Coercion and Long-Term Supplier Relationships

Stephane Bignoux, David Gray


This paper adapts intra-firm influence strategies to an inter-firm context. In the process it retests the relationship
between coercive influence strategies and supplier performance. Qualitative data is drawn from interviews with
managers in the Australian Recruitment Industry. Contrary to predictions, the findings show that suppliers use
coalitions and upward appeals to improve their performance in inter-firm relationships. This suggests that prior
influence studies are not completely correct in their prediction of a negative relationship between coercive
influence strategies and performance in inter-firm relationships. And, it suggests that there may be two types of
coercive influence strategies in inter-firm relationships. There are coercive influence strategies that hinder
supplier performance and there are coercive influence strategies that aid supplier performance.

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International Journal of Business and Management   ISSN 1833-3850 (Print)   ISSN 1833-8119 (Online)

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