In Chinese exporting, small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) need to be innovative to develop a competitive advantage. This research explored how these organizations can use two resources: 1) guanxi with customers, distributors, suppliers, and government officials; and 2) IT systems to enhance their innovation capabilities and new product performance. The moderating role of an organization’s proactiveness with respect to new product development is also examined. The resource-based view provides the theoretical support for the research. A conceptual model is developed and tested using survey data gathered from 210 Chinese SMEs in manufacturing industries that were analyzed using SmartPLS 2.0. Results show that IT systems are positively related to innovation capability. The relationship between guanxi and innovation capability is significant for firms that exhibit high levels of proactiveness but not when proactiveness is low.
Zhang, Man and Hartley, Janet L., "Guanxi, IT Systems, and Innovation Capability: The Moderating Role of Proactiveness" (2018). Management Faculty Publications. 27.
Journal of Business Research