The performance implications of temporal orientation and information technology in organization-environment synergy

Date of this Version


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Interim status: Citation only.

Dibrell, C., Davis, P. S., & Craig, J. B. (2009). The performance implications of temporal orientation and information technology in organization-environment synergy. Journal of strategy and management, 2(2), 145-162.

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2009 HERDC submission. FoR code: 1503

© Copyright Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Purpose: This paper aims to provide new evidence regarding the firm performance implications of using temporal orientation (time pacing) and information technology (IT) to align an organization with its task environment.

Design/methodology/approach: Using questionnaire data provided by top management team members, the results indicate that time-based strategies (i.e. time pacing) and IT mediate the effects of environmental disruptions on performance. To validate the scales and to test the hypothesized model of relationships, the study employs structural equation modeling through LISREL 8.52, as it is able to examine both the measurement and structural model simultaneously while including individual errors for the respective parameters.

Findings: The results suggest that time pacing should be used in association with IT, as time pacing had a much stronger relationship to environmental disruptions than did IT. This finding supports that a time pacing orientation is effective at helping managers react to disruptions in their task environment. In relation to firm performance, IT was directly linked to firm performance; whereas time pacing was only indirectly associated with firm performance.

Practical implications: The findings suggest that the application of time pacing strategies enables managers to increase firm performance via IT. The results therefore suggest that managers should not assess their use of temporally-based mechanisms (e.g. time pacing, IT temporality) and IT in isolation, but rather consider them in conjunction. This recommendation is consistent with findings elsewhere that components of strategy may need to be cohesive and integrative and require a supportive firm structure if they are to have their greatest effects on firm performance.

Originality/value: The study extends the research on temporal strategies and IT as mechanisms for offsetting environmental pressures and improving firm performance. It alerts managers to the notion that time pacing will enable them to generate improved firm performance and competitive advantage, through the synchronistic use of IT.

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This document has been peer reviewed.