The role of mindful organising in relation to innovation adoption of employees in logistics

pp.1-25. Peter Oeij, Katarina Putnik, Steven Dhondt, Wouter Van Der Torre, Paul Preenen, Ernest De Vroome


Introduction: Due to fast technological changes organisations need to innovate to remain economically viable. However, many innovations do not get implemented. This study examines innovation adoption of employees as one of the factors responsible for unsuccessful implementation. The assumption is that mindful organising positively associates with innovation adoption. The study looked into the role of mindful organising of employees, which includes resilience, as well as organisational and individual characteristics in relation to innovation adoption, i.e., the actual use of innovation by employees. 

Methods:  Managers of 110 Dutch organisations from the transport and logistics sector took part in a survey in May 2017.  They were asked to evaluate the behaviour of the employees they are supervising. The dependent variable was the actual use of innovation, as indicator of innovation adoption. Independent variables were mindful organising, workplace innovation, supportive leadership, and perception of innovation (perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and subjective norm). Data was analysed using multiple regression (path analysis).

Results: Workplace innovation, voice and perceived ease of use have a direct relation with actual use of innovation by employees (i.e., successful innovation adoption), according to the answers provided by their managers. Mindful organising is related with all aspects of perception of innovation: perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness and subjective norm, i.e., the influence of important others (e.g., managers and co-workers). Mindful organising has an indirect influence on the actual use of innovation via perceived ease of use of innovation. Supportive leadership has a relation with perceived usefulness and subjective norm, and an indirect influence on actual use of innovation via perceived usefulness.

Conclusion: Mindful organising (including resilience), workplace innovation, perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use associate with innovation adoption. The practical implication is that, besides making sure that innovation is perceived as useful and easy to apply, management needs to ensure there is an environment that fosters mindful organising and gives employees sufficient room to express their opinion in the team in the process of renewal, if innovation is to be adopted by employees, and eventually implemented effectively in organisations. Apart from mindful organising attention for workplace innovation, i.e. a combination of high job autonomy, high team voice and involving operational employees in decision making, is of significant importance. While mindful organising refers to the organisational culture, workplace innovation particularly stresses organisational design elements (Oeij, Rus and Pot, 2017).

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