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Linking corporate entrepreneurship and human resource management in SMEs


  • Gary J. Castrogiovanni
  • David Urbano
  • Joaquín Loras


Purpose - This article seeks to analyse the human resource management (HRM) practices adopted in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) for promoting corporate entrepreneurship (CE) in the Spanish context. The specific objectives of the inquiry revolve around two main research questions: What HRM practices are most beneficial for promoting CE in SMEs? How do HRM practices promote an appropriate working environment for CE in SMEs? Design/methodology/approach - The idea of human resource practices as a key resource is analyzed in the framework of a broader perspective of strategic management known as the resource-based view of the firm. Additionally, literatures concerning CE and HRM in small firms are integrated and reviewed. The empirical study is carried out by adopting a multiple-case study approach. Findings - Evidence shows that the creation of personal relationships and the development of an open communication between owner-managers and employees, and among employees themselves, can help to explain the dynamics of entrepreneurial behaviors within small firms. The openness in the communication is important, not only for promoting CE activities, but also for creating the most appropriate work environment to carry out other resource management practices that stimulate entrepreneurial behaviors. Originality/value - This study integrates the research on CE and HRM practices in a field of study rarely analyzed, such as Spanish SMEs. The approach shows that there is sound evidence supporting the importance of analyzing the factors leading to the emergence of CE, including intangible resources such as the human resource practices that increase the employees' entrepreneurial attitudes.

Suggested Citation

  • Gary J. Castrogiovanni & David Urbano & Joaquín Loras, 2011. "Linking corporate entrepreneurship and human resource management in SMEs," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 32(1), pages 34-47, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:32:y:2011:i:1:p:34-47

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Zahra, Shaker A., 1995. "Corporate entrepreneurship and financial performance: The case of management leveraged buyouts," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 225-247, May.
    2. Gartner, William B. & Birley, Sue, 2002. "Introduction to the special issue on qualitative methods in entrepreneurship research," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 387-395, September.
    3. David Urbano & Desislava Yordanova, 2008. "Determinants of the adoption of HRM practices in tourism SMEs in Spain: an exploratory study," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 2(3), pages 167-185, September.
    4. Zahra, Shaker A., 1991. "Predictors and financial outcomes of corporate entrepreneurship: An exploratory study," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 259-285, July.
    5. Veneta Andonova & Hernando Zuleta, 2007. "The effect of enforcement on human resources practices: A case study in rural Colombia," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 28(1), pages 344 - 353, April.
    6. Lew Perren & Geoff Stevens, 2008. "My life as a service-worker," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 2(2), pages 147-152, June.
    7. Robert A. Burgelman, 1983. "Corporate Entrepreneurship and Strategic Management: Insights from a Process Study," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(12), pages 1349-1364, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wei-Shong Lin & Jui-Ling Huang & Margaret L. Sheng, 2014. "How the Organizational Goals Affect Knowledge Management," International Journal of Management, Knowledge and Learning, International School for Social and Business Studies, Celje, Slovenia, vol. 3(1), pages 3-22.
    2. Mustafa Michael & Lundmark Erik & Ramos Hazel Melanie, 2016. "Untangling the Relationship between Human Resource Management and Corporate Entrepreneurship: The Mediating Effect of Middle Managers’ Knowledge Sharing," Entrepreneurship Research Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 6(3), pages 273-295, July.
    3. Gisemba Beatrice Moige & Elegwa Mukulu & George Orwa, 2016. "Effect of Corporate Entrepreneurship on Performance of Food Fortification Companies in Kenya," International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, Human Resource Management Academic Research Society, International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, vol. 6(3), pages 95-108, March.
    4. Lubica Knošková, 2015. "Innovation Processes and Entrepreneurial Culture for Radical Innovations," The AMFITEATRU ECONOMIC journal, Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania, vol. 17(38), pages 342-342, February.
    5. repec:beo:journl:v:63:y:2018:i:216:p:111-130 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Turró, Andreu & Urbano, David & Peris-Ortiz, Marta, 2014. "Culture and innovation: The moderating effect of cultural values on corporate entrepreneurship," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 360-369.
    7. Lai Wan Hooi, 2014. "HRM Intensity, Corporate Entrepreneurship and Organisational Learning Capability in SMEs: What is the Relationship?," Proceedings of International Academic Conferences 0701980, International Institute of Social and Economic Sciences.
    8. repec:beo:journl:v:62:y:2018:i:216:p:111-130 is not listed on IDEAS


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