Long-term Success of Family Firms: Investigating Specific Aspects of Firm-level Entrepreneurship and Individual-level Antecedents

Sieger, Philipp (2011). Long-term Success of Family Firms: Investigating Specific Aspects of Firm-level Entrepreneurship and Individual-level Antecedents. (Dissertation, University of St.Gallen, School of Management)

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Long-term success of family firms is of utmost social and economic
importance. Three of its determinants are in the center of this Dissertation: firmlevel entrepreneurial orientation (EO), managers' entrepreneurial behavior, and value-creating attitudes of non-family employees. Each determinant and respective research gaps are addressed by one paper of this cumulative dissertation.
Referring to firm-level EO, scholars claim that EO is a main antecedent to
firms' both short- and long-term success. However, family firms seem to be
successful across generations despite rather low levels of EO. The first paper
addresses this paradox by investigating EO patterns of long-lived family firms in
three Swiss case studies. The main finding is that the key to success is not to be as entrepreneurially as possible all the time, but to continuously adapt the EO profile depending on internal and external factors. Moreover, the paper suggest new subcategories to different EO dimensions.
With regard to entrepreneurial behavior of managers, there is a lack of knowledge how individual-level and organizational level factors affect its evolvement. The second paper addresses this gap by investigating a sample of 403 middle-level managers from both family and non-family firms. It introduces psychological ownership of managers as individual-level antecedent and investigates the interaction with organizational factors. As a central insight, management support is found to strengthen the psychological ownership-entrepreneurial behavior relationship.
The third paper is based on the fact that employees' justice perceptions are
established antecedents of value-creating employee attitudes such as affective
commitment and job satisfaction. Even though family firms are susceptible to nonfamily employees´ perceptions of injustice, corresponding research is scarce. Moreover, the mechanism connecting justice perceptions and positive outcomes is still unclear. Addressing these gaps, the analysis of a sample of 310 non-family employees reveals that psychological ownership is a mediator in the relationships between distributive justice perceptions and both affective commitment and job satisfaction.
Altogether, the three papers offer valuable contributions to family business
literature with respect to EO, entrepreneurial behavior, and value-creating
employee attitudes. Thus, they increase current understanding about important
determinants of family firms' long-term success, while opening up numerous ways of future research.

Item Type:

Thesis (Dissertation)


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Department of Business Management > Institute of Innovation Management > Management

UniBE Contributor:

Sieger, Philipp


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 330 Economics
600 Technology > 650 Management & public relations




Philipp Sieger

Date Deposited:

02 Aug 2016 16:17

Last Modified:

02 Aug 2016 16:17

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Family business; entrepreneurship; entrepreneurial orientation; corporate entrepreneurship; middle-level managers; job satisfaction; commitment; psychological ownerhsip





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