Following Fashion: Visible Progressiveness and the Social Construction of Firm Value
Forthcoming in Strategic Organization
68 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2015
Date Written: October 29, 2015
A central tenet underlying studies on management fashions, is that the diffusion of novel forms, models and techniques is driven by an institutional norm of progress, which is the societal expectation that managers will continuously use ‘new and improved’ management practices. We add to the literature on management fashions by arguing that, if the display of progressiveness in the manner of managing and organizing is expected of organizations, firms that are visibly progressive would be evaluated more positively by organizational audiences following this institutional prescription. Using article counts of co-occurrences of firms and various fashionable management practices in Wall Street Journal, we hypothesize positive effects of such associations on security analysts’ evaluations of these firms. Results support this hypothesis. Our study enriches the management fashion literature by highlighting the consequential relevance of organizational adherence to the norm of progress.
Keywords: Diffusion, Management Fashion, Management Practices, Progressiveness, Fashion Dynamics, Security Analysts
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