Organizational Practice Transfer within a Transnational Professional Service Firm: The Role of Leadership and Control

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Most cross-border organizational practice transfer involves implementation challenges, yet key literature in this field largely overlooks the mediating role of the transfer coalition, which serves as a ‘bridge’ between headquarters and subsidiaries in transferring an organizational practice. By exploring an in-depth case study of a top-tier professional service firm, this study contributes to the literature on cross-border human resource management practice transfer. We show that the transfer coalition displayed activities that translated into two separate managerial roles – transfer leadership and control – that were practiced with quite different levels of commitment by different members and impacted the successful management of the transfer process. We propose two distinctive transfer coalition archetypes – the entrepreneurial and the ceremonial type – where the leadership and control roles were practiced quite differently and reached different levels of organizational practice adoption. Furthermore, we suggest practical implications for HR professionals in order to improve global leadership and control competence.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe International Journal of Human Resource Management
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)850-875
Number of pages26
Publication statusPublished - 27.04.2016

    Research areas

  • Management studies
  • organizational control, organizational practice transfer, professional service firms, transfer leadership, transnational corporations