Defense Date

2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Management

First Advisor

Anson Seers

Abstract

The present research examines the role of social ties and team-member exchange quality (TMX) in enabling small business owners involved in formal networking groups to gain access to new business. I report on data from two studies. First, initial data from a pilot study of 23 small business owners in networking groups revealed that more numerous social ties and more positive perceptions of team-member exchange quality (TMX) predicted performance outcomes. Specifically, individuals who had more numerous social ties within a networking group, and who reported higher TMX perceptions of their group, received significantly more referrals to potential clients compared to individuals who had numerous social ties but lower perceptions of TMX. Second, using a sample of 336 small business owners across 24 networking groups I built on these initial results, and incorporated an expanded theoretical framework, to explore how and when social ties and TMX influence the effectiveness of small business owners in networking groups. Specifically, I draw on the literatures related to social network theory, team-member exchange quality and affective organizational commitment to guide my exploration of the effectiveness of small business owners in networking groups. Data support the conclusion that both social ties and team-member exchange are important factors predicting the performance outcomes of small business owners in networking groups. Further, the data illustrate the mediating role of affective organizational commitment between the relation of social ties and team-member exchange on performance outcomes. I discuss implications and describe areas for future research based on these findings.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

May 2009

Share

COinS