Group knowledge sharing applies different strategies, depending on the scope of the project and level of participation by the parties involved. The most predominant group knowledge sharing approaches within group projects are participatory and autocratic involvement. This research paper reviews these knowledge sharing orientations in group projects at the department of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University through a case study of 30 respondents who have participated in group projects or are currently involved in one.
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The research study relates the level of participant satisfaction as directly related to the type of knowledge sharing approach adopted. In this study, the dependent variable will be group knowledge sharing while the independent variable is participant satisfaction. Through research survey, the study will involve questionnaire and direct interview instruments. Data analysis will be carried out through ANOVA. The research project will take a period of one month to complete.
Understanding the perception and reaction to different situations is involving. A blend of different behaviors and personalities form a group. It is apparent that the behavior or approach that one group adopt may not be same as the approach of another despite existing in the same environment and doing the same thing (Antunes & Costa, 2010). This proposal attempts to explicitly review the psychodynamics and developmental processes that occur within the group knowledge sharing through group projects in relation to satisfaction in the learning experience.
For instance, Aiken, Vanjani and Krosp (2013), established that group knowledge sharing in group project has a very vital role towards the outcomes and level of participant satisfaction with the results. Apparently, there are limited literatures available on the quantifiable relationship between group knowledge sharing and participant perception on the outcome of the group projects.
Therefore, the impetus of this study is to establish the tangible influences of group knowledge sharing through group projects on the project outcome as perceived by the participants. This section of the research will discuss the background of research, problem statement, research questions, research objectives, and research hypothesis. In addition, this section will review rationale, timeline, limitations, and significance of the research study.
Statement of the Problem (Research Motivation)
There is need for extensive research to establish the relationship between group knowledge sharing and level of satisfaction with the outcome by the participants. In the same retrospect, series of research studies have been carried out on the role of group knowledge sharing in group programs towards the outcome and level of participant satisfaction (Brown, Dennis, & Venkatesh, 2010; Ackermann et al., 2010; Aiken, Vanjani, & Krosp, 2013).
Therefore, the research will attempt to present the satisfaction with group projects as influenced by the level of group knowledge sharing. At the end of the research, parties interested in group knowledge sharing through group projects will have the appropriate mechanisms that guarantee optimal results through proactive member participation.
Purpose Statement (Research Objective)
Considering the significance and role of group knowledge sharing through group projects, this research paper aims to review the impact of proactive involvement through group sharing practices on the outcome of projects in technology management. The main sub-objectives of the research study are summarized as;
- To review the significance of group knowledge sharing through group projects within the department of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University.
- To investigate different strategies of measuring outcomes of group projects as influenced by the scope of knowledge sharing.
Research Questions and/or Hypothesis
- How effective are group projects that adopt the group knowledge sharing strategy?
- What is the consequence of presence or lack of group knowledge sharing through group projects in the outcome of the projects?
- H0: Null Hypothesis: Group knowledge sharing through group projects in technology management has an effect on the outcome that is satisfactory to parties in involved.
- H1: Alternative Hypothesis: Group knowledge sharing through group projects in technology management does not have an effect on the outcome that is satisfactory to parties in involved.
Since little research has been done to attempt to establish quantifiable relationship between group knowledge sharing through group projects in technology management and project outcome that is satisfactory to parties involved, the current study many not present the true picture, considering the narrow focus on a single department. Basically, the findings of the study will only present strategies that must be integrated to different knowledge sharing management values to guarantee smooth implementation of group projects.
In summary, chapter one has developed research background, research objective, rationale, questions, and justification. These concepts will guide the section of the case study in presenting the satisfaction with group projects as influenced by the level of group knowledge sharing.
This section of the study will review different aspects of group knowledge sharing that can be applied through group projects in technology management. Specifically, this section will examine the empirical and theoretical literature that is related to the topic, Group Knowledge Sharing Through Group Projects in Technology Management. A comparative review will then be performed to relate the literature review to actual situation on group knowledge sharing strategies in the aspect of technology management of group projects.
Impact of Effective Group Knowledge Sharing Through Group Projects
Different approaches of group knowledge sharing serve different functions in group project, depending on the outcome environment, purpose, and management strategy as directed by the parties involved. Brown, Dennis, and Venkatesh (2010) observed that efficient group project management is characterized by healthy project implementation environment, integration of different functions of the project among the groups involved, and high level of team motivation to perform optimally.
For instance, Chen and Kyaw-Phyo (2012) established that different group knowledge sharing approaches have a direct impact on performance quality in project deliverables.
In a quick rejoinder, Aiken, Vanjani, and Krosp (2013) observed that application of group knowledge sharing strategies in group project is related to the level of team motivation and general outcome since different knowledge sharing strategies applied in any group project trickles down to the functionality of project deliverables. This means that group projects with effective group knowledge sharing approach tend to have higher rate of outcome satisfaction than group projects with weak knowledge sharing approach (Antunes & Costa, 2010). Actions adopted in effective group knowledge sharing through group projects are critical in encouraging and inspiring maximum level of team output, especially in technology management (Aiken, Vanjani, & Krosp, 2013).
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Group Knowledge Sharing in Project Management
The technology-based support system as a group knowledge sharing approach can allow group leaders to examine cognitive dynamics, namely how participants contribute to the agreement and information sharing. Chen and Kyaw-Phyo (2012) noted that individual cognition shapes the underpinning for group negotiation as compared to the collective cognition in group projects. Although individual cognition minimizes the understanding the role of knowledge sharing in a group project, it is still vital to discuss them within the context of changing cognitions (Aiken, Vanjani, & Krosp, 2013).
The importance of individual thinking is indispensable to evaluating how negotiation changes in the course of introduction of separate ideas and strategies in group projects. In this respect, knowledge sharing builds the means by which these changes are reflected and tracked in line with the project deliverables (Brown, Dennis, & Venkatesh, 2010). Due to the fact that the group cognition is premised on the information the members operate during decision-making, group awareness indicates the readiness and availability of team while working on a particular project (Ackermann et al., 2010).
In this respect, knowledge sharing can be considered as a tool by which the degree of group awareness is identified and managed in the process of success group project execution (Aiken, Vanjani, & Krosp, 2013).
Leadership and Group Knowledge Sharing in Project Management
Good leadership has the ability to elucidate the way to the objective, diminishing deterrents that avert the members from arriving at these objectives and augment the group’s fulfillment in accomplishing project objective (Ackermann et al., 2010). Leaders are capable of creating and upholding the connection between fulfillment and output of the group by utilizing diverse authority styles whose viability could be directed by the complexity of the group project (Antunes & Costa, 2010).
The leader must have the capacity to acclimate to distinctive programs and exercises and test issues from diverse points of view and in the meantime, have an authority over the available technology in group project management (Chen & Kyaw-Phyo, 2012). Another point of contention is that the interactive teams might have a tendency to perform badly. The poor performance is due to the fact that the individuals have a trend to conform their output to the party who is at the bottom in tracking output as part of project management (Brown, Dennis, & Venkatesh, 2010).
It is a fact that people or team members will not perform well simply due to the presence of a leader who cannot encourage knowledge sharing. The leader has to have good leadership qualities and has to perform better to set a good example and become a role model himself for any strategy encouraging group knowledge sharing to function effectively (Ackermann et al., 2010).
In order to keep the efforts of the masses concentrated in one direction, that is, achieving the group project goal, effectively project leadership is necessary. Without a leader, the efforts of the team members of a project will be scattered and the motive will not be achieved (Chen & Kyaw-Phyo, 2012). An efficient leader will have the motivation injected in the project implementers and they will work as a team. Efficient leaders can have a great impact on the group knowledge sharing through group project, especially in technology management (Aiken, Vanjani, & Krosp, 2013). Therefore, an effective group project management should have leaders who have the competence to motivate the team and lead them to proactively share knowledge for effective project outcome.
In summary, the literature review suggests that there is a strong relationship between successful project outcome and group knowledge sharing through group projects in technology management. Specifically, the relationship was also noted to result to optimal attractive outcome when appropriate project management strategy is incorporated. It was also established that group knowledge sharing has an impact on performance effectiveness among the group project execution team. Besides, the literature review suggested that efficiency in project management has improved over the years due to implementation of different group knowledge sharing strategies that create an ideal project execution environment.
This section of the paper will examine the method to be applied in collection data and analyzing the results. Since this study is focused on a specific place, that is the department of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University, the researcher will apply research survey approach to gather data through qualitative analysis. The choice of qualitative analysis was informed by the need to properly facilitate proper understanding of attributes related to satisfaction in group participation as influenced by proactive group sharing.
From the research survey targeting 30 respondents, the research will analyze the results in order to identify the dominant approach in group participation that guarantees satisfactions of those involved in group projects. Application of this approach is necessary in facilitating identification of different statistical patterns emerging from the collected data as related to the variables of study.
Since the proposed research study is focused, dynamic, and subjective, the researcher opted for qualitative analysis since it is flexible to accommodate different tools of data analysis, within different margins of error (Creswell, 2012). The researcher will apply appropriate approach in scrutinizing collected data by use of Google docs software. The recorded interview and questionnaires will be subjected to transcription to identify relevant responses from each respondent in order to identify converging and diverging responses for special treatment.
During data collection, the research will observe certain steps that guarantee protection of the privacy of respondents by issuing informed consent letter requesting for permission and assuring the participants of their privacy. The informed consent form will highlight the scope of respondent’s participation, freedom to respond or not to respond to the questions, rights and responsibilities, and general permission to participate.
The researcher will proceed to organize for interviews and drop questionnaires once the respondents give consent. The questionnaire and interviews will be done in English language since the targeted respondents use English as first or second language. The use of English language will facilitate in-depth communication since there will be no risk of language barrier in conducting the survey study (Creswell, 2012). The interview and questionnaires will have a space for recording general responses that are not included in the guided research questions.
Participants or Subjects
The survey study will target students in the department of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University who are currently working in group projects in technology management. The respondents will be chosen randomly within the department. The rationale for targeting this category of respondent was informed by the need to collect information from all the stakeholders who have worked or are currently working on group projects in technology management. The sample space of 30 respondents is adequate to study the subject topic as representing the actual situation in knowledge share and level of satisfaction in group projects.
In picking the respondents, the researcher will adopt the random snowballing strategy to ensure that all dynamics in this group such as gender, age, responsibilities, and position in the group projects (Creswell, 2012). Besides, acceptance of this sample space would function within the scope of carrying out a comparative study towards establishing the relationship between level of satisfaction and group knowledge sharing in group projects dealing with technology management.
The scope of a study refers to the strategy of concentrating research on specific region and targeting specific group of respondents that are directly affected by the research aims. In relation to the proposed study, the scope of the research methodology will be to examine the magnitude to which knowledge sharing through group projects influences the level of satisfaction of the 30 participants. The instruments that will be used to address this scope are questionnaire and interviews are discussed below.
In collecting data through the research survey, the researcher will use self administered questionnaire prepared through the 5-point likert scale. As indicated by Creswell (2012), the questionnaire will enable the targeted respondents to express different opinions on the research questions. The choice of questionnaire was informed by its affordability to administer and convenience. The design of the questionnaires will be done in a simple language to ensure that the targeted respondents are fully integrated in the study. The research will ensure that the time allocated to drop and pick the questionnaires is reasonable.
The research will be carried out through semi-structured interview questions that are open and close-ended. The researcher will carry out one of one interview with respondents who are available and can allocate fifteen minutes to issue response. The direct interview will be ideal in capturing gestures, experiences, and opinion of the respondents that accompanies responses to each question asked. Since the researcher is already trained on professionalism, it is expected that the interaction with the respondents will guarantee credible and reliable responses.
The survey sample picked by the researcher can be described as representing verifiable, clear, and scientific criteria for reviewing decisions in the flexible sector under scrutiny. The big sample space and inclusion of different categories of respondents is representative of the situation on the ground in the sector. Besides, the extensive sample space will be ideal for comparative research in testing degree and accuracy at different interval. Based on these aspects, the survey research is predicted to be representational and accurate in addressing the research questions (Creswell, 2012).
Creswell (2012) describes validity and reliability as determining the magnitude of accuracy in data collection during research. The aspect of validity is achieved through pre-testing the questions to be asked against the objectives of the research. The aspect of reliability examines the consistency in research instruments application and outcome generated. Since the research intends to apply these concepts in the process of carrying out survey study, it is predicted that the findings are likely to “reflect the unique understanding that personal experiences bring to the development of case study” (Creswell, 2012, p. 43).
The proposed integration of direct interview and questionnaire will balance the competencies and practices in terms of relevance to the aim of the study. Before accepting the respondents to participate in the study, the research will ensure that demographic and eligibility tests are rolled out to meet the present participation criteria (Creswell, 2012).
The questionnaires will be sent to the department targeted by the researcher besides scheduling direct interviews with respondents who can afford a break of fifteen minutes to respond to the questions. For the questionnaires, the researcher will drop the sheets and pick them within four days to give the respondents enough time to answer the questions. The researcher will include his contacts in the questionnaire to respond to any inquiry raised by the respondents in the shortest time possible (Creswell, 2012).
The entire research survey process will embrace series of acceptable ethical principles of any scientific research. The first ethical practice that will be applied is inclusion of informed consent forms to accompany the questionnaire and interview sheets. The researcher will also request for permission from relevant authority to carry out research in the department at the university through a formal letter addressed to head of the department. In the process of carrying out the research, the researcher will address concerns such as privacy of the respondents through assuring parties involved of their rights to keep their identity anonymous (Creswell, 2012).
Since the proposed research will be scientific in nature, the research will abide by the moral guideline on the scope and usage of data collected. In addition, the process of participant selection, probing, and interview will be carried out in a professional manner to ensure that the aspects of balance in demographic traits and random sampling are observed. Therefore, all targeted respondents will be selected by the virtue of their roles in the group projects and acceptance to adhere to the guidelines of being admitted to participate in the research (Creswell, 2012).
Data Collection and Analysis Plan
After data collection and transcription, data analysis will be carried out for the data collected through direct interviews and questionnaire. The collected data from the survey will be examined via the SPSS package to generate cross tabulation for carrying out comparative analysis. As opined by Creswell (2012), quantification of the dependent and independent variables can be achieved through correlation analysis with the support of charts, figures, charts, and tables.
The data decoding will also encompass analysis of variance, which focuses on establishing the mean differences in the set of data collected through disintegrated variation in the sets. The researcher will use analysis of variance to establish any existing statistical variances between the mean of each set of data (Creswell, 2012). ANOVA (analysis of variance) is focused on substantiating the variances of different means of data sets. This statistical analysis methodology dwells on disintegrating the variances that exist between data sets from different groups. In this study, ANOVA analysis will establish the statistical variance between sets of data gathered.
The researcher will adopt qualitative method of research by integrating group knowledge sharing to success of group projects and satisfaction of the participants through a scientific interpretation (Creswell, 2012). The methodology of the study will be addressed through research survey targeting 30 respondents drawn from the department of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University. The data analysis will carried out via ANOVA after passing the data through SPSS to aid in the comparison-based study.
Ackermann, F., Andersen, D. F., Eden, C., & Richardson, G. P. (2010). Using a group decision support system to add value to group model building. System Dynamics Review, 4(26), 335-346.
Aiken, M., Vanjani, M., & Krosp, J. (2013). Group decision support systems. Review of Business, 1(6), 38-43.
Antunes, F., & Costa, J. (2010). The missing link: Theoretical reflections on decision reconstruction. Portuguese Journal of Management Studies, 6(15), 197-213.
Brown, S. A., Dennis, A. R., & Venkatesh, V. (2010). Predicting collaboration technology use: Integrating technology adoption and collaboration research. Journal of Management Information Systems, 27(2), 9-53.
Chen, J., & Kyaw-Phyo, L. (2012). User satisfaction with group decision making process and outcome. Journal of Computer Information Systems, 52(8), 30-39.
Creswell, J. (2012). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.