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Ordering collective performance manipulation practices: How do leaders manipulate financial reporting figures in conglomerates?

Abstract : This article explores some of the resources, tactics and skills used by managers involved in the manipulation of performance reporting by looking at management accounting practices in a conglomerate. Prior research on reporting manipulation in large corporations has focused on why executives manipulate figures. The present paper documents how BU leaders compensate for the uncertainties impacting the performance of their activities. Empirical evidence comes from a field study of a diversified French conglomerate. Performance reporting practices within and between a parent company and two subsidiaries are analyzed. The article shows that the conglomerate constitutes a strategic action field ( Fligstein and McAdam, 2011) where skillful group leaders use the resources granted by their power position to frame other actors' interests and identities to initiate stable cooperation around manipulation practices. This study clarifies the collective and collaborative dimensions of practices granting greater control over reporting figures.
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François-Régis Puyou. Ordering collective performance manipulation practices: How do leaders manipulate financial reporting figures in conglomerates?. Critical Perspectives On Accounting, Elsevier, 2014, 25 (6), pp.469-488. ⟨10.1016/j.cpa.2013.03.004⟩. ⟨hal-01069276⟩

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