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          Business ownersโ€™ network size and business growth in China: The role of comprehensive social competency


          Xiang-yang Zhao MICHAEL FRESE Angelo Giardini

          The authors present a model that explains how comprehensive social competency (made up of three components ? social skills, proactive and elaborate social strategies, and relational perseverance) is related to business peopleโ€™s network development, and how social networks in turn are related to business growth. We conducted two studies with Chinese small business owners, ? one in the capital city Beijing (N?=?133) and a second one in the less developed rural region of Xunyi (N?=?78). Comprehensive social competency was consistently related to network size and business growth. In addition, government network size was related to the business growth since start-up in both studies (employee growth in Study 1 and personal asset growth in Study 2), but business network size was not related to business growth. Government network size also functions as a partial mediator between comprehensive social competency and business growth since start-up. Some differences are found between the rural area and the urban centre.

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