Charismatic Leadership and User Acceptance of IT

flickr.com/photos/blacksnob/2229230806/ (cc 2.0)

flickr.com/photos/blacksnob/2229230806/ (cc 2.0)

Research Question: How does perceived leadership behaviour influence the acceptance and use of information technology?

Abstract: Although there is widespread agreement that leadership has important effects on information technology (IT) acceptance and use, relatively little empirical research to date has explored this phenomenon in detail. This paper integrates the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) with charismatic leadership theory, and examines the role of project champions influencing user adoption. PLS analysis of survey data collected from 209 employees in seven organizations that had engaged in a large-scale IT implementation revealed that project champion charisma was positively associated with increased performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence and facilitating condition perceptions of users. Theoretical and managerial implications are discussed, and suggestions for future research in this area are provided.

Model:

Findings: Project champion charisma was positively associated with increased performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence and facilitating condition perceptions of users.

Implications: (1) Leadership is essential to IT implementation outcomes. (2) Two specific categories of charismatic leadership behaviors were associated with adoption: (a) Inspirational Motivation (optimism, enthusiasm, vision, confidence), and (b) Idealized Influence (pride, purpose, altruism, respect, morality, collectivity). (3) Leaders who consistently engage in these behaviors, have followers who form positive PE, EE, SI, FC, thus positive BI, thus positive USE.

Citation: Neufeld, D.J., Dong, L., & Higgins, C.A. (2007). Charismatic leadership and user acceptance of information technology. European Journal of Information Systems 16(4), pp. 494-510. [link]