The explanatory relationship between knowledge sharing, emotional intelligence, and generational cohorts for United States healthcare services employees

by Woolsey, Connie J., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2016, 133 pages; 10182883


The theory of generations states that diverse characteristics are influenced by social, economic, and political occurrences. Where multiple generations may be working side-by-side, each generation’s qualities impact the daily routines, decisions, interactions, and relationships of an organization’s workforce. Grant’s (1996) knowledge-based theory of the firm emphasized that knowledge must be shared and transferred for organizational growth, performance, and in maintaining a competitive advantage. Where knowledge sharing is dependent upon the communication and interactions of the individuals involved in the activity, and those individuals have different generational makeup, emotions may influence the outcome. The theory of emotional intelligence involves the ability to alter emotions in guiding outcomes. This research study investigates the role of emotional intelligence for knowledge sharing between generational cohorts (Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y). A sampling of United States employed individuals from the operational and support services (non-provider) side of the healthcare industry completed a survey of two instruments: the Knowledge Sharing Behavior Scale and the Schutte Self-Report Emotional Intelligence Test. A hierarchical multiple linear regression model analyzed the data. The research question was: To what extent does the Emotional Intelligence Index and Generational Cohorts explain the variation in the Knowledge Sharing Index? The null hypothesis was rejected; the alternative hypothesis was supported with the Emotional Intelligence Index contributing 43.6% to the Knowledge Sharing Index. All strategies must be pursued to mitigate risks for losing any organizational knowledge. The results suggest the use emotional intelligence for knowledge sharing in mitigating the potential for lost knowledge.

AdviserTerry M. Walker
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsBusiness administration; Management
Publication Number10182883

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