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Abstract

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 36 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Article
Publication date: 26 December 2023

Bochra Idris, George Saridakis, Yannis Georgellis, Yanqing Lai and Stewart Johnstone

This paper examines how soft skills training for owner-managers affects the financial performance of exporting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Furthermore, the authors…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper examines how soft skills training for owner-managers affects the financial performance of exporting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Furthermore, the authors examine the differential influence of specific owner-manager skills, such as “team working skills”, “technical skills” and “leadership skills”, on performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper utilises the Longitudinal Small Business Survey, which is a nationally representative employer dataset of UK SMEs with up to 249 employees, including those with no employees. The dataset contains information on firms' turnover, export status of goods or services and training provision for employees or owner-managers.

Findings

The results suggest that owner-manager's training has a positive effect on turnover in non-exporting firms. Moreover, a combination of soft and hard skills is associated with higher turnover in exporting firms. Amongst the specific skills of owner-managers, training on “team working” has the most significant impact on exporting SMEs' performance.

Practical implications

The authors' findings imply that managerial training to develop soft skills such as leadership, decision-making and communication is a worthwhile investment. The knowledge that owner-managers acquire through soft and hard skills training enables them to develop essential internationalisation competencies. Moreover, the authors demonstrate that teamwork is a significant predictor of performance.

Originality/value

The authors contribute to the literature by examining the role of owner-managers' training in shaping internal systems, structure, processes and internationalisation strategies, thus affecting SMEs performance. The authors' also provide a nuanced analysis of how various types of soft and hard skills underpin the successful implementation of internationalisation initiatives.

Details

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

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 December 2019

Thomas N. Garavan, Sinead Heneghan, Fergal O’Brien, Claire Gubbins, Yanqing Lai, Ronan Carbery, James Duggan, Ronnie Lannon, Maura Sheehan and Kirsteen Grant

This monograph reports on the strategic and operational roles of learning and development (L&D) professionals in Irish, UK European and US organisations including multinational…

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Abstract

Purpose

This monograph reports on the strategic and operational roles of learning and development (L&D) professionals in Irish, UK European and US organisations including multinational corporations, small to medium enterprises, the public sector and not for profit organisations. This paper aims to investigate the contextual factors influencing L&D roles in organisations, the strategic and operational roles that L&D professionals play in organisations, the competencies and career trajectories of L&D professionals, the perceptions of multiple internal stakeholders of the effectiveness of L&D roles and the relationships between context, L&D roles, competencies/expertise and perceived organisational effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

The study findings are based on the use of multiple methods. The authors gathered data from executives, senior managers, line managers, employee and L&D professionals using multiple methods: a survey (n = 440), Delphi study (n = 125) and semi-structured interviews (n = 30).

Findings

The analysis revealed that L&D professionals increasingly respond to a multiplicity of external and internal contextual influences and internal stakeholders perceived the effectiveness of L&D professionals differently with significant gaps in perceptions of what L&D contributes to organisational effectiveness. L&D professionals perform both strategic and operational roles in organisations and they progress through four career levels. Each L&D role and career level requires a distinct and unique set of foundational competencies and L&D expertise. The authors found that different contextual predictors were important in explaining the perceived effectiveness of L&D roles and the importance attached to different foundational competencies and areas of L&D expertise.

Originality/value

This is one of the few studies to have investigated the L&D professional role in organisations from the perspective of multiple stakeholders using multiple research methods.

Details

European Journal of Training and Development, vol. 44 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-9012

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 December 2017

George Saridakis, Yanqing Lai, Rebeca I. Muñoz Torres and Anne-Marie Mohammed

Drawing on the motivation theory and family business literature, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the influence of family effect in growth behaviour of…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on the motivation theory and family business literature, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the influence of family effect in growth behaviour of small-and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors first compare the actual and expected growth of family and non-family-owned SMEs. The authors then compare the growth behaviour of small family firms managed by owner-directors and small family businesses co-managed by family and non-family directors with the non-family-owned SMEs.

Findings

The authors find a negative effect of family ownership on actual and intended small business growth behaviours. In addition, the findings also suggest that small family firms co-managed by non-family and family directors are no different from non-family-owned firms, in terms of reporting past actual growth in employment size and turnover as well as expecting growth in workforce size and turnover. The authors also observe a significant difference in anticipating sales growth between family-controlled and non-family-controlled firms. However, this difference is not explained by the heterogeneity of a top management team.

Practical implications

The study has important implications for managerial practice to family firms and on policies that improve the growth of SMEs. Specifically, the competence of managers and decision makers matters considerably in evaluating the efficient operation of the business and maximising the economic growth in SMEs.

Originality/value

The study makes two important theoretical contributions to small business growth literature. First, the findings underline a negative family effect in the actual and expected growth behaviour of SMEs. Second, the mode of family ownership alone may not sufficiently capture family effect and offer a thorough understanding of growth behaviour in SMEs.

Details

Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2051-6614

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 September 2000

Yanqing Duan and Russell Kinman

Small businesses play a crucial role in national and local economies, but their problems are not always accorded the same importance as those of larger organisations. Research…

Abstract

Small businesses play a crucial role in national and local economies, but their problems are not always accorded the same importance as those of larger organisations. Research shows that many small businesses fail from lack of management ability. It has been argued that small businesses can improve their performance and increase their competitiveness with better information and decision support systems (DSS). Study of the few research papers available reveals that the current use of computers in small and medium‐size enterprises (SMEs) is often limited, and geared to operational support rather than managerial decision making. The work discussed in this paper investigated current DSS use in small manufacturing businesses in Bedfordshire, and canvassed the views of managers as to what additional support they most needed. Conclusions are drawn from the results of interviews with managers of six small manufacturing businesses and a large‐scale self‐report survey of Bedfordshire firms.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 7 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 January 2023

Yanqing Shi, Hongye Cao and Si Chen

Online question-and-answer (Q&A) communities serve as important channels for knowledge diffusion. The purpose of this study is to investigate the dynamic development process of…

Abstract

Purpose

Online question-and-answer (Q&A) communities serve as important channels for knowledge diffusion. The purpose of this study is to investigate the dynamic development process of online knowledge systems and explore the final or progressive state of system development. By measuring the nonlinear characteristics of knowledge systems from the perspective of complexity science, the authors aim to enrich the perspective and method of the research on the dynamics of knowledge systems, and to deeply understand the behavior rules of knowledge systems.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors collected data from the programming-related Q&A site Stack Overflow for a ten-year period (2008–2017) and included 48,373 tags in the analyses. The number of tags is taken as the time series, the correlation dimension and the maximum Lyapunov index are used to examine the chaos of the system and the Volterra series multistep forecast method is used to predict the system state.

Findings

There are strange attractors in the system, the whole system is complex but bounded and its evolution is bound to approach a relatively stable range. Empirical analyses indicate that chaos exists in the process of knowledge sharing in this social labeling system, and the period of change over time is about one week.

Originality/value

This study contributes to revealing the evolutionary cycle of knowledge stock in online knowledge systems and further indicates how this dynamic evolution can help in the setting of platform mechanics and resource inputs.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 76 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 20 October 2021

Wenjie Fan, Yong Liu, Hongxiu Li, Virpi Kristiina Tuunainen and Yanqing Lin

Drawing on attribution theory, the current paper aims to examine the effects of review content structures on online review helpfulness, focusing on three pertinent variables…

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Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on attribution theory, the current paper aims to examine the effects of review content structures on online review helpfulness, focusing on three pertinent variables: review sidedness, information factuality, and emotional intensity at the beginning of a review. Moreover, the moderating roles of reviewer reputation and review sentiment are investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

The review sentiment of 144,982 online hotel reviews was computed at the sentence level by considering the presence of adverbs and negative terms. Then, the authors quantified the impact of variables that were pertinent to review content structures on online review helpfulness in terms of review sidedness, information factuality and emotional intensity at the beginning of a review. Zero-inflated negative binomial regression was employed to test the model.

Findings

The results reveal that review sidedness negatively affects online review helpfulness, and reviewer reputation moderates this effect. Information factuality positively affects online review helpfulness, and positive sentiment moderates this impact. A review that begins with a highly emotional statement is more likely to be perceived as less helpful.

Originality/value

Using attribution theory as a theoretical lens, this study contributes to the online customer review literature by investigating the impact of review content structures on online review helpfulness and by demonstrating the important moderating effects of reviewer reputation and review sentiment. The findings can help practitioners develop effective review appraisal mechanisms and guide consumers in producing helpful reviews.

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2002

Yanqing Duan, Roisin Mullins, David Hamblin, Stanislaw Stanek, Henry Sroka, Virgilio Machado and Joao Araujo

The rapid advancement in information and communication technologies (ICTs) has brought enormous business opportunities as well as challenges. One of these challenges is the demand…

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Abstract

The rapid advancement in information and communication technologies (ICTs) has brought enormous business opportunities as well as challenges. One of these challenges is the demand for ICTs skills and expertise in adopting and implementing these emerging technologies. Coping with skills shortage poses a serious challenge across all European countries. Lack of ICTs skills and knowledge is more evident in small‐ and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs). As training is regarded as the most effective way of improving skills and enhancing knowledge, this paper attempts to address skills shortage at pan‐European level by identifying SMEs’ needs on ICTs training in the UK, Portugal and Poland. The investigation focuses on the most needed training areas, the required training levels and the preferred training delivery channels. The paper summarises findings from three‐country investigations and highlights the implications of findings for the design and development of a Web‐based training system for the use of ICTs in SMEs.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 26 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 28 February 2023

Yanqing Fang, Shang Gao, Yanwu Jiang and Shuquan Li

Building information modelling (BIM), lean construction (LC) and prefabricated housing construction (PHC) have individually aroused great attention from academia and industry…

487

Abstract

Purpose

Building information modelling (BIM), lean construction (LC) and prefabricated housing construction (PHC) have individually aroused great attention from academia and industry. However, the integration of LC and BIM in PHC projects has not been sufficiently explored. This study aims to assess the current status of the implementation of BIM and LC in China’s PHC sector given, firstly, that China is a developing country characterised by the world’s largest population and a huge housing market, and secondly, that although China’s PHC is strongly supported by the government, the adoption of BIM and LC in PHC varies.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed approach (questionnaire survey and interviews) is adopted in this study. A total of 127 valid questionnaires were collected. This is followed by interviewing 12 interviewees who are key stakeholders in PHC and hold managerial positions.

Findings

The findings of the questionnaire survey show that BIM is more prevalent than LC in PHC projects in China. In addition, the adoption of LC exhibits more maturity in stages associated with production and manufacturing, and logistics and transportation, whereas BIM has seen wider adoption in design and construction. The interviews validated the factors that influence the implementation of BIM and LC in PHC projects in China.

Originality/value

The study uses a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis framework to clarify the opportunities, threats, strengths and weaknesses of BIM and LC in China’s PHC and proposes strategies.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 14 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 23 May 2023

Dezhi Li, Lugang Yu, Guanying Huang, Shenghua Zhou, Haibo Feng and Yanqing Wang

To propose a new investment-income valuation model by real options approach (ROA) for old community renewal (OCR) projects, which could help the government attract private…

Abstract

Purpose

To propose a new investment-income valuation model by real options approach (ROA) for old community renewal (OCR) projects, which could help the government attract private capital's participation.

Design/methodology/approach

The new model is proposed by identifying the types of options private capital has in the OCR project, selecting the option model most suitable for private capital investment decisions, improving the valuation model through the triangular fuzzy numbers to take into account the uncertainty and flexibility, and demonstrating the feasibility of the calculation model through an actual OCR project case.

Findings

The new model can valuate OCR projects more accurately based on considering uncertainty and flexibility, compared with conventional methods that often underestimate the value of OCR projects.

Practical implications

The investment-income of OCR projects shall be re-valuated from the lens of real options, which could help reveal more real benefits beyond the capital growth of OCR projects, enable the government to attract private capital's investment in OCR, and alleviate government fiscal pressure.

Originality/value

The proposed OCR-oriented investment-income valuation model systematically analyzes the applicability of real option value (ROV) to OCR projects, innovatively integrates the ROV and the net present value (NPV) as expanded net present value (ENPV), and accurately evaluate real benefits in comparison with existing models. Furthermore, the newly proposed model holds the potential to be transferred to various social welfare projects as a tool to attract private capital's participation.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

Keywords

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