Scielo RSS <![CDATA[South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences ]]> vol. 14 num. 1 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>The impact of female business leaders on the performance of listed companies in South Africa</b>]]> The purpose of this study is to determine the impact of female business leaders in JSE-listed companies on the financial performance of those companies. This is as result of the proposition that women, over and above men, bring unique skills to the workplace. However, it is hypothesized in this study that JSE-listed companies led by a high percentage of women do not outperform similar companies led by a low percentage of women. The Lean Modigliani and France Modigliani measure (M²) was used to test this hypothesis. Results of this study indicate that companies led by women do not outperform similar companies led by men. As a result, the null hypothesis is not rejected. Implications of these results are discussed. <![CDATA[<b>The impact of intra-group processes on family business success</b>]]> Interpersonal ties and intra-group processes influence the ability of people to work together effectively as teams. In the context of the family business team, intra-group processes describe the interaction that takes place between the family members and the resultant psychological climate that exists in the family business. Given the increasing number of sibling teams among family businesses, as well as the challenges they face as team members, this study focuses on sibling teams in family businesses and the intra-group processes that influence their success. The primary objective of this study is to identify and empirically test the intragroup processes influencing the effectiveness of sibling partnerships. A structured questionnaire was distributed to 1323 sibling partner respondents. The respondents were identified by means of a convenience snowball sampling technique, and the data were collected from 371 usable questionnaires. The empirical findings of this study show that the sibling relationship and fairness are important determinants of sibling team effectiveness. <![CDATA[<b>Task-based factors influencing the successful functioning of copreneurial businesses in South Africa</b>]]> Globally, evidence exists to suggest that the number of copreneurial businesses or spousal partnerships are on the increase. The primary objectives of this study are to identify the task-based factors influencing the effectiveness of a copreneurial business, to propose a conceptual model based on these factors and to subject the model to empirical testing. The model is empirically tested among copreneurial businesses to assess potential relationships between selected independent variables (shared dream, leadership, personal needs alignment, division of labour, complementary skills, supportive employees, competencies and adequate resources) and measures of copreneurial success (perceived success and financial performance). In order to address the primary objective of this study, a questionnaire was administered to a sample of 1548 respondents (spouses in business together) of which 380 questionnaires were useable for statistical analysis. The empirical results revealed that apart from division of labour all the other factors investigated exert a significant influence on the successful functioning of copreneurial businesses. <![CDATA[<b>Entrepreneurship in an emerging and culturally diverse economy</b>: <b>a South African survey of perceptions</b>]]> South Africa has consistently ranked very poorly in the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor survey in terms of entrepreneurial activity. It is clear that South Africa is not producing a sufficiently entrepreneurial economy and this needs to be addressed so as to create employment, expand markets, increase production and revitalize communities. This paper examines the entrepreneurial traits of a diverse group of young adults in South Africa. It draws on a sample of 609 university students and looks at their attitudes towards and perceptions of entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial opportunities and the broader economic environment in an attempt to clarify how South Africans view entrepreneurship. Although the data do not allow the identification of causal relationships, descriptive statistics show that socio-economic elements play a noteworthy role in people's perceptions of the value of entrepreneurship and thus need to be incorporated in entrepreneurial models. <![CDATA[<b>Assessing entrepreneurship perceptions of high school learners in Pietermaritzburg, Kwazulu-Natal</b>]]> Although South Africa achieved positive economic growth rates since the advent of democracy in 1994, the formal sector has not been able to absorb the annual increasing number of job-seekers on the market and solve the unemployment problem. The exercise of entrepreneurship, through business formations and expansions, is regarded as a vehicle for job creation and output expansion. According the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) reports, South Africa's level of early stage total entrepreneurial activity (TEA) is rather low relative to other countries at a similar level of development. This is partly owing to skills and resource limitations. If more individuals could realistically be exposed to practical entrepreneurship education at the secondary school level, South Africa's base for entrepreneurial capacity can be enhanced. This study uses quasi logistic regression to examine the probability of secondary school learners, in Pietermaritzburg, the capital of Kwazulu-Natal province in South Africa, to start their own business in the future. It also probes the association between the socio-economic attributes of these learners and entrepreneurship. On the basis of a survey of 275 senior school learners from 5 schools, the regression results indicate that gender, ethnic background and having a role model as well as acquiring personal skills to run one's own business are significant factors influencing an individual's propensity to venture into small firm self-employment in the future. Black learners are perceived to have a significantly greater disposition to enter into business than other groups, and male scholars are found to have a greater probability of starting their own business than female. As potential entrepreneurs do not necessarily come exclusively from a business family background, the supply of effective entrepreneurship can be augmented, if more young individuals with the relevant skills endowment can start opportunity firms and necessity ventures. <![CDATA[<b>Career development of South African knowledge workers</b>]]> The demand for knowledge workers is on the increase, yet little is known about their career perceptions and attitudes. The objective of this article is to determine the factors affecting the career development of knowledge workers in South Africa. Part-time learners of a postgraduate course were used as a purposive sample and 82 completed questionnaires were received. The results of the online survey provide an interesting look at the unique career issues knowledge workers experience from a South African perspective. Issues identified dealt with the lack of importance placed upon organisational training, the lack of interest in temporary work assignments and the low importance placed on learning from mentors. Organisations need to take note of their reward structures as knowledge workers have indicated that promotions and rewards based on their knowledge is insufficient. <![CDATA[<b>An exploratory study of motivations driving corporate investment in voluntary climate change mitigation in South Africa</b>]]> This study investigates factors driving investment in voluntary climate change mitigation among a selection of listed corporations in South Africa. Based on a review of the literature, a proposed conceptual framework is developed and empirically tested using case studies. A qualitative analysis of the data reveals three key motivational drivers: legitimacy, the financial business case and moral responsibility. In addition, a number of sub-drivers are identified which provide insights for engagement with companies in developing South Africa's response to climate change. <![CDATA[<b>Ontology and epistemology</b>: <b>a transcendental reflection on decision-usefulness as an accounting objective</b>]]> As key global accounting regulators, the FASB and the IASB have accorded much importance to the concept of decision-usefulness, especially in the context of the capital providers as a specific user group. However, a vague reference to the usefulness of accounting information means nothing unless the utility being sought is properly defined. This paper reflects on the relevancy of decision-usefulness as a key financial reporting objective from two perspectives. Firstly, the ontology of accountancy with specific reference to decision-usefulness and utility versus ophelimity are considered. Secondly, epistemological issues around the quantification of accounting data and its predictive abilities are discussed. The article does not deny the importance of the usefulness criterion, but rather argues against a vacuous concept of decision-usefulness, which, as a key accounting and financial reporting objective, is devoid of any substantive meaning. Instead, a more realistic key objective of accounting should be to provide factual economic and financial information, which, since it presents any user with information in a unique company-specific context, can be considered judgement-useful, rather than decision-useful.