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Employee Innovation in the Hospitality Industry: the Mediating Role of Psychological Safety

Alzyoud, S and Partington, S and Mitchell, C and tom-Dieck, D (2017) Employee Innovation in the Hospitality Industry: the Mediating Role of Psychological Safety. In: Council for Hospitality Management Education (CHME'17), 16 May 2017 - 19 May 2017, Aalborg, Denmark.

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Official URL: http://chme17.org/

Abstract

In the current turbulent and highly competitive environment, innovation can be considered a strategic weapon that enables hotels to survive, compete, and succeed. Innovation has been advocated to enhance hotels’ products, services, productions, processes, and overall performance. Innovation activities can take place as a result of employees’ behaviour, hence there is a call for greater attention to employees, in order to enhance hotel performance. Since innovation activities may involve uncertainty and risk, it is crucial to understand what makes employees feel safe, also referred to in literature as psychological safety, and encouraged to engage in the innovative behaviour. This conceptual paper presents an exploration of the factors that could encourage employee innovation in the hospitality industry. This relationship is supposedly mediated by psychological safety of the employees. The model propose seven essential elements that can promote innovative behaviour in the hospitality industry. Support and motivation from the management, high-quality relationships amongst members at work, autonomy, role expectation, and proactive personality, as an interpersonal trait, are all proposed to be positively associated with psychological safety and employee innovation, whereas openness to experiences and challenges at work are suggested to be positively associated only with employee innovation. Thus, understanding what promotes innovative behaviour will help hoteliers to cultivate and encourage the innovative behaviour amongst hotels’ employees, which can, in turn, enhance hotels’ services quality and performance.

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