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Organizational Virtue Orientation and Family Firms

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  23 January 2015

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This manuscript develops the concept of organizational virtue orientation (OVO) and examines differences between family and non-family firms on the six organizational virtue dimensions of Integrity, Empathy, Warmth, Courage, Conscientiousness, and Zeal. Using content analysis of shareholder letters from S&P 500 companies, our analyses find that there are significant differences between family and non-family firms in their espoused OVO, with family firms generally being higher. Specifically, family firms were significantly higher on the dimensions of Empathy, Warmth, and Zeal, but lower on Courage. Based on these findings we further develop the OVO concept through the discussion of implications and areas for future research.

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Copyright © Society for Business Ethics 2011

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