The impact of budget emphasis, participation and task difficulty on managerial performance

A cross-cultural study of the financial services sector

Chong M. Lau*, Jeng J. Tan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)


This study examines whether the three-way interaction between budget emphasis, budgetary participation and task difficulty affecting managerial performance, found in the manufacturing sector (Brownell and Dunk, 1991) can be generalized to the financial services sector. It also extends this research area across national culture within the theoretical framework suggested by Harrison (1992) using a sample of 189 Australian and Singaporean financial services sector managers. The financial services sector was studied as little research attention has been directed to this sector. Additionally, since financial services sector managers are routinely involved with financial and accounting matters, their better understanding of accounting may lead to a greater acceptance of accounting controls than non-financial sectors managers. Consequently, their reactions to accounting based evaluative styles and budgetary participation are expected to be more favourable than those of non-financial sector managers. The results indicate that budget emphasis has a significant and positive main effect on performance for financial services sector managers, whilst budgetary participation interacts significantly with task difficulty to affect performance. No cultural effects on the relationship between evaluative styles and performance were found.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-183
Number of pages21
JournalManagement Accounting Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1998


  • Budget emphasis
  • Culture
  • Financial services
  • Participation
  • Performance

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The impact of budget emphasis, participation and task difficulty on managerial performance: A cross-cultural study of the financial services sector'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this