Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Conceptual Model of Organizational Trust and Knowledge Sharing Behavior among Multigenerational Employees

Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Conceptual Model of Organizational Trust and Knowledge Sharing Behavior among Multigenerational Employees

Article excerpt

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between organizational trust and knowledge sharing among their multigenerational employees. On the other hand the purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual model to examine the relationship with antecedents of trust, organizational trust and knowledge sharing behaviors with the moderating effect of multigenerational demographic.

The Literature of Knowledge sharing behavior, Knowledge Management, trust and related theories assist as starting-points for developing the conceptual model. Based on the vast literature review, all the dimensions of variables have been identified and discussed in depth.

This study attempts to reduce the existing gap in literature regarding the relationship between organizational trust and knowledge sharing among employees with differences in generations. It is anticipated that this study to have a significant contribution to the advancement of KM research literature and provides managers and scholars to get to a better insight on the relationship between the established trust among multigenerational of employees and their knowledge sharing.

Keywords: knowledge management (KM), knowledge sharing, trust, multigenerational workforce

1. Introduction

A crucial component of effective Knowledge Management (KM) is knowledge sharing (Nonaka & Takeuchi, 1995; Alavi & Leidner, 2001). Studies today argue that effective knowledge sharing is critical to providing an organization with a unique competitive advantage (Argote & Ingram, 2000; Gold et al., 2001). To enhance a company's collective learning and knowledge assets, an organization must develop an effective knowledge sharing framework that allows its employees and partners to share knowledge (Bock, Sabherwal, & Qian, 2008; Osterloh & Frey, 2000).

Trust is a backbone of intention to share tacit knowledge in organization. It can be influenced by several internal and external factors. Personal characteristics are studied as major player to create trust in organization (Wassan & Rasool, 2011; Cheng, 2008; Fleig-palmer & Schoorman, 2011; Khesal, Samadi, & Musram; 2013). Previous studies usually includes factors such as reward expectation, ability, benevolence, integrity, and justice as determinants of organizational trust (Thorgren & Wincent, 2011; Mayer et al., 2013; Fang & Chiu, 2010).

Another major challenge to share the tacit knowledge within organizations is the demographic differences (e.g., age, gender and ethnics) among employees (Abrams, Cross, Lesser, & Levin, 2003; Chatman et al., 1998) specially the age difference. For instance, the studies show that more than fifty percent of existing employees in firms belonging to younger generations whereas the rest of population belong to older ones (Farren, 1999; Girault & Sauvé, 2008). Since employees tend to have more interaction with those who have more similarities (e.g., age, gender, experience and expertise) with them thus establishment of a credulous relationship between employees from different backgrounds in order to share their knowledge and skills is a difficult task (Zemke, 2000; Eisner, 2011; Kueh & Voon, 2007).

The main objective of this study is developing the conceptual framework to study the relationship between ability, benevolence, justice/fairness, integrity, reward expectation, organizational trust and knowledge sharing behavior with the moderation of generation gaps.

1.1 Significance of Study

This study would complement the expanding field of research by developing a comprehensive conceptual research model for studying the relationship between the antecedent of organizational trust, organizational trust and knowledge sharing behavior among Multigenerational employees. This study will provide better views for employees to gain insight on other employees' perceptions regarding their cooperation during work. …

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