Employee Silence and Entrepreneurial Orientation in Small and Medium-Sized Family Firms

  • Duarte Pimentel (1) Centro de Estudos de Economia Aplicada do Atlântico (CEEAplA), University of the Azores; (2) TERINOV - Parque de Ciência e Tecnologia da Ilha Terceira http://orcid.org/0000-0002-8224-0571
  • Raquel Rodrigues Instituto Superior de Psicologia Aplicada, Lisboa, Portugal
Keywords: Family firms, Portuguese companies, Employee silence, Entrepreneurial orientation

Abstract

This paper aims to assess differences between employees of family and non-family firms regarding their levels of employee silence and their perceptions of the company’s entrepreneurial orientation. Moreover, focusing on family firms, we assess the relationship between the levels of employees’ silence and their perceptions of the firm’s entrepreneurial orientation. The empirical evidence is provided by a sample of 245 Portuguese employees, 117 employees of family firms, and 128 of non-family firms, who responded to a questionnaire that included employee silence and entrepreneurial orientation measures. Results reveal that family firms’ employees show higher levels of employee silence but perceive their companies as less entrepreneurially oriented than employees of non-family companies. In addition, our results do not support the idea that there is a relationship between the levels of employee silence and the employee’s perception of the company’s entrepreneurial orientation. This paper offers initial insights into the debate on the relationship between the levels of employee silence and the employee’s perception of the company’s entrepreneurial orientation in family firms.

References

Alayo, M., Maseda, A., Iturralde, T., & Arzubiaga, U. (2019). Internationalization and entrepreneurial orientation of family SMEs: the influence of the family character. International Business Review, 28(1), 48-59. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ibusrev.2018.06.003 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ibusrev.2018.06.003

Aldrich, H. E., & Cliff, J. E. (2003). The pervasive effects of family on entrepreneurship: toward a family embeddedness perspective. Journal of Business Venturing, 18(5), 573-596. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0883-9026(03)00011-9 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0883-9026(03)00011-9

Aparicio, G., Ramos, E., Casillas, J. C., & Iturralde, T. (2021). Family Business Research in the last decade. A bibliometric review. European Journal of Family Business, 11(1), 33-44. https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v11i1.12503 DOI: https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v11i1.12503

Berrone, P., Cruz, C., & Gómez-Mejía, L. R. (2012). Socioemotional wealth in family firms: theoretical dimensions, assessment approaches, and agenda for future research. Family Business Review, 25(3), 258-279. https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486511435355 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486511435355

Boling, J. R., Pieper, T. M., & Covin, J. G. (2016). CEO tenure and entrepreneurial orientation within family and nonfamily firms. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 40(4), 891-913. https://doi.org/10.1111/etap.12150 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/etap.12150

Carver, C. S., Scheier, M. F., & Weintraub, J. K. (1989). Assessing coping strategies: a theoretically based approach. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 56(2), 267-283. https://doi.org/10.1037//0022-3514.56.2.267 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.56.2.267

Chou, S. Y., & Chang, T. (2020). Employee silence and silence antecedents: a theoretical classification. International Journal of Business Communication, 57(3), 401–426. https://doi.org/10.1177/2329488417703301 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/2329488417703301

Covin, J. G., & Slevin, D. P. (1989). Strategic management of small firms in hostile and benign environments. Strategic Management Journal, 10(1), 75–87. https://doi.org/10.1002/smj.4250100107 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/smj.4250100107

Covin, J. G., & Wales, W. J. (2012). The measurement of entrepreneurial orientation. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 36(4), 677-702. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2010.00432.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2010.00432.x

Covin, J. G., & Wales, W. J. (2019). Crafting high-impact entrepreneurial orientation research: some suggested guidelines. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 43(1), 3-18. https://doi.org/10.1177/1042258718773181 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1042258718773181

Chua, J. H., Chrisman, J. J., & Sharma, P. (1999). Defining the family business by behavior. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 23(4), 19-39. https://doi.org/10.1177/104225879902300402 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/104225879902300402

Discua Cruz, A., Howorth, C., & Hamilton, E. (2013). Intrafamily entrepreneurship: the formation and membership of family entrepreneurial teams. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 37(1), 17-46. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2012.00534.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2012.00534.x

Duran, P., Kammerlander, N., Van Essen, M., & Zellweger, T. (2016). Doing more with less: innovation input and output in family firms. Academy of Management Journal, 59(4), 1224-1264. https://doi.org/10.5465/amj.2014.0424 DOI: https://doi.org/10.5465/amj.2014.0424

Eddleston, K. A., Kellermanns, F. W., & Sarathy, R. (2008). Resource configuration in family firms: linking resources, strategic planning and technological opportunities to performance. Journal of Management Studies, 45(1), 26-50. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2007.00717.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2007.00717.x

Edmondson, A. C. (2003). Speaking up in the operating room: how team leaders promote learning in interdisciplinary action teams. Journal of Management Studies, 40(6), 1419-1452. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-6486.00386 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-6486.00386

Garcés-Galdeano, L., Larraza-Kintana, M., García-Olaverri, C., & Makri, M. (2016). Entrepreneurial orientation in family firms: the moderating role of technological intensity and performance. International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, 12(1), 27-45. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11365-014-0335-2 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11365-014-0335-2

Gómez-Mejía, L. R., Haynes, K. T., Núñez-Nickel, M., Jacobson, K. J., & Moyano-Fuentes, J. (2007). Socioemotional wealth and business risks in family-controlled firms: evidence from Spanish olive oil mills. Administrative Science Quarterly, 52(1), 106-137. https://doi.org/10.2189/asqu.52.1.106 DOI: https://doi.org/10.2189/asqu.52.1.106

Gómez‐Mejía, L. R., Larraza‐Kintana, M., Moyano‐Fuentes, J., & Firfiray, S. (2018). Managerial family ties and employee risk bearing in family firms: evidence from Spanish car dealers. Human Resource Management, 57(5), 993-1007. https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.21829 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.21829

Hernández-Linares, R., & López-Fernández, M. C. (2018). Entrepreneurial orientation and the family firm: mapping the field and tracing a path for future research. Family Business Review, 31(3), 318-351. https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486518781940 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0894486518781940

Hernández-Perlines, F., Covin, J. G., & Ribeiro-Soriano, D. E. (2021). Entrepreneurial orientation, concern for socioemotional wealth preservation, and family firm performance. Journal of Business Research, 126, 197-208. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2020.12.050 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2020.12.050

Josefy, M. A., Harrison, J. S., Sirmon, D. G., & Carnes, C. (2017). Living and dying: synthesizing the literature on firm survival and failure across stages of development. Academy of Management Annals, 11(2), 770-799. https://doi.org/10.5465/annals.2015.0148 DOI: https://doi.org/10.5465/annals.2015.0148

Kachaner, N., Stalk, G., & Bloch, A. (2012). What you can learn from family business. Harvard Business Review, 90(11), 102–106.

Kellermanns, F. W., Eddleston, K. A., & Zellweger, T. M. (2012). Extending the socioemotional wealth perspective: a look at the dark side. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 36(6), 1175-1182. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2012.00544.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2012.00544.x

Kidwell, R. E. (2008). Adelphia Communications: the public company that became a private piggy bank: a case of fraud in the Rigas family firm. In S. Matulich & D. Currie (Eds.), Handbook of frauds, scams, and swindles: Failures of ethics in leadership (pp. 191-205). New York: Taylor and Francis Group. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1201/9781420072860.sec5

Kidwell, L. A., & Kidwell, R. E. (2010). Fraud in the family: how family firm characteristics can shape illegal behavior. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Accounting Association.

Kizildag, D. (2013). Silence of female family members in family firms. International Journal of Business and Social Science, 4(10), 108-117.

Knoll, M., & Redman, T. (2016). Does the presence of voice imply the absence of silence? the necessity to consider employees’ affective attachment and job engagement. Human Resource Management, 55(5), 829-844. https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.21744 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.21744

Kraus, S., Rigtering, J. C., Hughes, M., & Hosman, V. (2012). Entrepreneurial orientation and the business performance of SMEs: a quantitative study from the Netherlands. Review of Managerial Science, 6(2), 161-182. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11846-011-0062-9 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11846-011-0062-9

Lumpkin, G. T., & Dess, G. G. (2001). Linking two dimensions of entrepreneurial orientation to firm performance: the moderating role of environment and industry life cycle. Journal of Business Venturing, 16(5), 429-451. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0883-9026(00)00048-3 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0883-9026(00)00048-3

Miller, D. (1983). The correlates of entrepreneurship in three types of firms. Management Science, 29(7), 770-791. https://doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.29.7.770 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.29.7.770

Miller, D., & Le Breton–Miller, I. (2011). Governance, social identity, and entrepreneurial orientation in closely held public companies. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 35(5), 1051-1076. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2011.00447.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2011.00447.x

Miller, D., Le Breton-Miller, I., & Scholnick, B. (2008). Stewardship vs. stagnation: an empirical comparison of small family and non-family businesses. Journal of Management Studies, 45(1), 51–78. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2007.00718.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2007.00718.x

Morgan, K. E. (2017). Introducing the employee into employee silence: a reconceptualisation of employee silence from the perspective of those with mental health issues within the workplace. Retrieved from http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/17993/1/Kate%20Morgan%20PhD.pdf. Accessed June 2021.

Morrison, E. W., & Milliken, F. J. (2000). Organizational silence: a barrier to change and development in a pluralistic world. Academy of Management Review, 25(4), 706-725. https://doi.org/10.5465/amr.2000.3707697 DOI: https://doi.org/10.5465/amr.2000.3707697

Naldi, L., Nordqvist, M., Sjöberg, K., & Wiklund, J. (2007). Entrepreneurial orientation, risk taking, and performance in family firms. Family Business Review, 20(1), 33-47. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-6248.2007.00082.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-6248.2007.00082.x

Nieto, M. J., Santamaria, L., & Fernandez, Z. (2015). Understanding the innovation behavior of family firms. Journal of Small Business Management, 53(2), 382-399. https://doi.org/10.1111/jsbm.12075 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/jsbm.12075

Perlow, L., & Williams, S. (2003). Is silence killing your company? IEEE Engineering Management Review, 31(4), 18-23. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1109/EMR.2003.24935

Pimentel, D. N. G. (2016). A family matter? Business profile decision and entrepreneurship in family business: the case of the Azores. Doctoral dissertation, Universidade dos Açores (Portugal).

Pimentel, D. (2018). Non-family employees: levels of job satisfaction and organizational justice in small and medium-sized family and non-family firms. European Journal of Family Business, 8(2), 93-102. https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v8i2.5178 DOI: https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v8i2.5178

Pimentel, D., Almeida, P., Marques-Quinteiro, P., & Sousa, M. (2021). Employer branding and psychological contract in family and non-family firms. Management Research: Journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management, 19(3/4), 213-230. https://doi.org/10.1108/MRJIAM-10-2020-1106 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/MRJIAM-10-2020-1106

Pimentel, D., Couto, J. P., & Scholten, M. (2017a). Entrepreneurial orientation in family firms: looking at a European outermost region. Journal of Enterprising Culture, 25(4), 441-460. https://doi.org/10.1142/S0218495817500169 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1142/S0218495817500169

Pimentel, D., Pires, J. S., & Almeida, P. L. (2020). Perceptions of organizational justice and commitment of non-family employees in family and non-family firms. International Journal of Organization Theory & Behavior, 23(2), 141-154. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOTB-07-2019-0082 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOTB-07-2019-0082

Pimentel, D., Scholten, M., & Couto, J. P. (2017b). Profiling family firms in the autonomous region of the Azores. Revista Portuguesa de Estudos Regionais, 46, 91-107.

Pimentel, D., Scholten, M., & Couto, J. P. (2018). Fast or slow? Decision-making styles in small family and nonfamily firms. Journal of Family Business Management, 8(2), 113-125. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFBM-02-2017-0007 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/JFBM-02-2017-0007

Pinder, C. C., & Harlos, K. P. (2001). Employee silence: quiescence and acquiescence as responses to perceived injustice. Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management, 20, 331-370. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0742-7301(01)20007-3 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0742-7301(01)20007-3

Podsakoff, P., MacKenzie, S., Lee, J., & Podsakoff, N. (2003). Common method biases in behavioral research: a critical review of the literature and recommended remedies. Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(5), 879-903. https://doi.org/10.1037/0021-9010.88.5.879 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1037/0021-9010.88.5.879

Portuguese Association of Family Business (2021). Brochura de Apresentação Empresas Familiares. https://empresasfamiliares.pt/apresentacao-da-associacao-das-empresas-familiares/. Retrieved from Accessed on May 2021.

Rauch, A., Wiklund, J., Lumpkin, G. T., & Frese, M. (2009). Entrepreneurial orientation and business performance: an assessment of past research and suggestions for the future. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 33(3), 761-787. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2009.00308.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6520.2009.00308.x

Sabino, A., & Cesário, F. (2019). O silêncio dos colaboradores de Van Dyne, Ang e Botero (2003): estudo da validade fatorial e da invariância da medida para Portugal. Análise Psicológica, 37(4), 553-564. https://doi.org/10.14417/ap.1641 DOI: https://doi.org/10.14417/ap.1641

Samsami, M., & Schøtt, T. (2021). Family and non-family businesses in Iran: coupling among innovation, internationalization and growth-expectation. European Journal of Family Business, 11(2), 40-55. https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v11i2.10444 DOI: https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.v11i2.10444

Schilling, J., & Kluge, A. (2009). Barriers to organizational learning: an integration of theory and research. International Journal of Management Reviews, 11(3), 337-360. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2370.2008.00242.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2370.2008.00242.x

Short, J. C., Moss, T. W., & Lumpkin, G. T. (2009). Research in social entrepreneurship: past contributions and future opportunities. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 3(2), 161-194. https://doi.org/10.1002/sej.69 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/sej.69

Soomro, B. A., & Shah, N. (2019). Determining the impact of entrepreneurial orientation and organizational culture on job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and employee’s performance. South Asian Journal of Business Studies, 8(3), 266-282. https://doi.org/10.1108/SAJBS-12-2018-0142 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/SAJBS-12-2018-0142

Soriano, D. R., & Huarng, K. H. (2013). Innovation and entrepreneurship in knowledge industries. Journal of Business Research, 66(10), 1964-1969. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2013.02.019 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2013.02.019

Spector, P. E. (2019). Do not cross me: optimizing the use of cross-sectional designs. Journal of Business and Psychology, 34, 125–137. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10869-018-09613-8 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10869-018-09613-8

Van Dyne, L., Ang, S., & Botero, I. C. (2003). Conceptualizing employee silence and employee voice as multidimensional constructs. Journal of Management Studies, 40(6), 1359-1392. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-6486.00384 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-6486.00384

Wales, W. J., Covin, J. G., & Monsen, E. (2020). Entrepreneurial orientation: the necessity of a multilevel conceptualization. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 14(4), 639-660. https://doi.org/10.1002/sej.1344 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/sej.1344

Wang, C. C., Hsieh, H. H., & Wang, Y. D. (2020). Abusive supervision and employee engagement and satisfaction: the mediating role of employee silence. Personnel Review, 49(9), 1845-1858. https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-04-2019-0147 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-04-2019-0147

Whiteside, D. B., & Barclay, L. J. (2013). Echoes of silence: employee silence as a mediator between overall justice and employee outcomes. Journal of Business Ethics, 166(2), 251-266. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-012-1467-3 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-012-1467-3

Wiklund, J., & Shepherd, D. (2005). Entrepreneurial orientation and small business performance: a configurational approach. Journal of Business Venturing, 20(1), 71-91. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusvent.2004.01.001 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusvent.2004.01.001

Wilkinson, A., & Fay, C. (2011). New times for employee voice? Human Resource Management, 50(1), 65-74. https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.20411 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/hrm.20411

Zellweger, T. (2007). Time horizon, costs of equity capital, and generic investment strategies of firms. Family Business Review, 20 (1), 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-6248.2007.00080.x DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-6248.2007.00080.x

Published
2022-03-08
How to Cite
Pimentel, D., & Rodrigues, R. (2022). Employee Silence and Entrepreneurial Orientation in Small and Medium-Sized Family Firms. European Journal of Family Business, 12(1), 39-50. https://doi.org/10.24310/ejfbejfb.vi.13536
Section
Research Paper