How does organizational learning matter in strategic business performance? The contingency role of guanxi networking

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1216-1224
Journal / PublicationJournal of Business Research
Issue number6
Online published10 Dec 2014
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015


Based on organizational learning and networking theories, this study examines the effects of organizational learning (explorative and exploitative learning) and guanxi (business and political ties) on business performance. Business guanxi is classified as a channel networking tie, while political guanxi is categorized as a non-channel networking tie. Based on the experience of 120 Chinese firms, it is found that business guanxi positively moderates the effect of explorative learning on strategic performance. In contrast, though political guanxi positively enhances the effect of exploitative learning on strategic performance, it negatively affects the relationship between explorative learning and strategic performance. This study's outcomes indicate that, when doing business in the emerging economies such as China, only a proper fit between organizational learning and guanxi networking can yield a higher degree, or extent, of strategic performance. This study has implications for marketing managers and research concerning organizational learning, guanxi, business performance and standardization/customization strategies.

Research Area(s)

  • Business and political guanxi, China, Explorative and exploitative learning, Oorganizational learning, Strategic business performance