The Influence of organizational culture on innovation in technology SMEs
Waimiri, Michael Thuita
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Culture is often considered a crucial basis for how an organization operates. It can be used as an enabler for employees to develop certain habits and fills the gaps between what is formally announced and what actually happens. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of organizational culture on innovation in Information Technology (IT) Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Kenya. It sort to explore the dominant culture in these companies and how the organizations can enhance innovation by studying the factors that influence an innovation culture. The study used a framework for analyzing organizational culture developed by Cameron and Quinn where culture is examined as a set of competing values in four dimensions. The study employed a descriptive survey research design. The population of study was employees in small and medium-sized information technology companies. A simple random sampling technique was used to select the companies and employees to respond to the survey. The study was conducted in more than twenty IT companies, with 66 out of 110 respondents returning the filled questionnaires. This represented a 60% response rate. Primary data was collected through self-administered questionnaires. Descriptive statistics and inferential data analysis method was used to analyze the gathered data. It was analyzed using IBM SPSS software and presented in tables and figures. The study established that a market culture is dominant in technology SMEs and goes on to suggest that this is a potential hindrance to innovation due to its focus on stability and control. The findings showed that organizations with cultures that are flexible, collaborative and encouraged employee participation had the highest correlation to innovation. Clan and adhocracy cultures exhibited these characteristics. Latent factors that affect an innovation culture in organizations were also derived. Finally, the study recommends areas of further research like using qualitative methods of data collection and analysis to uncover deeper cultural aspects or using a different organizational culture model for the study. The terms Information Technology (IT) and Information Communication and Technology (ICT) were used interchangeably throughout the study to mean the same industry.