Over the last decades, organization studies have been inspired by the knowledge-based view, which points to the importance of knowledge assets for firms’ competitiveness. At the core of this stream is the awareness that knowledge should flow across the whole organization. Given that ideas and know-how are rooted in individuals’ minds, for such knowledge to be valuable, it is fundamental to share and use it. Therefore, it becomes vital to understand the antecedents to knowledge sharing and utilization behaviours. This paper focuses on the role of individual, micro and macroorganizational factors in affecting employees’ knowledge utilization. Specifically, it centres on individual motivation, job formalization and operating procedures, and organizational culture and tests the related hypotheses in a complex tourism organization. The results of a regression analysis demonstrate that people motivated by reputation enhancement are less likely to engage in using the shared knowledge. However, such negative relationship is mitigated by a community organizational culture, which emphasizes social cohesion, teamwork, and commitment. Finally, the data show that while formalization is positively associated with knowledge utilization behaviours, operating procedures tend to inhibit them.
Accordingly, this study suggests practical implications managers can rely on when designing their strategies for fostering employees’ participation and involvement in knowledge exploitation processes.
Keywords: knowledge sharing, motivation, community culture, formalization, operating procedures, tourism management