Bui, H., Nguyen, H. and Chau, V. (2020). Strategic Agility Orientation? The Impact of CEO Duality on Corporate Entrepreneurship in Privatized Vietnamese Firms. Journal of General Management [Online] 45:107-116. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0306307019886170.
This study examines the impact of CEO duality (a chief executive operating chair of board and leader of a firm) of newly privatized Vietnamese firms on the level of corporate entrepreneurship; this understanding is used to throw light on the extent to which a position of strategic agility is achieved. Specifically, does CEO duality enable firms to keep consistent with their vision, while remaining flexible in their business model? Data from a survey of 114 CEOs of board and top management team members in privatized firms in Vietnam were collected and examined through a combination of agency theory and stewardship theory. The research finds that CEO duality does not necessarily lead to a higher degree of entrepreneurial activity in privatized Vietnamese firms. The results have policy implications for shaping corporate governance, and management implications for firms striving to be competitive, in ways that advance corporate entrepreneurship in economies such as Vietnam that are both emerging and pursuing privatization.
Bui, H., Chau, V., Degl’Innocenti, M., Leone, L. and Vicentini, F. (2019). The Resilient Organization: A Meta-Analysis of the Effect of Communication on Team Diversity and Team Performance. Applied Psychology: An International Review [Online] 68:621-657. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/apps.12203.
The Input-Process-Output framework is adopted to examine the impact of diversity attributes (the input) on communication (the process) and their influence on performance (the output), to understand the internal group/team working mechanisms of organizational resilience. A meta-analysis of 174 correlations from 35 empirical studies undertaken over 35 years (1982-2017) showed that members of a team who have different experiences are more likely to share information and communicate openly when they deal with a task that requires collaboration outside the team. This supports the view that organizations are more resilient by being more closely connected with the external environment. Differences in social categories tend to favor openness of communication, especially in the case of age diversity and race/ethnicity diversity. An increase in openness of communication is likely to enhance team performance, particularly for small and medium sized teams operating in manufacturing industries, while frequency of communication can be beneficial for both large and medium sized teams working in the high technology industry. The positive workings of these associations form the resilient organization.
Chau, V. (2019). Performance Management: State-of-the-art and Implications for Europe and Beyond. European Management Review [Online] 16:225-228. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/emre.12357.
Solutions for any headline problem need also come from global efforts, and these start from national and firm level activities, concerning which theories and management frameworks about improving performance have been developed and revised earnestly. This is a core purpose within EMR’s interested scope of publication. In this editorial, the state-of-the-art on performance management thinking is presented by introducing ten articles that explore new aspects that are core but sparse within the subject, which deal with ‘performance’ not just as an outcome but also in other interlinking ways that ultimately lead to it. Implications and suggested directions for future research to help the many challenges in Europe for the near and distant futures are finally presented.
Chau, V. and Liu, J. (2019). Proliferation and Propagation of Breakthrough Performance Management Theories and Praxes. International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management [Online] 68:670-674. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJPPM-04-2019-460.
The articles included in this special issue look broadly at the proliferation (widespread) and propagation (deliberate attempt to implant in other disciplines/contexts) of breakthrough (significant, high impact, renowned) performance management theories and praxes (cf. practices, for its acceptability and custom use).
Bui, H., Chau, V. and Cox, J. (2019). Managing the Survivor Syndrome as Scenario Planning Methodology … and it Matters!. International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management [Online] 68:838-854. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJPPM-05-2018-0202.
The importance of foresight is discussed in relation to why traditional scenario planning methodology is problematic at achieving it. The ‘survivor syndrome’ is borrowed from the human resources literature and presented as a metaphor for foresight to illustrate how better ‘scenarios’ can be achieved by understanding the syndrome better. A practice perspective is given on the use of a 7-theme framework as a method of interviewing survivors. The article draws from an empirical research that took place during the 2008 global financial crisis to illustrate the richness of the insights that would otherwise not be obtainable through scenario planning methods that do not involve ‘survivors’. In that research, semi-structured interviews were employed with key personnel at multiple levels of one private and one public organization that had undergone a redundancy process at the time of the crisis to explore its effect on the remaining workforce. The ‘survivor syndrome’ itself would be minimized if managers consider the feelings of survivors with more open communication. Survivors in private firms were found generally to experience anxiety, but are more likely to remain more motivated, than their counterparts in the public sector. These detailed insights create more accurate ‘scenarios’ in scenario planning exercises. Organizational performance can be better enhanced if the survivor syndrome can be better managed. In turn, scenario planning, as a form of organizational foresight, is better practiced through managing the survivor syndrome. Scenario planning methodology has proliferated well in the human resource management literature.
Chau, V. and Quire, C. (2018). Back to the Future of Women in Technology: Insights from Understanding the Shortage of Women in Innovation Sectors for Managing Corporate Foresight. Technology Analysis and Strategic Management [Online] 30:747-764. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09537325.2017.1376046.
This paper investigates why there is a shortage of women in innovation, such as science, particularly technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) sectors and offers insights for managing corporate foresight. It acknowledges that traditional corporate foresight methodologies have their own inherent problems, but argues that greater inclusion of women brings in new dimensions not previously recognised within the predominantly male-dominated technology sector. While extant feminist research may look at the general disadvantages women have in the workplace, few have examined the genesis and constitution of femininity to understand what new input can be brought innovation management, and how these different views can change the conduct of corporate foresight in the technology sector. Interviews from five senior personnel in the technology sector were conducted, and responses to a concise questionnaire involving 365 participants were obtained. Three case-rich narratives are presented as a summary on the future of women in technology.
Chau, V., Gilman, M. and Serbanica, C. (2017). Aligning University-Industry Interactions: the Role of Boundary Spanning in Intellectual Capital Transfer. Technological Forecasting and Social Change [Online] 123:199-209. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2016.03.013.
In the UK, the boundary spanning role has taken on greater significance as successive governments emphasize how universities should play in direct knowledge transfer and changing academics’ visions over third mission functions. Studies in the UK have focused on the relative performance of technology transfer organizations (TTOs) / knowledge transfer organizations (KTOs) or their use by academics and external organizations. Compared to their US and international counterparts, TTOs/KTOs at UK universities exhibit low-levels of absolute efficiency. Therefore questions remain relating to how to raise the efficiency and productivity of these units, how to attract and train staff with suitable qualifications/capabilities and how to change adverse attitudes towards knowledge exchange by some academics. Currently, there is a lack of a holistic view of these functions and the way they complement each other or coordinate their activities. This study addresses this gap in theory and practice and advances how universities should provide consistency in both the internal and the external interfaces, by the offer of a framework and key stakeholder insights.
Bui, H., Baruch, Y., Chau, V. and He, H. (2016). Team Learning: the Missing Construct from a Cross-Cultural Examination of Higher Education?. Asia Pacific Journal of Management [Online] 33:29-51. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10490-015-9426-z.
Team learning should be an important construct in organizational management research because team learning can enhance organizational learning and overall performance. However, there is limited understanding of how team learning works in different cultural contexts. Using an international comparative research approach, we developed a framework of antecedents and outcomes in the higher education context and tested it with samples from the UK and Vietnam. The results show that a common framework is applicable in the two different contexts, subject to slight modifications. However, this study does not find that team learning (measured via the proxy of “attitude towards team learning”) exhibits any statistically significant relationship as a predictor of the proposed outcomes. Other findings from this study on educational contexts are important not only to scholars in this field, but also for practicing managers, particularly those who study and operate in the extensive global market.
McCarthy, D., Bui, H. and Chau, V. (2013). Assessing Performance Determinants of Higher Education Academics in Developed and Emerging Economies: UK vs Vietnam. Strategic Change 22:371-385.
Two major universities were used in this study (one from the UK and one from Vietnam) to examine the role of various employee and job characteristics that determine academics’ performance. The backgrounds of the higher education systems of the UK and Vietnam are presented. The research demonstrates the importance of individual characteristics in determining both academic teaching and research performance, regardless of developed or emerging economy context. Of particular interest, tenure is also found to be a significant determinant of research performance. However, organizational characteristics are found to have no statistically significant impact on academics’ performance.
Soltani, E. and Chau, V. (2012). A Learning Organization Perspective of Service Quality Operations in the IT Industry. Strategic Change [Online] 21:275-284. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsc.1909.
This study uses learning organization to explore the knock-on effects of the entirety of service quality operations. It examines IT firms which are exemplars of behaviour of the high-tech industry by drawing on data collected from managers involved in key service quality operations. Two alternative paths for management’s approach to service quality are evident. The first involves alignment of all resources to support both employees and customers that distils generative learning (progressive organization), and is applicable to the high-tech IT industry. The second involves a quick-fix, fire-fighting approach to champion only customers that distils a passive learning mentality (regressive organization), and seems applicable to other contexts, such as healthcare and hospitality.
Chau, V. and Witcher, B. (2012). Varieties of Captialism and Strategic Management: Managing Performance in Multinationals after the Global Financial Crises. British Journal of Management [Online] 23:58-73. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8551.2012.00816.x.
This paper examines the varieties of capitalism thesis for its implications for strategy and strategic management. It considers the grounds for an integrated approach to strategic management, which will make firms less susceptible to sudden economic change in global markets. The paper is structured into four parts. In the first, the nature of the varieties of capitalism thesis is examined (Hall P. A. and Soskice D. (2001). ‘An introduction to varieties of capitalism’. In P. A. Hall and D. (eds), Varieties of Capitalism: The Institutional Foundations of Comparative Advantage, pp. 1–68. Oxford: Oxford University Press). In the second part, two distinct strands of theory and research in strategic management (the outside-in and inside-out views of strategy) are considered, and how these might condition thinking about strategy, management and organizational learning. The third part explores convergence in strategic management, and explicates a model from research at Nissan, which brings core competencies and dynamic capabilities to the strategic management of the large multinational firm. The fourth part concludes with a critical assessment of the varieties of capitalism and the likelihood of a convergent strategic management after the global financial crisis.
Chau, V., Thomas, H., Clegg, S. and Leung, A. (2012). Managing Performance in Global Crisis. British Journal of Management [Online] 23:1-5. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8551.2012.00825.x.
The title of this special issue is deliberately ambivalent: it concerns how the subject of performance management is globally in crisis, as well as how the implications of the 2008 global financial crisis can be better understood. Both are exemplified.
Chau, V. and Ngai, L. (2010). The Youth Market for Internet Banking Services: Perceptions, Attitude and Behaviour. Journal of Services Marketing [Online] 24:42-60. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/08876041011017880.
Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the perceptions, attitudes and behaviour of the youth market for internet banking services (IBS).
Design/methodology/approach – A survey was carried out to acquire data from 164 respondents. The respondents were competent computer users and studying for a degree at a university. Three additional in-depth interviews were subsequently carried out on interesting cases.
Findings – The authors find that young people (age 16-29) have more positive attitudes and behavioural intentions towards using IBS than other user-groups. It has also confirmed that there is a positive impact of IBS quality on satisfaction and loyalty.
Research limitations/implications – The study focused on an isolated convenience sample of university students in the UK. The findings might not therefore have worldwide significance despite a large proportion of the students were international and from a good representation of minority ethic groups.
Originality/value – The research focused on a specific segment of the internet banking services market – younger students at a UK university. The findings are useful for bank services marketing as the young are likely to become the most important segment of users as the worldwide web and banking services become more advanced in the future.
Chau, V. and Kao, Y. (2009). Bridge Over Troubled Water or Long and Winding Road? Gap-5 in Airline Service Quality Performance Measures. Managing Service Quality [Online] 19:106-134. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09604520910926836.
Purpose – This paper seeks to apply the SERVQUAL model to identify critical performance measures in the airline industry, exploring differences between Eastern and Western expectations of airline service quality and delivery.
Design/methodology/approach – Data from 263 effective questionnaire responses were collected from two locations – Taipei (Taiwan) and London (UK) – to compare differences between the well-documented gap-5 (between perceived and expected levels of service quality) values of respondents from these places of origin.
Findings – The paper generally finds that: there is a statistically significant difference between the perceived and expected levels of service quality in the airline industry; these are affected by such demographic factors as education, occupation and income levels (but not all that were examined); the SERVQUAL model's dimensions represent appropriately the airline industry; and the gap-5 sizes of these quality dimensions have a significant impact on customer satisfaction and service value; but there does not seem to be a statistically significant difference between the gap-5s of respondents from the two locations.
Research limitations/implications – The paper limited the research to data from two locations, and makes a bold assumption that the two locations make adequate representations of views from the East and West.
Practical implications – Gap-5 and general SERVQUAL analyses seem to apply well to the airline industry. Further, management effort need not be different for the delivery of service quality between Eastern and Western passengers/customers. The findings are generalizable to other sectors for which service quality is an important public sector concern (e.g. household utilities).
Originality/value – A generic framework is presented for how service quality dimensions, and issues of gap-5, relate to overall service quality, customer satisfaction, and service value, in the passenger airline industry.
Chau, V. and Witcher, B. (2009). The Uses and Usefulness of Reflexive Accounts in Strategic Performance Management Research: The Case of UK Regulated Public Utilities. International Journal of Productivity andPerformance Management [Online] 58:346-366. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/17410400910951017.
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to discuss the role of reflexivity in ensuring quality in the conduct of qualitative organizational and management (especially case study based) strategic performance management research. It argues the importance of research reports to include a reflexive account of the comings and goings about the circumstances that may have impacted upon the research to justify its validity. A project on UK-regulated public utilities is used to illustrate the benefit of such an account and how it may be presented.
Design/methodology/approach – The paper draws on a two-year longitudinal research project, which used longitudinal case studies to examine the impact of regulatory policy incentives on the strategic management of UK monopoly network utilities, to present a developed approach for presenting reflexive accounts in qualitative research. It focuses on the longitudinal tracer methodology that allows a close examination of detailed yet holistic operational activities, which is particularly good for strategic performance management research.
Findings – The paper suggests that the more explicit the reflexive appreciation during the conduct of the research, the better it satisfies the conditions of reliability and validity which are themselves well-known prerequisites for ensuring quality in qualitative research.
Practical implications – Strategic performance management research is characterised by a need to examine closely detailed internal decision-making processes. Such an approach is supported by the emerging activity-based view of management, known as strategy-as-practice, that concerns understanding micro-activities of the organization. The provision of a reflexive account in research reports alerts the reader to these equivocal conditions under which the findings were derived.
Originality/value – The paper concludes that an appreciation of the epistemological and ontological positions of the tracer methodology has an impact upon the way in which a reflexive account of organizational research should appropriately be presented. It suggests some potential issues to include in the presentation of reflexive accounts.
Chau, V. (2009). Benchmarking Service Quality in UK Electricity Distribution Networks. Benchmarking: An International Journal [Online] 16:47-69. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/14635770910936513.
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to review the evolution and development of customer service
performance measures in the electricity sector since privatization in 1989, and then examine the impact
of a specific recent energy regulatory requirement (known as information and incentives project (IIP))
on the organizational management of an exemplar electricity distribution company. Also discussed is
how the sector has tried to learn from benchmarks from a number of such literary disciplines as
economics, marketing service quality, and total quality management.
Design/methodology/approach – The research first presents a survey of the historical development
of performance standards based on archival documentation. It is then augmented by the employment of a
longitudinal “tracer study”, involving the isolation and firsthand real time qualitative observations of a
company’s key strategic and operational activities, to understand how they related to the other
organizational phenomena at large. This process spanned an investigative period of two years.
Findings – The paper finds that much of the early standards used in electricity immediately after the
sector’s privatization rested much on those in the water and gas safety sectors, which themselves were
then admittedly inadequate in UK. The IIP, a complementary set of service quality standards,
worked on these early problems, but the implementation of the new scheme proved problematic and
warranted major organizational reengineering, as shown in the exemplar company, ElectriCo. IIP has
impacted on organizational management mostly in the areas of: higher-level strategic change, causing
noticeable internal confusion during strategic transitions, building a performance management
system, improvements in performance data, and establishing more effective ways for management.
Research limitations/implications – While the case example used in the research is a regional
monopoly and is a good representation of the context in which the service standards operate, the
findings are limited to the one company. It is a UK specific context without international comparison.
Originality/value – The research has combined archival research with an innovative firsthand
methodological approach (tracer studies). Its value is in how the story of service standards in
electricity (and specifically distribution) has been augmented from the early customer service
standards to the most recent IIP considerations. It also looks from within the company, which has been
missing in longstanding research in the more traditional disciplines such as economics.
Witcher, B. and Chau, V. (2008). Contrasting Uses of Balanced Scorecards: Case Studies at Two UK Companies. Strategic Change [Online] 17:101-114. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsc.819.
This article considers two contrasting applications of the balanced scorecard, at EDF Energy and Tesco, where the scorecard is called a steering wheel. A distinction is drawn between a strategic scorecard based on vision and a performance management scorecard based on mission and values. This difference makes the associated balanced scorecards useful to management in different ways. Our model demonstrates how different balanced scorecard approaches can complement each other for effective strategic management. This conceptualization is consistent with a perceived general tendency for large multinationals to use values to strategically manage from the center organization-wide core competences.
Chau, V. (2008). The Relationship of Strategic Performance Management to Team Strategy Company Performance and Organizational Effectiveness. Team Performance Management [Online] 14:113-117. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13527590810883398.
Purpose – The purpose of this editorial is to introduce the special issue on the relationship of strategic performance management to team strategy, company performance and organizational effectiveness.
Design/methodology/approach – The paper explains each of the components in this relationship before introducing the problematic issues regarding this relationship and where the gaps are missing in the extant literature; hence the need for the special issue is justified.
Findings – The paper finds that the concluding remarks are offered to suggest that strategic performance management can take place at top management, middle management, or strategic operations levels, and the their impact on team strategy, company performance and organizational effectiveness can be regarded as a special phenomenon, termed “strategic team performance management”.
Originality/value – This editorial provides an overview of this compilation which comprises five original papers that are examples of latest developments in this research area, and each of these articles contains a brief introduction on how they contribute to filling in gaps in the literature.
Chau, V. and Witcher, B. (2008). Dynamic Capabilities for Strategic Team Performance Management: The Case of Nissan. Team Performance Management [Online] 14:179-191. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13527590810883442.
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explain how hoshin kanri (policy management) is used as a higher order dynamic capability at Nissan. The paper also seeks to examine the role of top executive audits as part of the FAIR strategy execution process to develop core competences as part of team management.
Design/methodology/approach – The research used semi-retrospective ethnographic case summaries recorded by an active manager involved in the implementation process of the researched organizational phenomenon. These documented observations were triangulated against internally published company reports and those made public, and any externally published documentation about Nissan.
Findings – The paper finds that the use of a top executive audit (TEA) as a part of hoshin kanri, works as a high-order dynamic capability according to Teece et al. . Hoshin kanri is premised on a strong reliance on teamwork, and the effectiveness of teams is a major contributory factor to organizational performance. It works well because TEAs are a special form of organizational audit of lower-level operations against top-level strategy (i.e. it is a strategic review framework).
Originality/value – How Nissan's business philosophies and methodologies are managed as core capabilities is explored. TEAs, as a key component of hoshin kanri, are examined as a strategic team performance management system.
Witcher, B., Chau, V. and Harding, P. (2008). Dynamic Capabilities: Top Executive Audits and Hoshin Kanri at Nissan South Africa. International Journal of Operations & Production Management [Online] 28:540-561. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/01443570810875359.
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the use of top executive audits (TEAs) as part of hoshin kanri (policy management) at Nissan South Africa (NSA). It relates these to the emerging importance of core competencies in the resource-based view of strategy to discuss “nested” sets of dynamic capabilities and superior performance.
Design/methodology/approach – The case study of NSA is considered in terms of how the firm defines its core areas, evaluates its business methodologies and management philosophies, and conducts its diagnosis of management. This was through real time internal company observation during an intensive phase of organizational change and documentation supplied by a senior manager.
Findings – The style of TEAs at Nissan is related to the concepts of “core competency” and “dynamic capability.” The core business areas of NSA are organization-wide competencies necessary for competitive success, and the management of these is shown to be most effective in the form of a TEA, which in the hoshin kanri form, is arguably a nested set of dynamic capabilities.
Originality/value – The paper concludes that hoshin kanri and TEAs are used at Nissan as a higher order dynamic capability to develo0p both core competences in key areas of the business, and core capabilities in terms of its corporate methodologies and business philosophies. The recovery of Nissan during the East Asian Crisis of the late-1990s was the result of improved productivity practices, such as the uses of hoshin kanri and TEAs, and not just of economic recovery.
Witcher, B. and Chau, V. (2007). Balanced Scorecard and Hoshin Kanri: Managing Strategic Priorities. Emerald for Managers.
The scorecard and hoshin kanri are integrative cross-functional approaches used for managing strategic priorities across the functional hierarchy of the firm. They provide firms with an overall capability for sustaining strategic management over time. The scorecard’s strength lies in its ability to clarify long-term statements of corporate purpose. Hoshin kanri, on the other hand, is strong as a management system for the deployment and execution of purpose as short-term actions. In fact, the balanced scorecard was originally developed from hoshin kanri.
Witcher, B. and Chau, V. (2007). Balanced Scorecard and Hoshin Kanri: Dynamic Capabilities for Managing Strategic Fit. Management Decision [Online] 45:518-538. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/00251740710745115.
Purpose – The paper seeks to combine the uses of the balanced scorecard and hoshin kanri as
integrative dynamic capabilities for the entire strategic management process. It aims to posit a model
for the combination of these long- and short-term organisational activities as a framework for a senior
level to manage a firm’s strategic fit as an integrated organisation-wide system that links top
management goals to daily management.
Design/methodology/approach – The resource-based view of strategy is explored for its relevance
to how a combined balanced scorecard and hoshin kanri approach serves as a high-order dynamic
capability. Examples are given from Canon, Toyota and Nissan, of how core capabilities are managed
to show how strategy is executed cross-functionally across a firm’s functional hierarchy.
Findings – The study finds that strategic management of the organisation should consider the
long-term strategy as well as the short-term capability. Important to this are core capabilities and core
competences, cross-functional management, and top executive audits, which, when managed properly,
explicate a new view of strategic fit, as a form of nested hierarchies of dynamic capabilities.
Originality/value – The paper is the first exposition of how balanced scorecard and hoshin kanri
practices may usefully complement each other in strategic management. It is a useful framework for
dynamically managing sustained competitive advantage.
Witcher, B., Chau, V. and Harding, P. (2007). Top Executive Audits: Strategic Reviews of Operational Activities. Managerial Auditing Journal [Online] 22:95-105. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/02686900710715666.
Purpose – The paper explores the involvement of top management in strategic reviews of the
organization’s operational activities (known as top executive audits or TEAs). These are discussed in
relation to strategy process and business excellence.
Design/methodology/approach – The case of Nissan South Africa (NSA) is used to illustrate their
importance and their relation to hoshin kanri (policy deployment) practice.
Findings – The paper argues that TEAs are a very important and integrative aspect of the holistic
management of the organization. TEAs are also crucial to hoshin kanri and facilitate operational
Originality/value – The paper suggests that strategic reviews, such as TEAs, are best operated
when integrated together as an organization-wide managed system of review.
Keywords Auditing, Chief executives, Performance management, Strategic management