Monday, January 30, 2012

Example of Assigment: FACTORS INFLUENCING INTENTION TO SHARE KNOWLEDGE IN AN ORGANIZATION

INTRODUCTION

In the current fast moving situation where mergers, acquisitions and Technologies or product transfer from USA to Asian countries like Malaysia, China and India, information is an important asset for companies to ensure products are transferred smoothly and learning process to be shortened. Preserving and sharing of information is very important to remain competitive in changing landscape of the increasingly globalized business world. The information intensive organizations have revolutionized economics and industry as much, the inventions that led to the industrial revolution in the Eighteenth Century. Another key element is people need to work smarter instead of working harder.

Many companies today are beginning to feel that information of their employees is very important and it is an asset that cannot be purchased using money. Information is a personal capability like skills, experience people learn and intelligence to make judgments. This capability can be acquired by an individual as a result of seeing, listening to or feeling (physically or emotionally) something. What a person reads, sees, hears or feels is not the information; rather it is the medium through which information may be transferred.

Research Problem

Research Objectives

The main objective of this research is to identify factors influencing the intention to share knowledge. Thus it hopes to achieve the following objectives:
1.                  To understand or to gauge the behavioral intention to share information in an organization,
2.                  To identify differences in behavioral intention to share across various characteristics of the respondents such as gender, position, department and education level,
3.                  To model the impact of attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavioral control on the intention to share knowledge among employees in an organization.

In order to achieve the above objectives, the following research questions were posed for this study:

1.                  How high is the level of intention to share information in this organization?
2.                  Does behavioral intention vary across various demographic profiles of the respondents, such as gender, position, department and education level?
3.                  What are the impacts of attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavioral control on the intention to share knowledge among employees in this organization?

Research Framework

The Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB)

In psychology, the TPB is a theory about the link between attitudes and behavior. It was proposed by Icek Ajzen (1991). The TPB is an extension of Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA) made necessary by the original model’s limitations in dealing with behaviors over which people have incomplete volitional control (Ajzen, 1991).

The TPB holds that human action is guided by three kinds of considerations which are beliefs about the likely outcomes of the behavior and the evaluations of these outcomes (behavioral beliefs), beliefs about the normative expectations of others and motivation to comply with these expectations (normative beliefs), and beliefs about the presence of factors that may facilitate or impede performance of the behavior and the perceived power of these factors (control beliefs). Finally, given a sufficient degree of actual control over the behavior, people are expected to carry out their intentions when the opportunity arises. Intention is thus assumed to be the immediate antecedent of behavior. However, because many behaviors pose difficulties of execution that may limit volitional control, perceived behavioral control is thought to have an additional direct effect on behavior.

According to Chang (1998), attitude towards moral behavior significantly influences behavioral intentions. Besides that, Bock & Kim (2002) have research the positive effect of attitude towards knowledge sharing on the knowledge sharing intention. Recently, Ryu et al. (2003) studies showed that the physician attitudes towards knowledge sharing have affected knowledge sharing intentions. Limiting the domain of the behavioral intention model to the rational actor, intention to engage in a behavior is determined by an individual’s attitude towards that behavior (Ajzen & Fishbein 1980).

Knowledge sharing among firms, departments or most of often, among peers within an organization, provides better solutions to increasing development, decreasing research-to-market times and escalating problems and complexity (Yu, Wilkins & Ma, 2005). In short, individual positive perception will leads to the attitude towards knowledge sharing. Therefore, attitudes towards knowledge sharing have a positive correlation towards the intention of one’s sharing his/her knowledge.

H1:      Attitude towards knowledge sharing has a positive effect on the intention to share knowledge

Research using TRA & TPB have often found subjective norms significantly influence or impact in predicting behavioral intentions then the other factors of the models (Kurland, 1995; Chang; 1998). Based on Ajzen & Fishberg (1980), proposed that the significant of the factors in their model vary with the behavioral intentions tested and the subgroup or population investigated. Besides that, Chang (1998) found that subjective norm significantly affected moral behavioral intention. In a studies by Ruy et al., (2003) indicated that individual professional groups, physician subject norms regarding knowledge sharing have affected knowledge-sharing intentions. From the finding, subjective norms is a good construct in influencing the intention of one’s sharing knowledge.

Further more, the subjective norm construct has received considerable empirical support as an important antecedent to behavior intention (Mathieson, 1991; Taylor & Todd, 1995; Thompson et al., 1991). The definitions of subjective norm refers to the degree to which one believes that people who bear pressure on one’s actions expect one to perform the behavior in question multiplied by the degree of one’s compliance with each of one’s referents (Fishbein & Ajzen, (1981).      Thus, subjective norm have a significant affect towards the intention to share knowledge.

H2:      Subjective norm to share knowledge has a positive effect on the intention to share knowledge

Perceived behavioral control refers to people's perceptions of their ability to perform a given behavior. The concept of perceived behavioral control is most compatible with Bandura’s (1977, 1982) concept of perceived self-efficacy which is concerned with judgment of how well one can execute required actions to deal with specific situations. Perceived behavioral control is more important in influencing a person’s behavioral intention particularly when the behavior is not wholly under volitional control. Therefore, perceived behavioral control becomes a salient factor in predicting a person’s behavioral intention for information sharing. Perceived behavioral control is another important determinant of intention that be improved, specifically by enhancing computer-self efficacy, general computing experience (Ndubisi, 2004). Perceived behavior control is the third factor after subjective norm and attitude that effect individuals’ behavior intention to share knowledge (Ryu etal., 2003)

H3:      Perceived behavioral control has a positive effect on the intention to share knowledge

Based on the literature and the hypotheses developed the research framework can be presented in Figure 2:




Population and sample

The population of interest is defined as all employees in one multinational company operating in the Bayan Lepas Free Trade Zone. Data was collected by means of questionnaires. A survey was conducted in order to determine user intention to share knowledge in this organization. Data collection was conducted from end of Jan to end of February, 2006. The questionnaires were handed out to employees in this organization and they were collected immediately after they were completed.

Variables and Questionnaire Design

To measure the variables of the study, various sources were used and these are summarized in the table below, together with information regarding the layout of the questionnaire.

The Measures and Layout of the questionnaire.
Section
Variable

Items
Source

Identification Number




Personal data

7

A
Attitude towards
sharing
(Att1 – Att5)
The degree of one’s positive feelings about sharing one’s knowledge
5
Bock et al. (2005)
B
Subjective norm
(Sn1 – Sn4)
The degree to which one believes that people who bear pressure on one’s actions expect one to perform the behavior
4
Bock et al. (2005)
C
Intention to share
(Intent1 – Intent5)
The degree to which one believes that one will engage in  knowledge sharing act
5
Bock et al. (2005)
D
Perceived Behavioral
Control
(Pbc1 – Pbc4)
The degree to which one perceives it to be easy or difficult to perform the knowledge sharing behavior
4
Chang, 1998; Chau and Hu, 2001
E
Actual Sharing
(Share1 – Share3)
The extent to which one actually shares the knowledge that he/she possesses
3
Adapted from Bock et al. (2005)



REFERENCES


Barry, B. and Hardin, R. (1982). Rational Man and Irrational Society? Sage Publications: Newbury Park, CA.
Bock, Gee-Woo, Zmud, R. W., Kim, Young-Gul and Lee, Jae-Nam (2005). Behavioral Intention Formation in Knowledge Sharing: Examining the Roles of Extrinsic Motivators, Social-Psychological Forces, and Organizational Climate, MIS Quarterly, 29(1), 87-111
Chang, M. K. (1998). Predicting unethical behavior: a comparison of the theory of reasoned action and the theory of planned behavior, Journal of Business Ethics, 17(16), 1825–1834.
Chau, P. Y. K., and Hu, P. J.-H. (2001). Information technology acceptance by individual professionals: a model comparison approach, Decision Sciences, 32(4), 699–719.
Gibbert, M. and Krause, H. (2002). Practice Exchange in a Best Practice Marketplace, in Knowledge Management Case Book: Siemens Best Practices, T. H. Davenport and G. J. B. Probst (Eds.), Publicis Corporate Publishing, Erlangen, Germany, pp. 89-105.
Marwell, G. and Oliver, P. (1993). The Critical Mass in Collective Action: A Micro-social Theory, Cambridge University Press: New York.
Kalling, T. and Styhre, A. (2003). Knowledge Sharing in Organizations, Copenhagen Business School Press: Copenhagen, Denmark.

 

QUESTIONNAIRE


1.       Your Gender                                                           1.         Female             2.         Male

2.       Your age                                                                             __________Years

3.       Number of years  working in the organization                        __________Years

4.       Number of years of working experience                                __________Years

5.       Department

1.         Sales & purchasing                               2.         R&D
3.         Subcon management                             4.         Production
5.         Test                                                      6.         QA
7.         Material                                     8.         Engineering
9.         HR                                                        10.        Marketing
11.        Others

6.       Current Position                  1.         Technician                                 2.         Engineer
3.         Sr Engineer                               4.         Manager
5.         Above Managers level   6.         Others

7.       Level of education               1.         Secondary or lower                   2.         Diploma
3.                   First Degree                              4.         Master Degree
5.         PHD                                         6.         Others



Strongly                                                                                                            Strongly
Disagree                 Disagree                 Neutral      Agreed                    Agree
       1                             2                            3                         4                            5





A.         ATTITUDE
This section is to understand your feelings towardsknowledge sharing. Please circle the appropriate number on each scale.

My knowledge sharing with other organizational members is good
1
2
3
4
5
My knowledge sharing with other organizational members is harmful
1
2
3
4
5
My knowledge sharing with other organizational members is an enjoyable experience
1
2
3
4
5
My knowledge sharing with other organizational members is valuable to me
1
2
3
4
5
My knowledge sharing with other organizational members is a wise move
1
2
3
4
5

B.         SUBJECTIVE NORM
This section is to understand your behavior when someone applies pressure on knowledge sharing. Please circle the appropriate number on each scale.

My higher management thinks I should share knowledge with other member in the organization and factory
1
2
3
4
5
My manager thinks I should share knowledge with other member in the organization and factory
1
2
3
4
5
My colleagues think I should share knowledge with other member in the organization and factory
1
2
3
4
5
My organization expects me to share knowledge
1
2
3
4
5

C.         INTENTION
This section is to understand your engagement in an explicit and implicit on knowledge sharing. Please circle the appropriate number on each scale.

I will share my work reports and official documents with members of my organization more frequently in the future
1
2
3
4
5
I will always provide manuals, methodologies and models for members of my organization
1
2
3
4
5
I intend to share my experience or know-how from work with other organizational members more frequently in the future
1
2
3
4
5
I will always provide my know-where or know-whom at the request of other organizational members
1
2
3
4
5
I will try to share expertise from my education or training with other organization members in a more effective way
1
2
3
4
5

D.         PERCEIVED BEHAVIORAL CONTROL
This section is to understand your ease or difficult to perform the knowledge sharing. Please circle the appropriate number on each scale.

It is always possible for me to share knowledge with members in my organization
1
2
3
4
5
I believe that there are much control I have to share my knowledge with others in my organization
1
2
3
4
5
If I want, I could always share knowledge with members in my organization / factory
1
2
3
4
5
It is mostly up to me whether or not I share knowledge
1
2
3
4
5
E.         EXTENT
Please circle the appropriate number on each scale. Please indicate the extent that you do each of the listed behavior.

                                                                                      Not at all                               Very often
Provide manuals, methodologies and models for members of the organization
1
2
3
4
5
Share experience or know-how from work with other organizational members
1
2
3
4
5
Provide know-where or know-whom at the request of other organizational members
1
2
3
4
5



RAW DATA SET

1
1
26
2
2
4
2
3
3
2
2
4
4
2
2
48
17
24
9
5
4
2
2
2
4
4
3
1
35
5
9
1
3
3
3
3
3
3
2
4
2
19
1
1
4
1
2
5
5
5
5
4
5
1
33
6
8
3
3
3
5
5
5
4
4

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