Employee Orientation and Performance: An Exploration of the Mediating Role of Customer Orientation

Junfeng ZHANG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Managing stakeholders is an important managerial aspect of corporate social responsibility. Employee stakeholder is one of the primary stakeholders that are critical to a company. Previous studies have shown inconclusive findings regarding the performance impact of managing this stakeholder, with some identifying little impact while others finding a positive association. This study further explores this issue in the context of foreign companies' subsidiaries in China. A potential mediating mechanism (i.e., customer orientation) between employee stakeholder orientation and performance (both financial performance and innovation performance) was proposed; a sample of 103 Chinese subsidiaries of foreign companies which have new product development responsibilities was used to test hypotheses. A subsidiary's employee orientation was found to show a significant positive relationship with its product innovation performance, but no significant relationship with its financial results. Moreover, employee orientation showed a significant indirect relationship with both performance outcomes through customer orientation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-121
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law

User-Defined Keywords

  • China
  • customer orientation
  • employee orientation
  • innovation
  • performance
  • subsidiaries


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