This paper aims to examine how knowledge transfer between individuals influences performance in product development (PD) organizations and whether this influence is contingent to the degree of novelty in the PD work.
A set of hypotheses describing the relationships between knowledge transfer by codification (KTC), knowledge transfer by personalization (KTP) and performance is developed. It is hypothesized that performance decreases when KTC interacts with novelty, but improves when KTP and novelty interact. Survey‐based data were collected from 287 knowledge workers across 19 PD units of Indian manufacturing companies, and multiple regression analyses were performed to test the hypotheses.
Of the eight hypotheses stated, only one was supported by the data. KTP significantly influences the efficiency of PD work, highlighting the relative importance of personalized, as compared to repository‐based, knowledge transfer to performance. No significant interaction effects of KTC/KTP with novelty were detected.
The findings strongly suggest that PD work can benefit from interpersonal relationships and knowledge exchange, something that requires diligent cultural interventions.
To the best of the authors' knowledge, the contingent effects of novelty on the productivity of inter‐individual knowledge transfer have received little, if any, attention to date. This study helps improve understanding of the nature of knowledge transfer that is best suited where the nature of work involves creativity.
Kumar, A. and Ganesh, L. (2011), "Inter‐individual knowledge transfer and performance in product development", The Learning Organization, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 224-238. https://doi.org/10.1108/09696471111123270Download as .RIS
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