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Sustainability 2019, 11(2), 527; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11020527

The Role of a Manager’s Intangible Capabilities in Resource Acquisition and Sustainable Competitive Performance

1
Business School, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
2
Hamdard Institute of Management Sciences, Hamdard University, Karachi 74600, Pakistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 December 2018 / Revised: 17 January 2019 / Accepted: 17 January 2019 / Published: 19 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Entrepreneurship, Finance and Sustainability)
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Abstract

The answer to the challenging question, “Should one either invest in tangible resources or intangible resources/capabilities?” is still fragmented. In prior studies, more emphasis is given to tangible resources, while intangible resources have comparatively received minor attention, despite their significant role in the success of small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Particularly the role of the intangible skills; intellectual capital, financial literacy (FL), and business experience (BE) in resource acquisition and sustainable competitive performance has missed in prior studies. Grounded on the resource-based view and upper echelon theory, this study examines the role of intellectual capital in sustainable competitive performance with a mediating role of resource acquisition. This research also assesses the moderating role of financial literacy and business experience between intellectual capital and resource acquisition. Data are collected through structured questionnaires from 384 owners/managers of Pakistani SMEs. After analyzing the data through structural equation modeling (SEM), the results indicate that intellectual capital helps managers in acquiring valuable resources, which in turn enhance sustainable competitive performance. Resource acquisition partially mediates the relation between intellectual capital and sustainable competitive performance. Financial literacy is a significant predictor of resource acquisition, but it does not significantly moderate the relation between intellectual capital and sustainable competitive performance. Business experience significantly boosts the acquisition of resources and strengthens the path between intellectual capital and resource acquisition. SMEs should encourage their managers to acquire unique, rare, and immutable external resources in the turbulent markets. View Full-Text
Keywords: intangible skills; intellectual capital; financial literacy; business experience; resource acquisition; sustainable competitive performance intangible skills; intellectual capital; financial literacy; business experience; resource acquisition; sustainable competitive performance
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Ying, Q.; Hassan, H.; Ahmad, H. The Role of a Manager’s Intangible Capabilities in Resource Acquisition and Sustainable Competitive Performance. Sustainability 2019, 11, 527.

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