The Business Review Journal

Vol. 17 * Number 1 * Summer. 2011

The Library of Congress, Washington, DC  *  ISSN 1553 - 5827

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FDI Spillovers in Member Countries of Integrated Markets

Dr. William L. Casey, Jr., Professor of Economics, Babson College, Babson Park, MA

 

Abstract

 Membership in an integrated single market, such as the EU, does offer relatively poor member nations the opportunity to employ inward foreign direct investment (FDI) as an engine of economic growth and development. Free access to the regional market means that multinational corporations (MNCs) can take advantage of favorable labor market conditions and low taxes in host countries, locate production facilities within, and export duty free throughout the market. However, there is a dark side to common market membership. Free unrestricted resource movement enables MNCs to import intermediate goods and other industrial inputs rather than develop relationships with suppliers in the local economy. Common market arrangements also promote the mobility of MNCs throughout the region leading to frequent plant closings. Member nations of integrated markets will have difficulty capturing positive spillover effects and avoiding negative spillovers unless these issues are addressed in the form of national and regional policy responses. In examining the impact of inward foreign direct investment on economic growth and development, a key issue in the economics literature has been the ability of host countries to capture positive spillover effects and to avoid negative spillovers.  Proponents of FDI-fueled economic development argue that the growth potential for inward FDI flows is multifaceted. Contributions to the host country’s developmental aspirations can occur in many ways including the infusion of needed capital as well as the spillovers from technology transfers, the introduction of new production processes, related gains in productivity, the infusion of managerial skills and know-how, employee training, the establishment of international production networks, and expanded access to international markets (Alfaro, 2003).  Positive spillovers can be either horizontal, in which local competitors gain knowledge, know-how or insight operating at the same level of production as multinational corporations, or vertical in which supply chain linkages between MNCs and local firms (either upstream or downstream) provide the same benefits. (Hanson, 2001).  

 

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A Strategy for Enterprise Sustainability

Dr. Dennis F. X. Mathaisel, Professor of Management Science, Babson College, MA

Dr. Clare L. Comm, Professor of Marketing, University of Massachusetts, MA

 

ABSTRACT

 Sustainability is the ability to endure. For any entity or any enterprise, sustainability is the ability to remain productive long term while minimizing waste and creating value. To be sustainable, the entity or enterprise, whether it is an ecological, environmental, human, or service enterprise, must possess five “abilities”: availability; dependability; capability; affordability; and marketability. This paper presents a strategy for sustainability based on these five abilities which should be adhered to throughout all phases of the life cycle of the entity or enterprise.  Sustainability is an ability - the ability to endure. In ecology, sustainability describes how biological species survive. For the environment, it is assessing whether or not project outputs can be produced without permanent and unacceptable changes in the environment. For humans, it is our long-term physical and cultural well-being. For mechanical systems and structures, it is maximizing reliability while conserving required resources and reducing waste. For an entity or an enterprise, it is the ability of the enterprise, its products, and its systems to remain competitive and productive long term, without failure, while minimizing waste.  Sustainability and sustainable development have become popular goals. They have also become wide-ranging terms that can be applied to any entity or enterprise on a local or a global scale for long time periods. Sustainability has many interpretations. Recently, the term has been used more in the context of “green”, which refers to having no negative impact on the environment, community, society, or economy (Bromley 2008). However, the traditional meaning centers around the words “endure”, “maintain”, or “support”, which is the focus of this paper. Here, sustainability means to aim to maintain the readiness and operational capability of systems or services in the enterprise or entity through the adoption of a strategy that meets established performance requirements in the most effective, efficient manner over the entity’s life cycle.

 

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The Reality of International Business Environment and the Challenges of Small Businesses in Pennsylvania-Conceptual Review

Dr. Mengsteab Tesfayohannes, Sigmund Weis School of Business, Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, PA

Dr. Jerrell Habegger, Sigmund Weis School of Business, Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, PA

 

ABSTRACT

 Small Businesses (SBs) are the engine of sustainable economic growth and innovation in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (PENN). They make a pivotal contribution to the socio-economic development of PENN as they represent more than 99% of all existing businesses in the State. However, SBs in PENN have continued to confront formidable challenges due to the new reality marked by increasing international business interactions and socio-economic and technological interdependency affecting all developed and developing economies around the globe.  This in turn has brought enormous intricacies and complexities in conducting business both domestically and internationally. The impact of massive technological discoveries and innovations is now felt everywhere with the ever expanding outreach around the globe. Unfortunately, many SBs’ Entrepreneurs in PENN are insufficiently aware of this phenomenon. Many of them specially the smaller ones have continued to devote their full time and energy in a limited local domain which might not warrant them business sustainability and growth. This paper attempted to conceptually review how SBs in PENN so far reacted to the demands of global business environment. In this paper our approach is to conduct a foundational study based on secondary data. We believe that our study can give a general picture of the scenario.  The developmental reality of the 21st century is one of complex socio-cultural, economic, political and technological leaps forward and intricate challenges.

 

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State and Local Government Fiscal Crises:  Causes and Solutions

Bassam AlBassam, Florida Atlantic University, FL

 

ABSTRACT

 State and local governments play a major role in the national economy, so we cannot investigate fiscal crises and explore solutions without studying and analyzing the situations of state and local governments. To find better solutions, studying the current fiscal situation and clarifying the roots of the problem is necessary. Many suggestions and solutions have been circulated among authors and specialists, although these have mostly been temporary solutions. Federal centralization and long-term planning are two solutions presented and discussed in the current paper.  The structure of the U.S. government is based on three levels of government: federal, state, and local. For the most part, state and local governments are independent in almost all government functions, including the financial system, budgetary system, and government functions. Therefore, every state is responsible for managing its own financial system. Here we have to note that state and local governments receive aid and grants from the federal government, whether directly in lump sums or indirectly through applying for federal programs. In addition, local governments receive aid from the state. Since decision-making at the state and local levels is revenue-driven, aid from higher levels of government affects how states and local government construct their regulations and laws (Gianakis & McCue, 1999).  State and local government is truly “big business” (Freeman et al., 2009). Since the U.S. was established as a nation, the role of state and local government in the economy has been important in many ways. First, state and local governments are responsible for providing services to people, so they are the first line providing services to the public. “Local governments are important economic agents. Because they make substantial purchases of goods and services and have employees who buy products and pay rent or mortgages, local governments contribute to the economic well-being of a community” (Miller & Svara, 2008, p. 4-5). State and local governments employ almost 17 percent of the workforce compared to 2 percent for the federal government (Boyd, 2009). This high percentage makes state and local governments the main engine for the whole economy, and illustrates the importance and effect of state and local government in terms of the national economy.  

 

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 General Education Curricular Foundations in Business Education

Dr. David S. Harrison, University of South Carolina Aiken

Dr. C. Michael Ritchie, University of South Carolina Aiken

 

ABSTRACT

 Articles in the popular press, and a significant study on the effectiveness of higher education by former Secretary of Education Margaret Spelling, have called into question the long-accepted, conceptual foundation approaches to learning, including collaborative, active-based, and integrative approaches.  Arne Duncan, current Secretary of Education, has instituted a new, “Race to the Top” $4.3 billion initiative, exceeding any previous amount of Department of Education discretionary spending, to create far-reaching improvements in our nation’s schools.   As with previous administrations, most of the changes are structural, and systemic reform, rather than learning modality approaches.  Absent from his core initiatives are innovative approaches to learning, including those emphasizing conceptual framework building.  Most university business programs favor that conceptual approach, yet appear to retain the same “discipline-segmented, non-integrated, general education / major specialization curriculum model” prevalent for many, many years, without significant change. We surface these critical issues, and follow with a survey of course requirement, current practices at regional, mid-sized public universities.  The survey had an eighty percent response rate (65 universities); the results of the survey are presented, with some commentary.  General Education:  Do we need it?  Columbia and the University of Chicago have strictly dictated curricular requirements; Cornell and Brown are student-driven and flexible.  Business schools in India, teach business [only]. What is the true value of a general education curriculum? Here’s an interesting quote: “The quality of a liberal education that makes it so effective is that the subject matter one studies is not use-eh-ful.”  (Ferral, V.E., 2008.)  The point being that the appreciation of knowledge, learning, has inherent value that transcends whether or not it leads directly to marketable skills.  Also examined in this broad view of education is the focus on pedagogical platforms that move from traditional methods of delivery to more effective systems. In July of 2009, Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education, announced the creation of a $4.3 billion program branded as “Race to the Top”.  (The current and prior administrations seem not to lack in talent for program marketing, catchy lingos.) 

 

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Educational Leadership Cost-Effectiveness and High School Completion Among Oahu’s Public School Districts

Dr. Larson Ng, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii

 

ABSTRACT

 The following study attempted to ascertain the leadership cost-effectiveness of public high school administrators towards completers through a financially based econometric analysis. Essentially, public high school leadership expenditures and completer data were collected and bivariate interaction analyzed through a correlation and linear regression procedure. Based on the collective results, with the exception of the Windward and Leeward District that reported a positive though statistically insignificant relationship, both the Honolulu and Central Districts reported a statistically insignificant negative relationship. Despite the positive results from the Windward and Leeward District, public high school administrators in each of the four public school districts on Oahu were found to have no econometrically meaningful effect towards high school completion from 2000 to 2007. Educational leadership, other than instruction, is a critically important factor that contributes to high school completion, where it is school administrators that set the goals and strategic direction for teachers to accomplish this task (Heck & Hallinger, 2010; Jarrett, Wasonga, & Murphy, 2010; Riley & Mulford, 2007). Although there are many techniques to measure the productivity of educational leadership, assessing its effectiveness through a financial perspective remains one practical way to accomplish this task (Beard, 2009). Consequently, this study will specifically analyze Hawaii’s Department of Education’s (DOE) high school leadership expenditures (i.e., school management, program/operations management, and overall management) and its econometric relationship with high school completers among the four public school districts on Oahu both individually and collectively (Hawaii Department of Education, n.d.). With this research, it is hoped that the results will provide a current snapshot of the effectiveness of Oahu’s DOE’s administrators in fostering high school completion from an economic perspective. 

 

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 A Suggested Computer Related Teaching Technique to Replace Debits and Credits in the Introductory Accounting Course

Lee Tagliaferri, Pace University, New York, New York

 

ABSTRACT

 I studied the role of debits and credits which are embraced as a primary teaching technique in the introductory accounting course, although they are outmoded in the contemporary data processing of computers. In particular, I probed if the role mandates debits and credits as a teaching technique and precludes a change in methodology. The reason for my study is to explore the feasibility to adopt, as an alternative for the teaching technique of debits and credits, a computer related tutelage. A comparative study of the alternatives gives evidence that a computer related tutelage is less complex, more comprehensible and easier to learn than the teaching technique of debits and credits. I investigated Particularis de Computis et Scripturis (De Scripturis), written by Luca Pacioli, in order to gain an insight of the rationale for debits and credits and how it correlates to learning in the introductory course. I find that the pedagogy of the introductory accounting course does not mandate debits and credits as a teaching technique. On this premise, I suggest a computer related teaching strategy to replace the technique of debits and credits in the introductory accounting course.  The teaching technique of debits and credits in the introductory accounting course does not correspond to the practical application of instruction for data processing by computers. The purpose of my study is to discern in this anomaly the role of debits and credits. I investigated if the role mandates integration of the teaching technique of debits and credits and precludes an alternative tutelage. Debits and credits in the introductory accounting course have far reaching implications.

 

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The Role of Corporate Values on Business Students’ Attitudes:  A Comparison of Undergraduates and MBAs

Dr. Denise Kleinrichert, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Michael Albert, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Jamie P. Eng, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

 

ABSTRACT

 Undergraduate business student attitudes about business values have not been analyzed for the impacts these views will have on business school curriculum, corporate recruiting of BSBA graduates, and these students’ future roles as change agents in business. Our empirical research on 715 undergraduate business students’ perceptions indicates that undergrads and MBA students are concerned that their values conflict with those they anticipate in the workplace.  The focus of this paper is undergraduate business student attitudes about business values and its underlying corporate initiatives, which has not been directly studied. There has been, however, a comprehensive study of MBA students. We seek in this paper to begin a dialogue on the study of U.S.-based undergraduate business student attitudes about the role of business values in society. For example, the evolving attitudes of MBA students - their learning in business schools and their thinking about the relationship between business and society, and whether this relationship involves ethical managerial practices – has been investigated by The Aspen Institute’s Center for Business Education (Aspen 2008).  One aspect of business education ought to include “moral imagination,” a complicated definition that includes a form of reasoning that serves as “a process composed of distinctive forms of moral sensitivity, moral judgment, moral intention, and moral behavior” toward corporate responsibilities to stakeholders (Moberg & Seabright 2000: 847-8). We should be concerned with whether undergraduate management-development education ought to reflect the context of ethical commitment by individuals to their corporations and to business practice based on the use of qualitative factors as well as quantitative indicators (Bishop 2008).

 

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Crisis Management: Corporate Recovery in Business Environment with Non-zero Mean Losses

Dr. Valery Shemetov, Strayer University

  

ABSTRACT

 A corporate recovery in a chronic crisis is considered, and an extension of an earlier proposed model for the recovery is developed. This extension takes into account possible non-zero environmental losses. Using the solutions for a corporate recovery in a crisis given in this paper, and a technique for calculating probabilities for survival in the recovery, one can estimate a probability for survival for each available recovery program, and choose the one providing the highest probability for a success.  This paper continues a quantitative study of a chronic (cumulative) crisis (Hwang and Lichtenthal, 2000) germinated by an internal or external event in a company’s business environment and making corporate return on assets (ROA) continuously decrease over time. Industry risks generate a random flow of losses threatening the corporation’s survival when its assets decline to a certain level. A company’s probability for survival on a delay with implementation of a recovery program relative to the crisis onset, and the ROA increment secured by the program is considered on the following assumptions (Shemetov, 2010): A1)  a cumulative effect of the losses caused by volatility of the corporation’s environment on corporation assets is small compared to the losses caused by a crisis: A2)  the time needed for converting corporate productive assets into cash is small A3)  a corporation uses no loans  A4)  corporate ROA changes uniformly in a crisis A5)  a flow of environment losses follows a Poisson’s distribution. When corporate assets are reasonably high, one can ignore environmental losses.

 

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Research Proposal: Investigating Sustainable Enterprise Wikis

Jeffrey Stewart, University of Cincinnati, OH

Brian Clark, University of Cincinnati, OH

 

Abstract

The knowledge-based view of the firm states that firms should organize around their knowledge assets (Grant, 1996).  To effectively organize using this view, firms must first identify what knowledge exists in the firm, and where.  Wiki technology is a flexible, dynamic web technology that can be used to capture organizational knowledge in the work process by users.  This research proposes to study the factors that influence user adoption and use of enterprise wiki technology as a decentralized knowledge and project management tool.  Additionally, the proposed research will investigate the factors that influence success and sustainability of enterprise wiki technology.  This describes a collaborative research effort between Jeffrey Stewart & Brian Clark, University of Cincinnati, and the R&D department of a major corporation It is designed to gain understanding of key phenomenon in planning, implementing, and evaluating modern knowledge management systems (KMS), specifically focusing on syntactic and semantic wiki tools as decentralized forms of user-generated and user-managed forms of KMS.  The results from the research will help identify pathways for achieving R&D’s long-term and short-term knowledge management (KM) goals; additionally, resulting data sets can be used for academic purposes, including pursuit of a dissertation and publication while maintaining compliance with confidentiality restrictions.  The knowledge-based view (KBV) of the firm states that the production and services offered by a firm are a result of the knowledge in the firm (Grant, 1996).  In the KBV, the firm is organized in a manner to best use the knowledge resources and competencies of the firm.  One way of organizing and incorporating the knowledge of employees is a knowledge management system (KMS). 

 

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Financial Crisis and Corporate Restructuring

Dr. Chaiporn Vithessonthi, Mahasarakham University, Thailand

 

ABSTRACT

 Although a financial crisis can be thought of as an economic event, it is rather unique and has significant consequences for the economy. Hence, a financial crisis should be treated differently than other economic events in the study of corporate restructuring. In this paper I propose a model for the impact of financial crisis on the corporate restructuring strategy of firms in emerging market countries. The purpose of the framework is to change how managers and scholars perceive corporate restructuring strategies. In this article, I ask, what is the impact of financial crisis on environmental conditions of organizations? What is the effect of financial crisis on financial market conditions? Is the need for corporate restructuring affected in different ways? Do corporate restructuring strategies remain effective during financial crisis as in other economic conditions? In this paper, I have identified (1) key antecedents of the need for corporate restructuring and the capacity to adopt corporate restructuring strategies, (2) the effects of financial crisis on the organization’s internal and external factors, (3) new propositions for research in the context of emerging market countries, and (4) new ways of thinking about managing corporate turnaround during financial crises.  Financial crises have occurred relatively more frequently in both emerging market countries as well as developed countries during past decades  ADDIN EN.CITE  ADDIN EN.CITE.DATA (Allsopp, 2002; Freedman et al., 2010; Glick and Hutchison, 2005). The latest global financial crisis of 2007-2008 results in the substantial economic downturn in almost all countries  ADDIN EN.CITE  ADDIN EN.CITE.DATA (Kashyap and Zingales, 2010; Longstaff, 2010), posing a challenge to both domestic as well as multinational firms across the globe.

 

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“Introducing ERPs to SMEs: A Two-Dimensional Review and Analysis”

Dr. Kostas Metaxiotis, Assist. Prof., University of Piraeus, Greece

 

ABSTRACT

 Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are a vital part of any national economy .To survive in the global economy, SMEs have to improve their products, services and processes, exploiting their intellectual capital in a dynamic network of knowledge-intensive relations inside and outside their borders. In order to accomplish these objectives, more and more companies are turning to the Enterprise Resource Planning systems (ERP).ERPs assist large enterprises in automating and integrating corporate cross-functions and provide the basis for business process management integration in order to minimize costs and increase efficiency and effectiveness of enterprises. However, in the case of SMEs, there is currently strong debate in the research community about the ERP adoption of SMEs and the final benefits for them.  In this framework, this paper aims at throwing light on the diffusion of ERPs in SMEs, analyzing several key issues and barriers. A wide range of academic and practitioner literature related to ERPs and SMEs is reviewed. On the basis of this review, the paper gives answers to specific research questions and presents future research directions.  During the last decade, the global economy has entered a new era where the future of enterprises essentially will be determined by their ability to wisely use knowledge, a precious global resource that is the embodiment of human intellectual capital and technology. The knowledge-based economy places great importance on the diffusion and use of information and knowledge, as well as its creation. In this new global economy, SMEs, being a vital part of any national economy, are obliged to focus on maintaining and enhancing their knowledge capital in order to innovate, and their ability to learn, adapt and change becomes a core competency for survival (Perry, 1999).  

 

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Mean-Reversion of Net Sales Predictability in the Case of Polish Public Companies

Dr. Jacek Welc, Wroclaw University of Economics, Poland

 

ABSTRACT

 Corporate financial results (measured by e.g. sales growth, profitability, earnings growth, leverage) are characterized by the long-term reversion toward the levels average for the whole economy. Empirical research also shows that the Beta coefficients (reflecting investment risk) of public companies are strongly mean-reverting. Because Beta coefficients are at least partially correlated with variability and predictability of corporate sales and earnings, the long-term mean-reversion of Beta coefficients suggests the possibility of the mean-reversion of the variability and predictability of firms’ sales and earnings. In this paper we explore the reversion toward the mean of net sales predictability in the case of companies listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange in the period of 2000-2009. The research confirmed the strong tendency of net sales predictability to revert toward the mean.  Forecasting corporate earnings constitutes an essential element of most models of corporate financial analysis and valuation [Moyer, McGuigan, Kretlow 1995; Penman 2007; DePamphilis 2008]. Analysts, when making forecasts, usually exploit a wide range of available information concerning the company under investigation. The second approach to forecasting earnings is based solely on corporate historical financial results and the predictions are made with the use of mechanical methods. However, the empirical research finds generally high inaccuracy of earnings predictions made by professional analysts as well as obtained from the extrapolative models [O’Brien 1988; Brown 1996; Dreman 1998; Malkiel 2007; Rothovius 2008]. It’s also not unequivocally clear whether detailed forecasting approaches are superior to the simpler ones or vice-versa.  Abundant research shows that the characteristic feature of corporate financial results (measured by e.g. sales growth or profitability) is a long-term reversion of those results toward the economy-wide average levels [Fama, French 1999; Keil, Smith, Smith 2004; Bajaj, Denis, Sarin 2005; Murstein 2003].

 

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Motivation to Change Project Manager’s Position With Line Manager’s Position and Vice Versa

Niksa Pivac, Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Split, Croatia

Dr. Snjezana Pivac, University of Economics, Split, Croatia

Josko Ravlic, Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Split, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 The realization of projects is characterized  by the extreme complexity and uncertainty, all as a result of the increasing complexity of business activities and the environments in which the projects are implemented and in particular due to the rapid development of science, technology and humanity as a whole. Thus, the dynamics of nowadays business in a global and powerful competition as the main precondition sets strong interconnection of all the participants and immediate response to rapid market fluctuations.  Visibility and performance of the projects are always evaluated and directly reflected in the fundamental objectives of each project: to conclude all the activities on time (i.e. the shortest possible time), within planned range of costs (i.e. the minimum costs) and at the same time fulfilling a required scope of the project. Project manager should be a key factor of the project success and consequently a key player of a successful business enterprise. The question arises whether project managers are adequately recognized in their workplace and whether their roles and responsibilities are in accordance with their influence and position in the enterprises.  In this respect, the main goal of this paper is to perform an empirical analysis in order to get insights on the actual role, significance and influence of project managers in their enterprises and generally in a society. A special emphasis has been given on the relationship between project managers and line managers throughout their organizations. The paper has made a comparative analysis of position of a relevant management levels in the Croatian enterprises and the enterprises in the selected countries.  Each and every organization has a lot of challenges on its way to success and vision. And it streams to reach desired position completely focused on the results and solutions, to be internally and externally perceived as innovative, dynamic and competitive regardless of dynamic and complex surroundings, to build strong and transparent relationships with customers.

 

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Toward A Model of Drivers for IT Outsourcing in a Developing Country: Jordan Public Sector Case Study

Dr. Maen Al hawari, Al Ain University of Science and Technology, Abu Dhabi, U.A.E

Mohammad S. Awwad, University of Arab Academy for Banking and Financial  Studies, Amman, Jordan

Dr. Mohammed Al hawari, Sharjah University, Sharjah, U.A.E

 

ABSTRACT

 IT outsourcing has experienced a high degree of growth at least in the latest decade, basically as a result of IT revolution and its huge use in organizations and then the increasing complexity of its management.  This study presents findings from five interviewed organizations in the public sector in Jordan. The findings revealed that IT outsourcing decision in any organization is affected by thirteen factors, nine of them are internally, and the other four are externally.  The findings revealed five new drivers that influence the outsourcing decision in Jordan (pressure from the sponsor, pressure from top management, pressure from external service provider ESP, the role and skills of CIO and distrust to internal skills. Furthermore, the majority of the interviewed managers do not prefer the option of the external outsourcing. This general attitude is referring  to the difficulties and some failures encountered   the organizations in practicing the outsourcing. Therefore, this study reveals the need for more cases in other developing countries to confirm and generalize the results of the study.  Statistics indicate that spending on IT outsourcing is about US$56 billion in 2000 (Suhaimi et al., 2005), $ 156 billion in 2004 (Bahli and Rivard, 2005), which means surely that the number exceeded $ 200 billion in 2010, and the market size of IT outsourcing is significantly growing.  The large market of IT outsourcing has motivated many researchers to explore the factors affect and motivate organizations to outsource some or all of their IT functions.  Most studies and literatures give a high importance to the considerations of cost, skills, and core-noncore business as main motivations to go toward outsourcing. Some researchers expanded their analysis by reviewing some theories such as, transaction cost economics and the resource-based view for more support and justification to their hypotheses about these factors (Marshal et al., 2007).  The majority of researches that identify motivations of outsourcing are discussed this issue in developed countries.

 

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Implementation of Classification Methods in Determining Human Resource Bundles

Ivana Tadic, University of Split, Split, Croatia

Dr. Snjezana Pivac, University of Economics, Split, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 In today volatile and every day changing business environment, human resources represent one of the crucial company’s resources. Changing from traditional to modern economy, it is not enough for company to possess substantial material and financial resources. It requires possessing unique human resources, with specific knowledge, skills and abilities important for survival of the company and creating company’s sustainable competitive advantage. Two decades ago, reputable authors started to research influence of human resource activities and organizational performances. Moreover, many researches provided empirical evidence of the importance of creating human resource bundles, which represent set of combined human resource activities. Due to their more direct and stronger synergic effect, human resource bundles provide greater effect on companies’ performances, instead of isolated and separated human resource activities.  The aim of this paper is to present different bundles, created by the implementation of classification methods (factor and cluster analysis) and their correlation with the most influential companies’ financial performances. Bundles are created using nine groups of human resource practices and their particular activities. The sample of this research includes Croatian public companies listed on Croatian Stock Exchange Market which were provided by written survey. Survey was generally designated to human resource managers, investigating their subjective opinions on the level of development of human resource practices within their company. These data are paired by companies’ financial indicators in order to disclose their relations. Second analysis creates the most influential human resource bundles, distinguishing them according to the company’s main activity, in order to reveal their characteristics which results from specificities of different industries. 

 

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Comparative Analysis of Lattice Based Option Pricing Models

Dr. Branka Marasovic, University of  Split, Split, Croatia

Dr. Bosko Sego, University of  Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia

Ivan Marasovic, Brodomerkur d.d., Split, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 Binomial and trinomial option pricing models are very popular numerical methods for pricing American option. In general, there is unfortunately no analytical solution to the American option problem. Since, no closed form solution is derived, lattice based models as binomial and trinomial model can be used in order to obtain approximate solutions. The binomial option pricing model was developed in 1979. This model involves the construction of binomial tree to represent the various probabilities for the future price over the life of the option. However, the binomial model assumes that the option price can either go up or down over a time step. It does not assume that the option price may remain unchanged. In 1986 Boyle proposed the trinomial option pricing model. Under the model, in each period, the prices can go up, down or remain unchanged ant that‘s the reason why author of trinomial model present it as an improvement of binominal model. However, trinomial model have never achieved popularity of binominal model. This phenomenon inspired authors of this paper to research rate of convergence of previously mentioned models.  In this paper authors will generalize research of M. Horasali (2007) in which he research rate of convergence of binominal and trinomial model for “in the money” options. In this paper we research rate of convergence for “in the money”, “at the money” and “out of the money” options. Furthermore, authors will be, also, determined time which computer spends to calculate value of options with given precision.  There are many models for pricing options, out of which the Black-Scholes option pricing model and the binomial option pricing model are the most popular. Black-Scholes model was the first model to be developed in 1973. This model is mathematical and based on various assumptions, some of them, unrealistic. It is also not able to give the value of an American put option on a dividend paying stock. Binomial and trinomial approximations are useful to solve this problem but using a lattice model introduces approximation error. The binomial option pricing lattice was developed in 1979 (Cox, J.C., S. Ross, M. Rubinstein, 1979).

 

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A Scale Development Study on Implicit Leadership Theories of Selected Management and MBA Students from Turkey

Ibrahim Ugur Baser, Marmara University and Director of Vocational School of Studies, Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey

Yasin Rofcanin, Bogazici University and Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey

 

ABSTRACT

 Studies on leadership have enfolded that individuals have “implicit leadership schemas” in their minds. In this sense, implicit leadership means the prototypical and ideal leadership attributes that individuals have about a potential leader (Lord, Foti & De Vader, 1984). Even though majority of implicit leadership studies underpin the “general nature” of this literature, recent studies have started to include individual differences as antecedents of implicit leaderships. The purpose of the present study is to elaborate on the construct of implicit leadership and offer a scale on implicit leadership theories. The study utilized a qualitative approach. Senior management and MBA students from Istanbul University and Istanbul Bogazici University were selected as sample groups. Four round focus groups and in-depth interviews were conducted. One managerial case excerpt (Lord et al., 1984) was also used within each focus group.  For internal reliability, inter-judge reliability scoring and test-retest approaches were utilized. Two tenured academicians scored the dimensions revealed from the qualitative studies and inter-judge reliability score was 82.3 %. Following focus group interviews and experimental designs, as further methodological suggestions, a questionnaire is offered that will include the self-developed scale and demographic information section for further purposes.  Despite the rising importance of implicit leadership theories, studies on the scales of implicit leadership theories have been limited, especially in Turkey. Therefore, the perceptions of senior management and MBA students regarding their implicit leadership prototypes will provide important guidelines for recruiting purposes, especially in Turkey.  From global warming to ethnic conflicts leadership is widely regarded as both the cause and the solution to many of the contemporary problems of our world. Although the academic literature on leadership includes hundreds of studies, the dominance of leader focused studies and theoretical fragmentation of the field resulted in a lack of knowledge on leadership as a process involving followers’ perceptions and judgment. In addition to this, leadership is suggested to be like beauty difficult to describe.

 

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The Missing Link in Network Dynamics

Dr. Yiu Hing Wong, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hunghom, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

Dr. Jennifer W. M. Lai, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hunghom, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

Dr. Tze. L. Yip, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hunghom, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

Dr. Ricky Y. K. Chan, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hunghom, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

 

ABSTRACT

 An important issue in the management of organizational networks is the balancing of relationships at both the interpersonal and interorganizational levels throughout the network while satisfying an external end-customer requirement. Addressing this issue requires an understanding of the key dynamics of a complex network system including the role of trust in relationships. Therefore, in this paper, we first develop a three-level relationship model with a trust transferability concept that evaluates the quality of multiple levels of relationships We then present trust dynamics at the individual level to enhance the overall trust in the system while meeting the required organizational trust with the external customer. The model delivers a statistically sound determination. Furthermore, the model generates managerial insights into related design and control issues of organizational networks. In numerous sectors of industry, including electronics, computers, and automobiles, internal and external relationships usually take the form of a complex dynamic network connecting customers, salesmen, and administrative staff. Throughout the organizational network, there exist different levels of trust associated with the relationships involving customers-salesmen (external, interpersonal), salesmen-back office (internal, intra-organizational), and customers-organization (external, interorganizational). These multi-level trusts affect the overall trust of a network in terms of customization, which in turn affects the minimal trust level witnessed in today’s competitive business environment. Amongst other things, high-level relationships usually produce an efficient level of customer satisfaction, and although the efficient level of both internal and external trust presents competitive advantages, the management of such relationships and trust poses a great challenge to many organizations. We find many examples in the recent American subprime mortgage crisis and the current global financial crisis. One of the most important steps that most institutions, particularly financial institutions, are taking in an attempt to prevent the crisis from worsening is to rebuild inter-party and trilateral trust levels in the global network.  

 

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Empirical Evidence on Innovation Activity in Tourism: The Hotel Sector Perspective

Dr. Smiljana Pivcevic, University of Split, Split, Croatia

Professor Lidija Petric, University of Split, Split, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 Innovation is one of the five drivers of productivity growth alongside skills, investment, enterprise and competition” (DTI, 2007, p. iii.). Tourism is no exception to this. In fact, it is a general opinion that the competitiveness of tourism enterprises to a great extent depends upon their innovation activity. On the other hand and to our surprise, in tourism the research on innovation has so far received poor attention from scholars, especially in the field of empirical research. This article aims at filling that gap. It presents results from an empirical study of innovation activity carried out during the spring/summer 2010 in the hotel sector in Croatia. Due to the problem of empirical measurement of innovation and the specific characteristics of hotel sector, the Community Innovation Survey IV questionnaire design was used and adapted for this purpose. The results suggest that Croatian hotels can be portrayed as only moderately innovative and with different innovation activity according to innovation type and newness. Furthermore, the relationship between the innovation acitivty and hotel performance is investigated. Based upon the research results, managerial implications are given.  In a recent review of research on innovation in tourism Hjalager (2010) states that through its history tourism has been marked by remarkable innovation while at the same time the issue of tourism innovation was rarely discussed in the context of traditional academic research on innovation. Hjalager herself was a pioneer in researching these issues. In an article on tourism, environment and innovation she pointed out that such approach represented "an explorative and analytic approach which tourism research has never before touched on in any systematic way" (Hjalager, 1996, 201 according to Hall and Williams, 2008, 4). On the other hand, almost 15 years later, she reasonably concludes “…there is still only limited systematic and comparable empirical evidence of the level of innovative activities and their impacts and wider implications for destinations and national economies” (Hjalager, 2010, 1). 

 

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Social Responsibility, Crisis and Sustainable Development

Dr. Cornel Nicolae Jucan, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Romania

 

ABSTRACT

 The effects of globalization and of the economic and financial crisis have made it clear that it is necessary to find new approaches to the interactions between modes of doing business, the political system and society. Corporate social responsbility (CSR), as a strategic tool, represents a way of bringing together these three elements in order to identify solutions for overcoming the crisis and for achieving sustainable development. This paper aims to provide an assessment and potential demonstration of the fact that adopting and fostering the values of social responsibility in the case of companies, governments and civil society, could be an important step in the sustainable development of society.  In 1972, Edward Lorenz, one of the pioneers of chaos theory, insightfully asked: Does the flap of a butterfly's wings in Brazil set off a tornado in Texas?” In the context of globalization, the  “butterfly effect” is clearly manifested in the economy. A turbulence – natural or of another sort – in Indonesia or China, for instance, may affect the production capacity of many multinational companies, which can in turn have an impact on profits. This is then immediately reflected in the stock market value of these companies’ shares through the modification of the market indices of all the stock exchanges on which the companies are listed. Kotler and Caslione (2009, p 21-37) draw attention to the fact that that there has been a shift from a normal” economy – an economy with upward and downward fluctuations and with some degree of predictability – to the economy of the new normality” characterized by major shocks and incresingly unforeseeable turbulence” , manifested through agitation, random occurrence, lack of predictability. This shift has resulted in higher degrees of overall risk and uncertainty at both the micro and the macroeconomic levels. In Kotler and Caslione’s view, this new phase of the economy is charcaterized by the lack of economic cycles, by boom-ins and unpredictable recessions. In the context of this newly emerged economy, investors are more cautious than ever before, focusing on trully profitable business, on low-risk business, and on a market whose customers have become increasingly conservative. Because of this, the managers’ strategies must be rethought so as to allow efficient and straightforward procedural approaches to the situations emerging in this new economy.

 

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“So, You’re a Millennial — Create us a Facebook Presence.”

Dr. Barbara A. Looney, Black Hills State University, Spearfish, SD

Dr. Annette Ryerson, Black Hills State University, Spearfish, SD

 

ABSTRACT

 Graduating millennials entering the workforce will find their new employers presume them to be competent navigators with social media.   A recent survey conducted by the South Dakota Center for Enterprise Opportunity indicates that, while small business owners in the upper Midwest believe they currently underuse social media potential, most hope to build and grow a social media presence.  Employers look to new hires for social media strategies.  However, student adeptness with personal social connectivity does not guarantee a graduate’s ability to produce well-targeted and beneficial business media.  In fact, most higher education texts in business communication, as well as in advertising and marketing, have yet to develop instructional segments for adapting social media to business use.  Business students risk graduating underprepared to meet their employers’ aspirations and expectations.  As business faculty, the authors offer a prescriptive approach for educating students to meet future employment needs.  The buzz of social media potential navigates across contemporary business journals, newsletters, magazines, and textbooks.  For those in business, decisions about adopting social media options are a question of when and to what degree, not whether.   The tools of social media, such as MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, and e-mail blasts, offer businesses enormous broadcast potential to a wide and targeted audience at minimal expense.  The decision by PepsiCo Beverages America, for example, to step away from their tradition of 23 years and withdraw advertising with the 2011 Super Bowl, provides a mega-company example of how businesses are re-evaluating their resource allocation and implementing social media with stunning effect.  In Pepsico’s case, $20 million in Super Bowl advertising funds were set aside for an online contest in which consumers submit ideas and compete for votes to win grant money.  Logging on to Twitter and Facebook., participants make known their preferences. 

 

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The Convergence of Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Sustainability: Starbucks Corporation’s Practises

Dr. Alev Katrinli, Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey

Dr. Gonca Gunay, Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey

Dr. Mehmet Efe Biresselioglu, Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey

 

ABSTRACT

 The evolution of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and the concept of Corporate Sustainability (CS) have converged resulting in a similar objective of achieving the balance between economic prosperity, social integrity and environmental responsibility. This paper aims to demonstrate this convergence based on energy related CSR projects pursued by Starbucks Corporation both in Turkey and globally. In addition, it aims to illustrate how CSR projects are able to simultaneously achieve economic, social and environment goals, without creating conflicts of interest between different domains.  Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is an important phenomenon that has recently received increasing attention both from academia and the business world. This paper discusses how this important concept of CSR is converging with Corporate Sustainability (CS) on the goal of satisfying the environmental, societal and economic demands, and aims to illustrate this convergence, focusing on CSR projects related to renewable energy and energy efficiency pursued by Starbucks Corporation both in Turkey and globally. Moreover, it also tries to show how those CSR projects related to energy serve economic, social and environmental domains simultaneously. Thus, it starts with a discussion on the CSR and CS concepts, followed by the section on the role of energy in CS. Then, within this framework, Starbucks’s CSR practices related to energy are explained and discussed from the viewpoint of global energy trends and renewable energy use in Turkey.  Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) consists of actions that appear to further some social good beyond the interests of the firm and that which is required by law (McWilliams & Siegel, 2001). Although the concept has received growing attention from business scholars in recent years, Bowen provided the first modern definition of the concept as early as 1953, stating that businesses are responsible for their actions beyond profit and loss statements.  

 

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Helping Students Understand the Implications of Electronic Technologies on Managerial Communication Practices

Dr. Thomas Clark, Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH

Julie Stewart, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH

 

Abstract

 This article describes a sequence of assignments that are designed to help students in a business communication class achieve four goals:  1) to explore the impact of “slow time” and “fast time” technologies on their academic and interpersonal goals, 2) to learn to use the Toulmin model to construct a logically complete argument, 3) to teach fellow students to learn how to use effectively tap into information resources, available on-line and through the University’s Learning Resources Center, and 4) to present their findings orally using electronic technologies commonly used in modern organizations.  Today’s students have never known a world without electronic technologies. Perhaps of most significance, students may take it for granted that faster communication is better communication, so text messaging, Twitter updates, and email, as well as PowerPoint slides, YouTube videos, and Facebook photos, are privileged over longer messages, such as papers and public speeches that are composed over days and weeks rather than in minutes.  They and most knowledge workers participate in a world of perpetual contact and cognitive switching from one medium to another in a highly fragmented communication environment.  Recent research indicates some disturbing facts: In total, interruptions take up to 2.1 hours of an average knowledge worker’s day and costs the US economy $558 billion a year. Even more surprising, 45% of interruptions are self-initiated. The research also indicates it takes the average worker eight minutes to regain the focus needed to resume the work that was interrupted (Jackson, 2008).  This is a significant contrast to the learning environment that many teachers experienced as college students, where books and a library took center stage and thought was absorbed through reading and communicated on paper.

 

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Analysis of Financial Statements using Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA): A Case of Select Indian Pharmaceutical Companies

Prof. Mohammed Akbar Ali Khan, Osmania University, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India

Dr. Sudershan Kuntluru, Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Sunil Kumar Parupati, ING Vysya Bank, Kareemnagar, Andhra Pradesh, India

 

ABSTRACT

 Financial ratios are used as analytical tools for evaluating the performance of a firm. It is easy to compute but their interpretation is problematic especially when two or more ratios provide conflicting signals.  In this regard, multi objective non–parametric methods like Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) are being widely used for explanation and prediction of a firm's behavior based on using variable method assumption. In this paper, we demonstrated that DEA can augment the traditional ratio analysis as a tool for evaluating a firm's overall performance. DEA can provide a consistent and reliable measure of evaluating operational efficiency of a firm. This research tries to utilize the results of DEA applied to a large sample of pharmaceutical companies in India in order to demonstrate how useful DEA is useful for financial statement analysis.  Financial statement analysis (FSA) is principally based on the computation of ratios. The computerization of modern industrial systems has facilitated the collection and elaboration of data and has led to a rapid proliferation of such measures. Despite the disadvantages of ratio analysis listed in the literature it is still the major tool used in the evaluation and interpretation of the firm's behavior. The reason for this widespread use of ratio analysis dating from 19th century is not only the multiplicity of information offered, but also the lack of simple alternative techniques.  The more recently developed use of ratios is the explanation and prediction of various business phenomena. Thus, elaborate statistical models have been constructed to forecast the business's future, particularly with respect to bankruptcy risk. Multivariate models have also been applied to determine industry standards, useful for inter firm comparisons. However, the results of these studies are hardly utilized by the applied work in the field.  Multivariate models facilitated the collection and elaboration of data have also been applied to determine industry and has led to a rapid proliferation of such standards, useful for inter firm comparisons [Diakoulaki et.al, 1991].  In the Coasian tradition of the theory of the firm and related transaction cost analysis, surviving firms indicate that there may be some firm-specific production or managerial efficiencies that are unlikely to be replicated by other firms in the same industry and the market, or those firms would not have survived in the first place. Earlier studies have demonstrated the general usefulness of Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) in various decision contexts.

 

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Asset Prices Boom & Bust Cycles: Methodology and Key Features

Dr. Ana Rimac Smiljanic, University of Split, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 Boom and bust cycles in asset prices are often accompanied by credit cycles. These movements can sometimes lead to the periods of financial instability. Moreover, the current global financial crisis can be accounted among the crisis largely connected with the asset markets. There are a large number of empirical researches that explain the connection between the cycles in asset price and credit and financial stability. In this paper we present a new methodology for determining the cycles in asset prices. By this methodology we have defined the cycles in asset prices in the United States and analyzed the specifics of the proposed method of determining the cycle compared to previously used methods. Analysing the events in previous cycles in asset prices, we find the rationale for the proposed method of determining the cycle in order to preserve financial stability.  Until the end of the twentieth century, the economic literature did not pay a significant attention to the cycles in asset prices. What the episodes of financial instability, which occurred in the late twentieth century, had in common was a large fluctuation in asset prices. The bubbles in real estate and stock prices, that occurred in conditions of low inflation and high levels of external funding, deflated in the crisis, causing stagnation in the economy. Therefore, economic scientists started researches on the effects of large cycles in asset markets and the associated credit cycles on the economy. A large number of researchers began doing studies to answer the question whether the movements in asset prices can serve as an indicator of financial instability, i.e. what is the role of asset prices in the credit cycles. The analysis of the connection between asset prices, credit booms and financial stability is related to the literature on business cycle models that incorporate financial accelerator effect first explained by Bernanke and Gertler, 1995. Due to this effect, significant shocks to asset prices, relative to the prices of goods and services, change the net value of a potential debtor, which determines the possibility and cost of external financing.

 

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The Applications of Fiscal Policy in Centrally Planned Economies

Dr. Hasan Bulent Kantarci, Kocaeli University, Kocaeli, Turkey

 

ABSTRACT

 This paper studies the applications of fiscal policy in centrally planned economies. The applications of fiscal policy on economic growth, income distribution, and stability in the centrally planned economies are presented. The economic transformation experiences to date do not show that either approach to reform, radicalism or gradualism, is unconditionally better than the other. Rather, by comparing the initial economic and social situations and special economic structures, each approach may be a “constrained optimum” that reflects what is politically acceptable and economically feasible in each case. However, vested interests can very easily thwart these policies and result in causing these policies to fail. The results of this paper provide a better understanding of fiscal policy applications in the centrally planned economies.  The goals of fiscal policy are the following: economic growth, income distribution, and stability.  In centrally planned economics, these goals are achieved by central planning. If fiscal policy is successful in directing total spending in the economy, then a high degree of stability, growth and income distribution are achieved. Government fiscal policy is a conscious attempt to direct the economic activities of the government toward the accomplishment of these goals. This is how central planning resolves these basic tasks.  If the economic activity of a country is to be planned, some fundamental steps are needed. First of all, a plan has to be executed that specifies the goals (or objectives) to be reached within a specified time frame. Then, there must be an organizational mechanism for managing the plan. In other words, there must be an incentive system to harmonize the behavior of agents with the achievement of goals. Lastly, there must be a method to evaluate outcomes and, where they differ from targets, to ensure appropriate feedback to adjust the direction of economic activity.  All kinds of forces can dictate the structure of centrally planned economies through state controls and ownership arrangements. Thus, the state dictates sectoral expansion and, within sectors, the arrangements for production. The central planning board decides what to produce, how to produce it, who is to get the product and how to provide for the future. Operating plans are given to each firm (or enterprise) within the economy.

 

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I’ll Take Ten Employees, and a Large Order of Fries… To Go Please.  A Look at Hiring Pools and Their Dangers

Dr. T. J. Robertson, Sam Houston State University

Dr. Laura Sullivan, Sam Houston State University

 

ABSTRACT

 In this dynamic economy many companies are changing the way they do business.  It is becoming increasingly important to have a flexible workforce which allows an employer to have necessary personnel ready to work on short notice.  While many companies are turning to a temporary workforce there are other options.  One option employers might consider is the development of a hiring pool.  These hiring pools are groups of prequalified workers an employer may call on to begin work on short notice.  There are many hazards associated with creation of a hiring pool such as job qualifications and their impacts on protected employees.  This paper takes a look at hiring pools, the process used to create them, and pitfalls an employer should be aware of.  Can an employer require applicants for a hiring pool to have a high school diploma (or equivalent), a driver’s license, and that they undergo academic testing if the company already employs workers in similar jobs who do not meet those requirements?  Hiring criteria like those proposed by a company are governed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures.  While these guidelines are not laws per se, they are entitled to great deference.  Griggs v. Duke Power Co., 401 U.S. 424, 91 S.Ct. 849 (1971).  Any employment test which is discriminatory, even if just in effect and not intent, is prohibited unless the employer can show that the requirements are directly and significantly related to the employment being offered.  Moody v. Albemarle Paper Co., 422 U.S. 405, 95 S.Ct. 2362, 2375 (1975); citing Griggs v. Duke Power Co., 401 U.S. at 432.  Even an absolute lack of discriminatory intent is not enough to protect an employer from a discrimination suit.  Griggs v. Duke Power Co., 91 S.Ct. at 854.  In Griggs the employer had gone to great efforts to help the undereducated employees with a plan offering company financing of two-thirds the cost of high school training.  Id.  The focus in these matters will be on the consequences of the employment practices, not the motivations of the employer. Id. There are two ways in which employment requirements can be deemed discriminatory. 

 

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How Much is Polish Companies’ Earnings Predictability Mean-Reverting

Dr. Jacek Welc, Wroclaw University of Economics, Poland

 

ABSTRACT

 Corporate financial results (measured by e.g. sales growth, profitability, earnings growth, leverage) are characterized by the long-term reversion toward the levels average for the whole economy. Empirical research also shows that the Beta coefficients (reflecting investment risk) of public companies are strongly mean-reverting. Because Beta coefficients are at least partially correlated with variability and predictability of corporate sales and earnings, the long-term mean-reversion of Beta coefficients suggests the possibility of the mean-reversion of the variability and predictability of firms’ sales and earnings. In our previous research we confirmed the strong tendency of mean-reversion of net sales predictability in the case of companies listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange in the period of 2000-2009. In this paper we explore the reversion toward the mean of net earnings predictability. The research confirmed the strong tendency of net earnings predictability to revert toward the mean.  Forecasting corporate earnings constitutes an essential element of most models of corporate financial analysis and valuation [Moyer, McGuigan, Kretlow 1995; Penman 2007; DePamphilis 2008]. Analysts, when making forecasts, usually exploit a wide range of available information concerning the company under investigation. The second approach to forecasting earnings is based solely on corporate historical financial results and the predictions are made with the use of mechanical methods. However, the empirical research finds generally high inaccuracy of earnings predictions made by professional analysts as well as obtained from the extrapolative models [O’Brien 1988; Brown 1996; Dreman 1998; Malkiel 2007; Rothovius 2008]. It’s also not unequivocally clear whether detailed forecasting approaches are superior to the simpler ones or vice-versa.  Abundant research shows that the characteristic feature of corporate financial results (measured by e.g. sales growth or profitability) is a long-term reversion of those results toward the economy-wide average levels [Fama, French 1999; Keil, Smith, Smith 2004; Bajaj, Denis, Sarin 2005; Murstein 2003].

 

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Challenges of Relationship Management with Customers in Business Environment

Dr. Maja Djurica, Belgrade Business School, Higher Education Institution For Applied Studies, Belgrade

Gordana Tomic, Belgrade Business School, Higher Education Institution For Applied Studies, Belgrade

Mile Samardzic, Belgrade Business School, Higher Education Institution For Applied Studies, Belgrade

 

ABSTRACT

 Customer Relationship Management is a business strategy used to develop and maintain mutually beneficial long-term relationship between buyers and suppliers. This strategy is based on identifying, attracting and retaining the most valuable (strategically important) customers in order to improve profitability and increasing customer services. The main instruments used for implementation of customer relationship management are loyalty programs. They are used in all sectors of the economy, especially in the sphere of retail trade through special credit cards and other loyalty cards.  The primary goal of customer relationship management is to build and maintain a database of loyal customers that are profitable for the organization. Both sides in relation “buyer - company “ can benefit from the retention. This is not just in the interest of companies, but also in the interest of customers who benefit from the long-term cooperation with the firm.  In case they have a choice, customers will remain loyal to the company if they get more value compared to expected value from competing companies. To the buyer this value represents compromise between "giving" and "taking." Customers are likely to remain in the relationship in which they get (quality, satisfaction, specific benefits) more than they give (financial and non-cash expenses). If companies are able to consistently deliver value to customers, then it is clear that the customers will benefit, and be stimulated to stay in the same relationship with the company.  Empirical research shows that human nature is such that most buyers would rather not have changed suppliers of products or services, especially in their relationship a lot invested. Cost changes are often high in terms of monetary costs of switching operations and the accompanying psychological and time costs.

 

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Outsourcing and Downsizing As Modern Organizational Trends in Croatian Companies

Dr. Lovorka Galetic, University of Zagreb, Croatia

Ana Aleksic, University of Zagreb, Croatia

Maja Klindzic, University of Zagreb, Croatia

 

ABSTRACT

 This paper gives a theoretical and empirical overview of modern organizational trends in design with a special accent given to outsourcing and downsizing. Outsourcing and downsizing have been seen as an instrument that can help organizations to deal with new business environment and as such they are becoming one of the basic issues and modern trends of organizational design. In order to investigate the state and perspectives of those modern organizational trends in Croatian companies, a research was undertaken. Results of the research show the dynamic of outsourcing activities in different types of ownership and different types if industries, as well as the relationship between application of modern organizational trends and different aspects of companies competitive position. Organizational structures as well as overall organizational design play a crucial role in defining and enhancing organizational performance. Results of a surveys conducted among managers of major corporations show that appropriate organizational design is valued as one of the four key criteria for business successes in the twenty-first century (Nikolenko and Kleiner, 1996). Still, there are no set of principles or a model that would be unique for all organizations and all business environments. In recent time, due to global business trends and development of information technology, new trends in organizational design have emerged. There was a shift from traditional forms and principles to modern, organic forms. These forms are characterized by more flexible and autonomous units, lack of hierarchy, with a strong focus on teamwork, lateral communication, organizational learning and orientation on core business and activities.  Large-scale downsizing, vertical disaggregation, outsourcing and elimination of management levels have been characteristic of large multidivisional organizations of the 20th century (Schilling and Steensma, 2001). They will continue to be a characteristic of future modern companies which are trying to react to uncertain environment and to find fit between them and their business environment.

 

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The Job Redesigning Process: A Study of Medical Representatives using the Job Characteristics Model

Dr. Maria P. Michailidis, University of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus

Nicolina Dracou, University of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus

 

ABSTRACT

 An examination of the levels of job satisfaction of Medical Representatives was conducted using the Job Characteristics Model (JCM) and the Job Diagnostic Survey (Short Form), Hackman and Oldham, (1980).  The study indicated the immediate need for job redesign in order to increase the general satisfaction levels. It seems that the current job design is not proportionally aligned with the skills and expectations of the majority of the workforce, and does not fulfill employees’ needs for achievement, recognition and growth. The least satisfied demographic category of Medical Representatives in Cyprus, and the category that seeks immediate job redesign is the Graduate degree holders; also those belonging to the age group of under 28 years old, and those working in the industry for 2-5 years demonstrated low general satisfaction levels.  As far as the differences between genders in terms of satisfaction levels, no significant differences were shown.  Furthermore, it was shown that the profession needs to be redesigned in a manner that would match and moreover exceed the employee’s needs in all of the five job characteristics of: Skill Variety, Task Identity, Task Significance, Autonomy and Feedback, thus adding value to the profession and to the pharmaceutical industry.  Dhanjal (2006) refers to medical representatives as the bridges between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical profession (Dhanjal 2006).  According to recent international data there are approximately 1,500,000 professional medical representatives worldwide, from which the three hundred and forty three are working in Cyprus according to the Cyprus Association of Medical Representatives (www.siekcy.com).   The everyday work activities of medical reps are very stressful, demanding and require high energy and self-motivation as it is a profession dealing with everyday sales which depend on whether the customers/doctors feel convinced about the quality of the products (www.bodycote.nildram.co.uk). 

 

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The Future of Regional and Multilateral Trade Agreements

Jenifer Varzaly, The University of Adelaide, SA, Australia

 

ABSTRACT

 In the modern era of international trade, international institutions such as the World Trade Organization (WTO) have encouraged liberalism at the multilateral level, at the same time as having regard to the national sovereignty of individual states. The ultimate objective of the WTO was established as free trade between nations, and this was viewed as best being achieved through multilateral agreements which would apply to all WTO members.  Multilateral agreements are trade agreements between all WTO member countries that are required to satisfy the most favored nation (MFN) principle, requiring market access benefits to be made on a non-discriminatory basis. Regional and bilateral agreements comprise trade agreements in which a number or group of countries form preferential trade agreements that give a discriminatory concessions to member countries. For the purpose of this paper, regional trade agreements (RTAs) will refer to all forms of interstate cooperation falling under GATT Article XXIV, including bilateral, preferential trade and free trade agreements. Hence, RTAs constitute an exception to the MFN principle.  RTAs have increased markedly in number over the last 15 years and have become a very prominent aspect of the multilateral trading system. For example, from 1995 to 2005, the WTO was notified of more than 130 new RTAs, which was more than the previous 46 years combined.  As of December 2008 around 421 RTAs had been notified to the WTO, and around 400 of these are scheduled to be implemented by 2011. The proliferation of RTAs over the past 15 years certainly raises the pertinent issue as to whether these are positive developments in international trade, or whether they serve to undermine the multilateral trading system. 

 

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Networking in Business Training Community

Dr. Zsolt Csapo, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary

 Dr. Laszlo Karpati, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary

 Dr. Andras Nabradi, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary

 

ABSTRACT

 The European MBA Network started 14 year ago as a successful Tempus project with the participation of universities in Warsaw (Poland) and Prague (Czech Republic). University of Debrecen (Hungary) joined quite soon to the Network. Since that time the Network has developed into an efficient way of upgrading the management knowledge of young managers mainly in Central and Eastern Europe. However, the main message of this paper is that the MBA is not only a way of improving the business skills of the students, but also an effective way of intensifying the participating teaching staff’s contacts (personal and web based) within the Network. At the University of Debrecen also a new business education form started recently: the Team Academy, as a part of a Team Academy network headed by University of Jyvaskyla, Finland. This type of training is also emphasizes networking and learning by doing principles that leads the future businessmen to the situation that they do not acquire knowledge, but also create new knowledge as a result of the networking process.  AGRIMBA is an international Network of academics and professionals from universities and related institutions dealing with education and research in agribusiness. At the moment the Network has participant institutions from Europe (Poland, the Netherlands, Ukraine, Hungary, Portugal, United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Croatia and Serbia) and one partner from the United States and is active mainly in Central and Eastern Europe. The main objective of the Network is to set standards for the programmes overseen by the Network based on the best practices and accredit them on the basis of these standards. The International MBA Network was established in 1995.  The idea of Team Academy, as a new way of learning entrepreneurship started in 1993, in Jyvaskyla Finland, based on the idea of the founder Mr. Johannes Partanen [3]. Learning is based on team companies, with a program taking three and half years, leading to Bachelor degree in Business Administration.

 

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Mean-Reversion of Sales Growth as Investment Strategy on the Warsaw Stock Exchange

Dr. Jacek Welc, Wroclaw University of Economics, Poland

 

ABSTRACT

 Abundant empirical research found that corporate sales growth and profitability are strongly mean-reverting. At the same time the stock market investors and analysts seem to neglect this mean-reversion. The result is over-extrapolation of historical earnings trends and the presence of significant over-optimism in the most optimistic earnings forecasts and significant over-pessimism in the most pessimistic earnings forecasts. This creates investment opportunities for those market participants who are aware of the mean-reversion phenomenon. In this paper we compared profitability of strategies based on corporate sales growth on the Polish stock market in 1998-2010 years. The strategy of investing (with annual portfolio rebalancing) in 20% stocks with the lowest net sales’ growth generated above-average returns. The average annual nominal return of the lowest sales growth stocks in 1998-2010 period was 12,6% p.a. compared with 7,3% p.a. in the case of the highest sales growth stocks and compared to the average annual return of the market as a whole of 6,8% p.a.  Abundant research shows that the characteristic feature of corporate financial results (measured by e.g. sales growth, profitability, etc.) is a long-term reversion of those results toward the economy-wide average levels [Fama, French 1999; Keil, Smith, Smith 2004; Bajaj, Denis, Sarin 2005; Murstein 2003]. One research found that from 1960 through 1999 only 8 of the largest 150 companies on the “Fortune 500” list managed to increase their earnings by an annual average of at least 15% for two decades [Loomis 2001]. The other research, based on five decades of data, showed that only 10% of large U.S. companies had increased their earnings by 20% for at least five consecutive years, only 3% had grown by 20% for at least 10 years straight, and not a single one had done it for 15 years in a row [Zweig 2001]. This means that maintaining above-average pace of corporate earnings growth is extremely difficult in the long-run. This mean-reversion of earnings is at least partially caused by mean-reversion of sales growth.

 

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Structural-Qualitative Characteristics of Environmental Elements on Romania’s Territory

Dr. Giani Gradinaru, Assoc. Prof., Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania

Raducu Marian, Terra's Guardians NGO (Asociatia Gardienii Terrei), Bucharest, Romania

 

ABSTRACT

 Providing a safe and stable environment for present and future generations necessitates major governmental interventions that will have to be substantiated on comprehensive and high quality information regarding the structural-qualitative characteristics of environmental elements. The paper aims to contribute in this direction both theoretically and empirically. Thus, in the first part a critical analysis of several conceptual constructs on the organization and utilization of environmental information is conducted, while in the second part there are depicted the evolution patterns of selected environmental indicators on Romania’s territory for a ten years timeframe within the conceptual framework of the pressure-state-response model. The structural-qualitative characteristics of environmental elements recorded variations with different amplitudes and directions suggesting that there could be some environmental tradeoffs of the transition related economic restraining and of the European process in which Romania is engaged.  The rapid economic growth featuring the last period, world level development of the smoke pipe’s ecponomy affected in an unprecedented way almost everything that surround us. The attention was focused by a large number of individuals, able to analyze the issue (scientists, researchers, professors, engineers, economists, students) has concetrate their forces in order to find viable solutions that will staisfy the present needs without compormising the chance of future generations to satisfy thei needs. In a consequent way, in last years, there were specialized bodies which focused their activities on estimating the risk that influence the ecosystems, especially their losses.  Society is confronted with a number of major challenges at the threshold of the new millennium.

 

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Does the Origin of the Country Matter: The Effects of Country of Image Concept on Turkish Job Seekers

Cihangir Gumustas, Istanbul Technical University, Institute of Social Sciences, Istanbul, Turkey

 

ABSTRACT

 Globalized world and business exist in everywhere. Somehow, we tend to forget that before companies can manage a foreign workforce, they need to recruit it. The shortage of qualified workers leads organizations to face difficulties in attracting qualified applicants (Turban, 2001). Thus, organizations have started allocate relatively more resources to attracting and retaining qualified individuals. Leonard (1999) stated that many firms are increasing their budgets for recruitment and %31 of the HR budget is allocated to the recruitment and retention processes. Moreover, recruitment actions of talented people in foreign countries can be much more complicated task and different from what companies experience in their domestic markets. Multinational companies are operating overseas and they need to attract talented and skilled employees not only in their domestic country but also in overseas business markets. Organizations that achieve attracting highly qualified applicants will have a larger applicant pool that leads to a greater utility of the organization’s recruitment system and a potential competitive advantage (Turban & Greening, 1997). This study tries to explore the underlying reasons of why foreign companies are (not) attractive to local job seekers.  Because of the current labor shortage in some labor markets, the attractiveness of an organization has become more important (Lievens et al., 2001). Certainly, every organization prioritizes this issue and organizations lead to compete against each other to attract the most talented employees.

 

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 Volatility Spillover Effects between Credit Default Swap and Foreign Exchange Markets in Korea

Dr. Hong-bae Kim, Dongseo University, Pusan, South Korea

 

ABSTRACT

 This paper empirically investigated the shock and volatility spillover effects of counterparty risk on the deviations from covered interest parity (CIP) in the foreign exchange (FX) forward market of Korea. During the recent financial turmoil, there was significant shock and volatility transmission from the counterparty risk of the European credit default swap (CDS) market to the CIP deviations of FX market under investigation. In addition, the shock of counterparty risk for US corporations was transmitted more to the Korean FX market than that of Korean sovereign risk. FX forward deviations tended to depend more on investment-grade European and US corporations than on Korean sovereign ones. This finding is consistent with the view that the demand for dollar liquidity in the Korean FX market during the turmoil stemmed from mainly dollar London interbank offered rate (Libor) panel banks, such as European and US banks, than the financial institutions of emerging countries like Korea.  The origins of the US dollar shortage largely stemmed from a sharp growth in US dollar assets of European banks that outpaced the growth in their dollar deposits (McGuire and Von Peter, 2008, 2009). European banks were increasingly funded at very short maturities, which raised rollover risk (McAndews, Sarkar and Wang, 2008.

 

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Core-Self Evaluation: Predictor of Employee Engagement

Rania Shorbaji, Lebanese American University, Lebanon

Dr. Leila Messarra, Lebanese American University, Lebanon

Dr. Silva Karkoulian, Lebanese American University, Lebanon

 

ABSTRACT

 This research aims to investigate whether a relationship exists between Core-self Evaluation and Employee Engagement. Employee engagement is a new notion in the work place environment that has only recently started to attract the attention of many scholars and researchers. Due to its significance in improving work performance and profitability, much interest has been given to understanding it as well as identifying its possible predictors. Core-self Evaluation is a higher order trait constituted from four personality traits: Locus of Control, Self-Esteem, Generalized Self-Efficacy, and Neuroticism. Earlier research has identified a relationship between each of the personality traits that constitute Core-self Evaluation and Employee Engagement. However, this study aims to verify the relationship between Core-self Evaluation as a whole and Employee Engagement. A total of 102 individuals employed in medium-sized organizations in the private sector in Lebanon participated in the study. Results showed a positive correlation between Core-self Evaluation and Employee Engagement, therefore supporting the idea of Core-self Evaluation as being a predictor of Employee Engagement.  Unfolding the secrets of success and profitability in organizations has been the long sought pursuit of many managers and business scholars. Recently, the concept of Employee Engagement (EE) has emerged as an important predictor of success and profitability in organizations (Ott, 2007). It is “an individual’s involvement with, satisfaction with, and enthusiasm for, the work he/she does” (Robbins and Judge, 2009, p.115). 

 

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Cross-cultural Leadership Challenges for Hospitality Immigrant Entrepreneurs in Texas

Dr. Yun-Hsi Chang, MingDao University, Taiwan, R.O.C.

Dr. Yi-Fan Tsai, MingDao University, Taiwan, R.O.C.

 

ABSTRACT

 The purpose of this mix method study was to discover the influence of cross-cultural learning experiences through leadership practices for the Chinese immigrant entrepreneurs in south Texas hospitality industry. Eight Chinese immigrant entrepreneurs and 255 of their employees were participated in this study. Based on the findings, these Chinese entrepreneurs have certainly faced significant challenges in both cultural and leadership issues, such as facing cultural differences and dealing with human resource problems. In many cases, cultural issues and leadership challenges blended together as a greater challenge when they operated their hotels or motels. However, the participants value their acculturation experiences highly and it shows in the positive consequences, such as personal maturity and the successful careers of these immigrant entrepreneurs.  Globalization makes the world become smaller and more accessible, people have a greater opportunity to pick and choose where they want to live and where they want to work. For various reasons, immigrants move away from their home countries and arrive in the land of freedom –the United States. The entrepreneurial spirit of immigrants is a well-documented phenomenon. Attracted by reports of great economic, religious and political freedom, immigrants came from all around the world to the United States in early 19th century, seeking opportunities and a new life. Since then immigrant issues have been widely discussed. There is no doubt that the contribution from immigrant entrepreneurs in the U.S. is economically significantly. As a demographic group, immigrants have been more likely to be self-employed than native-born residents. According to Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity National Report, the immigrant entrepreneurship rate was 35% in 2005 compared with a 28% for native-born (Fairlie, 2006). Among the most populous states, Texas (480 per 100,000 adults) has a relatively high rate of entrepreneurial activity.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau (2007), the growth rate for the Asian population from the year 2000 to 2004 was 16.2%, making it the second faster growth minority in the U.S. The highest growth rate belonged to the Hispanic population which was 17%. 

 

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