University of Twente Student Theses


The role of leadership and emotional intelligence in times of adopting new Industry 4.0 technologies

Manko, Jerome (2023) The role of leadership and emotional intelligence in times of adopting new Industry 4.0 technologies.

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Abstract:Purpose: Evermore organizations opened their doors for the digital transformation, also known as Industry 4.0, as it can be a decisive enabler of ensuring competitive advantage. To make that transition as smooth and fruitful as possible, employee’s acceptance of such new revolutionary technologies is pivotal. However, few studies have investigated the determinants of employee acceptance. Hence, this study attempts to investigate how manager’s leadership style, specifically, transformational leadership, and instrumental leadership, as well as manager’s and employee’s emotional intelligence affect employee’s acceptance of Industry 4.0 technologies, and eventually, their adoption to Industry 4.0 technologies. Theoretical background: This study makes primarily use of the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT), indicating four different factors that determine individual’s willingness to use new technologies. To cover external factors influencing individual’s technology adoption, this study focuses on the transformational leadership theory, relating to manager’s motivational aspects, and the instrumental leadership theory, relating to manager’s strategic and task-monitoring aspects. In addition, emotional intelligence is considered as a novel factor. Methodology: The German-based logistics organization made use of Industry 4.0 technologies in their daily business, including Smart Supply Chain and Smart Working. A mix of qualitative and quantitative methods was used, consisting of 13 semi-structured interviews, and surveys(N=40) with team leaders and employees, engaging in the Industry 4.0 technology adoption process. Findings: The qualitative results showed that adopting transformational and instrumental leadership styles contribute to employee’s Industry 4.0 technology adoption, extending the existing UTAUT model. Moreover, manager’s and employee’s emotional intelligence are suggested as an additional factor contributing to employee’s technology acceptance and therefore, further extend the UTAUT model. Additionally, the quantitative findings corroborate some of the qualitative findings in relation to perceived ease of use and facilitating conditions for both transformational and instrumental leadership, while they contradict them in terms of performance expectancy and social influence for both leadership styles. Further, they support the effect of emotional intelligence on facilitating conditions, while they contradict the effect on social influence. Implications & Future Research: This study has both theoretical and practical implications. First, transformational and instrumental leadership have been suggested as potential antecedents to the UTAUT model, affecting all its four sub-dimensions. Second, both employee’s and team lead’s emotional intelligence have been suggested to moderating the effect of facilitating conditions and social influence. Practical implications related to organization’s culture are suggested. Further, training sessions on both technological knowledge and emotional intelligence are proposed, to cover both employee’s and manager’s hard and soft skills. Moreover, besides technological savvy, organizations should focus on emotional intelligence in the recruitment process. Additionally, implications for future research are proposed.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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