This research investigates individual differences in the context of knowledge management system (KMS) usage, knowledge sourcing and learning outcome. Individual differences are measured for mastery, performance and avoidance goal orientations. Individuals with high mastery goal orientations prefer to master and develop new skills and knowledge. Those with high performance goal orientations prefer to compare their performances with others. Lastly, those with high avoidance goal orientations prefer to avoid a new task if they feel incompetent. User posting and reading activities in a KMS are examined over a 3- month period. Consistent with goal orientation theory, the results show that mastery goal orientation has an effect on reading, knowledge sourcing and learning outcome. In contrast, performance goal orientation has an effect only on posting, but not on reading. To a lesser degree than mastery goal orientation, avoidance goal orientation has an effect on reading, but not posting. These findings have important implications for both knowledge management researchers and practitioners.
Lin, Julian; Chan, Hock C.; and Wei, Kowk Kee, "The effects of goal orientations on knowledge management system usage, knowledge sourcing and learning outcome" (2006). ECIS 2006 Proceedings. 37.