisms that explain this relationship.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis is based on data from an online, time-lagged survey of 209 employees. Latent moderated structural equations (LMS) method was used to test the mediating role of job crafting and meaningfulness and the moderating role of core self-evaluation (CSE) in the organizational support-employee thriving relationship.

Findings

POSSU has a direct, positive relationship with employee thriving at work. Moreover, this relationship is fully mediated by employees' job crafting (as an agentic work behavior) and meaningfulness (as a resource produced at work). In addition, contextual factor of POSSU synergistically interacts with individual characteristic of CSE to foster thriving at work.

Research limitations/implications

Based on a time-lagged survey, causal relationships cannot be drawn from this study. Results point to future research that can incorporate specific types of work climate and organizational practices in a multilevel design to investigate how context at team, unit and organizational levels impact employee thriving.

Practical implications

The study results highlight the importance of fostering employee thriving at work by implementing organizational practices that create supportive, innovative and meaningful workplaces. Management needs to pay close attention to develop a supportive organizational climate geared to identifying, developing and utilizing employees' strengths.

Originality/value

This study provides theoretical explanations and empirical tests on the mechanisms linking organization support and employee thriving based on the socially embedded model of thriving.

Article
Publication date: 19 June 2019

Wenguang Zhang, Xiaoyu Guan, Xueqin Zhou and Ji Lu

This study investigated employees’ career planning in preparation for the impact of manufacturing transformation triggered by automation technology. Built on career construction…

1691

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigated employees’ career planning in preparation for the impact of manufacturing transformation triggered by automation technology. Built on career construction theory, the purpose of this paper is to conceptualize career planning as an attempt to integrate oneself into the social environment. In this process of integration, career adaptability is a critical psychological resource for adaptation to anticipated changes.

Design/methodology/approach

Through an online survey, 476 participants answered questions regarding the following aspects: perceptions of the threats and opportunities posed by automation technology; career adaptability, that is, career-related concern, control, curiosity, and confidence in adapting to occupational transitions; and career plans and actions to address the challenge, including short-term job crafting behaviors and long-term career adjustment plan.

Findings

The results showed that opportunity and threat perceptions were associated with one’s job crafting behavior and long-term career adjustment plan and such relationships were moderated by career adaptability and work experience relevant to automation technologies. Specifically, career adaptability is a psychological resource helping individuals deal with perceived challenges, while relevant work experience moderated one’s strategies to catch opportunities.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the understanding of psychosocial determinants for better career planning in the midst of the industrial revolution. Policies that aim to prepare workers for the upcoming social transition may benefit from this study to leverage adaptive and proactive behaviors at a societal level.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 24 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 May 2018

Xiaoyu Guan and Stephen Frenkel

Scholars have adopted different theoretical perspectives to explain the influence of HR practice on employee outcomes. However, few studies have investigated the role of human…

5386

Abstract

Purpose

Scholars have adopted different theoretical perspectives to explain the influence of HR practice on employee outcomes. However, few studies have investigated the role of human resource (HR) practice in fostering higher in-role and extra-role employee performance by encouraging employee participation in job design, a process referred to as job crafting. Drawing on human resource management (HRM) process theory and the job crafting literature, this study aims to examine how work engagement and job crafting mediate the relationship between employee perceptions of HR practice and employee performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use survey on a sample of 455 employees working in five Chinese manufacturing firms to test their theoretical model.

Findings

This study finds that where management maintains a strong HR system, employees are more likely to be engaged in their work and participate in job crafting. In addition, job crafting on its own, and work engagement and job crafting together, are shown to mediate the HRM–performance relationship.

Research limitations/implications

In a Chinese context, line managers (including supervisors) are both important implementers of HR policy and vary in their adoption of particular roles. Yet our research did not consider the role of these persons in facilitating work engagement or job crafting. Future studies could usefully explore how these managers vary in their attitudes towards job crafting and the roles they play in encouraging this important activity.

Practical implications

One important implication is that strong HR system with distinctive, consistent and consensus HR practices should be used by managers to motivate employees to encourage work engagement and job crafting behaviours.

Originality/value

This study enriches the theoretical framework to explain the underlying mechanism between HRM and employee performance from job crafting perspective.

Details

Chinese Management Studies, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-614X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 September 2018

Xiaoyu Guan and Stephen Frenkel

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the influence of firm training on the job performance of mainly semi-skilled manufacturing employees in the context of changes required…

6911

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the influence of firm training on the job performance of mainly semi-skilled manufacturing employees in the context of changes required to ensure the competitiveness of contemporary Chinese manufacturing.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected using a survey with time-lagged method and from multiple sources. The sample included 348 supervisor-subordinate dyads from two Chinese manufacturing firms. PROCESS macro tool (Hayes) was used to test the mediating role of work engagement and the moderating role of HRM strength in the training-performance relationship.

Findings

Work engagement mediates the relationship between training and in-role task performance, while the relationships between work engagement and both task performance and organizational citizenship behavior are moderated by HRM strength.

Research limitations/implications

Based on a time-lagged survey, causal relationships cannot be drawn from this study. Results point to future research on the training-performance relationship that more closely considers antecedents and the organizations’ internal and external contexts.

Practical implications

Managers should pay close attention to the context and process of training and learning from the employees’ perspective. In addition, a strong HRM system will improve the benefits of training on employee performance.

Originality/value

This study provides theoretical explanations on the mechanisms linking training and employee performance based on the ability-motivation-opportunity framework.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 48 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 August 2019

The authors wanted to find out if perceptions of training were positively related to work engagement and also assess the mediating influence on human resource management.

249

Abstract

Purpose

The authors wanted to find out if perceptions of training were positively related to work engagement and also assess the mediating influence on human resource management.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors sent out 415 questionnaires to employees in two Chinese garment factories supplying an Australian retailer. Overall, 360 questionnaires were returned and 348 were valid. The survey covered perceptions of the organization’s training practices. A month later, a second survey included employee evaluations of the HRM strength and their work engagement. Meanwhile, supervisors filled out a survey rating employee work performance.

Findings

The study found that their perceptions of training were positively related to work engagement. The study also revealed that when there was a strong human resource management (HRM) climate, employees had more training opportunities and were more strongly motivated to perform well.

Originality/value

The authors claimed their study of 348 supervisor-subordinate dyads offered important lessons for managers. It provided guidance on how to increase work engagement and job performance. The research took place in China because it was especially relevant to the cultural and economic context there. China has rapidly grown, but shortages of labour and rising protests about working conditions have made change inevitable.

Details

Human Resource Management International Digest , vol. 27 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 January 2018

Xiaolong Lu, Shiping Zhao, Xiaoyu Liu and Yishu Wang

The purpose of this paper is to describe the design and development of “Pylon-Climber II”, a 5-DOF biped climbing robot (degree of freedom – DOF) for moving on the external…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the design and development of “Pylon-Climber II”, a 5-DOF biped climbing robot (degree of freedom – DOF) for moving on the external surface of a tower and assisting the electricians to complete some maintenance tasks.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper introduces a pole-climbing robot, which consists of a 5-DOF mechanical arm and two novel grippers. The gripper is composed of a two-finger clamping module and a retractable L-shaped hook module. The robot is symmetrical in structure, and the rotary joint for connecting two arms is driven by a linear drive mechanism.

Findings

The developed prototype proved a new approach for the inspection and maintenance of the electricity pylon. The gripper can reliably grasp the angle bars with different specifications by using combined movement of the two-finger clamping module and the retractable L-shaped hook module and provide sufficient adhesion force for the Pylon-Climber II.

Practical implications

The clamping experiments of the gripper and the climbing experiments of the robot were carried out on a test tower composed of some angle bars with different specification.

Originality/value

This paper includes the design and development of a 5-DOF biped climbing robot for electricity pylon maintenance. The climbing robot can move on the external surface of the electric power tower through grasping the angle bar alternatively. The gripper that is composed of a two-finger gripping module and a retractable L-shaped hook module is very compact and can provide reliable adhesion force for the climbing robot.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 45 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 16 January 2017

Xiaolong Lu, Shiping Zhao, Deping Yu and Xiaoyu Liu

The purpose of this paper is to describe the design and development of “Pylon-Climber”, a pole climbing robot (PCR) for climbing along the corner columns of electricity pylon and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the design and development of “Pylon-Climber”, a pole climbing robot (PCR) for climbing along the corner columns of electricity pylon and assisting the electricians to complete maintenance tasks.

Design/methodology/approach

Introduces a PCR that is composed of a simple climbing mechanism and two novel grippers. The gripper consists of two angle-fixed V-blocks, and the size of V-block is variable. The clamping method of the angle bar meets the requirement of the force closure theorem. The whole design adopts symmetrical design ideas.

Findings

The developed prototype proved possibility of application of PCRs for inspection and maintenance of pylon. The novel gripper can provide enough adhesion force for climbing robot.

Practical implications

The robot is successfully tested on a test tower composed of different specification steel angles, oblique ledges and overlapping steel struts.

Originality/value

Design and development of a novel climbing assistive robot for pylon maintenance. The robot is able to climb along the column of electricity pylon and pass all obstacles. The gripper can reliably grasp the angle bar with different specification and overlapping steel struts from multiple directions.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 March 2021

Xin Feng, Liangxuan Li, Jiapei Li, Meiru Cui, Liming Sun and Ye Wu

This paper aims to study the characteristics and evolution rules of tagging knowledge network for users with different activity levels in question-and-answer (Q&A) community…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the characteristics and evolution rules of tagging knowledge network for users with different activity levels in question-and-answer (Q&A) community represented by Zhihu.

Design/methodology/approach

A random sample of issue tag data generated by topics in the Zhihu network environment is selected. By defining user quality and selecting the top 20% and bottom 20% of users to focus on, i.e. top users and bot users, the authors apply time slicing for both types of data to construct label knowledge networks, use Q-Q diagrams and ARIMA models to analyze network indicators and introduce the theory and methods of network motif.

Findings

This study shows that when the power index of degree distribution is less than or equal to 3.1, the ARIMA model with rank index of label network has a higher fitting degree. With the development of the community, the correlation between tags in the tagging knowledge network is very weak.

Research limitations/implications

It is not comprehensive and sufficient to classify users only according to their activity levels. And traditional statistical analysis is not applicable to large data sets. In the follow-up work, the authors will further explore the characteristics of the network at a larger scale and longer timescale and consider adding more node features, including some edge features. Then, users are statistically classified according to the attributes of nodes and edges to construct complex networks, and algorithms such as machine learning and deep learning are used to calculate large-scale data sets to deeply study the evolution of knowledge networks.

Practical implications

This paper uses the real data of the Zhihu community to divide users according to user activity and combines the theoretical methods of statistical testing, time series and network motifs to carry out the time series evolution of the knowledge network of the Q&A community. And these research methods provide other network problems with some new ideas. Research has found that user activity has a certain impact on the evolution of the tagging network. The tagging network followed by users with high activity level tends to be stable, and the tagging network followed by users with low activity level gradually fluctuates.

Social implications

Research has found that user activity has a certain impact on the evolution of the tagging network. The tagging network followed by users with high activity level tends to be stable, and the tagging network followed by users with low activity level gradually fluctuates. For the community, understanding the formation mechanism of its network structure and key nodes in the network is conducive to improving the knowledge system of the content, finding user behavior preferences and improving user experience. Future research work will focus on identifying outbreak points from a large number of topics, predicting topical trends and conducting timely public opinion guidance and control.

Originality/value

In terms of data selection, the user quality is defined; the Zhihu tags are divided into two categories for time slicing; and network indicators and network motifs are compared and analyzed. In addition, statistical tests, time series analysis and network modality theory are used to analyze the tags.

Details

Information Discovery and Delivery, vol. 49 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-6247

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 July 2020

Xiaoyu Wang, Hean Tat Keh and Li Yan

Frontline employees (FLEs) play a pivotal role in service delivery. Beyond their expected in-role behaviors, FLEs often have to perform extra-role behaviors such as providing…

1251

Abstract

Purpose

Frontline employees (FLEs) play a pivotal role in service delivery. Beyond their expected in-role behaviors, FLEs often have to perform extra-role behaviors such as providing additional help to customers. The purpose of this study is to investigate how customers’ power distance belief (PDB) influences their perceptions of FLEs’ warmth and competence when FLEs perform extra-role helping behaviors.

Design/methodology/approach

Four experiments were conducted to test the hypotheses. The first three experiments used a one factor two-level (PDB: low vs high) between-participants design. The fourth one used a 2 (PDB: low vs high) × 2 (firm reputation: low vs high) between-participants design.

Findings

The results indicate that, compared to high-PDB customers, low-PDB customers perceive greater warmth in FLEs’ extra-role helping behaviors but no significant difference in FLEs’ perceived competence. Importantly, these effects are mediated by customer gratitude. Moreover, these effects are moderated by firm reputation such that customers’ perceptions of FLEs’ warmth and competence are both enhanced when the firm has a favorable reputation.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the study is the first to identify the differential effects of PDB on customer perceptions of FLEs’ warmth and competence in the context of FLEs’ extra-role helping behaviors and to reveal the mediating role of gratitude. These findings contribute to the literatures on FLEs’ extra-role behaviors and social perceptions of both warmth and competence.

Article
Publication date: 6 February 2017

Xiaoyu Yu, Sanjit Kumar Roy, Ali Quazi, Bang Nguyen and Yuqing Han

For entrepreneurs operating in an Internet-of-Things (IoT) environment, it is essential to monitor more systematically, both the interaction with the consumers and the sharing of…

4497

Abstract

Purpose

For entrepreneurs operating in an Internet-of-Things (IoT) environment, it is essential to monitor more systematically, both the interaction with the consumers and the sharing of information among the consumers. The purpose of this paper is to identify the antecedents of word-of-mouth (WOM) in the online SME’s context in terms of consumers “citing the site” to peers in personal communications. A research model integrates the determinants of retail website-specific positive WOM communication, and proposes that WOM about a particular website is influenced by: site-level variables, that is, website quality and interactivity; and consumer-level variables, these being the site user’s satisfaction with and commitment to the website. The research advances the study of IoT entrepreneurship.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from graduate and undergraduate students with business and entrepreneurship majors from a reputed school in the Northeast region of the USA, using an online survey. The hypotheses were then tested with SEM using AMOS 18.0.

Findings

Findings suggest that in an IoT context, WOM is influenced by a variety of factors of which the e-satisfaction and attitude toward website constructs play important roles. The study highlights the importance of the e-satisfaction construct and its metrics. E-satisfaction is not only a critical outcome metric, but also a primary predictor of customer e-loyalty, measured in terms of the customer’s positive attitude, stickiness and propensity to spread positive WOM.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the entrepreneurship and IoT literature with a comprehensive framework of information sharing, interactivity and WOM, showing that specific antecedents drive consumers to cite and advocate for a website to fellow customers. The framework helps retail SME entrepreneurs in the IoT context to design appropriate strategies to influence website visitors’ endorsement of the site to fellow customers.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

Keywords

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