Interpersonal trust and formal controls in hierarchical relationships

Ekanayake, Samson 2004, Interpersonal trust and formal controls in hierarchical relationships, in Proceedings of the 2004 ABAS International Conference, [Academy of Business and Administrative Sciences], [Montreux, Switzerland], pp. 1-21.

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Title Interpersonal trust and formal controls in hierarchical relationships
Author(s) Ekanayake, Samson
Conference name Academy of Business and Administrative Sciences. Conference (2004: Montreux, Switzerland)
Conference location Montreux, Switzerland
Conference dates 12-14 June 2004
Title of proceedings Proceedings of the 2004 ABAS International Conference
Editor(s) Appa Rao Korukonda
Publication date 2004
Start page 1
End page 21
Publisher [Academy of Business and Administrative Sciences]
Place of publication [Montreux, Switzerland]
Keyword(s) interpersonal trust
heirachical relationship
formal control
monitoring
Summary This paper examines the influence of the level of interpersonal trust between superior and subordinate managers on the control behaviour of the former. On the basis of a questionnaire survey and interviews of senior managers from business organisations in Sri Lanka, and a survey of managers in Beijing-China the study explores the control behaviour of superior managers when their trust in a subordinate is high or low. Sri Lanka and China, societies in which the dependence on interpersonal trust is believed to be high, were chosen for the study to maximise the effect of interpersonal trust.

The findings of this study indicate that a superior’s high (low) trust in a subordinate is associated with a low (high) level of monitoring and a high (low) level of social interactions. The hypothesis that a superior’s high (low) level of trust is associated with a low (high) level of reliance on formal control was supported only in the Sri Lankan sample. These findings are at least indicative of control behaviour of superior managers in Sri Lanka and China and possibly of other countries in Asia. An understanding of the trust-sensitive control behaviour of managers in this region is particularly important for designing and implementing effective control systems for international organizations operating in the region.
Language eng
Field of Research 150105 Management Accounting
HERDC Research category E1 Full written paper - refereed
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30005303

Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: School of Accounting, Economics and Finance
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