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Team reflexivity and employee innovative behavior: the mediating role of knowledge sharing and moderating role of leadership

Zhining Wang (School of Economics and Management, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou, China)
Shuang Ren (School of Economics and Management, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou, China) b
Doren Chadee (Deakin Business School, Deakin University, Victoria, Australia)
Mengli Liu (School of Management, Shangdong University, Jinan, China)
Shaohan Cai (Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 4 January 2021

Issue publication date: 30 July 2021

Abstract

Purpose

Although team reflexivity has been identified as a potent tool for improving organizational performance, how and when it influences individual employee innovative behavior remains theoretically and conceptually underspecified. Taking a knowledge management perspective, this study aims to investigate the role of team-level knowledge sharing and leadership in transforming team reflexivity into innovative behavior at the individual level.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper follows a multilevel study design to collect data (n = 441) from 91 teams in 48 knowledge-based organizations. The paper tests our multilevel model using multinomial logistic techniques.

Findings

The overall results confirm that knowledge sharing in teams mediates the influence of team reflexivity on individual employee innovative behavior, and that leadership plays an important role in moderating these influences. Specifically, authoritarian leadership is found to attenuate the team reflexivity and knowledge sharing effect, whereas benevolent leadership is found to amplify this indirect effect.

Originality/value

The multilevel study design that explains how team-level processes translate into innovative behavior at the individual employee level is novel. Relatedly, our use of a multilevel analytical framework is also original.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This research is partly supported by The Fundamental Research Funds for Central Universities in China (Grant No. 2017XKQY087).

Citation

Wang, Z., Ren, S., Chadee, D., Liu, M. and Cai, S. (2021), "Team reflexivity and employee innovative behavior: the mediating role of knowledge sharing and moderating role of leadership", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 25 No. 6, pp. 1619-1639. https://doi.org/10.1108/JKM-09-2020-0683

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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