International Journal of Business Environment (8 papers in press)
Solution sales process blueprinting
by Rodrigo Rabetino, Samuel Johnson Ogundipe, Marko Kohtamäki
Abstract: By utilizing the blueprinting technique, this study develops a sales process framework that visualizes different activities, actors, and customer touch-points in the sales process. Multiple-case method was utilized for collecting data from eight Finnish manufacturers that are implementing servitization. This study draws on diverse data, including information from websites and face-to-face interviews with 18 company representatives. Our results show that firms also interact with customers during post-sales delivery to acquire and disseminate new information. The main actors having direct encounter with customers are the sales people, but early engagement of the project and design divisions help them serve and understand customers better. However, the process blueprint reveals the need for improvements in the firms sales process design, in order to better integrate the service function into the selling phase and to enhance the opportunities for post-sales customer support. The identified managerial practices indicate that the entire sales process revolves around early engagement of solution providers to participate in the technical negotiation and design with the customer before needs are realized, or investment decisions are made. Additionally, the sales process blueprint visualizes displays the different customer touch-points and how various actors in providers organization interact to deliver value for customers. Lastly, the blueprinting framework offers a guide to managers to re-orientate their sales process around those the identified fundamental practices for long-term customer relationship development.
Keywords: Solution Selling; Blueprinting; Relationship selling; Servitization.
ORGANIZATIONAL AMBIDEXTERITY AND INDUSTRIAL CLOCKSPEED THEORIES IN UNDERSTANDING DYNAMIC MANAGERIAL CAPABILITIES: A MULTIPLE CASE STUDY
by Emre Erbaş
Abstract: Today, to have a competitive advantage, firms are in need of developing managerial capabilities to make sure strategic decisions taken at the corporate level are translated into actions that are properly implemented and managed in the field. While researchers acknowledge the importance of managerial capabilities for the competitiveness of firms, research commonly fails to address managerial capabilities with the proper empirical approaches. Therefore, in this study, an X-Y axis framework based on organizational ambidexterity and industrial clockspeed theories, was developed and is proposed here as a tool for analyzing dynamic managerial capabilities. Using an explorative approach, case studies and observation were used to illustrate the issue regarding two tourism destinations. Results show that similar managerial capabilities have different intended uses and outputs that affect the competitiveness of the case destinations. For example, while governance is used to quickly exploit resources in Erciyes, it is just the reverse in Cappadocia. The proposed framework can be applied not only to tourism destinations but also to other areas of product or service management.
Keywords: Dynamic managerial capabilities; organizational ambidexterity; industrial clockspeed; competitiveness; destination; tourism.
KIBS and Innovation in Machine Tool Manufacturers. Evidence from the Basque Country
by Jean Pierre Seclen Luna, Jon Barrutia Güenaga
Abstract: The machine tool industry, insofar as it has a classical industrial component and a more modern one incorporating transversal technologies of innovation is representative of the innovative tension as a source of competitiveness for advanced manufacturing. KIBS can play an important role in promoting innovation in manufacturers since they support clients in their innovation process. Our results show that a relationship with KIBS provides firms with innovation outcomes and promote their internationalization processes. However, there are differences owing to the size of the firm. Basically, the small manufacturers have relationship with KIBS to compensate and fill the gap their knowledge and skills, while larger ones reinforce their know-how, by carrying it out internally. The comparative analysis is carried out based on sequential methodological triangulation as there is just a small sample of 52 machine tool manufacturers.
Keywords: KIBS; innovation outcomes; machine tool industry; size of the firm.
Can entrepreneurial role models alleviate the fear of entrepreneurial failure?
by Eugenia Ferreto, Esteban Lafuente, Juan Carlos Leiva
Abstract: This paper analyzes how entrepreneurial role models alleviate the fear of entrepreneurial failure among people who have not yet opted for entrepreneurship. The proposed hypothesis are tested using a logistic regression model relating the presence of entrepreneurial role models and fear of failure on a unique sample drawn from the Costa Rica Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) for the year 2014. The results indicate that the presence of entrepreneurial examples reduces the fear of failure among non-entrepreneurially active individuals. This study offers insights on how entrepreneurial examples contribute to shape relevant individual perceptions related to the fear of entrepreneurial failure, which constitutes an antecedent of entrepreneurship.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship; fear of failure; role models; Costa Rica.
Impact of Social Media on Brand Commitment: Testing the mediation Role of Perceived Value and Brand Image
by Homa Kavousi, Mojtaba Ramezani, Reza Rostamzadeh
Abstract: Today distinguishing brands by traditional methods has been difficult for firms, because branding is not only a companys share in the market, but it also contributes its share in customers mind and memory and this is the main pivot of experimental marketing. Given that media encourages members to deep levels of engagement in the society, this leads to creation of trust and commitment of the members and it is beneficial for brand community. Therefore, according to media importance in brand commitment, the goal of this research is to evaluate the impact of social media on brand commitment by emphasizing the mediation role of perceived value and brand image. Target sample of this research is the customers of LG Company. For evaluation of reliability and validity of this research, Cronbachs alpha and composite reliability indices used which have been obtained greater than 0.8 and 0.5 respectively for all variables which show that they are in standard and acceptable level. Study results confirmed that the proposed models fitness for evaluation of media social impact on brand commitment according to mediation role of perceived value and brand image. In addition, results indicated that brand commitment is significantly influenced by perceived value and brand image.
Keywords: Social media; brand commitment; perceived value; brand image.
Export diversity and the relevance of different forms of market experience
by Marco Alvarado, Esteban Lafuente, Ronald Mora-Esquivel
Abstract: This study evaluates how different forms of human capitali.e., formal management studies, labor market experience and experience in multinational businessesexplain the export diversity of SMEs, defined as the number of foreign market destinations where the business sells its goods or services. The proposed hypotheses are tested using negative binomial regression models on a unique sample of 117 Costa Rican SMEs for 2017. The findings reveal that labor experience in multinational firmsin particular, experience in managerial positionsis a relevant source of human capital that equip entrepreneurs with specific know-how that is conducive to export diversity, in terms of number of market destinations. Results also show that firm size, age and online sales (e-commerce) are positively correlated to export diversity. Beyond canonical export-related measures, this study offers insights on the importance of including the number of foreign markets (market destinations) in the evaluation of the export performance of SMEs.
Keywords: Export diversity; market destinations; human capital; SMEs; Costa Rica.
Network-based bootstrapping and performance in SMEs: The moderating role of entrepreneurship training
by Krisztina Horváth
Abstract: This study evaluates how the use of financial bootstrappingi.e., cash management techniques which are linked to the exploitation of different networksand human capital components impact employment growth of small and medium-sized enterprises. The proposed hypotheses are tested on a sample of 70 Hungarian small and medium sized businesses. Results reveal that the effect on employment growth of network exploitation via bootstrapping techniques is conditioned by the presence of entrepreneurial training. While bootstrap finance related to suppliers is positively associated with employment growth, it was found that entrepreneurial training positively moderates the relationship between employment growth and bootstrapping techniques related to business and customer networks. The results of this study offer relevant theoretical and managerial implications.
Keywords: Financial bootstrapping; bootstrap finance; entrepreneurship training; networking; employment growth; small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); business performance; Hungary.
Product-service innovation and performance: unveiling the complexities
by Oscar F. Bustinza, Ferran Vendrell-Herrero, Emanuel Gomes, Esteban Lafuente, Marco Opazo-Basáez, Rodrigo Rabetino, Yancy Vaillant
Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to unveil the existing complexities in the relationship between Product-Service Innovation (PSI) or servitization and firm performance that arise from the mismatch between theoretical predictions and empirical evidence. Whilst theoretical work suggests that there are a number of advantages for implementing PSI, quantitative firm-level evidence is not conclusive about the positive effects of this type of innovation on firm performance. By reviewing the relevant publications dealing with the PSI-performance relationship, their methodological approach, the novel constructs validated, and the role of mediators/moderators found in the servitization literature, we argue that further contextualization is needed to solve this puzzle. Additionally, this work systematically organises the different methods and variables used to assess the PSI-performance link, guiding scholars on the choice between different methods and measures. This work enumerates various streams of future research to discover unexplored fields to better ground this relationship, including the development of solid configurational theories, appropriate fit between theory and measurement techniques, and new sampling strategies for performing longitudinal studies.
Keywords: Product-service innovation; Servitization; Performance.