This study develops theory and provides empirical evidence regarding the antecedents and consequences of extra-role behavior in supply relationships (i.e., supplier behaviors that go beyond formal role definitions and responsibilities and are oriented toward helping the buyer firm, referred to as partner ERB). Communal motivations, instrumental motivations, and role formalization explain the variation in partner ERB. Further, the effect of partner ERB on relationship profitability is contingent on the buyer partner's qualifications and the degree of technological unpredictability. An empirical test is presented based on 223 buyer-supplier relationships. Partner ERB has several drivers including role formalization. While partner ERB generally increases buyer profitability, in certain cases (e.g., for poorly chosen suppliers in a predictable environment) it may actually decrease it.
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