How Do Rewards and Management Styles Influence the Motivation to Share Knowledge?
SMG Working Paper No. 6/2008
47 Pages Posted: 27 Feb 2008
Date Written: February 12, 2008
How to motivate knowledge sharing is of crucial importance to many companies. This paper analyzes individual knowledge sharing behavior in a self-determination theory (SDT) perspective. The primary aim is to explore what type of motivation predicts knowledge sharing behavior and how this type of motivation is affected by reward structures and management styles in organizations. The paper builds on survey and interview data from a pilot case study and provides statistical evidence of a strong positive relationship between autonomous motivation and knowledge sharing behavior. Furthermore, tangible rewards are found to correlate negatively with autonomous motivation for knowledge sharing. The more employees perceive knowledge sharing to lead to tangible rewards, the less they are autonomously motivated to share. On the other hand, a management style supportive of employees' needs for autonomy is found to promote autonomous motivation for knowledge sharing.
Keywords: Autonomy support, knowledge sharing, motivation, rewards
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation