INFLUENCE OF KNOWLEDGE SHARING PRACTICES ON JOB PERFORMANCE AMONG STAFF OF GLOBACOM TELECOMMINICATION COMPANY, LAGOS STATE, NIGERIA
The main aim of this study is to investigate the influence of knowledge sharing on organizational performance of Globacom Telecommunication Company, Lagos state Nigeria. The study was guided by the following research objectives: to find out the level of job performance of staff in Globacom staff in Lagos State, to find out knowledge sharing methods practiced in Globacom telecom, Lagos State, identify the challenges facing the effective job performance among the staff in Globacom and examine the significant influence of knowledge sharing on job performance among Globacom Staff. The research was guided by both the expectancy theory and SECI model. The study adopted a correlational research design. The target population included all the staff of Globacom telecommunication Company, Lagos State Nigeria while the sample population was 180 respondents. The study collected primary data. A structured questionnaire was used to collect data. Data was summarized, edited, coded, tabulated and analyzed. Data was analyzed using the Predictive Analytics Software (PASW) version 23. These measures were used to describe the characteristics of the collected data. The study found out among others that Knowledge are shared through: brainstorming amongst the peers of staff, one on one discussion, job rotation, coaching and mentoring, conference, workshop, and seminars. Knowledge are been created through telling stories, brainstorming or ad hoc meetings, focus groups, job rotation and Participation, questionnaires or surveys are used to convey knowledge, learning from observation, and documentation. The staff are face with the challenge of lack of incentive, lack of cooperation among juniors and seniors staff and insufficient technology to perform work, inadequate staff training, opportunity to share their experience, and constant budget decline affects their job performance. Also that knowledge sharing have significant influence on job performance. The study recommends among others that Telecommunication Company should put more emphasis on training and information sharing in order to improve employee knowledge sharing. It was also recommended that the management should ensure cooperation among juniors and senior staff, sufficient technology should be put in place which will help the staff in performing their work, adequate opportunity should be given to staff which will enable them to share their experience.
1.1 Background of the study
Performance is the ultimate goal for both organization and individual achievement. In the past, performance tend to focus on financial measures of performance, such as profits and economic values. However, placing emphasis on financial measure does not provide the full picture of how competitiveness is sustained in organizations. Thus, there is the need to consider other aspects of performance (otherwise known as non-financial performance). A good example of non-financial performance is job performance. In the Nigerian telecommunication industry, job performance is negatively affected due to the increasing number of subscribers on daily basis which has contributed in making employees jobs more stressful (Ademola, 2017).
Job performance can be said to be the attitude that workers have toward their job. According to Buchanan (2002), an individual performance is generally determined by factors such as motivation, the desire to do the job, the capability to do the job, and the work environment, the tools, material and information needed to do the job. In the past, organizations used to depend on financial indicators to measure their success (Porter and Lawler, 1968). Those traditional indicators are not good enough anymore. Among the recent indicators that added to the measurement of the success of organizations is individual performance. Individual performance is the output that an individual contributes to organization performance as result of his activities and behavior in work environment and as a product of his fulfillment of his job’s duties and responsibilities. There are three dimensions for individual performance: exhorted effort in work, personal capabilities, and personal consciousness about individual role and capacity (Porter and Lawler, 1968). Other researchers believe that capabilities and motives are the most critical dimensions of individual performance. For instance, an individual who has only motive without the right capabilities will never be able to perform in appropriate way and vice versa.
To improve job performance there is the need for knowledge sharing (KS) and it can ultimately improve overall performance of an organization. When employees of the organization share information over time they have ability to be familiar with the information in blocks or in patterns, pattern process is faster than single piece of information, by adopting this process employees can be able to understand small clues from other employees which assist them in improving their performance. A wider range of job performance indicators should be used to measure job performance efficiency and effectiveness in order to reveal the dynamic nature of an organization in the knowledge economy include creativity, innovativeness, quantity and quality of work done, efficiency and effectiveness (Tseng, & Huang, 2011).
The world is today a global village and is being transformed to a knowledge economy where knowledge has become the product that gives an organization its competitive advantage. The emergence of this knowledge economy had given rise to a business environment that is characterized by uncertainty, instability and changes that create various challenges and opportunity. Such kind of environment includes many factors as increased globalization, rapid technological changes, and the growing need for qualified employees and improved performance (Vanhala & Stavrou, 2013). For this reasons, organizations are forced to use the knowledge resources at hand in efficient and effective manner to achieve competitive advantage.
The need for firms to manage their knowledge resources more efficiently to enhance job performance and consequently gain a competitive edge over their rivals is of paramount importance (Sáenz, Aramburu, & Blanco, 2012; Wu, Lee, & Tsai, 2012). This assertion is in furtherance to the call for good knowledge management (KM) within organizations and part of the goal of KM, is to capture the tacit knowledge required by a business process. Therefore, KM enables a firm to position its tacit knowledge for responding quickly to customers, creating new markets, developing new products, and dominating emerging technologies. Another goal of KM is to capture the explicit knowledge required by firms. Therefore, scholars emphasize the need for firms to integrate their Information Technology (IT) with their KM strategies, processes, and practices to achieve competitive advantages and greater financial performance (Kamasak & Bulutlar, 2010; Mills & Smith, 2011; Wu, Lee, & Tsai, 2012).
Basically there are two types of knowledge, namely: tacit knowledge and explicit knowledge. Tacit knowledge is the type that is difficult to verbalize and codify because it is ingrained at a subconscious level (Faizuniah & Aizzat, 2009). Tacit knowledge requires face-to-face interactions and a dialectic debate (Koskinen, Pihlanto & Vanharanta, 2003; Fernie, Green,
Weller, & Newcombe, 2003) among employees at workplaces. Tacit knowledge is also a subjective, context specific, and difficult to capture and it is not easily to express or communicated via visually or verbally. It is subjective as well as difficult to formalize (Nonaka, Totama & Nagata, 2000). Tacit knowledge is embedded in action, commitment, and involvement in a specific context and derived from personal experiences. Implicit knowledge is another form of tacit knowledge, it is the kind of knowledge that is shared or understood by people or groups who are either unwilling, or unable to express it explicitly (for example, due to cultural factors) without a proper atmosphere.
Explicit knowledge basically is the type that can be easily explained and codified, and are available in books, manuals and other types of publications (Faizuniah & Aizzat, 2009). It is commonly agreed that disseminating and communicating explicit knowledge is easier than sharing of tacit knowledge. Sharing of explicit knowledge can be done by means of books, manuals, video clips, databases and expert systems, as well as through formal training. According to Fernie, Green, Weller, and Newcombe (2003) the explicit knowledge is objective, can be communicated visually or verbally, and is more easily codified. Explicit knowledge is the knowledge that has been or can be articulated, codified, and stored in certain medium and can be readily transmitted to others. Similarly explicit part of knowledge is systematic and easy to communicate in the form of hard data or codified procedures (Pan & Scarborough, 1999). This means that explicit form of knowledge can be formal and easily transmitted and shared across individuals and organizations.
The creation of knowledge as well as its sharing and application can influence organization in significant ways through the performance of its employees. Knowledge management may be a veritable tool for the improvement of products and process and for growth and productivity and sustainable competitive advantage hinges on effective management of organizations’ vast and varied knowledge assets (Kulkarni & Louis, 2003). Knowledge sharing which is an important dimension of knowledge management is very vital to day-to-day running of business organizations; they are very important in improving organizational output and performance thereby forming part of the organization’s business strategy and assisting to achieve its objectives. There are various definitions of knowledge sharing in the literature. Ryu, Ho & Han (2003) defined knowledge sharing as the behavior of an individual dispersing his or her obtained knowledge and information to other colleagues within an organization. Cummings (2003) explained knowledge sharing as a means by which an organization obtains access to its own and other organizations’ knowledge. Xinyan and Xin (2006) stated that knowledge sharing has been regarded as a necessary way to obtain knowledge for an individual and to innovate new knowledge for an organization. Hendriks (1999) explained knowledge sharing as a communication process that includes two parts: (1) the knowledge owner externalizes the knowledge; (2) the knowledge demander internalizes the knowledge. There are various factors that influence knowledge sharing behavior such as communication, information systems, rewards, organization structure, job satisfaction, organizational culture, organizational climate, leadership, the norm of reciprocity and trust extrinsic and intrinsic motivation e. t. c. Hsu, Ju, Yen, and Chang, (2007); Ridings, Gefen & Arinze (2002); Jiacheng, Lu & Francesco (2010). Knowledge sharing as an important part of the knowledge management results in several benefits at individual and organizational levels. One example is that knowledge sharing increase performance of the firms (Cummings, 2003).
Knowledge sharing can help employees understand their jobs better and bring personal recognition within the department. Once the knowledge is built, companies will be able to have sustainable competitive advantage thereby increasing their performance. Increase in Knowledge sharing level helps organizations in better utilizing knowledge and consequently improving business. However, the challenge is how to make the process of knowledge sharing formal and how to create an environment that supports knowledge sharing in offer to job performance output. Addressing such challenges requires special attention from organizations’ top management and requires specific strategies and policies that nurture and support knowledge sharing, such as developing a motivation system, changing how information is showing, utilizing some technology, and redesigning communication channels (Abdullah, 2017).
The Nigerian telecommunications industry has witnessed, for almost 10 years now, the emergence of more profitable and highly successful telecommunications organizations whose values are increasingly based on their intangible resources (i.e., people and their expertise, business processes and market assets such as customer loyalty, repeat businesses and organizational reputation) (Suraj & Ajiferuke, 2013). Therefore, to stay ahead of competition, it telecommunications organizations within and even beyond Nigeria will have to leverage the knowledge acquired from their business processes, their skilled employees, their customers and their competitors to create distinctive competencies, unique market positioning and sustainable business growth to survive in today’s knowledge economy.
In the world over, including Nigeria, many business organizations, including the telecommunication industry, practice knowledge sharing, but the question is does knowledge sharing always translate to job performance? The world has seen very large business organizations that are perceived to have vibrant knowledge sharing practices go down. Among them are WorldCom, Tyco, Quest, Enron and Computer Associates, all in the U.S.A. (Jackson, Moldrich & Roebuck, 2007). This is not limited to the developed world alone; even the developing world like Nigeria has witnessed the collapse of organizations that are also perceived to have good human resources management and even knowledge sharing practices (Sahara Reporters, 2010). Knowledge sharing is supposed to make organizations to be focused in achieving their desired outcome. The optimal usage of these assets is one of the major concerns of organizations to get more competitive advantages in their market. In order to achieve a proper level of knowledge creation and innovation, organizations have to promote their employees’ knowledge and skills effectively. This process seeks more attention to the critical role of knowledge sharing in an organization. Knowledge sharing is an integral component of knowledge management that helps transform individual knowledge into organizational knowledge and improve firm performance (FP) (Foss, Husted, & Michailova, 2010).
1.2 Statement of the problem
The ultimate goal of any organization is an improvement in performance which can be either financial or non-financial. However, irrespective of the dimension of the performance being studied, job performance remains crucial in organizations. In recent times there has been decline in job performance across sectors of the Nigerian economy including the telecom industries. Although the job performance is dependent on various variables within the organization, in this age of information it is also affected by effective and efficient use of knowledge.
It is known that knowledge plays a remarkable role in society, and knowledgeable workers are the most important assets in organizations. The optimal usage of these assets is one of the major concerns of organizations to get more competitive advantages in their market. However, organizations today find it very difficult to address proper level of knowledge creation and innovation as well as sharing, which consequently leads to low job performance. Knowledge sharing is an integral component of knowledge management that helps transform individual knowledge into organizational knowledge and improve firm performance. Although existing research helps researchers to better understand the value of KS in organizations, several broad concerns still remain especially in the Nigerian context. Furthermore, past studies reviewed showed that organizations face challenges of understanding and managing critical factors required for resolving complicated knowledge management (KM) issues and that researches rarely empirically address the associations of knowledge sharing and job performance; hence, the influence of knowledge sharing on business performance for efficient job performance remains unclear (Oyemomi, Liu, Neaga & Alkhuraiji, 2016). Thus, the continual decline in job performance in organizations, especially the Nigerian telecommunication organizations is worrisome. Could it be that, the poor job performance can be attributed to poor knowledge sharing? Therefore, this study seeks to find out the influence of knowledge sharing practices on job performance of staff in Globacom Telecommunication Company Lagos State, Nigeria.
1.3 Objective of the study
The general objective of this study is to investigate the influence of knowledge sharing practices on job performances of staff in Globacom Telecommunication, Lagos State, Nigeria.
The specific objectives are to:
- find out the level of job performance of staff in Globacom staff in Lagos State, Nigeria.
- find out knowledge sharing methods practiced in Globacom telecom, Lagos State, Nigeria.
- identify the challenges facing the effective job performance of staff in Globacom.
- examine the significant influence of knowledge sharing on job performance of Globacom Staff.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions were answered in the course of the study:
i. What are the job performance level of Globacom staff in Lagos State, Nigeria?
ii. What are the knowledge sharing methods practiced in Globacom telecom, Lagos State, Nigeria job?
iii. What are the challenges facing the effective job performance of staff of Globacom?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
One hypothesis was set out to guide the study at 0.05 level of significant.
H0: Knowledge sharing has no significant influence on job performance of Globacom staff.
1.6 Significance of the study
This study will be of immense benefit to telecommunication industries, employees, companies, students and researchers. Telecommunication industries will benefit from the findings of this study by identifying the specific dimension of knowledge sharing that will help in improving their organizational performance. Similarly, employees of various companies will understand the importance of knowledge sharing on their job performance. In addition, the management team of globacom and other companies will also find the recommendation of this study valuable in formulating policies that will enhance knowledge sharing in their organizations.
Furthermore, other researchers, staff and management of the organization will benefit from the findings of this research work.
Finally, the study will provide both theoretical and empirical evidence to existence studies in related field.
1.7 Scope of the study
This study covers the influence of knowledge sharing practices on job performance of staff. Specifically, the study will cover staff of Globacom Telecommunication Company limited in Lagos State, Nigeria. In terms of variables scope, the study will cover two variables namely: Knowledge Sharing and job performance. Under job performance, the study will cover creativity, innovativeness, quantity and quality of work done, efficiency and effectiveness. Under knowledge sharing, it will cover brainstorming, team work, conference, communication and job rotation.
1.8 Operational Definitions of Terms
Knowledge; is considered as the information process of an individual including idea, fact, expertise and judgments which are relevant for the individual, team and organization performance.
Knowledge sharing: knowledge sharing is the process by which two or more people brainstorm to share ideas.
Knowledge sharing practices: Knowledge sharing practices include all the activities and process, both formal and informal, by which knowledge is shared and created within an organization.
Job Performance: Job performance refers to what is expected to be delivered by each individual staff or all the staff of globacom telecommunication within a time frame.