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Shaaban S, Mohammad Khani M R, Alizade A, Mirhajian Z, Momeni Z, Rafiei S. Impact of Organizational Culture on Entrepreneurial Behavior with the Mediating Role of Social Capital: Path Analysis. EBHPME. 2022; 6 (1) :61-70
URL: http://jebhpme.ssu.ac.ir/article-1-342-en.html
Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Research Institute for Prevention of Non-communicable Diseases, Qazvin University of Medical sciences, Qazvin, Iran
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Background: Organizational culture can affect the levels of entrepreneurship and innovation through identifying the social capital dimensions and enhance the ability of staff to accept challenges. This study aimed to examine the impact of organizational culture on entrepreneurial behavior with the mediating role of social capital among the staff working in Qazvin University of Medical Sciences.
Methods: This was an cross-sectional analytical study conducted among the staff of Qazvin University of Medical Sciences in 2020. Sample size was calculated by Cochran formula considering type I error and the accuracy of 5 % and was equal to 122 individuals. Addressing sample attrition, the final size considered to be 143 people by calculating 15 % increase. The standard questionnaires of entrepreneurial behavior were applied to collect the data. Descriptive statistical tests were used in order to analyze the data; moreover, correlation coefficients were applied to examine the relationship between the main variables of the study. Furthermore, the Structural Equation Analysis (SEM) test was used by LISREL and SPSS software to test the research hypotheses.
Results: The estimated coefficient reported for the relationship between organizational culture and entrepreneurial behavior was 23 %; while it was reported to be 12 % for the relationship between social capital and behavior. Furthermore, the hypothesis that social capital mediates the relationship between organizational culture and entrepreneurial behavior was confirmed (T statistic = 3.310, Std. Error = 0.110, P-value < 0.001 ).
Conclusion: The results of the present study necessitate further attention to university environments and higher education institutions for creating an entrepreneurship culture by establishing a flexible structure with participatory and supportive management in order to empower human resources and encourage them to promote social capital. Holding discussion sessions with staff and using their pure ideas and avoiding the implementation of strict regulations in addition to creating a participatory atmosphere can play important role in this regard.
Key words: Organizational culture, Entrepreneurial behavior, Social capital, Employees
Nowadays, the economic status and population composition of the country make us find leading areas in the economic arena more than ever before. In this regard, the need for accurate models and strategies is felt more for education, training, and optimal use of active and entrepreneurial workforce (1). Entrepreneurship can drive an economic development in the country and consequently enhance productivity, job creation, and social welfare. Considering the abundance of natural resources in Iran, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita is relatively at low level; however, a significant number of young and educated individuals are deprived of employment opportunities. Thus, entrepreneurship is a key approach that should be concerned more
closely (2).
Nowadays, entrepreneurship is a crucial element in the transformation and development of various societies, in which entrepreneurs are capable to lead societies towards increasing development in an influential and effective manner through identifying the existing opportunities (2). One of the significant criteria for differentiating developed countries and developing ones in terms of efficiency and effectiveness is entrepreneurship (3). Organizational entrepreneurship consists of entrepreneurial activities affecting individuals and organizational issues in the organizational atmosphere (4). In addition, this concept consists of structures, norms, technologies, services, and products that are on the path of development, including innovation and creativity (1). Entrepreneurship dimensions are composed of independency in action, creativity and innovation, leadership, competition, persistent approach, risk-taking, and teamwork orientation (5, 6).
Before starting a business, people must have the necessary capital, technology, and facilities to produce suitable products and services (7). Given that organizational entrepreneurship is a process within the organization, it is affected by internal factors, such as managerial support, evaluation and reward mechanisms, organizational interactions, organizational structure, and most importantly organizational culture (8). It seems that investigating the role of these factors in strengthening the entrepreneurial behavior of organizational members can improve, facilitate, and accelerate the outcomes of entrepreneurial objectives (9). Despite the entrenched culture of entrepreneurship in the national culture, unfortunately, the issue of entrepreneurship and its importance in the political and executive policies of the government does not have a proper place. Hence, a comprehensive examination of entrepreneurship and understanding its relationship with organizational culture is not only important but also necessary (4, 10).
Human beings are the creatures who have various personality traits, multiple abilities, psychological and material motivations which bring them unprecedented behavior. However, some studies have been able to predict human behavior in certain environments. One of the main parameters which help the predictability of personnel behavior is organizational culture. In fact, in order to achieve organizational goals, it is required to interact with different departments and work groups in a proper manner. Thus, neither organizations can separate themselves from their surroundings, nor the environment can survive without effective interaction with organizations. Some define organizational culture as a system of beliefs shared by organizational members (11). Organizational culture is a set of assumed values, core beliefs, group memory, expectations, and definitions of success that are present in an organization reflecting the common ideology of the organization in such a way that people consider it as expressing their identity (12). Dimensions of organizational culture consist of organizational identity, group commitment, stability of the social system, shaping behavior, and lack of resistance (13, 14).
Organizational culture can affect the levels of entrepreneurship and innovation through sociability processes and structures, policies, and procedures that are formed by the basic beliefs and values of the organization, and increase the
ability of staff to accept challenges (15). Organizations can have a better understanding of interpersonal and group interaction models by recognizing the dimensions of social capital and better managing their organizational issues, such as entrepreneurship. Social capital includes resources that are formed in business networks or within individual networks. These resources consist of information, thoughts, guides, business opportunities, financial capital, power and influence, emotional support, benevolence, trust and cooperation, which play a much more significant role compared to physical and human capital in organizations. In fact, in the absence of social capital, other capitals lose their effectiveness; moreover, it becomes difficult to follow the paths of cultural and economic development without social capital (16).

One of the main responsibilities of medical universities is the provision of health care services, education, and research in the field of medical sciences; making their governance more sophisticated (8). Therefore, the existence of entrepreneurial staff in such complex organizations can play a vital role in directing the mentioned missions more effectively (17). Despite the importance of the issue, little attention has been given to the development of entrepreneurship in Iranian medical universities. While based on the new global assignments of universities, it is obviously clear that advancement of entrepreneurial culture can facilitate the achievement of the goals of third generation universities focusing on innovation, creativity, and revenue generation (18). This study aimed to examine the impact of organizational culture on entrepreneurial behavior with the mediating role of social capital among the staff working in Qazvin University of Medical Sciences in 2020.
Materials and Methods
This was a cross-sectional, analytical study conducted on 143 employees working in different faculties of Qazvin University of Medical Sciences from April to June 2020. The participants were entered the study through proportional to size sampling from various departments of the university. Sample size was calculated by Cochran formula considering type I error and the accuracy of 5 % and was equal to 122 individuals. Addressing sample attrition, the final size considered to be 143 people by calculating 15 % increase. The demographic information, such as age, gender, level of education, work experience, and marital status was gathered from the participants. Moreover, three standard questionnaires, including entrepreneurial behavior by Leonidas A. Zampetakis and Vassillis Moustakis (2007), organizational culture by Robbins (1998), and social capital by Nahapiet and Ghoshal (1998) were used to collect the data. The entrepreneurial behavior questionnaire includes 12 questions in the dimensions of decreasing bureaucratic barriers, changing behavior, strategic insight, creating a high-energy, and a supportive environment in a Likert scale. Questions were evaluated in a five-point Likert scale (from 1 = very low to 5 = very high); in which scores below 1.60 were considered as lack of entrepreneurial behavior, while scores between 1.6 and 3.30 were considered as moderate status, and those more than 3.30 were mentioned as a desirable condition. The reliability and validity of this questionnaire were equal to 0.72 by using Cronbach's alpha test in the study by Asadnia et al. (19). Organizational culture questionnaire comprised of 56 items with different dimensions of creativity and innovation, risk-taking, attention to detail, attention to achievement, attention to organizational members, the impact of decision results on staff, attention to team members, ambition and enterprising, and sustainability. The participants were asked to rate the organizational culture on a five-point Likert scale. A score of 1 to 5 was assigned for each of the responses (from 1 = completely disagree to 5 = completely agree). The reliability of this questionnaire were equal to 92 % in the study by Moghadam et al. (20). In addition, the social capital questionnaire consisted of 25 items in three general sections of structure, cognition, and communication; the reliability of which have been obtained above 0.89 by using Cronbach's alpha test in the study by Ghanbari et al. (21). Employees who worked in Qazvin University of Medical Sciences for at least one year and voluntarily agreed to participate in the study were asked to fill out the questionnaires after giving them necessary information about the study objectives.
In order to analyze data, descriptive statistical tests were used; moreover, correlation coefficients were applied to examine the relationship between the main variables of the study by using SPSS20 software. Furthermore, the structural equation analysis (SEM) was used by LISREL software to test the research hypotheses. The project was approved by the Ethical Committee in Qazvin University of Medical Sciences with the reference number: IR.QUMS.REC.1399.471 Written informed consent was obtained from the participants.
In this study, 149 staff members were participated, 33.600 % of them were male and 66.400 % were female. Among the participants, 10.70 % had less than 5 years of work experience; while 38.300 % of them had more than 20 years of experience. The highest percentage of participants was in the age group of 40-50 years (43.600 %) and a large percentage of them were employed in school of public health. Moreover, most of the participants had bachelor degree (49.700 %) (Table 1).
The status of variables, including organizational culture, entrepreneurial behavior, and social capital is presented in Table 2.
According to the results, organizational culture with the mean and standard deviation of 3.110 ± 0.500 was in a moderate level. Among various dimensions, the highest mean was assigned to leadership followed by control, communication, and managerial support. The mean score of social capital was 3.190 ± 0.500 with communication dimension as the most pleasant condition (3.470 ± 0.700) and structural aspects (2.870 ± 0.600) as the least desirable one. Entrepreneurial behavior with the mean and standard deviation of 3.320 ± 0.500 was also in a moderate level. Among different dimensions, the highest mean was given to reducing bureaucratic barriers (3.560 ± 0.700) and the lowest mean score was related to the development of an energetic work environment (3.050 ± 0.500).
The path coefficients related to this model are illustrated in Figure 1. The positive signs of coefficients indicate positive relationships between the variables. Moreover, t-test was used in order to determine the significance of coefficients; all the related results are illustrated in Figure 1.
Table 3 reveals that all path coefficients were significant indicating T-statistic values greater than 1.96 in a confidence interval of 95 %
(Table 2).

The estimated coefficient reported for the relationship between organizational culture and entrepreneurial behavior was 23 %; while for the relationship between social capital and behavior; it was reported to be 12 %. Indeed, a unit of increase in each of the standard deviation of the mentioned variables correspondingly resulted in 23 % and 12 % change in the standard deviation of entrepreneurial behavior by about 23 % and 12 %. Furthermore, the hypothesis that social capital mediates the relationship between organizational culture and entrepreneurial behavior was confirmed (T statistic = 3.310, Std. Error = 0.110 , P-value < 0.001).
Table 1. Demographic characteristics of the participants
Variables Frequency Percent
Age 20 - 30 15 10.100
30 - 40 53 35.600
40 - 50 65 43.600
50 Over 16 10.700
Gender Male 50 33.600
Female 99 66.400
Work experience (year) Under 5 16 10.700
5 - 10 15 10.100
15 - 10 41 27.500
15 - 20 20 13.400
Over 20 57 38.300
Workplace School of public health 25 16.800
School of para-medicine 14 9.400
School of nursing 15 10.100
School of dentistry 22 14.800
School of medicine 4 2.700
Deputy of educational affairs 13 8.700
Deputy of cultural and student Affairs 12 8.100
Deputy of management Development and resources 25 16.800
Deputy of research 19 12.600
Educational level Diploma 19 12.700
Associate diploma 8 5.400
Bachelor 74 49.700
Master 44 29.500
PhD 4 2.700
Table 2. Organizational culture, social capital, and entrepreneurial behavior in employees
Variables Mean SD
Organizational culture Compromise with conflicts 2.890 0.610
Control 3.760 0.620
Innovation 2.240 0.550
Integrity 2.730 0.430
Rewards system 2.910 0.710
Communication 3.420 0.320
Managerial support 3.280 0.470
Leadership 3.960 0.510
Identity 2.710 0.730
Organizational culture 3.100 0.520
Social capital Structural 2.870 0.680
Cognitive 3.250 0.750
Communication 3.470 0.720
Social capital 3.190 0.540
Entrepreneurial Behavior Bureaucratic barriers reduction 3.560 0.730
Employee behavior improvement 3.470 0.420
Strategic attitude 3.250 0.650
Development of energetic work environment 3.050 0.580
Creation of a supportive environment 3.480 0.470
Development of an entrepreneurial behavior 3.120 0.610
Entrepreneurial behavior 3.320 0.580
Table 3. The estimated model by factor loadings and T-statistics
Hypothesis Load factor Se T P* Ci.Lower Ci.Upper Std.All
Culture→ Behavior 0.236 0.119 1.984 0.047 0.002 0.470 0.245
Social capital→ Behavior 0.129 0.144 1.897 0.036 0.153 0.411 0.134
Total 0.365 0.110 3.310 0.001 0.149 0.582 0.380


The study objective was to examine the impact of organizational culture on entrepreneurial behavior with the mediating role of social capital in the staff of Qazvin University of Medical Sciences. The findings confirmed a direct significant relationship between the components of organizational culture and social capital; social capital and entrepreneurial behavior. In addition, the mediating role of social capital in the relationship between organizational culture and staff entrepreneurial behavior was confirmed. The results of the current study were proved by a number of similar studies. For instance, Ghafouri et al. (22) confirmed a significant direct relationship between organizational culture, and social capital as a source of trust and cooperative manner in the organization. They reported that developing a constructive, team-based, and supportive culture can have a significant effect on the internal and external integrity of the organization, which could potentially lead to a sense of belonging, and improvement of effective interactions among staff. Emamgholizadeh et al. (23) also reported a positive and significant relationship between organizational culture and social capital. They found that senior managers could improve the sense of trust and job commitment among employees through the creation of a participatory culture in the organization, and social capital improvement. In fact promoting an organizational culture which makes an alignment between individual and organizational goals could be mentioned as an important facilitating factor in this regard. In addition, in a similar study conducted by Song-zheng et al. (24), they found that organizational culture not only affects the interaction between staff but also it has a significant effect on the relationship between the organization and its suppliers, customers, competitors, etc. Melé's (25) study also indicated that organizational culture emphasizing on the necessity of capacity growth of individuals and working groups, in addition to respecting individuals and their rights would lead to strong interactions among staff through establishing a sense of mutual trust as one of the main contributing factors of social capital. Indeed, supportive management not only emphasizes on the necessity of supporting staff in accomplishing the organizational affairs, but also facilitates the staff development resulting in employees' satisfaction and strengthening their sense of trust and cooperation. In a study a significant relationship between culture and organizational entrepreneurship was confirmed (26). Results of similar studies also indicated that organizational culture had a positive impact on entrepreneurial characteristics among staff (27-29). Based on the literature, conservative organizational culture, lack of management support for entrepreneurship, attention to short-term profits, lack of staff authority and independence, strict control and incorrect methods of encouraging and offering rewards, lack of forethought and restraints related to personnel policies were itemized as main obstacles to organizational entrepreneurship (30, 31). Thus, to resolve existing obstacles, it is required to build entrepreneurial skills through enhancement of communication skills, and keep learning. Furthermore, the obligation for entrepreneurship in order to facilitate improvement in the organizations is an effective factor on organizational cultural, entrepreneur shipping culture and entrepreneurs traits. Weinekötter (32) also affirmed positive effects of reinforcing mechanisms, such as staff empowerment as well as managerial support in creating entrepreneurship. The study mentioned that internal barriers, including conservative culture that creates a strict atmosphere, lack of cooperation and innovation among staff is one of the main challenges leading to lack of entrepreneurial culture. In fact, lack of training workshops on the importance of organizational entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial behavior causes lack of awareness among staff and consequently lack of creative activities, innovation, teamwork, and entrepreneurship behavior. Bureaucratic management techniques in the organization do not provide the opportunity for cultivating entrepreneurial morale and the emergence of entrepreneurial behavior in organizations.
In the present study, the relationship between social capital and entrepreneurial behavior in staff was also approved, which was in line with several studies. Madadi (33), indicated a statistically significant association between social capital and entrepreneurship. The study showed that forming interactive work teams and social relationships among staff would facilitate transfer of knowledge through identifying opportunities and environmental threats, which ultimately lead to organizational trust and empowered social capital. Kalhor et al. (34) also confirmed a direct relationship between entrepreneurial behaviors and social capital. They concluded that trust building in staff and designing new motivational practices could promote social capital. Therefore, managers can contribute to the improvement of job performance through developing entrepreneurial behavior in organizations. In addition, Chen et al. (35) indicated a significant relationship between social capital and entrepreneurial performance. Furthermore, the study of Escandon-Barbosa et al. (36) showed that social capital had a greater impact on the relationship between organizations and entrepreneurship, so that social capital provided an opportunity for entrepreneurs to interact with each other by developing a satisfactory communication network, providing a proper condition for business development.
The present study had thematic innovation; since it examined three variables of organizational culture, social capital, and entrepreneurial behavior simultaneously and introduced such concepts in academic work environments.  In addition, the use of structural equation methods which has the capability to simultaneously investigate the relationships between different overt and covert variables was the strength of the study. However, the study had a number of limitations, such as limited sample size, purposeful sampling method, and self-report method for evaluating the entrepreneurial behavior of staff, proposing the application of more operative methods to resolve the issues.
The study results necessitate further attention to university environments and higher education institutions to create a constructive organizational culture through meeting the accepted values
of the society in order to promote social capital. As strengthening the organizational culture can provide an appropriate basis for the development of entrepreneurial workforce the economic growth of the organization in a competitive arena would also be expected. Therefore, it is suggested that university managers avoid implementing strict regulations and promote a flexible structure
with participatory and supportive management, empower entrepreneurship among human resources, and promote cooperative and participatory working environment.

This paper is extracted from the undergraduate project in the field of health services management, approved by Qazvin University of Medical Sciences and Health Services with ethical code of IR.QUMS.REC.1399.471, which was supported by Qazvin University of Medical Sciences. Hereby, we would like to express our gratitude toward all the people who cooperated in conducting this study.
Conflict of interests
Authors declared that there is no conflict of interests.
Authors' contributions
Rafiei S and Shaban S designed research; Mohammad Khani MR, Mirhajian Z, and Momeni Z conducted research; Alizadeh A analyzed data; and Rafiei S wrote the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Non applicable.
Type of Study: Original article | Subject: Healt care Management
Received: 2021/05/13 | Accepted: 2022/01/30 | Published: 2022/03/29

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