Organizational virtue orientation and family firms

G. Tyge Payne, Keith H. Brigham, J. Christian Broberg, Todd W. Moss, Jeremy C. Short

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


This manuscript develops the concept of organizational virtue orientation (OVO) and examines differences between family and non-family firms on the six organizational virtue dimensions of Integrity, Empathy, Warmth, Courage, Conscientiousness, and Zeal. Using content analysis of shareholder letters from S&P 500 companies, our analyses find that there are significant differences between family and non-family firms in their espoused OVO, with family firms generally being higher. Specifically, family firms were significantly higher on the dimensions of Empathy, Warmth, and Zeal, but lower on Courage. Based on these findings we further develop the OVO concept through the discussion of implications and areas for future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-285
Number of pages29
JournalBusiness Ethics Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2011


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