THE IMPACT OF LEADERSHIP STYLE AND ORGANISATIONAL CULTURE ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF E-SERVICES: AN EMPIRICAL STUDY IN SAUDI ARABIA
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There is a general scarcity of empirical studies investigating the impact of leadership styles on e-Government use in the service industry. This is doubly true of styles such as transformational, transactional and servant leadership. Theorised models propose that leadership style forms the desired organisational culture for implementing e-services, organisational culture being the mediator and the national culture the moderator. This research fills the empirical gap by investigating how leadership forms the organisational culture that facilitates and enhances the implementation and use of e-government in organisations in Saudi Arabia. The research was conducted through the sampling of employees in private and public sectors. While the data for the leadership styles, organisational culture and national culture were collected through the use of questionnaires designed for employees, the e-services were measured through organizations’ official websites. All data were processed and analysed using computer software (WarPPLS) and SPSS. The results support the hypothesized relationships proposed in the theoretical model, wherein all constructs under study (except for the mediating effect of National Culture (NC) on the relationship between leadership styles and organisational culture) positively affect e-services implementation, including Individualized Influence (IINF), Intellectual Stimulation (ISTIM), Individualized Support (ISUP), Contingent Reward (CR), Management by Exception (MbE), Servant Leadership (SL), Bureaucratic Culture (BC), Involvement Culture (INVC), Mission Culture (MC), Innovative Culture (INC), Task Culture (TC) and Future Culture (FC) and the mediating effect of National Culture (NC) on the relationship between organisational culture and e-services implementation. The results also indicated that specific leadership styles have direct and positive impacts on e-services implementation and indirect influences through a mediating organisational culture and a moderating national culture. The empirical findings bring new evidence in support of this proposal, indicating that specific leadership styles play crucial roles in influencing processes and outcomes within organizations. According to these results, e-services differ from one organization to another, and these variations were correlated to leadership styles and organizational culture. It was found that there were positive and significant correlations between total leadership styles (hybrid) and total organizational cultures (hybrid) in the full sample and in e-services implementation. E-services implementation increases when the mean for leadership styles rises, but types of organizational culture were also crucial factors in achieving better e-services. The national culture variable, which was used as a moderator, did not have a significant influence on the relationship between leadership style and organisational culture. Therefore, the moderating role of national culture in the relationship between leadership styles and organisational culture did not have any level of statistical significance, which means that regardless of the national culture (power distance or uncertainty avoidance) the effect of leadership style on organisational culture in the model adopted in this study appeared to be quite consistent. The study links theory to practice by explaining the subject of modern leadership styles and shows their relevance to the Saudi organisations and business environment. As such, it opens up a domain for investigating the application of modern management theories in a different culture. Although a plethora of studies have investigated the effect of factors such as organisational culture and/or national culture on e-services implementation in Saudi’s organisations, no study (to the best of this writer's knowledge) has tackled the issue of e-services implementation and leadership styles in those organisations. Therefore, studying e-services implementation and leadership styles in Saudi’s organisations is a contribution to the literature on the service industry, adding to its knowledge with a case study from a different cultural setting. The study also opens up a horizon for future research on developing the business sector, as it uses standardized tools in terms of reliability and validity within the context of the e-services implementation. Therefore, this study contributes to existing knowledge in that leadership and organisational culture are revealed to be key contributors to e-services implementation. The three leadership styles - transformational, transactional, and servant leadership - were empirically found to be appropriate styles that work well in e-services implementation projects. These styles have direct and positive benefits to e-services implementation and an indirect impact through the mediating means of organisational culture, and empirical findings bring new evidence for this notion. Moreover, the six organisational cultural dimensions were judged to be appropriate supporters of e-services implementation, specifically: involvement, mission, innovation, task-orientation, bureaucracy, and future-orientation.
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