All authors contributed equally to the manuscript.
Performance impact of middle managers' adaptive strategy implementation: The role of social capital
Article first published online: 2 APR 2013
Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Strategic Management Journal
Volume 35, Issue 1, pages 68–87, January 2014
How to Cite
Ahearne, M., Lam, S. K. and Kraus, F. (2014), Performance impact of middle managers' adaptive strategy implementation: The role of social capital. Strat. Mgmt. J., 35: 68–87. doi: 10.1002/smj.2086
- Issue published online: 2 DEC 2013
- Article first published online: 2 APR 2013
- Accepted manuscript online: 5 FEB 2013 12:21PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 26 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 17 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Received: 30 SEP 2010
- middle managers;
- social capital;
- adaptive strategy implementation;
- social network;
- multilevel analysis;
This article reconciles mixed findings about the performance impact of middle managers' strategy involvement. We propose that the relationship between middle managers' adaptive strategy implementation—through upward and downward influence—and objective business performance can be curvilinear and contingent on formal and informal structures. Applying a multilevel perspective to social networks, we empirically show that reputational social capital enhances the performance impact of middle managers' upward influence while informational social capital elevates the performance impact of their downward influence. The size of a business unit or region has differential moderating effects. The curvilinear effects of middle managers' upward influence and reputational and informational social capital on business unit performance reflect paradoxes. We discuss the implications of these findings for strategy implementation research and practice. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.