Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 97, Issue 1, pp 87–108 | Cite as

The Influence of Retail Management’s Use of Social Power on Corporate Ethical Values, Employee Commitment, and Performance



Recent cases in retailing reflect that ethics have a major impact on brands and performance, in turn, demonstrating that brand owners, employees, and consumers focus on ethical values. In this study, we analyze how various sources of social power affect corporate ethical values, retailer’s commitment to the retail organization, and ultimately sales and service quality. Multi-source data based on a sample of 225 retailers indicated a strong link between power, ethics, and commitment and that these affected output performance.


business ethics power stakeholder retailing mystery shoppers ethical values 


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We thank Lars Kjaerstad, Geir Myhre Jacobsen, and Roger Gronberg for technical assistance during this research. This research was supported by the Centre for Advanced Research in Retailing at BI Norwegian School of Management. The Research Fund of Norway, (the SUPTEK-program) provided funding for this study. We gratefully acknowledge the comments and suggestions from Roberta W. Berg at BI Norwegian School of Management, and two anonymous reviewers.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MarketingBI Norwegian School of Management, Centre for Advanced Research in RetailingOsloNorway

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