Social capital, knowledge sharing and organizational performance: What structural relationship do they have in hotels?

Taegoo Terry Kim, Gyehee Lee, Soyon Paek, Seunggil Lee

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

124 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate an integrative model that explores the influence of knowledge-sharing enablers (social capital (SC), including structural, relational, and cognitive SC) on knowledge-sharing (KS) processes (KS behaviors: knowledge collecting (KC) and knowledge donating (KD)) as well as a further superior KS outcome (organizational performance). Design/methodology/approach: The survey was administered in 14 top tier five-star hotels in Seoul, Korea. Employees of the hotels participated in the survey; 486 surveys were used to investigate a research model and hypotheses using a path analysis. Findings: The research confirmed the importance of SC in the context of KS from the resource-based view. The paper provides empirical evidence that structural, relational, and cognitive SC affected KC and KD, which in turn influenced organizational performance. Interestingly, whereas cognitive SC has the strongest effect on employees' KC, relational SC has the strongest effect on employees' KD. The impact of employees' KC on organizational performance appears to be stronger than that of KD. Practical implications: The relationships among KS enablers, processes, and organizational performance may provide a clue regarding how hotels can promote KS culture, which focuses on the social dynamics derived from interpersonal and group relationships to boost their performance by increasing employees' willingness to collect knowledge from and donate knowledge to colleagues. Originality/value: This study explores the under-researched subject of SC with regard to KS and their roles in promoting organizational performance within a hospitality industry context. The study is among the first to examine SC as an organizational resource, two distinctive types of KS behaviors as an organizational capability, and organizational performance from both an integrative (KS enablers-processes-outcomes framework) and resource-based view of the firm's perspective simultaneously. Especially, this study identifies the specific mechanism of two distinctive types of employees' KS behaviors, such as KC and KD, between SC factors and organizational performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)683-704
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2013


  • Employees behaviour
  • Hotels
  • Knowledge collecting
  • Knowledge donating
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Knowledge-sharing behaviour
  • Knowledge-sharing enablers-processes-outcomes framework
  • Organizational performance
  • Social capital
  • South Korea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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