The theory of commitment is defined as “agreement between two or more social actors to carry out future actions” (Lenney and Easton, 2009). Commitment is a trait which resides within an actor as one actor may be committed to other while other may not be committed at all. In contrast, commitments primarily subsist in the space among actors. The concept of commitment introduces the idea of purposiveness in the model which in turn helps provides a more unobstructed view of way and how actors, activities and resources are linked and it also helps to explain interaction and what are the outcomes from the network (Lenney and Easton, 2009). By definition, we can say that commitments are the product of the actors’ intentions. Hence commitments not only present a critical part of the mechanism by which larger-scale actors such as businesses and inter-organisations operate but, eventually, also offer provides a pathway to access intentions and goals (Lenney and Easton, 2009).
When we talk about commitment in business, we generally tend to talk it from a staffing perspective. Since staff turnover is an essential issue for most of the organisations, due to which there are lots of academic work available in this area relating to commitment. Allen and Meyer were the first pioneers to develop the three-component model (TCM) of organisational commitment which explains the organisational behaviour in terms of “a psychological state that links an individual to an organisation (i.e. makes turnover less likely)” (Allen & Meyer, 1990, p14, as cited in Lenney and Easton, 2009). The three components of the model are described in terms of affective, continuance and normative. “Employees with strong affective commitment remain because they want to, and those with strong continuance commitment because they feel they need to, and those with strong normative commitment because they ought to”(Allen & Meyer, 1990, p3, as cited in Lenney and Easton, 2009). Over time the model has been verbalised in many different ways. For example, Bremmels (1995) as cited in Lenney and Easton (2009), claims that the actors have dual or multiple commitments, for example, if we look from an organisational perspective, the commitment can be to both the organisation and the trade union and also inter-organisational commitments. Another close concept which is related to commitments is intentions. However, both the concepts differ from each other as intentions mostly involve psychological characteristics and commitments, mainly social ones. This concept of commitment can be found in Esports teams, especially if we look at the hierarchy of the teams from the lower division to upper-division, the level of commitment continually changes. We can see players in the lower league are less committed to their teams, whereas players in a much higher league and premiership are more committed to their teams. It happens because players at lower leagues are more committed towards their careers than the team itself, and lack of funds also contributes to it. However, when we look at the much-established teams, the commitments are entirely different; for example, for this research, we look at Esports Team Dignitas. Players from this team are committed to winning competitions and giving good results to teams as well as their sponsors.
The ARA model and commitment
Each element ARA model is different from one another, but the close relationship which they share within each other gives us a precise look inside how business and intra-business activities happen and they operate. Commitments in itself is a different concept; it can be termed as a resource, but only ones which define not only actors commitments but also help directs activities (Lenney and Easton, 2009). The following will define how individually commitments affect the ARA model.
Actors Bonds and Commitments
Actors from the organisation or different organisations have interactions. When these interactions happen, they lead to commitments, and these commitments lead to formations of business relations. As we can look at Figure 2, which show us, 4 actors, two individual actors in an organisation A (AI), and B (BI) from buying organisation. One group actor (BG), which represents the selling organisation. The group in the selling organisation is a key account management team. In this complex network, all the actors are bonded to each other, which implies that there will be a continuous social and economic relationship.
Additionally, the group BG will have internal social and formal bonds. In all these complex activities, there is also commitment between the actors, which is depicted by the green boxes. The commitments are shown as being connected to one actor because one actor makes commitments to another. For example, the JFK group in the selling organisation might have a commitment which can be to present the buyer AI in the buying organisation with a comprehensive plan for the supply of a new component. Within BG, every actor commits to other actors to get things done and also commits to AI to get contribution in the planning process.
Another AI, in turn, commits the JFK group to provide them with samples. Finally, BI, a senior manager, commits the JFK group to examine their plan before it is sent to the buyer (Lenney and Easton, 2009).